ONLY 11 days into the year in which I said I would run frequently and consistently, I finally actually ran. Not just once, but twice! Actually it was kind of the same run but with a five minute shoe switching break in the middle to break in my new shoes with a short distance. NEW SHOES. So exciting.
2.8 miles, 22:31, 8:02/mile
1.4 miles, 9:29, 6:46/mile
The latter run was in my new pair of Saucony Kinvaras.
On paper: they have less cushioning than a traditional running shoe and they are flatter. They still have a huge thick sole so, contrary to Saucony’s marketing department’s opinion, they are a long way from being a minimalist shoe, but they’re certainly not a traditional shoe either. I am currently running in a pair of Asics Nimbus 14s, which are sort of like giant marshmallows, and before that some other Asics I can’t remember the model of, so this is all new to me.
First practical impressions of the Kinvaras are that they feel very very very different from traditional shoes. They feel stiffer and very light. The weight (or lack thereof) is really surprising. I went slow to start with and, unlike the shoes, I felt awkward and heavy even though I was totally warmed up. Everything was different and I had no idea how to hit the ground any more. I am finely attuned to loud slapping footsteps and mine were horrible. They quietened off once I got into a rhythm and things started feeling more comfortable. I ran a loop twice so if it wasn’t going well I could have stopped at 0.7 miles, but everything was OK so instead I decided to sprint the second repeat. It all felt pretty natural at speed.
In theory the flatter shoe should require more work of my calf and Achilles tendon as I take the impact, so I was expecting my calfs to at least complain a bit, but honestly, they feel absolutely fine.
I’m a bit sceptical about the apparent lack of cushioning compared to my Nimbuses so I am going to keep the Kinvaras for short runs for now and gradually increase the mileage on them.
My knee felt ok as well, but we have to play the waiting game now.
Update 24 hours later: Calves are definitely stiffer today. Foam roller here I come.
36 hours later: YEP, the DOMS is kicking in pretty hard, glad I didn’t go any further than 1.4 miles.