Sunday, 12 September 2010
ASICS introduce GEL -FUJI whilst INOV-8 HIT THE ROAD.
Ideally I would have put off the track visit for another day but Friday I had a meetimg with the rep from ASICS. He was keen to remind me of the imminent arrival of their new low profile trails shoe, the ASICS GEL-FUJI ES in November. RRP £65. Said to be based on the HyperSpeed road racing shoe it should satisfy many "minimalist" fans.
It's only one of 7 trails shoes the company will offer for 2011 including 3 Goretex upper models; starting with the excellent value for money GEL-TRAIL LAHAR 2 G-TX at £70 RRP. Whilst Asics have increased their offroad offering, offroad specialists INOV-8 have gone the other way.
Inov-8 will offer 3 new road shoes. The "hypersonic" Road-X 222 (gs) , racing shoe, Road-X 233 "super natural racing shoe. Both of these are "unisex". Plus the Road-X 255(male) and Road -X 238 (female) for racing/training.
Inov-8 ask us to consider the foot in its natural state....barefoot. No support, no medial posts,
no gel, no air pads. The foot flat to the floor with no raised heel. These road shoes reflect their desire to incorporate "minimalist" barefoot running principles into their shoes.
Inov-8's don't expect us all to "go minimalist" overnight. They suggest we might start with the Road-X 255 then gradually reduce the cushioning with the Road-X233 then later the Road-X 222.
All well and good. However, despite stripping the shoes of the "bells and whistles" of other premium priced road models, the Inov-8 shoes will be initially £95 RRP ! A limited appeal I would suggest! Not just because of the price but also due to the fact that 100% of existing Inov-8 buyers are off-road runners ; a big percentage of whom NEVER EVER race on the road and even resort to head torch running offroad to avoid running on the roads in the dark nights of winter. We shall see.
TERRIFYING HALF MARATHON
So that was Friday. I would need another day before returning to the road, so SATURDAY it was back on trail for a steady 7. With a mile to go I caught up to a young lady who had stopped her run on the narrow trail in front of me and had pulled aside to let me pass through. However, as is my want, I slowed down just a tad and encouraged her to keep going for that last mile. She said she would be doing the Great North run half marathon next week and was "terrified" at the prospect ! I asked what her longest run had been since entering in June and she said that, because of her degree finals, she had only managed to get up to 8 miles. We agreed this would be one exam in which she won't be getting a "first" as she is hoping for in her university exams! I 'm sure on the day with the encouragement of the crowds and the adrenalin she'll be fine but I stand by my belief that you have to be able to train the distance before you race the distance and that goes for marathons. I spoke to several customers in the shop on Friday and none of them had exceeded 10 miles in their longest training run in preparation for the World's largest 1/2 marathon from Newcastle to South Shields in England's north east.
ON YER BIKE!
Meanwhile, my training week was brought to a close with a good solid , undulating road run on narrow country lanes. Significantly, starting out at 11.15 a.m. I only saw 3 other runners; in contrast well over 100 cyclists of all shapes and sizes jostled for space with oblivious car drivers. Makes me think I am in the wrong line of business selling running gear rather than cycling gear!
Not a sparkling run today time wise but coped with the hills quite well and finished with acceleration as usual. The 10 brought me up to 51 miles for the week; just one track session (the 2 x 2 ) in there following last week's race. Maintaining the year's average at just over 47 miles. But if I am to do another half marathon this year I must practice what I preach and add a few miles to today's length of run!