I hate spending money unless it’s on food or running things. So I bought running things. (And food.)
I knew that I needed a more substantial trail shoe – more material between my foot and the ground, more grip – than the Minimus for the 50-miler (and probably future 50ks, just because my feet were sore after the last ones), and I knew I wanted to go either Salomon, Montrail, or Brooks PureGrit. After some research, I narrowed it down to either the Salomon Speedcross, Montrail Mountain Masochist, and the PureGrit. I really, really wanted to like the Speedcross, but… the tongue. The tongue was (a) HUGE and puffy and would have rubbed against the front of my ankle like none other, and (b) wasn’t attached and would have been sliding around. Other than that, the shoe was solid – almost too solid. It felt like a lightweight hiking shoe, which I guess makes sense since it’s a rugged trail shoe, but it was just Too Much Shoe for me. Although the grip was really nice. And I straight out opted out of the Mountain Masochist because I couldn’t find it in stores around me, and I wanted it for the weekend, so… yeah. I’d still like to try it in the future.
Which brings us to the PureGrit. As I’ve mentioned, I wear and like the PureFlow for road running: it’s light, but provides enough cushioning on the bottom and has a low drop (4 mm; 7.5 oz). Since I’ve been satisfied with its performance and fit, I figured that the PureGrit (4 mm; 7.6 oz) wouldn’t be that far of a jump, and I was right. So far, it fits a little narrower, which I would list as my only potential concern. This might be fixed by adjusting how I lace them, or maybe they’ll stretch out/widen a bit over time. I wore them on both trail runs this past weekend, and they performed admirably. They allow enough feel to have a good sense of the trail, but they also protect your feet from… well, the trail.
I’ll be keeping an eye on Brooks from now on…
Nathan Intensity vest
Another item I figured I’d need/want for long races and training runs. I took a risk and bought the Intensity vest online without having tried it on in person, but I was fairly confident in my decision: the Nathan brand is of good repute among the ultrarunning community, and I read many, many positive reviews. It’s designed specifically to fit the female frame (or petite men), it’s light, and it doesn’t bounce around. I wanted something with easy-access pockets in front, which this has. I tried it out on my Sunday run, just 13 or so on the trails, and I loved it. Other than a bit of noise (water sloshing a little, along with general motion-noise), I barely noticed it. Having the hose is so much more convenient than carrying bottles (although I do have and like a Nathan handheld, good for shorter distances), and my water stayed decently cold during the slightly-under-2h run.
And just a shoutout to Mountain Hardwear for their tech shirts. They’re great. I’m going to get another one for my race.
(I had planned on taking my own pictures, then was too lazy. Perhaps eventually… when I’m running in these things for my races!)
peace love and running!