Last week my coach gave me an easy week, relatively speaking of course. I only ran 68K including two runs on the Stanley Park seawall- a tempo on Tuesday and 5K intervals on Friday. Both run in pouring rain.
Fortunately there was a break in the rain on Sunday morning and I had a wonderful 30K long run with one of my step-daughters and a friend. Both of these ladies are training for the Vancouver Marathon. Although they are much faster than me, they are not yet as used to longer runs. We ran part of the marathon route and they kept me going at a nice steady pace, faster than I would usually go, but still within my aerobic zone. By the end though I may have been pulling them along. Our average kilometre pace for the morning was 5:50 and it was my fastest training long run in decades.
I usually try and take at least one Instagram photo during my long runs. Here are a couple taken from where we ran along the beaches heading towards Vancouver. It was a grey day but at least it wasn’t raining.
This week I also did some running shoe shopping. My favourite shoes so far this year have been the New Balance 1400s for speed work, and New Balance 890s for long road runs. But both pairs are approaching 600 kms and have to be replaced.
Even though the 1400s have worked well for me, they have a high 11 mm heel drop and I was looking for an alternative racer, something less than 11 mm, but not as minimal as the NB Minimus. This year, starting with my Saucony Kinvaras, I had transitioned to lower drop shoes. I got quite excited when the shoe sales person showed me a new New Balance. These Fresh Foam Zantes have a 6 mm heel drop. Competitor magazine says they are the road shoe of the year. They felt light and comfortable when I tried them on. I even like the vivid violet –Well at least they aren’t pink.
Unfortunately the store hadn’t yet received the women’s New Balance 890 v5, and I didn’t have time to start visiting other stores. I’ll have to wait until next week. The 890s are my long run shoes. The new version 5 are the shoes I plan to wear for Comrades. Coincidently they are the official Comrades shoe.
Still I was trying to keep an open mind before making a final decision. I had read such good things about Adidas. A few of the top marathoners like them, and my coach wore Adidas for Comrades. I had hoped that there may be a pair suitable for me and I planned to try some out in the store. But it was a case of dislike at first sight. I could tell just by looking at them that they would be too narrow for me. So no more looking around for something better. I’ve committed to New Balance 890s for the big day.
This being a lighter running week I seemed to have more mental energy for sewing and I began a new project, a dress for our trip to South Africa. I’ve also been thinking of experimenting with sewing running clothes and my internet research turned up a couple of interesting blogs by sewers who run: Scruffy Badger Time, and Fehr trade who also creates and sells patterns for running wear.
Ten weeks until Comrades and this is going to be a heavy training week– 95K total distance, including back to back 42K and 20K runs this weekend. This is getting serious.