Do you need expensive running shoes?

Lots of people, especially those who are new to running and wish to purchase their first pair of shoes, go to “marquee” sports shops to buy running shoes.  Prices in those shops range from P4000 to P6000.  I recommend instead to go to bargain shops and sports outlets.  These shops would carry last year’s “obsolete” models.  There’s no reason to get the latest, supposedly more advanced, running shoe.  In fact, there is some research that people may even be better off without running shoes.  The funny thing is that today’s P5000 shoe becomes next year’s bargain P2000 shoe only because a new model was released with small incremental changes, if any at all.    For example, a few months ago, Adidas launched a new set of Climacool running shoes.   The shoes came in “in a wide variety of exciting and vibrant colourways” like “fresh pink, intense green, sun yellow, radiant gold and red.”  The price?  P4,795.   Just today I came from The Sports Warehouse in Market Market and I found an older ClimaCool running shoe that was half that price.  I suspect that there is no major difference in the features.  The sole still looks the same.  The shoes still had the same type of laces.  It still has that ClimaCool material, the “unique Adidas-owned technology which offers the benefit of 360 degree ventilation.”  All this techno-jargon is hype.  Hype is what drives the running shoe market.  These shoe companies want us to believe that the newer models are technologically superior than its predecessor.  They use mumbo-jumbo terms like ultra-light polyutherene mesh and make us believe that the cushioning is based on NASA rocket science.    The only difference between the old and the new is that the new model has a different color scheme.  Would that justify the difference in price?




Where are the run results?

MizunoThe Mizuno Infinity Run ended two days ago, and yet we still haven’t seen any run results.   What’s taking  them so long?  We had timing chips, so how difficult is it to consolidate everybody’s start and end times and upload it?  It’s not like people are using analog stopwatches and tearing off stubs from the runners’ race bibs.  Or will we see something similar to the problem of the Men’s Health All-Terrain Race results?

In this day and age of computers and wireless technology, there’s no excuse to take more than 24 hours to upload race results.



My first 21K

Mizuno Infinity RunYes, that’s me. That’s me with a bright-yellow Brooks singlet, struggling at the final few meters of the Mizuno Infinity Run, my first foray into the 21K category. As I write this I still don’t have my official time, though I figure I finished at around the 2:28 mark. It was NOT a fulfilling run for me. Optimism must have gotten the best of me as I THOUGHT I could run a 21K at something close to a 10kph pace. And a 21K is a long 21 kilometers. The route took me atop the Fort Bonifacio flyover, all the way to South Super Highway along Buendia, back to Bonifacio Global City, then to Lawton Avenue, left to Bayani Avenue, leading to Libingan ng mga Bayani, then a U-turn back to BGC.

And yes my friends had commented that I must have been out of my mind to run a 21K in those minimalist Vibram shoes. I can’t say that it wasn’t a ridiculous idea, since the shoes were feather-light. Contrary to what people may think, it wasn’t a shock to my joints. I admit my legs were stiff after the run, and I figure that is because of the long distance rather than the shoes.

So what did I learn? What should I do differently to better my time?

I need to pace myself. I need to take it easy. I will probably slow my pace to 6.5 min/km. I shouldn’t hurry. Mental discipline is the key.

I have to carry one, maybe two, energy gels. I lost steam in the last 5 kilometers. Maybe some carbo-fuel can provide the final kick.