Review: Saucony Ride 5

My least favorite part of being a runner is finding shoes.  It’s not that I am a picky person  or that I have a tough time finding one that fits my foot just right, I just don’t like having to move on from something that worked without problems.  So when I went in to get a new pair of shoes, I was really hoping that my old shoes would still be on the shelves as last time I purchased 3 pairs so I wouldn’t have to go through this shopping experience for awhile.

I decided to consult with the local running store (Fargo Running Company) to try on new shoes and hope to ultimately take them and start running in them.  I ultimately chose the Saucony Ride 5 but when they told me it’d take 10-14 days to get it in, I about laughed out loud.  From working in the ecommerce industry, if you can’t get it to someone in a 2-3 days max, they will find someone who can and unfortunately my shopping habits are similar. After getting a recommendation of Running Warehouse from @milestraiser I decided to purchase my first pair of running shoes online.  My experience with Running Warehouse was wonderful and with their 2 day shipping my shoes arrived very quickly and were ready to be run in.

My initial thoughts upon trying them on were: super comfortable, moderate cushioning, and not heavy but not a minimalist either.  I have been running in them for two weeks including two long runs of 8 and 9.5 miles, a few speed workouts, and short runs as well.  The shoes continue to be comfortable throughout the run and I’m not experiencing any knee pain after my runs either.  I will be running the Fargo Half-Marathon in these shoes and then will probably run the marathons that are on my schedule in them as well.  Now the only question left is, what color to get my next pair in?

Men's Ride 5

Motivation Monday

Monday’s have always been known as the worst day of the week and one that “just can’t go by fast enough.”  I decided that I’m going to try change that and I am going to write a motivational post or post about a motivating person or story each Monday.  This week I am going to use a video of  a new educational video series that is taking the world by storm.  It started out as a small idea to help family members and it continues to innovate into new ways to help people young and small. Take a look at this video about how the Khan Academy story and if it doesn’t leave motivated for this work week, check your pulse and come back next Monday for my next post.

A Community That Cannot Be Torn Apart

Team sports make you rely on others to succeed while individual sports like tennis and golf rely more on your individual talents to determine your success. Now imagine if you could combine the two and get the both of best worlds.  I believe that is what the sport of running is.  This was on display a few days ago again at the Boston Marathon while the runners ran and after tragedy struck.

I first noticed this amongst runners and fans during my cross-country seasons at Jamestown High School.  Although there was the team aspect, my teammates and coaches pushed me to do my best and wanted nothing more.  Sure they wanted the team to do well, but individually they wanted to see us all set PR’s.  Also, once the fastest teammates were done, they wouldn’t just lay around, they’d cheer on runners that were still coming in to the finish.  If these actions seem odd between competitors the fans took it to the next step.  Cross-country, which is not a fan-friendly sport, had nothing but the best fans.  Not only does cheering involve running to several different spots along the race course to cheer on the competitors but just because your son or daughter was in one race, it didn’t stop you as a fan from cheering on the competitors in each and every race.

Now this past week has been one that has not only torn apart a city but also shaken the running community as well.  While everyone was wanting answers of who did it, the actions that took place during the tragedy is what is extraordinary.  The fans that had spent all day cheering on thousands of runners at different spots along the course I’m sure, jumped right in to lend a hand when the chaos begun.  Runners who had just ran as hard as they could for 26.2 miles continued running to the hospital to give blood for victims that needed it.  Once again the members of the running community were not worried about themselves; they were worried about everyone else.

Now I’m sure I might get comments that it is not just the running community where this mentality of others first occurs, however runners are where I have seen this continually and never any other way.  I’d like to thank my parents, coaches, teammates, and fans for strengthening these values within me.  I look forward to running the Fargo Half-Marathon in a few weeks and you bet I will be cheering on fellow competitors once I am finished with my race.  Although our running community will never be the “same,” I believe as we work through the uncertainty of why, we will end up stronger than ever.

Kickin’ Bad Habits To The Curb!

This time of the year usually has a common routine among many households: spring cleaning.  Although spring has not arrived in North Dakota quite yet, that doesn’t give me an excuse to skip out.  Before we know it our weekends will be filled with our favorite summer time activities and we will not want to do much else as we know our nice weather is limited.  I have decided that since we are in a transition between houses and moving back to the Midwest, my spring cleaning this year would be personal.  Many times before I have tried to rid myself of drinking pop only to decide “one every once in awhile” would be okay which usually turned into one or more a day eventually.

Since I started my new job at a great company (Swanson Health Products), you could say their mission is contagious. Do the right things now by giving your body what it needs and it will reward you later.  I have made many changes this spring already with many more in the plan as we get settled in our own home.  Although I found it very easy to consume twenty or more ounces of pop a day, it was never for a good reason.  It contains a bunch of sugar, no nutritional value, and although it seems to be cheap (only $1 for any size at McDonalds) it’s a money pit.  When I put into perspective that I was spending about $20/week on pop, it made me realize I could do a lot of other fun things with that money.  A new pair of running shoes over the course of a month, dinner and movie dates with my wife, and the list goes on and on.

It has not been quite two weeks since I kicked pop to the curb, but I already am over the cravings for it.  I keep a water bottle with me at all times and have switched from drinking a few ounces of water a day to 2-3 liters easily now in a day.  This is just the start of the changes and I will continue to document them here in this blog along with any struggles that I encounter.  Have you done any spring cleaning? Feel free to comment below with changes you might be making.

Quest For Boston…

Running has always been something I enjoyed. Starting with Wednesday night track meets to track in elementary and middle school to cross country in high school.  Again in college I combined running with swimming and biking to become active in triathlons along with a few road races.  You could say I get the “runners high” and I feel the thrill at both the starting line and finish line.  Having this love for running has come and gone at times depending on different life events, but deep down I have always wanted to be able to qualify for the Boston Marathon.  I always thought that if I ever did qualify, I would make the trip and run the historic race.  After the events that took place on Monday, you better bet the house I will make the trip.

I will be running in the upcoming Fargo Half-Marathon and have set my goals.  My career best half marathon is 1:38:17 and my goal for Fargo will be sub 1:30.  No it will not qualify me for Boston (my age group puts my marathon time at 3:05), but it will be a step in that direction.  I hope to enter a few marathons this summer/fall and other road races to help me along my journey.  Getting to the starting line and crossing the finish line are great moments, but the journey that it takes to get to live those moments is where the satisfaction truly begins.

“Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time.” -Thomas A. Edison