Monday, April 21, 2014

Marathon shoes - Ronin vs. Elixir

On Friday evening I was setting back and relaxing after a long day when my phone started ringing. I recognized Billy’s number so I pressed the answer button.

Billy was calling to ask my opinion about racing a marathon in the Mizuno Ronin vs. the Mizuno Elixir.

We talked for about 15 minutes and I shared my thoughts and opinion about racing in them.

Afterwards, I started thinking about our conversation more and then it dawned on me. I should probably share this with a post.

Through my many marathons, I have run in several different brands of shoes. By far, the most often, I have used the Ronins.

To most runners, the Ronin is a great short distance shoe. But over the long haul, it doesn’t have the cushioning and support needed to handle the marathon distance. I suspect this is why most people opt for the Elixir or something similar.

They are concerned about the pounding that their legs and feet are going to take over the 26.2 mile distance.

This is a validate point. 26.2 miles takes its toll on the legs and the body. During the late stages of a race, the body really starts to break down. Usually when it does, the pace starts to slip.

So why do I choose to run in the Ronins vs. another shoe.

I have always subscribed to the theory that the lighter the shoe the less work needed to be done by my legs to turnover.

Think of it along these lines, each day you carry a 20 pound weight during your run. Then, on race day, you carry a 5 pound weight. Logic dictates that you would be able to move faster since you are carrying less weight.

The same principle applies to the running shoe. A lighter shoes means my legs are expending less effort to turnover. Thus, they should at least in theory go longer and faster during the race.

Back to the points about cushioning and support, I firmly agree that these are factors. They weigh heavily in a marathon. More than a few times, my body has wanted to stop after about 22 miles.

Racing is about tradeoffs.

When I finish a marathon, I have to believe that I have done everything possible to run as fast as possible. If this means that my feet and body will be sore for a few days because I opted for a certain shoe. I am okay with this tradeoff. Pain and discomfort are temporary. In a few days, they will pass.

The time that I run will stand forever.  



Sharing one thought at time,

The Cool Down Runner

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