Since my brain is frazzled, bedazzled or is that just gone missing, but anyway that you look at it my long-form writing, motivation and the Muse have been missing for a few weeks. Yeah, the continued crap with the election and pandemic have completely gutted what is left in the old noggin. So I am going back to something that always seems to bring me back out of whatever writing funk I am at the time.
Writing about my running for a while — who knows maybe even longer.
This has been a screwy week where it snowed just enough to make things rather treacherous (the snow was hiding all the ice) Monday, so I figured that would be a great day to take off. Then Wednesday and Thursday came with rain in the mid 30s (or lower), which is an automatic no run outside day. I don’t enjoy hypothermia and it is too easy to do in those conditions. Plus there was just a bit of black ice in spots, so those are no running clues for the old guy now that I don’t have access to a treadmill.
Finally, this morning things cleared out and I got to walk Bennie. We checked out down-back and it was a combination of mud, slush and ice on the flats past the lower gate. Not ideal for the run I had planned so I changed it to my Pepin 5.0 miler.
I got a sweet deal on a pair of On Cloudflyer v1 a few weeks ago — under $30 shipped on eBay. They looked to have about 30-40 miles on them and were quite nice. However, I wasn’t so sure about the firmness. They sure are not anything like the Triumph 17s that I have been running in lately, but their firmness wasn’t harsh like I found the Topo Zephyr (which was too much even for me). Walking in them didn’t really do a lot one way or another, so I needed to get the first run done.
Like most shoes, they have their own best stride to run in and it took until I got going down Philbrick Hill to figure it out. They felt firm, but they also felt lighter than the 8.9 ounces that they showed on the scales. Without attempting to, I ran an 8:31 first mile, so that made me smile a little.
When I got on Pepin I thought “why not” and picked up the pace for my Pepin segment, no I didn’t set any world records, but I also didn’t think about my feet at all during the segment. I just ran faster than usual and pretty comfortably at a 7:02 pace for just over a half mile. I felt strong and had another gear or two if I really had gone after the segment. The Cloudflyers did exactly what I wanted, disappeared on my feet during the faster running.
I finished the second mile split with a 7:59 and felt good, I slowed down a lot for the next 2.0 miles, I am not in shape for running 7:00 pace and the body just kind of went ooommpphh (that feeling you get like a balloon that fizzles all the air out) when I hit 2.0 miles. Especially when I was running back up Philbrick Hill. I walked a ways just to keep some semblance of a reasonable heart rate. Once I got back up on top, I was able to run fairly normally and even picked it up pretty well going down the muddy road towards the lower gate.
The only reason I went to the lower gate was I wanted to see how the Cloudflyers handled the sloppier conditions and they did just fine. Better than 90% of the road shoes I have used down there in those conditions. The “clouds” did provide a little extra grip in the slime, even though the actual tread wasn’t worth a damn in it. So it was an interesting experiment and one I am glad that I did.
For a first run, they did well, I am not so sure I would use them for recovery or longer runs, but at the same time, for the first time in a while my feet didn’t have discomfort or hurt when I got over 3.0 miles and I was still able to pick the pace back up a bit at the end. So I need to run in them a few more times, but I have a feeling they will compliment nicely the Triumph 17s as my tempo/fartlek shoes or more if I find out that they are the only shoes that don’t kill my feet.
A nice run and one where I learned a lot about the On Cloudflyer. Now to get more miles on them and see where they actually fit in my rotation.
See I got a few words written down for a change. Now to get back in the habit.