While living in Alabama, I committed one a runner sin. I was underprepared shoe wise for 6 weeks. While I could have gotten a pair of shoes I’ve already run in, I decided to try the Saucony Freedom. Before leaving, I had tried them on at work. They seemed like they would be a good shoe for me.
This is the first model so there is nothing to compare it too. I have run in multiple other Saucony shoes including the Kinvara, Zealot ISO 1 and 2, Ride 9 and Triumph ISO 1 and 2.
The Freedom uses Saucony’s signature Everrun material. It is the first of the line to use the Everrun at the forefront of the shoe. What does this mean for me? As someone who strikes extremely far to the front, there is plenty of cushion up there too. There are actually very few shoes with a full length cushioning in the forefront too (most shoes have a lot of cushioning in the heel and it tapers to the front).
Just like the Saucony Triumph and Zealot, the Freedom uses the ISO fit. It fits more like slipper than an actual shoe. I find the ISO fits my foot better but the shoe does run short. Typically I wear a size 10 but I found the 10.5 to be the best fit. I even contemplated doing an 11 or a men’s size 9 because I could use more width. I would recommend going up at least a half size if not more.
This was definitely interesting. I could feel the extra cushion in the forefront immediately. My first run in the shoe was an easy 7 miler. It felt comfortable the moment I put it in on. It was soft, yet responsive and the extra cushion for my metatarsals was immediately noticed.
More cushion in the forefront
Cost ($160 makes it one of the most costly neutral shoes on the market)
The adidas Supernova is a brand new shoe from adidas. It replaced the Adidas Glide. I never ran in the Glide, but I have run in the Energy Boost which I liked. Boost is the material that adidas chooses to construct their shoes out of. It’s a much more “bouncy” shoe, and it reminds me a lot of Newtons (which for anyone who read my blog in 2010-2012, I almost exclusively ran in).
Like with the energy boost and almost all of the adidas line, adidas fit narrow. The shoe is seamless so if you have wider feet (like myself), then it will stretch to fix your foot. However, it does run narrow. In most models of shoes, I wear a 10 wide. In the adidas Supernova, I wear a 10. The 10.5 was too long, and the shoe does not exist in wide. It fit pretty well, but if there were a wide, I would have gone that route.
A huge plus is that the shoe is seamless. You don’t have to worry about the shoe rubbing bunions, or if you have a high instep, it won’t rub there either.
The boost material in adidas shoes makes them much more bouncy and responsive. The heel is well cushioned where the forefront of the shoe has less boost and is more responsive. With every step, I felt propelled off the ground as the boost material responded.
The Supernova Glide is a great option for those who want a lightweight but want to stay in the adidas line. Especially for someone currently training in the Energy Boost and wanting a lighter shoe to race or do speed work in.
Another bonus about adidas is they use Continental tire rubber at the bottom of their shoes. There is more traction than several other brands. It was my shoe of choice when running outside in any conditions with possible ice.
I haven’t had a shoe that impresses me during my first run like the Brooks Ghost 9 in a while. I am shocked of how much I like the shoe.
The Brooks Ghost is one of the staple running shoes in the industry. At our store, it’s one of the most popular neutral shoes. Brooks is also a great company to work with too. For no real reason, I haven’t run in a lot of their shoes. I’ve tried on almost every model, but the only model of Brooks I’ve put significant mileage in, is the Brooks Launch 3 (for speed workouts).
The Brooks Ghost 9 came out in June. Recently, I fell in love with the new Galaxy color and decided it was the perfect time to give Brooks another shot. I was due to rotate another high mileage trainer, so that worked out well.
The Brooks Ghost 9 has enough cushion for high mileage but is also light enough for speed workouts and races. It’s a little more cushion and softer than the Launch.
As mentioned, I haven’t run much in any previous model of Brooks Ghosts. I had a pair of Brooks Ghosts 7 as well as 8s that I worked in but I never took them to the road.
The update from the 8 to the 9 is significant. They have widened the toebox. I wore a size 10 in the Ghost 7s, 10 wide in the 8s and I’m back to a regular 10 in the 9s. Wider feet or those with bunions can appreciate the upper is now seamless, so there is no rubbing or bleeding (something that happened to me personally a lot with the Asics Nimbus).
The wider toebox is something I’m personally thankful for. Your feet need to spread out while running. If there isn’t enough room, you are much more susceptible to foot issues.
In summary, the fit of the Brooks Ghost is one of my favorite of any shoe I’ve run in recently. It has a wide, seamless upper which allows my foot comfort.
The Brooks Ghost 9 is one of the softer shoes on the market. As a company, Brooks uses a material called “BioMoGo DNA” which essentially molds to your foot like memory foam.
The cushioning from the 8 to the 9 hasn’t changed much. If you like a soft and well-cushioned shoe, this could be a great option. I was always a fan of working in the shoe and it feels just as great when running.
I’ve put just over 100 miles in the Ghost now including a few longer runs of 10+ miles. I haven’t run into any issues.
New Balance is one of the few brands I don’t have much experience with running. I’ve walked around in both the 880 and the 1080 but never run in either. To be honest, the Fresh Foam Zante caught my eye when it came out in Rose Gold. I finally decided to give New Balance a fair shot in my rotation.
New Balance is not paying me, and I purchased these shoes. Remember what works for me might not work for you.
I have yet to find anything that compares to the brand of Moving Comfort. Moving Comfort only makes a few pieces of women’s apparel but specializes in sports bras. There is a reason they are number one in the industry. I’ve tried many other brands, and for me, these are the best.
They have removable pads, don’t chafe and fit my broad shoulders (YAY swimming). Working in running retail, I’ve tried most brands, and I truly believe Moving Comfort makes the best Sports Bras in the industry. They make sports bras for any size.
CEP Low Cut Socks ($20.00)
Right now I love my CEP Compression Socks. After my ankle injury, I wanted socks that promote blood flow to my feet as well.
Because my calves and my feet are not proportional, I prefer the calf sleeves and socks (versus just the knee high socks). CEP is medical grade compression which means that it does promote blood flow more than other brands. Since my calves do get tight frequently, they are the best for me.
Long sleeve: This one by Saucony. It’s thick and warm but it’s also reversible. That way when I’m getting ready in the dark in the morning, it doesn’t matter if it’s inside out. 😉
I am beginning to think you should avoid racing with me if you want to run in good race conditions. You can’t control the weather, and these are just the situations I’m handed. Do I wish the weather was better? Of course!
Since March wasn’t the end of my bad weather streak, I decided to revisit the topic and think about more methods. To be honest, racing in bad weather is best covered by being prepared with the right clothing and layers.
Before the race: Have throw away clothing or trash bags. The goal is to keep yourself as dry as possible before the race. Trash bags are great because they keep you dry and are inexpensive!
Trash bag your shoes and your entire self. This year, at Broad Street, several people passed me at the end still wearing their trash bags.
Wear form fitting clothing and avoid cotton.The more tightly fitting the clothing, the less it’s going to chafe, rub and become a wet soggy mess.
Thin socks: This is a must. The goal is to keep your feet as dry as possible. Thicker socks can retain more water like a sponge. There are a lot of thin socks, but my favorite is the low cut CEP compression because they hug your feet and provide support as well as compression.
In all of the races I’ve done this year, I haven’t gotten any blisters because I wore thin noncotton socks.
Hats: Before this spring I never ran in hats. They never stayed on my head. This year I’ve found hats keep the rain off my face. I like my logo Headsweats hat from work.
While I don’t race with a phone, I know many racers do. Put your phone in a Ziploc bag to make sure it doesn’t get water damage. About a month ago, I got caught in a downpour, and my phone was toast (luckily I had insurance).
The problem with races along the shore can be the wind. Races along the coast are typically flat, but you never know if you’ll face a headwind!
Run with a Pack: Running with a pack of people isn’t always possible, but it makes running a lot easier both mentally and physically. You can remind yourself; you aren’t facing the wind alone. During Shamrock this year, I got caught in a 2 mile stretch of headwind alone. It was miserable.
Turn your head to the side to breathe. If you’re running through a headwind, turning your head to the side to breath makes it a lot easier. I didn’t know that until this year!
Running into a headwind will cost you both time and energy. It’s not a reflection of your fitness level and don’t worry too much (easier said than done).
Invest in a good piece of wind resistant clothing. The wind can be piercing and chill you to the bone. Many companies make a light windbreaker that will keep you warm.
While the cooler months are coming, heat is definitely something to deal still with. The fact that it is 70 degrees is one clue!
If you want to follow in Rupp’s footsteps than try putting ice in your hat. For the rest of us staying hydrated is usually critical.
Hydration, Hydration, Hydration: Even if you don’t feel like you’re thirsty, it’s important to hydrate before, during and after a race. When I know the temperatures are hotter than I’m used too, I take Gatorade and water at every water stop in distances above 10k.
Less is More: I’m not saying run naked at a family friendly 5k, but dress for the conditions. If it’s hotter than you are used to, wear a tank top or shorts. Body glide and antichaffing cream will become your best friends, (If we ever race together, believe me, I have a tube in my car you can borrow).
Sunglasses: Generally heat brings out the sun too. Find a good pair of sunglasses to protect your eyes.
I’m not getting paid to promote any of these pieces of clothing/items, but they are items I’ve had success with:
I like the low cut socks because I can use compression sleeves as well. My shoe size and calf size are different, so the high socks won’t fit my feet and calves. The socks themselves are thin, and if they do get wet, they won’t weigh you down.
I’ve raced in these in all conditions and never chafed. They are long enough that my thighs don’t rub together but short enough that I don’t overheat. Plus they have pockets. They also don’t become see-through in the rain.
This is the hat I own, and you can get it logo’ed to whatever you like or need. Should I get FueledbyLOLZ team hats (just kidding)?
Sunglasses: The Tailwind from Nike stay on my face. I have a round shaped head so finding sunglasses can be tough.
As I said last time, The best piece of advice for any racing is to stay positive. At the end of the day, you can’t control the weather. You have to make the best of the situation, and if you’re able to think positively, you’ll be able to stay positive throughout the race.
I wasn’t positive during Shamrock half marathon, and I truly believe that is what caused me not to race well. I maintained positive for the rest of the races and dressed appropriately. Now I shrug off weather and just think: “other racers are dealing with the same conditions.”
The Nike Lunarglide is a special kind of shoe. It’s mildly supportive when you need it, and not when you don’t. It can fit a broad range of foot types, but that doesn’t mean it’s perfect for everyone. In fact, if you need an extremely supportive or high cushioned shoe, this probably isn’t a shoe for you. If you need a mildly supportive or neutral shoe, it could be a great option.
While I never ran in the LunarGlide 7s or any previous model of the LunarGlude, I had put them on before. They felt too supportive, and it was a shoe I didn’t need. The update from the LunargGlide 7 to 8 made it less supportive and a shoe I wanted to try.
The LunarGlide 8 now uses the flyknit upper that many other Nike shoes use. The fit is similar to other Nike Flyknit shoes, but it’s different than previous LunarGlide models. It’s not a good or bad thing, and the flyknit upper accommodates wider feet (like mine) as well as those with a higher instep. A lot of brands are going towards a seamless upper, and it’s a good thing. I usually wear a size 10, and the size 10 was the best fit for my foot.
It’s not a shoe I would just order online because you’ve worn that size the previous year.
As I mentioned, I’ve never run in LunarGlide before and in fact, on paper, it’s not exactly a shoe that would make sense for me. Since it is a special design that works for runners who need mild stability and those who need nothing, it can work for a few different people. (Sorry friends, not going to try a shoe that would injure me “for the sake of the blog).
The ride itself is light and soft. It doesn’t have a lot of cushion but definitely more than a racing flat. It’s not a shoe I’m comfortable running more than 10 miles in but some people might get away with it. Based on the design, I’m curious to see how much mileage,, it will be before the shoe breaks down.
Something interesting about the design pattern of the bottom is how many rocks it collects. I’ve only run into this problem with a couple of different shoes (including the Newtons). It’s not a make or break for the shoe, but you will hear a little clicking noise when (not if but when) a rock gets stuck in between the layers.
The major difference in the ride is the stability factor. The LunarGlide 8 is far less stable than the LunarGlide 7. If this is something you needed from the shoe, I would be more hesitant. For me, this is a good thing and why a neutral runner like myself likes and can use the shoe.
While I never ran in the LunarGlide 7, I do know it’s a drastic and significant change. That change is why I can run in the 8, but it’s a change that many running in the 7 might not appreciate. I would go to your local store before purchasing. Due to the changes, it’s not a shoe I would recommend ordering online, just because you’ve worn several models.
I do like the shoe and will continue to run in it until it wears out.
Less stable and can fit a broad range of foot types
No seem upper allows accommodating bunions and wide feet
Drastic changes from the LunarGlide 7 to LunarGlide 8
Collects a lot of small rocks underneath
Not too many “similar” models of shoes to compare too.