Saturday, February 16, 2013

The Hobo in the Mist

Gather round my children and listen to my tale of the HOBO IN THE MIST….

It was a cool, quiet, dark pre-dawn morning as I pulled into the parking lot. I was the first. Out of the darkness appeared another, and then another, then 2 more, with one final one showing up rounding out our 6. As we gathered and shared pleasantries, I was nervous. I had never gone as far as I had planned to go and wasn’t sure I was going to make it. With that fear lingering like a dog fart, we took off. Into the morning we ran, oblivious to what would come…

We weren’t far into our journey when it happened. Our route took us down a main thoroughfare and then under a bridge to connect to a trail that runs throughout most of the city. What was lurking under that bridge?  It was the horror, the unfathomable…the bridge hobo.  At first it was hard to make out in the greys and blacks of the pre-dawn morning. One of our group had a headlamp and its yellowish tint briefly splayed over the object in question. Nestled up amongst the shadows was a patch that was decidedly not rock. Not fully believing what we saw, we quickly ran past. No matter, the damage had been done…THE CREATURE STIRRED! We had woken the HOBO IN THE MIST.

Oblivious to what terror had been unleashed we moved on, wondering if what we saw was real. It was turning into a very nice run. The sun was rising, cutting through the darkness and lighting the path ahead. The group was lively and moving at a decent clip. And then it happened. Due to prior commitments, they turned back. About half the group returned to brave the creature under the bridge…never to be seen again. (Until next week)

The rest of the outbound journey was uneventful. More bridges but a suspicious lack of hobo nesting. Finally, after just under 7 miles out it was time for me to turn around and face my destiny.   It would be 6.5 long miles back to that point, to that shifting mass of uncertainty. The closer I got the more I worried that I may not make it out alive. And then around the bend I came and I could see it, looming. Under the bridge my eyes scanned the darkness as my legs ached; this was the longest I have ever run.  Would I have the intestinal fortitude to do battle under the bridge?

Hell no. I am not dumb. That dude could be crazy and I was alone. I would prefer to not turn up on a Dateline NBC show. I cut up above ground and skirted the bridge, running across the open street. I could see the parking lot in the far distance so I dialed it up a bit. I LOVE finishing strong. Finally, FINALLY I got to my car. 13.93 miles under shoe I had eclipsed the half marathon distance I had been chasing for so long now.  Of course, as tired as I was, I had 2 young kids’ birthday parties ahead of me.  In the end, I think I would have been safer fighting the…HOBO IN THE MIST.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Shoe Wishlist

I haven't posted for a while (working on a few), so I figured I would whip something up. I am taking the easy way out and making a shoe wish list. I don't know why ANYONE would want to read what shoes I would like to try out, but maybe a shoe company is out there that needs a shoe reviewed or takes pity on me. Maybe someone has used one or more of these shoes and has a few comments to give. Or maybe I am just deliriously optimistic (betting on the latter). Without further blathering...the list:

Skora Running Form R01-002M02 SKORA FORM, Men's Natural

First of all it should be known that I am sucker for a company that interacts with people. I love twitter. I think it is a great medium to interact, even if briefly. Skora has a fantastic social media presence. That alone would make me interested. Their customers have given absolutely RAVE reviews about their shoes. I love their philosophy of "Run Real". Something I am working on in my own running. Another great thing I have heard from others who wear these is that they are absolute energizer bunnies. They just keep on going and going. I definitely like that in a world where 250 miles is the supposed max life on some shoes. Another cool thing about these is the different material on the uppers. Everyone needs more goat skin in their life really.

Altra Zero Drop The One
Altra is another company with a very good social media presence. I appreciate that. I have made a move to less drop to try and get my striking more forward. One thing I am intrigued about Altra footwear is their options as far as the inserts. That seems like a cool feature to be able to adjust accordingly. I am still learning about my running and developing as a runner. Those options would help a lot in my development. This is also another company that has gotten good reviews from most everyone I have talked to. This and the Skora brand are a little less widespread throughout the retail outlets, so they have very generous return policies as well. I like that. However, this shoe doesn't come out until March, so, definitely going to have to wait it out...

My first pair of true running shoes were Mizuno Wave Rider 15 LE’s. I love them, I still have them, and I still run in them occasionally. I also tested a pair of non-running shoes for Mizuno (which hopefully I can/will review later). The company has a special place in my heart as they are one of the major reasons I love running so much. Of course, I am also competitive as hell, so I always want to race. Hence, race shoe! This was one of the first that I read about and the first that I wanted to try. Cannot have a wish list without this bad boy on there. Another shoe that seems very well recommended, with one recommendation being a tattoo of this shoe. That is good enough for me.

First of all, I am sucker for color. As numerous scientific studies (I made this up) have proven, color = fast. Look at it. Just having it on my screen has made my computer process faster. That being said, it is a 0 drop, flexible shoe built to move naturally. I like flexible and I like natural and I like this shoe. And because that just isn’t enough, it actually says ‘bootie’ in their website technology description. The 12 year old in me finds that hilarious. I know and run with a lot of people that are die hard Saucony fans, wife included. Sign me up.


I don’t do much trail running, but I can appreciate the need for a good trail shoe to get ready for them mud runs, or just change pace from the pavement. So I am throwing a trail shoe in here because I have none and would love to get in one to run a few trails near my work/home.
Men's ATV19+ Shoes V53165

Haha, just kidding. I love trying new things, but this may be even a bit too far for me. I really don’t know what I want out of trail shoe, again, as I have not run much on trail. I am intrigued by the Inov-8 Trailroc 245 and the Merrell Mix Master Move. I could also see maybe the Brooks Pure Grit 2 as I currently log a lot of miles in the Pure Cadence 2. Maybe someone out there has some good recommendations as I am not very well versed.

So that is my list, really hoping my budget (kids, they’re expensive) and miles put in allow me to experience a couple if not all of these. I am sure once I do, I will only want to try more.