Wednesday evening I headed over to the CVNP park for the summer version of their fun runs. Some may recall a few months ago when I attended the spring fun run and enjoyed a few miles in Salomon shoes for the first time. We met at Brandywine Falls, for those familiar with the area, a place I honestly had not been to for a run before!
I left my house in enough time to arrive 30 minutes early, in case parking was a mess, but my directions sent me to the wrong road! Ugg! Good thing I left so early. I arrived with enough time to strap on my water belt, sign a waiver and listen to instructions. However I also arrived in enough time to see a selection of new friends gathered about the grassy field.
What do you know? We were testing Brooks products thanks to a Brooks rep and Fleet Feet Sports! I happily kicked off my shoes and wiggled into a pair of PrueGrits (which as I mentioned after the Muddy Paws race, I have been eying).
The course options were to run about 1.5 miles, 4.5 miles, or 5.5 miles. Gale and I started off near Niall and began chatting about upcoming races, including plans for the Run Woodstock I’ve been so into lately. Apparently several people are doing the hotel option as they’re only coming in for the 1 event. I however want to be there for the entire weekend of festivities so I guess I really am pitching a tent. Eiip.
Eventually Gale and separated from Niall and continued running and chatting. I was feeling really strong until I found our first mile was around 15 minutes…still I wasn’t dying at that pace and that’s a fairly good race clip for me for distance. We arrived at the turn off for the short route and opted to keep going. When we arrived at the water stop near mile 2 we took about a 5ish minute break, talked to some fellow Grunt Girls and opted to return the way we came instead of adding more miles. Personally I wanted to extra miles, but didn’t know the route.
On the way back I started to feel the heat and power walked a lot of the hills. This was the perfect opportunity to tune into my feet and evaluate my goods. Two of my biggest issues with all trail shoes are 1) weight and 2) the inability to comfortably transition from run to walk. The PureGrits appeared to resolve both of these concerns. Weighing in around 7 oz they are lighter than the typical shoe, but still offer greater protection and support than a true minimal product. Made with the special BioMoGo DNA Midsole they are meant to go back and forth between heavy impact and lighter. What is that special blend? Have you ever done what I call the glue experiment? Where there is a glue mixture and if you touch it slowly your finger will sink, but if you hit it quickly you bounce back off and can’t penetrate? THAT is the mixture in these shoes.
At the end of the run many people enjoyed frozen custard, I skipped since it’s strongly ice cream based and I can’t have ice cream. Oh well. I chatted with the Brooks Rep and a few friends while making final decisions on the shoes. I loved them initially, they took care of many concerns and I felt great out on the trail. Still, the total run was only 3.5 miles. Not enough time to decide if they will create hot spots or blisters, if I need more support or different socks and also will they break in too much and leave me feeling like I am barely wearing a shoe at all? Not sure how to decide…time to find more extensive reviews I suppose.
Overall it was a great event and if you’re in the area I totally recommend taking part in the Fall Running Series. For around $75 you will have access to a slew of runs (competitive on Tues, non timed on Wed) a great gender specific LS shirt (I hear it’s fleece this year) and a portion of your money goes toward the park system too.