Get muddy with INOV8

26Feb11

I got me some new trainers!

Whilst there are precious few mountains round these parts, there are plenty of trails along the public footpaths, bridleways and along the Basingstoke Canal, and these byways are my running routes of preference – they beat pounding tarmac and inhaling traffic fumes every day of the week, hands down. So when my old trainers finally disintegrated completely, it was time or a new pair. We’re lucky to have an excellent ‘Sweat Shop’ specialist runningsShop close by, so it was a real treat to get a good pair of trainers fitted by staff who really know their stuff. Because I have a wide foot (good for balance and dancing, rubbish for shoe-buying) my choice was pretty restricted, but I was pleased that I was steered towards a pair of INOV8 trainers specifically or trail running, rather than the more expensive ‘premium brand’ equivalents. The only caution that I got was that I really, really wouldn’t be able to run on tarmac AT ALL in these running shoes.

We’ve been out for a few runs now, and are back up to my 10-15km average distance. I’m really pleased with these trainers … they are perfect for trail running.

It wasn’t an instant love.

These are all about the grip, and there’s very little in the way of cushioning or support in them, so it took a few runs to get used to the lack of ‘spring’ that helps you along with normal trainers, so my runs are making me work that bit harder. The compensation, of course, is that there’s no skipping around the slippery bits of mud, watching your step on the  sandy/shingle sections of heathland and being wary on the rubble of farm tracks. I made the mistake, too, on the first run, of doing a little road-work in the middle of the run, and it was pure torture. Like running on soccer boots, every step jolted through my joints and my shins complained for a good couple of days afterwards. I suspect that when summer comes and the tracks are baked rock-hard (I live in hope) that I might need to get another pair with a little more cushioning in them, but we shall see when the time comes.

What they hey, lesson learned, and a quick review of the ordnance survey map of our area to tweak the runs to take them completely off road, and we were flying. Today we made a great 12km yomp all around the commons and MOD land, and although parts of it was a total mudfest, the shoes were perfect, even in ankle deep mud. I’m not saying that it was all joy … I defy anyone to convince that there is anything pleasant about a shoe full of squelching, freezing, muddy water, or that there is anything happy at that 9k mark when you’re staring up a long hill, freezing cold and soaked to the bone, but knowing the only way home is forward for another 5k.

But the shoes were good …. even if they did look like this when we got home:

 I think I might have voided my 30-day money-back guarantee.

But that’s OK.

I’m keeping these trainers.

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6 Responses to “Get muddy with INOV8”

  1. Interesting.. Never heard nor saw those shoes before. I enjoy trail running, usually wear my regular shoes and they get full of mud!

    Cheers

    • 2 ellsea

      lol, you’re still going to get muddy feet if the mud’s that deep, but you won’t fall over in it 🙂

  2. 3 Knut

    For the tarmac bits you may want to land a little more forward on your foot allowing your body to use its natural cushioning to make the ride more pleasant. Same applies to hardpack trails. By landing more on your midfoot you’ll not only experience a more pleasant ride, when your body has adapted you’ll also be faster.

    • 4 ellsea

      hey, thanks for the tip Knut! I’ll try that next time out (no doubt it’ll feel totally weird until I get used to it 😉 )

  3. Very cool! I’m sticking near home as I start out, which means I’m stuck with roads, but someday, I can hope to move on to trails.

    And I totally hear you on the hard to fit issue. Try not only having wide feet, but feet that are 2 full sizes apart. Oy!

    Congrats on the new shoes. Glad you’re enjoying them.

    • 6 ellsea

      Yikes – that’s a nightmare foot scenario 🙂 Good luck with your running – hope you get to hit the trails soon – they’re so much more fun!! A deer jumped out in front of me the other day … I’m not sure which of us got the biggest fright 😀


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