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Nike Free Insole
Nike has long touted the design of their Free line of running shoes as having been inspired by barefoot running. Indeed, the newest Free shoes have the phrase “Barefoot Ride” written right on the insole (see photo at left). Personally, I'm a fan of the Frees since they suit my preference for light, flexible, moderately cushioned shoes. However, despite their more minimal structure, I don't think they really come even close to simulating the experience of running barefoot (few shoes do). In my recent review of the Nike Free 5.0 I cited a study that compared running biomechanics in the Nike Pegasus and the Nike Free 3.0. This research has been out for awhile, but I never wrote about the paper. Since I've been running a bunch in various Nike Free shoes lately, I thought I'd write up a summary. The study is authored by Richard Willy and Irene Davis and is more >>
Wed, May 20, 2015
Source: Runblogger
Nike Free 5.0 2015
Over the past several years the Nike Free 5.0 has consistently been one of the best selling athletic shoes in the United States. Go to any school and you're likely to see many kids sporting the flexible and colorful 5.0s. When I was in Disney World earlier this year the Free was probably among the most common shoes that I saw on folks at the parks. Where you are less likely to see the Free 5.0 is at a running race. The reason is that the immense popularity of the shoe is tied more to it's use for casual wear rather than for running. In terms of typical usage, it's more of a fashion shoe than a running shoe. I've been running in various versions of the Nike Free since 2009, and they have consistently been among my favorites. With their moderately thin, super-flexible soles, and minimally structured uppers, the Frees more >>
Mon, May 18, 2015
Source: Runblogger
Adidas XT5 1
The adidas adizero XT 5 was a pleasant surprise for me. I'd not seen much info about it until it just recently popped up on adidas' website, and after looking it over I decided it was worth a try. I had some previous experience with the adidas XT 3 and 4, but both of those shoes were much more substantial with deep lugged outsoles. They were also quite heavy (10+ oz.). With the XT 5, adidas stripped the shoe back (315 g in my size 13 which is usually around 8.5-9 oz in a size 9) and created a shoe that is essentially a trail version of the old pre-Boost adios 2 with a few key differences. Read on to find out if this is a good thing (hint: yep it is!). Fit looking down (XT 5 on right). Notice that I moved the entire lacing up one lace hole. more >>
Thu, May 14, 2015
Source: Runblogger
Usain Bolt Puma Ignite
by Austin Bonds The 119th running of the prestigious Boston Marathon ended recently, and needless to say the field was full of very fast runners. A good friend of mine finished in 2:59:50, though if I put his amazing time in perspective, the winner of the men's race, Lelisa Desisa of Ethiopia, broke the tape in 2:09:17. This is fifty minutes quicker. Two days before the marathon, thousands of runners also participated in the Boston Athletic Association (BAA) 5K race. Ben True finished the men's race first with a jaw dropping time of 13:22; Molly Huddle finished the women's race first with a time of 14:50. Huddle and True are both sponsored by Saucony. As it turns out, another buddy of mine, who previously worked for Big Peach Running Company and is now employed by Saucony, also competed in the BAA 5K. He finished the 3.1 mile course in 14:51. To put his more >>
Wed, May 13, 2015
Source: Runblogger
Polar A300 Activity Tracker
I've been using some form of activity tracker for a few years now. For a while I had a Fitbit (which went missing in Florida a few years ago), but my go-to device for the past year or so has been the Garmin Vivofit. For the most part I really like the Vivofit – solid battery life and tracking accuracy, smallish form-factor, works with a heart rate monitor, etc. But the Garmin Connect app isn't great, and I've had some issues getting the Vivofit to sync reliably with my phone (I lost a few months of data doing a factory reset in order to get it to sync). A few months ago Polar offered to send me a test sample of their new A300 fitness watch/activity tracker. I've never used a Polar device before, and being a bit of a gadget junkie, I agreed to try it out (Disclosure: the device more >>
Tue, May 12, 2015
Source: Runblogger
Heat Run
I feel like I write this post every spring. In fact, I probably do. I figure that maybe if I keep writing it, one year I'll learn to do things differently. This was not that year. Yesterday I went for a seven mile run. Nothing too special about that, but it was the first really hot day we've had this year in New Hampshire. The temperature was 89 degrees Fahrenheit when I checked after the run, and it was fairly humid. After a frigidly cold winter, my northern blood was definitely unprepared for a run in these conditions. To top things off, I didn't bring any water. “It's only seven miles”, I told myself. I ran eight just a few days before and had no issues. The splits in the table at the top of the post tell the tale of this one. I went out easy for mile one, then settled more >>
Mon, May 11, 2015
Source: Runblogger