Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Tech rehearsals...

So, just time for one last-minute pre-Juneathon shake-down and 'tech rehearsal' before the whole shebang kicks off, everything goes to pot, and I find myself lacking the energy, the inclination and the mental capacity to fix it. The tech I'm rehearsing is part attire and part gadgetry, and I'll cover both in this pile of waffle, along with the route, just to make sure everything's working and I know where I am, you know where I am, and everyone knows their positions, cues and lines. Okay? Okay...

The gadgetry first: I'm attempting to log Juneathon on a different GPS device - or at least, a different GPS-enabled mobile phone -  than I did for Janathon. The shiny Nokia N86 at least has the capacity to connect to my computer, which will (hopefully) make logging the routes to RunningFree a darn sight simpler. It could have been even simpler if Nokia hadn't discontinued their own SportTracker software and web service, as RF could have picked my uploads up directly from that and logged them automatically. But they've dropped it and the aftermarket company that have nabbed the software created their own service but failed to keep the integrations so I'm just going to have to transfer GPX files from the phone itself. (Makes mental note to remember data transfer cable if going anywhere...)

So far, so strange. Attire next. The short run-out tonight was a chance to start wearing in a few new bits of kit that will be aiding me through Juneathon and beyong, to the GRP in August.

Wave Harrier 3! And my ankles.
First off are the new shoes, a spangly pair of Mizuno Wave Harrier 3s. These came out tops after a fairly intensive 2-hour shoe shopping session with Stu and the team at Accelerate down in Sheffield. Stu helped fit me out for my last pair of trail shoes, the Saucony Xodus that saw me through Janathon, and will be helping me through Juneathon too. The Harriers are an addition, with a bit more grip for fell running, and to work with the fact that my gait has changed - quite a lot - since the start of the year. The first run out seemed fine, a bit of tweaking and wearing in needed to balance the tension in the laces between 'not moving at the heel' and 'not squeezing the life out of my foot'. But for a first run out, damn comfortable, grippy as a really quite grippy thing, and very easy to run in.

Toesocks! And my ankles...
Along with those is a pair of the wonderfully strange but also, from first feel, just plain wonderful Injinji toe socks. Yep, that's right, toe socks. Imagine gloves for your feet. That's the badger. The better half's first comment on seeing these was "Eugh. You look like your feet have died" (I assume that was a reference to the khaki green-ish colour rather than the shape...) After getting over the initial 'slight-oddness' when pulling them on, these are damn comfy, and should reduce the time spent picking bits of grit, dirt etc out from under and between my toes. They're also Coolmax, so should help keep my (very warm) feet from getting too sweaty on the run, a problem I would certainly be having if I ran Juneathon in the wooly Karrimor socks I used in January.

So, the run itself was uneventful, just a short spin down from the house, across Oxley and into the Hollies - I like the Hollies as a testing ground because it's got a bit of everything, ups, downs, gravel, tarmac, mud, wooden bridges, tight singletrack and open fire-road. A lap down some tight stuff and back up some rocky stuff, around some tarmac-y bits and back over the pitches (all with little bits of faff, shoe-tying and stopping for a drink involved) meant a pleasant little 28min 4km bimble. Just right for a shake-down and loosen out before the mile-munching starts in earnest tomorrow. Bring on the Juneathon!

1 comment:

Gary Vallance said...

Excellent behaviour! I'm a big fan of the Harriers, and if Stu's recommending them to you, it's testament to your development as a runner.

I'd love to be joining you for this one as well, but if anything else gets between my work-wife balance I might never walk (let alone run) again.

Best of luck with it all. Goose