Friday, 21 October 2016

shoeporn: Hoka One One - Speed Instinct

You are well used to profound appraisals of Hoka One One foodstuffs over at this neck of the woods. When I firstly experienced the distinctive and debated marque it was all about all-out sole-pillow. Today it appears that Hoka One One reduces the sole tallness and transports even more dynamic into their collection of running shoes. The Tracer, Hokas elected Road Running Flat, emerges to be the turn to a very exiting expansion. Alongside the release of cross and track spikes, Hoka One One now tries satisfie even more Runners. Once I received the state-of-the-art Modell, the Hoka One One - Speed Instinct, I couldn’t wait to take it out. Not only the appearance, moreover the primary impression of this Trail Running shoe is somewhat else.
The Hoka One One - Speed Instinct is meant to be an agile shoe for steadfast off-road trips. Still growing, the busy trail running market is the target of this model. With a mere of 225 grams the Speed Instinct approaches interested runners with the Hoka trademark weightlessness.
Visually the web upper sticks out instantaneously. The smooth Air mesh upper is welded in a synthetic web and covers most of the shoe. For myself I like the design as it gives the shoe a distinctive and individual note. But there is not only a style factor inside the formation of this shoe. Though it looks noble it is also built to hold the hard-working feet in place whilst running. I liked the meek and enjoyable firmness that grips the feet in place whilst roaming past technical sections on the run. Still the toe shield does not really work as it should be and I experienced some slams whilst hitting rocks or woods.
The heel counter is very flexible and the collar is well padded.  Despite it's flexibility, it offers great hold/support and is quite comfortable.
Alike the Tracer and the Clayton, Hoka uses their latest Pro2Lite midsole also within this shoe. I liked this sole in the other models and likewise with the Speed Instinct. The forgiving tail and the steadier front part of the sole is great with me. I like to run mid or forefoot so I like the straight sensation of this sole a lot. Still it is weird to have so much cushion with a shoe that bids so much dynamic and impulse to run fast.
A comparably widespread nonetheless shallow toe-box could be a potential difficulty for certain runners.
Though being a shoe that is meant to be used on un-paved undergrounds the performance on the road is great. The outsole is not too destructive on the legs, which delivers cosiness while wandering to or amongst off-road sections.
Quite the soul of each trail shoe – the outsole. For the Speed Instinct Hoka used a low profile, multi-directional tugs based design that do provides brilliant sense for the ground and faultless control. Most trail or off-trail units I ran with the shoe where great and joint with the soft sole the Speed Instinct performed to be a great and reliable companion. Although this altered when the underground got misty or very technical. As the lugs of the outsole are not very long the sole showed to loose grip here and there. A forceful sole design has its pros and cons. Not using lengthy lugs means that once the underground gets softer it ultimately loose grip. For me it was not a major problem during my daily running outings. The positive side is that the trip to the trail is smooth and without any hustle as sometimes spikey soles can be tough on the legs. 
The so-called Pro2Lite +10 EVA cushioning is used for the sole of the latest Speed Instinct. Eventually it supports fast and hasty off-road running.
The official product despricton states that this shoe comes with a rock-plate. I did not really experience a lot of protection while on rocky undergrounds. Some stones seem to find their way past the little red triangles. 
At the end – Some hard facts: Heel-to-Toe Offset: 3mm; 22mm (heel), 19mm (forefoot)
Hoka pooled the advantageous characters of their lightweight assortment into a top-class and exciting trail racing shoe. The Speed Instinct understands how to grip off-road streams with all obtainable types of speeds. The last couple of weeks I had tons of fun with this one as it combines the valuable Hoka qualities with a more prompter style. The low sole makes a lot of fun and the low to the ground gives you a lot of confidence when you hit the trails.

Tune of the day: No Remorze - Dark Malice

Sunday, 16 October 2016

Friday, 14 October 2016

Dialogues with World of Swimrun

The committed chaps at World of Swimrun believed it is a worthy idea to ask me various questions. Read all I have to say about SwimRun and endurance sports on their website.

Tick the image to read the full dialog on World of Swimrun.

Wednesday, 12 October 2016

Saturday, 8 October 2016

Thursday, 6 October 2016

On point with Magnus Myhrborg

It is not an uncommon sign – two Swedes cross the finish line of a SwimRun competition in first place. Magnus Myhrborg and his mate Jesper Hassel grabbed the first place at last weekends Loch Gu Loch SwimRun in around the second largest Scottish loch, the world famous Loch Ness. The two are not only fast athletes, while Magnus owns the sporting-goods website his friend Jesper is the co-founder of health tech start-up I caught up with Gothenburg-based Magnus to talk about their race and their plans ahead.

Picture Credit: SwimRun Scotland
Runssel: Together with Jesper Hassel you earned the top spot at last weekends Loch Gu Loch SwimRun around the spectacular Scottish highlands. What scared you most – Nessie during the cold swims throughout the icy Loch or the elevation gain through the run portions?
Magnus Myhrborg: In the beginning of the race I think it was the extremly cold water because I panicked when I jumped into the water and wanted to return to land and go home again. In the last part of the race it was the elevation, both Jesper and I are good runners when it´s flat so we had some problems with cramps during the last 6 k run.

Picture Credit: Anna-Karin Lundin
Runssel: How did the race progress for you guys? When did you realise you won the battle?
Magnus Myhrborg: We had a really good start with two good swims and OK running, so when we started the 3rd run (9 k running) the course was perfect for us, a bit downhill and some flat where I think we were averaging a running pace of around 4.30 min/km. I think it was that run that gave us a few minutes lead. I think I knew that we were going to win during the last 6 k of running, but Jesper wasn't sure until we had come out of the water on the last swim and therefore we did not want to celebrate before we past the finish line. We couldn’t see the teams behind us for some time, but we have never been leading a race before so it was a new experience.

Picture Credit: Andy Kirkland
Runssel: Why did you pick the Loch Gu Loch race and in what way did you prepare for the competition? Did you fine-tune your training to the course profile?
Magnus Myhrborg: We picked this race because we wanted to see more of Scotland. I have never been there before so it´s a cool way to explore a country. In regards to our training, it was pretty bad actually. I competed in Ö-loppet in the beginning of August and got hurt. My physiotherapist advised me 2 days before i went to Scotland that Loch Gu Loch was not a good idea. Thus I haven’t run more than 5k 2 times a week for some time. The good thing about that was that i could focus more on my swimming and started swimming with Simcoachen and the awesome coach Anna-Karin Lundin. Jesper has been traveling a lot in his work and could only really get runs in, even though it was not near as much as he had been hoping for. So in all honesty we weren’t as prepared for this race as we would have liked.

Picture Credits: Anna Schlosser
Runssel: What was your team tactic? Do you change the front swimmer during the race? Who is leading the runs?
Magnus Myhrborg: We did not have any particular tactics. Right now I’m the best swimmer so i was in the front all the time in the swimming. We know our strength and weaknesses so we just focus on enjoying the race and being happy all the time. After a bit over 20 k of running i felt that my body was not up for it, so then we put the rope between us and Jesper helped to pull me along a little. On the steeper uphills we walked because we wanted to save energy and we also know that we can run pretty fast downhill and on the flat.

Runssel: You raced several SwimRun races throughout Sweden. What makes this race stick out to the competitions you raced so far?
Magnus Myhrborg: Yes we have been doing this a few years now and we are always looking for new races because it´s an amazing way to explore the nature. This is actually the race that hade the most amazing nature that we have done a SwimRun in. As a result of the race we can say that we really have seen Loch Ness and the nature surrounding it =)

Runssel: Was this your last race in 2016? Any plans for the upcoming season? 
Magnus Myhrborg: No, we have one race left - 1000 Lakes in Germany. So far we have not planned any races. However, there are a couple that we would like to do and it would also be fantastic if we would get the opportunity to compete in the SwimRun World Championship, ÖtillÖ next year.

INSTAssel: Seasonal pleasures

Ein von runssel (@runssel) gepostetes Foto am

Tune of the day: Bellows - Fist and Palm

Wednesday, 5 October 2016

sneakerporn: Mizuno - Wave Ekiden 10

I do not really memorize which version, but the Wave Ekiden was my very first road-flat quite some years ago. From the time when then I got my first pair until now, I raced several pairs of this modern road-running classic. It is not only a shiny and fast looking shoe, it is also a superior racing flat I loved every time I got my hand on one. Now Mizuno released the 10th version. Lets have a close look.
The term “Ekiden” is something that should be well-known to all running fans across the globe. It refers to a long-distance relay running race, typically on roads. The Japanese term originally referred to a post-horse or stagecoach which transmitted communication by stages.
Mizuno calls the outsole by the name of “G3“. It is merely created for road running and bids just enough charge for reckless excursions on the cemented underground or track workouts. For a humble and slick get-up it latest quite some time when I used the shoe through numerous trainings and road interval sessions.
Personally I always enjoyed the fitting of the Ekiden. The elegant and thin upper creates a comfortable and close fit and makes running fast a controlled experience.
It is called “X10” and its job is to ensure stability and traction. The durable Mizuno carbon rubber allows for longer wear in high impact areas and provides more traction.
“U4ic” is the name of the midsole compound providing high comfort and performance, while being extremely lightweight.
The height of accurate racing expertise is found in this Japanese heritage shoe.
Unconquerable - the pure beauty of a simple running flat.
The polite 6mm offset bids a  fast and very responsive ride.
All pictures show the Mizuno Wave Ekiden in the Diva Blue, White and Safety Yellow colour line. Mizuno sticks to the characteristic design.
All my dear reader please note: This shoe does not have a lot of cushioning you consequently need to be able to have some experience running a shoe like this. The minimalist design does not offer much and feet and legs might need to work more. It is a pure racing shoe that follows the minimal route.
Mizuno’s 10th version of the Wave Ekiden bids minimal underfoot support which is desired to run fast and efficient. With a total weight of sweet 145g the shoe offers no arch support either. 
Once more I was delighted to have a go with this classic. Mizuno delivers once more as the only update their road-racing flagship insignificant. Why change a running system?

All pictures (c) Runssel