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Monday, March 28, 2011

Part Two: I Love My Shoes

I worked my eight hours, and as the day wound down, my wife told me she was going for a run.

I mentioned that I was supposed to run three more miles today.

She asked if I was up for it, and I replied that I was not sure.

She mentioned that she would be wearing her new running hat, and that's when I remembered my new running shoes.

As part of my mother's visit this past weekend, she took me down to Hill Country on South Lamar, which I have determined to be my running store of choice. I've been in there several times, never with any money, to examine their merchandise, and every time I've been there, I have gotten a great deal of information about the various products. Thus, I want an Iron Man Watch, and I vowed that when I got new shoes, I would get them from Hill Country.

Having bought me my last pair and being my inspiration for running in general, my mom told me that she'd get me a new set of shoes.

The last time I got new shoes was in 2008 at a store in Missoula, Montana. Mom was visiting me on tour, and I was just considering getting back into running again. She bought me the Saucony shoes you see in the picture at the top right of the blog. My running shoes at the time were so completely destroyed that the store actually asked if they could keep them and put them under glass as a display for future customers.

However, I felt like I'd broken them in and that they finally fit my feet, so I kept them for a little while longer. I finally got rid of them when we moved down South, which is sad, because I would have loved to include a picture. To quote my mother, there was so little fabric left that "they looked like sandals." I think that's taking it a little far, but you get the idea.

In an effort to not run my feet and legs into the ground, she felt that we'd be more proactive this time, and I've actually heard great things about running in different shoes, which gives the shoe time to dry out and bounce back, so we got another pair of Saucony shoes, essentially the same model (the Ride) for training. I did like the New Balance pair I tried on, but I think they'll be better for the race itself, so I might get them in a couple months.

Since my wife was about to take out her new equipment, it motivated me to take out mine, but given that my leg was still tweaked a bit, I decided to do Monday's required three miles (my actual scheduled run), on the treadmill, so that if my leg decided it was done, I didn't have too far to come back.

The first half mile was brutal, I'm not going to lie. I started out at about a 7:30 pace, and dropped back to 8:00 almost immediately, as my leg simply wouldn't move that fast. Then something strange happened. Everything loosened up. This is not to say that there wasn't still pain, but it was manageable, and it wasn't affecting my stride, as long as I kept my stride long, so I lengthened it, speeding up the treadmill.

And then I sped up some more, and some more, and some more.

The difference in cushioning was immediately noticeable, and I ended up running a stellar 3 mile time despite a slower-than-average first mile.

I felt so energized that I even did some upper body work before I left the gym. All of this because I wanted to try out my new pair of shoes. And because I refused to let my body quit.

More than likely, I'll have to check out a doctor at some point, assuming that the new shoes don't magically fix the entire problem, but at this point, I feel like I'm back on track, and that I'm more motivated to continue running than I have been in a while.

And in about seven hours, I'm scheduled to be running again.

Monday's (Afternoon) Run:
Indoors / Treadmill
3 Miles
22 Minutes, 14 Seconds

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