A Trip to the Hills and a New Shoe Experiment

Training: Sunday I headed out for 20 miles in the hills of Marlboro. I had mapped this out earlier in the week on MapMyRun. After mapping it I also drove it on my way home from work one night. I realized driving it that it had some nasty hills at the exact halfway point. I went back and forth with myself about whether I should run the hills in the middle of a 20 miler but ended up doing it, mainly because I was too lazy to map another alternate route. I’m glad I did, it was a great run, I will probably hit this route at least one more time before the marathon.

Shoes: I was looking at the tread wear on a pair of my oldest Brooks Adrenalines recently and decided to take them to my local running store. After looking at them the guy there confirmed that I am not a heel striker, I am landing mostly mid foot. On top of that my right foot is mostly neutral, with my left foot needing a little more stability. I had always assumed I was a heel striker (since most “experts” tout that as bad) and always leaned towards wearing high stability shoes. I trained for most of the Philadelphia Marathon in the high stability Brooks Trance (I am now wondering if maybe that played a part in my injury last season).

So I will probably be sticking with the lower stability Adrenalines for a while. However, on a whim I decided to try a pair of the Nike Free 3.0. Matt Fitzgerald is a fan of the Free in Brain Training for Runners, and I found a screaming deal on them at Running Warehouse so I figured I’d give them a try. Nike advertises the Free 3.0 as a minimalist shoe designed for neutral to mild overpronators for stengthening the feet. They are a far cry from the heavily cushioned running shoes on the market, and are supposed to be closer to the feel of barefoot running. Initially I will only wear them once a week for shorter distance running since most of my other shoes are nearing their life expectancy. If I hate running in them they are my new street shoes, since I think they look kind of cool.

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