Not that I'm feeling old or anything lately. I mean, I'm officially going to enter into my racing age group here in a few months, and realize that turning 35 means I'm getting just that much closer to another decade.
Back to my point. RUNNING! I really really do have a love hate relationship with it. I've always loved it, even back when I was first starting and did all my runs on the treadmill. Even after years of injury resulting in a comeback pace of 11 min miles. EVEN after thousands of dollars spent on Physical Therapy, ART and a gazillion running assessments, insoles and custom orthotics. Yup, I still freaking love it. I love sweating my ass off, breathing hard, chatting with my friends, my husband while running the same loops over and over. I love running with my dogs. Watching their ears flap against the wind, and their tongues hanging out the side. The smiles when we stop and they collapse on the tile to cool down.
I love that I have found lululemon and I've never in my life been so comfortable in running clothes. Perfect support, no chafing and cute enough to wear anywhere. My wallet doesn't so much love this, but at least I look cute!
Over the years I've tried just about every stability and neutral shoe made. Nike, Saucony, Adidas, Brooks, Asics… Yup, tried them all. No insert, custom insert. Every time I think I've found the perfect match, the shoe changes and then it all goes to shit. I get massive blisters or something just feels off. Last year when I was doing a lot of running/fall racing, I went for yet another shoe/running evaluation and went a little bit out of my comfort zone and purchased a light weight race/trainer. Not one of the fancy slip on/no sock type shoe, but a big step (for me) in that direction. I did a lot of races in those shoes and thought it was such a big step for me to finally be able to wear a real RACE shoe! My IT bands seemed to be doing fine with them, so I was sold.
When I joined Team Newton/Athletes for a Cure for Ironman Canada, part of our sponsorship included 2 pairs of Newton shoes. I have to admit I didn't really care much about this, I just sorta had this mindset that those were for real runners. The ones who don't get injured and don't need support. That or the stupid ones who just buy them cause they are light and look cool.
I went online and picked out the one that was described as stability, the Motus/Motion. It was bright orange and way retro looking. When I got the package in the mail and I was instantly in love with the goofy look and then I tried them on and decided even if running in them didn't work out I was still going to be happy! They felt like a soft, weightless slipper!
I slowly started to build into them. Running 3 miles here and there. It took a few runs to get use to the sole having such an extended base (probably more so because I am a klutz and rarely pick up my feet). I started really liking how I felt in the shoes and grabbing them more often, especially for my transition runs. They just felt GOOD.
Just before my half ironman in July I tried them out for a 7mile race pace transition run. It was a hard run, but I felt fantastic and had absolutely no pain in my feet/hips or IT bands. I decided to wear them for the race. The run course had so much slanted road running, like so slanted we were actually running next to the curb. I was totally freaked out, but I finished the run with a new Half IM PR, no blisters and most importantly absolutely NO IT band pain…
My next long run before Ironman Canada was a 22 miler. I was scared for the distance, but since I was going to unknown territory anyway, decided why not try the Newtons out for the long run too?
Guess what? Awesome run, no blisters and again NO IT band pain. I was sold. I made the decision to wear them for the marathon and am so freaking happy I did. Not only did I have a personal best IM marathon split by 35mins, I also PR'd my stand alone marathon time by 13mins on a much harder course. I never had any pain, ended the race with just a small blister where I always get it. My feet weren't sore, my hips felt better than they did before the race.
Science and genetic make-up and studies and all that information that consumer goods products throw at us is totally overwhelming. I'm definitely a try and see kinda person, and as far as I can see Newton shoes are an amazing product! I'm super excited to keep running in them, and maybe some day I'll be confident enough to try on of their racing shoes.
As a side note, one of my biggest issues I've had over the years with my running shoes has been the durability. My shoes last 200-250miles MAX before I start to feel pain in my knees, back, and IT bands. Add that up and you are spending a lot of money. I recently talked with the Newton team at IMCA and found out that their shoes typically last about 400+miles and up to 900 on the really experienced runners. Even though the shoe (that I wear) is pricey at $175, I figured even if they last me 300-350 miles I'm still saving money.
Right now they are offering a 60day money back guarantee program. If you have ever thought about trying them, why not do it now? Shane's next to give them a go. He's been a Asics runner for about 6 years now….
p.s. no, i'm not sponsored by them, I just love to share when I find something I really really love!