Monday, August 15, 2011

Forget everything..

As a self-diagnosed “shoe geek” I think about shoes a lot. Not sometimes, not often… but A LOT! I also own so many pairs of shoes it’s sometimes hard in the morning to decide which lucky pair to bring on the day’s workout. I have certain pairs I use on the easy/recovery days, I’ve got a designated pair for tempo and fartleks, obviously a special race day pair that I also take once a week to the track, and of course… I’ve got multiple pairs of my all-time favorite shoe that I use on MOST days, my Wave Elixirs.

When I get to work my problem is multiplied, as I work in run specialty and actually make my living talking to runners about running and running shoes. Seriously, I get paid to obsess over my obsession… I’m stealing money huh?

Ok follow me here… It’s not just shoes I love, it’s everything about running. I average 70-80 miles per week, pay close attention to my nutritional needs, try to sleep as well as I can (anybody with a newborn at home will understand my struggle there) and like many runners, I’m my own worst enemy with over analyzing it all. I pay too much attention to what the Garmin says, if one 400 rep in a workout doesn’t go my way I get frustrated, I worry I’m running my recovery runs too fast or too slow blah blah blah… But worst of all, I worry about shoes:

“Am I heel striking?”
“What’s my cadence?”
“Is this shoe too heavy… or wait, is it too light?”
“What’s the heel/toe offset?"
“Wait… am I pronating too much?”

Here’s my solution to the problem. Let all that crap go! This came to me this past weekend, as I was just out for an easy recovery 6 miler. I decided to go with the Wave Prophecy, as I had only about 25 miles on the shoe, and every single one of those miles I was over thinking the technology and trying to come up with witty words to write in an earlier review… instead of just letting it all go, and enjoying the run!

As to be expected, my first couple of miles out the door I thought about the Infinity Wave plate within the midsole, I experimented with different foot strikes to see how the shoe adapted, I played with my speed to get a better feel, then something magical happened. At mile 2 I merged with my city’s mayor, who is an outstanding runner and also training for a Fall marathon. Soon, we were casually running discussing my son keeping me up all freakin’ night, how awesome the new café in town is, which local microbrew is our favorite, and how we need to get our families together sometime.

Not once in the run did we talk about running or shoes, mile splits, foot strike, and can you believe we didn’t even argue about millimeter drop in shoes? CRAZY! We talked about life and just enjoyed the run! At the end of the run we bid each other farewell and headed towards our respective homes on the other side of town… and then I realized I was wearing the Prophecy still.
I just had the most enjoyable run I’ve had all summer in a shoe I earlier deemed a bit too heavy and built up for me. I’ve always said the Wave Prophecy gives me a sense of just flowing, and only when you finally let go of all the outside B.S. that doesn’t matter will you be able to experience the true sense of flow. The ride the Prophecy gave felt amazing as I was able to enjoy good company, great conversation and a fantastic run, with superb cushion and responsiveness... without thinking about it!

I urge all runners to try at least once a week to forget about that upcoming race or tomorrow’s hard workout. Leave the GPS at home. Forget about your cadence, foot strike, speed or how high your heel is off the forefoot. Don’t worry about the inbox at work, the deadline for that project or all the yard work awaiting you at home. Lace up your favorite pair of shoes, and just get out the door and remember what it’s like to enjoy the run.

Sometimes we forget… this shit is supposed to be fun.


  1. This? Coming from the one who constantly tries to tell me that I don't obsess enough? My world. It's crumbling.
    For real, that's the only way anyone becomes a life long enjoying it. And that's why I running up effing Sunday River. Because I swear, it'll be fun.
    Great post, Seth. Glad to be your friend.

  2. Good stuff Seth. Overthinking things is many runners' worst enemy.