Photo from Mount Royal, Frisco, Colorado.

"That is happiness; to be disolved into something complete and great. When it comes to one, it comes as naturally as sleep." - Willa Cather

Sunday, 9 January 2011

Could I run Copenhagen Marathon 7 months pregnant in these?

It started as a joke. I was looking up minimalist running shoes and ran across this picture. I had to show Step Daughter. She appreciates good humor. Could one really run in these? Are they made for a pool or what?

Here's the deal. I've talked about barefoot running here before. And a little bit made fun of it, despite the fact that I like how it feels. But while barefoot running has some downsides, the running shoes I have purchased throughout my life have a lot more. My biggest problem as a runner has been my left hip. I am now fairly certain that there is, in fact, nothing "wrong" with my left hip. There is, however, something wrong with me wearing super-cushioned shoes all of the time for long-distance running. I've never had a running style analysis. I've just always assumed that the thicker, the more comfortable (with the only downside being that you sacrifice speed). But I am now convinced humans are not made for running on shoes with such super support. Plus the fact that we can't "grip" the ground with our feet makes our feet weak. Now I know I'm boring most of you. But here's the bottom line:

I need to change my shoe choice before my hip prevents me from running once again during pregnancy. The pregnant pelvis is extremely susceptible to coming out of alignment. The ligaments loosen there for an obvious reason. And if I've got a shoe that's pushing things out of place, I am certain to deal with the same hip pain and very little running the last three months (or more!) of pregnancy.

So I actually wrote to Marketing at Inov8 and asked if I could try the Evoskins (above) to review. They're not for sale yet. It will be exciting to see way the say in response. And more exciting to try them if they say yes.

If they say no, I may buy the Vibram 5 Fingers. There is just no geekier feeling than being the last person to hop on the bandwagon, is there? But if they prevent injury, I'll take geekdom. (Just as an aside, the Danish for "hopping on the bandwagon" is "hopping on the gluestick".)

The English "Hopping on the bandwagon" has a slightly better connotation than the Danish "hopping on the gluestick". The "gluestick" used to be a form of bird entrapment in Denmark. It's illegal now, but is still practiced some places, apparently.

Why not run barefoot all the time? Well, I am not really excited about learning to run barefoot on ice and snow. Plus I have this worry: is running on pavement barefoot seriously superior to running with cushioned shoes? It's a confusing question for me since humans didn't evolve running on pavement either. So what is the best shoe option for a road marathon?


Now onto another question...

In the pregnancy world, my nausea is actually starting to wane. I don't take as much ginger and chocolate doesn't taste quite as bad anymore. I have had two really nice 28 km runs in the last 4 days and I find myself getting really hungry halfway through. What I want to know is - What is your favorite snack to take along on a long run. Please nothing that has a fancy running marketing name (even if it can be purchased here, it will be as expensive as hell)!

Running songs of the day (two for January) : January Wedding by The Avett Brothers (thanks again, Steve) and January Hymn by The Decemberists


Angie Bee said...

In pregnancy I found that the bigger my belly got and the more swayed my lower back the more my hips and sciatic nerve hurt.

In padded shoes with a high heel toe drop it induces the same posture as pregnancy with a swayed back and tilted forward pelvis. After going barefoot and in minimal shoes I have found that my back problems have dissapeared.

I have done some work for Merrell and have been wear testing their new minimal shoe line and really love them. They are the best minimal shoes out there yet. The balance of protection vs ground feel is excellent. They are light and zero heel drop.
They are a little pricey but their shoes are notorious for lasting forever so worth it in the long run.
They are even comfortable without socks.
Be Well!

Stefanie Schocke said...

As far as minimal shoes-

what about Nike Frees or Vibrams?

I have Vibrams but have not attempted to run in them...yet. No experience with the NIke Frees.

Joy Joy said...

SLG- I've been hooked on using racing flats as trainers for about a year and absolutely love them. I go with Brooks, but I think many companies make them.

I need protein on the run and my fave snack is string cheese, portable and just salty enough. Good luck!

Ewa said...

I used to run in Nike Frees and really liked them, especially 3.0. Vibrams are great but in winter my feet get quite cold in them (Treks seem to be a bit warmer and they grip better on slippery surfaces, mud and ice).

Kirsten said...

To prevent all this "hip-fun" you could try (a lot of) gluteal exercises - it's pretty efficient. And back exercises.

mmmonyka said...

Isn't 42km on a hard road too long not to have enough support?
I would be afraid to do that.

Danni said...

I have Vibram 5 fingers and don't like running very far in them. I do like the Saucony Kinvaras and Nike Lunar Racers for lightweight minimal shoes that still have some cushion and protect your feet a little more.

SteveQ said...

Barefoot and pregnant. The jokes just write themselves.

I forgot in my year's best songs "Trouble Comes Running" by Spoon. The title alone makes it noteworthy.

One of the most incomprehensible bboks I ever read was "The Lime Twig," the title of which apparently refers to bird lime and trapping birds somehow, perhaps like the glue stick. Or maybe it was about minimalist footwear - I really couldn't say.

SteveQ said...

I just read a review of John Hawkes "The Lime Twig." If that's what it was about, I missed the point entirely.

I'm tring to think of February songs for you. Lou Reed's "Christmas in February" is all I've got so far.

sea legs girl said...

Steve, I've got one:

One Heavy February by Architecture in Helsinki.

Other than that, a bunch of calendar songs come to mind - but those don't really count, do they?

SteveQ said...

I was going to seriously suggest a baby name - Isabella - if you have a girl. Then, wondering what the new royal Danish twins were named, I saw the two older ones are Christian and Isabella. Never mind.

btw, verification word: fockre. Also a good name choice.

Katie said...

I rarely eat when running. I just never get hungry when I run. It might also be because I'm not particularly thin. I think my mom has eaten things like gummi bears on her long runs.

I have done some barefoot running on my treadmill. The most I seem able to do is 4 miles, and it's hard. I actually get blisters on the balls of my feet. I also tried running in racing flats, but they didn't feel quite right either. Then I reluctantly tried Nike Frees (they seem sort of gimmicky to me). I really enjoy running in the Frees and have found my injuries have greatly decreased since switching to them. They provide some cushion, but are flexible enough that you can adjust your stride to a forefoot strike.

BrianFlash said...

You aren't the last one to go buy Vibrams. That would be reserved for me - I still actually like running in my cushioned Asics...

sea legs girl said...

I had actually just started considering the name Isabella the day before you wrote that because of a girl in Christian's music class with that name. But it seems kinda geeky to go all royal family.


That is very interesting about the Nike Frees, though dripping in irony since they're the ones who started the whole concept of the super-cushioned shoe!

Brian - no reason to "hop on the gluestick" if you don't need to!