serious running: trail running, races, shoe reviews

Posts Tagged ‘running shoes’

Big Peach Running Company 5k Run/Walk

Tuesday, April 14th, 2009


What a good reason to get a new pair of running shoes, to run a 5k!  You can save money on both by buying a pair of Nike running shoes (or any other Nike product purchases totaling $75 or more) at the Big Peach Running Company.  Not only will you get to take advantage of their competitive prices on running shoes but you also get a free race entry in the Big Peach 5k Run/Walk.  This is the 4th running of this popular Atlanta road race.  Since Big Peach Running Company takes the time to go through their fit process to find the best running shoe for you, give them the best thank you possible, run your PR at the Big Peach 5k Run/Walk!

The race is on May 2nd at the Big Peach Running Co store in Brookhaven.  Try to take the Brookhaven/Oglethorpe MARTA because you won’t be able to park in the Cherokee Plaza Shopping Center on race day, plus you’ll save the environment a bit.  Go environment!  If you must drive (like most Atlantans, don’t worry, MARTA apparently is “too large to fail” and is getting bailed out) you can park at the Brookhaven MARTA station parking lot.  The course rolls through the beautiful Brookhaven neighborhood and has an exciting finish right on Peachtree Road!  Just like the Peachtree Road Race…just half the race distance, about 50,000 less people, and a finish line 2 miles North of the Peachtree Road Race start line.  So it’s pretty much the same thing.  All Big Peach Running Company 5k race participants will get a NIKE Dri Fit technical T-shirt which will have the Big Peach Running Company name on it.  A T-shirt with the word “peach” on it is all the Peachtree Road Race is good for anyways, right?  Need another reason to run this race?  How about the proceeds go to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society/Team In Training-GA Chapter?  I spoke with a friend this past weekend that is participating in Team In Training and it is a great organization.  Not only is she working to raise money for Leukemia and Lymphoma but she is getting in better shape than she would have on her own.  Everyone’s a winner!  Well, in this 5k race the top 3 overall male and female finishers along with the top 3 in each age group are the biggest winners.  Big Peach Gift Cards will go to the top 3 overall M/F ($200, $100, $50) along with 1st overall Masters M/F ($100/$100).   Also, age group awards presented to Top 3 M/F in 13 age groups.  If you are more of a team player then compete in the corporate challenge.  No matter what your team’s strengths, you have a chance to win with awards going to the top teams for most participants, fastest team, and best team T-shirt design.  Overall, Big Peach Running Company wants to promote the pedestrian active lifestyle or P.A.L.  So get out their and move your body forward anyway you desire.  Just get moving!  After you’re done moving for 3.1 miles hang out for the post-race party with lots of food, music, and raffles!  Partying is fun.

I don’t want to hear any excuses about why you were not able to register for this race.  You can register online.  You can download and entry form and send it via mail.  Or if you want to get it done quickly and free then go to any Big Peach Running Company store location, buy any Nike shoes, apparel, accessories, or a combination thereof totaling 75 dollars or more and register on the spot (Note:  you can register at a store location without buying Nike apparel).   Registration is $20 from now until April 21st and the NIKE dri fit T-shirts go to the first 1700 runners who register.  After April 21st the registration fee is 25 dollars and registration closes at 5:00 pm on May 1st.

So go ahead and register for this great 5k and while your at it, try out all the running shoes you desire at Big Peach Running Company.  Maybe you’ll find some faster running shoes.

Running Shoe Laces: Does Longer Mean Better?

Wednesday, March 4th, 2009

shoe-laces-resize-2The search for the perfect running shoe is over.  I decided to go with the same brand of running shoe I had before.  I tried many different types of shoes, ran in them, did my research and eventually could not find a running shoe that I liked better than my Brooks Adrenaline GTS 8s. I guess if the shoe fits, run in it.  There’s no need to reinvent your “wheels.”

Although I found my perfect pair of running shoes, I still have a problem with the shoe laces being too long.  It seems to be the norm in running shoes these days.  I don’t know why.  So now I have to find the right laces for my perfect running shoes.  Why is it so difficult to make me happy?  Because I demand perfection.  Well, at the very least, I demand being close to spectacular.

I didn’t realize how diverse shoe laces had become until I started doing my research.  You’ve got the flat, the fat, the round, the colored, the infants, the big foot, the waxed, the elastic, even the butterfly and the daisy styles.  These are just some examples, there is a plethora of other shoe laces out there.  It became too much information for me to properly delineate.  Apparently there are 2 Trillion ways to lace up a standard 12-eyelet pair of shoes.  Click here if you want to learn more about general shoe lacing and tying techniques from Ian, a shoelace expert and connoisseur. It’s actually pretty interesting.  Then, go to your parents house and yell at them for not teaching you how to properly tie your shoes when you were 5 years old.  I personally wore Velcro shoes until I was about 10 years old.  Why learn to tie your shoes when you can wear Velcro?  I was so much smarter back then.

So, although I bought the exact same pair of running shoes that I had previously owned, I’m always looking to try new things, but I just don’t understand why running shoe laces have been getting longer and longer as time passes.  Are people’s feet evolving to be wider?  I didn’t realize homosapiens had balance issues.  Maybe my feet are just that skinny and when I tighten my shoes I get all a lot of that extra lace.  And no, it’s not true what they say about the width of one’s feet being directly proportional to other body parts.  Shattering stereotypes is my middle name baby.  Chris Shattering Stereotypes Barber, B.A.  Don’t act like your not impressed.

I don’t think I’m smarter than the shoeientists and shoeginneers at Nike, Brooks, or New Balance; so with my last pair of Brooks Adrenaline 8s I tried using the standard model laces that came with the shoes for the first couple of months.  Upgrades are a rip off anyways.  As my shoes tightened to my feet, the longer my laces  hung out.  I’m all for “hanging out” but it started to become a hazard for me.  I started to trip over the excess string, falling to the ground on multiple occasions.  Even though my falls were typically when I was running with someone of a slower running pace, I needed laces that would be safe for any pace I chose to run.  I finally broke down and bought some standard shorter, thinner shoe laces at the dollar store and put them in my running shoes.  I’m going to do it again for my new running shoes.  I’ll probably get some other things at the dollar store too.  Steak sauce, “orange” cleaning solution, maybe a spatula or an extension cord.  I don’t know.  I don’t know if I’ll have enough time.

I honestly can’t understand why the thicker, round, and longer laces that come on most running shoes today are better.  The thickness and roundness of the laces helps the knot hold better but the length is just plain ridiculous.  Even when you double or triple knot the laces they end up being way too long.  Even Shaq would have excess lace on his running shoes.  Not that Shaq runs.  That’s for Stevey Nash to worry about.

Our American way of thinking that bigger is better doesn’t always ring true.  “Super-sized” food just makes us fatter, SUVs use way too much expensive gas, and big houses come with high mortgages that Americans are struggling to afford right now.  Let’s stop this Manifest Destiny of running shoe laces before it’s too late.  Next thing you know we’ll be buying Alaska or Louisiana!  The horror.

Running Shoes that Run Green – Brooks Trance 8

Tuesday, January 20th, 2009

After many different versions of Nike’s Air Pegasus running shoes I decided to see if there was another running shoe out there for me.  I had recently moved which changed the surfaces that I regularly ran on.  I needed to find a new shoe with the same comfort but with a little more stability to prevent injury.  I went to a running shoe store that allowed me to try multiple pairs of shoes, all at the same price, by running about a mile in each pair.  I ended up finding that the Brooks Adrenaline GTS was the best fit for me by far.  I honestly had never tried on a pair of Brooks running shoes before, sticking to my trusty New Balance and Nike brands, but I have to admit, my Brooks shoes have lasted the longest and have given me the least amount of aches and pains from running.  I love them.  Plus, I can tell I’m SO much faster in them.

Brooks Sports, Inc., based in Bothell, Washington and was founded in 1914.  Now it is a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway, Inc.  Berkshire Hathaway is run by Warren Buffet who’s business strategy throughout the years has been to invest in undervalued, quality companies for the long-term.  Based on his investing record, if Warren likes it, the company must be good.  Brooks’ footwear is designed to produce a running shoe that is both comfortable and helps to prevent running-related injuries. From the Brooks website, Brooks Sports mission is to “inspire everyone to run and be active by creating innovative gear that keeps them running longer, farther, and faster.”  I guess this is where Kayne West got the idea for his song, “Stronger.”  I thought Puff Daddy was the one that ran a marathon?  Who knows.

At any rate, Brook’s newest innovative gear is the Brooks Trance 8.  Brooks Trance 8 is the first shoe made with a biodegradable midsole which breaks down in landfills 50 times faster than normal running shoes.  Normal running shoes take an average of 1000 years to biodegrade in a landfill in comparison to the Brooks Trance 8 which takes approximately 20 years to biodegrade.  Brooks estimates that by manufacturing this biodegradable shoe alone will account for a decrease our landfills by 30 million pounds in the next 20 years.  If just one type of shoe can account for that much waste, wouldn’t it be great if more products to be made with this innovative material and biodegrade quicker?  Of course, and Brooks Sports, Inc. agrees.  Brooks has made this new product an “open source” innovation, vowing that they will share this new product to any company, including competing shoe manufactures.  Now that’s a commitment to the environment.

After you buy your new pair of running shoes think twice about throwing away your old pair.  Please consider to continue to use them for other purposes or better yet, give them away to someone that needs them more.  Remember, those shoes have a life expentancy of 1000 years!