Road tested: Brooks Adrenaline 6

A short, but glowing shoe review: I’m constantly searching for the perfect shoe. While not perfect, the Brooks Adrenaline 6 comes close. In the past year I’ve tried out:

  • Adidas SuperNova Cushion
  • Saucony Trigon Guide
  • Montrail Masai
  • Salomon XA XCR Pro 3D
  • Brooks Adrenaline 6

I figure I may as well try different brands to see if one or another works out well in terms of fit, comfort and durability.

I originally ran in New Balance, but (and this is silly, I know) although they were perfectly fine shoes I’ve found that lately their shoe designs are just butt ugly. I don’t want to wear ugly shoes.

The Adidas were just weird. My first run in them was fine, very comfortable. Then, on the second run, the left shoe gave me unremitant pain along the outside of my left foot. This persisted for six or seven runs. I gave them to my sister, who has been delighted with them. Go figure.

The Sauconys have been fine, but not notable. They feel clunky and, although there’s a lot between my feet and road, they don’t feel cushioned. In fact, they feel a bit hard. I realize they’re a stability shoe, and so will be on the stiff side. But once you get into the 12th mile or so, running in a hard shoe isn’t pleasant. Maybe you get used to it.

The Montrails were an impulse buy. They’re a discontinued model that I spotted selling for $25 at Marshall’s. Before they were discontinued, they retailed for $90. They are trail shoes and I ran one 10 miler in them. My shins were worse the day after, although to be fair this was during my post-Thanksgiving racing tendonitis jamboree period, so the shoes may be fine. But I’m not taking any chances with them during marathon training. For now, I just wear them around the house.

The Salomons are the perfect waterproof shoe, as I attest to and swoon over in my previous review and its follow up.

Finally, we come to the Brooks shoe. I’ve run about 50 miles in the Adrenaline 6 so far and they are great shoes, for my feet at least. They are cushioned (but not hard) and lighter than the Sauconys, but with good support for my moderate overpronating. What I like best about them is that I am unaware of them when wearing them. Nothing’s pinching or sliding or rubbing or otherwise uncomfortable. I barely know they’re there. So they allow me to get on with the job of running.

Marathon training: Week 9

Training is going well. Some highlights:

The shinsplint has migrated to to my right leg now. But I’m not that bothered by it. It seems to come and go. At least it keeps to just one leg at any given time, which is a good thing since I only have one shin support.

My first hill run on Saturday went well, although I did it at a fairly easy pace. Jonathan’s mapped out a good route, with a total of 6 big hills. Muscles I didn’t know I had were asserting themselves the next day.

I did my first 18 mile training run yesterday, and that too went well. I was rested and, even with my shin bothering me, it was a good run. I felt quite tired for about two hours afterward, but basically felt fine and was able to function. I’m happy with my pace for that run, too: under a 10:30 mile, with the last 8 faster than the first 10.

The Macmillan pace calculator says I should be running these at between 9:17-10:17 in order to race my goal time of 3:50:00. I should be able to get into that range over the coming weeks. And I’ll eventually start adding in some marathon pace miles in those longer runs.

I drank more water on yesterday’s long run as compared to my last 16 miler, and consumed three Clif Bloks (at miles 15, 16, 17) as well. I felt a definite lift after eating those, but that may just be psychological. Although I did go out yesterday morning on an empty stomach, running from 7:30 until 10:45, so I suppose I was pretty hungry.

I’ve got one more 18 miler before I move up to the 20 milers. Yesterday left me feeling confident that I can do that without problems.

94 days until the marathon.