So what was in the box I showed you the last time we met? Where did the box come from? Why do we need to put things in boxes? Am I stalling or just trying to increase my word count? All valid questions. The answer to the most important one is that my birthday was last week and I used the opportunity of celebrating my beginning to buy new running shoes.
Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the Merrell Trail Glove.
Are you ok? Do you need a minute to collect yourself? Did they take your breath away? It's ok, just let your emotions run wild. I wept when I first saw them and you should too. If you think they look a little familiar you are not incorrect. Let's take a look at the evolution of footwear according to my feet.
The Little Italian LOVES it when I put my dirty running shoes on the table.
For those of you who don't have long term memory issues you may recall that my first foray into trail running was done in a pair of Chuck Taylors. We can all agree that was not a great plan. But it did lead to the purchase of the bright yellow Nike Zoom Waffle XC 8s you see on the far left of the above picture. They served me well. They were fast, light, had removable spikes and were yellow. That last bit was their best trait. After many miles in the dirt they had to be shelved and were replaced by the shoe you see in the middle. Look familiar? Yeah, that is the Merrell Sonic Glove. That has been a fantastic shoe but there are some major differences between those and the trail gloves so a change was in order. First, the trail glove has a mesh upper for increased breathability. I'm sure you have all been terribly worried about the breathability of my running shoes. Second, the Trail Glove has a flexible stone guard in the forefoot. Other than that the shoes are identical except for one major performance enhancing quality of my newest pair. My new shoes are silver. Silver shoes have been clinically proven to go faster. I don't make this stuff up folks. If you can find it on the internet, it's real.
My decision to go with this particular shoe was not one I took lightly. The whole minimalist running craze has flooded the market with shoes for that category. More options means more studying which means more coffee and that leads to me getting the jitters. I'm so tired but I can't blink and my hair is vibrating. I do it all for you though.
So why did I buy these shoes? First and foremost they are a true minimal shoe with zero drop from the heel to the forefoot. The upper is well thought out with a durable material and formed rubber toe guard. If Pegasus wore shoes he/she/it would have worn these. How's that for a product endorsement? That should take a little of the air out of Michael Jordan's sails. See what I did there? You're welcome.
Be honest, you are really just admiring the color. I know, they're cool.
The other major factor in my decision was the Vibram outsole. Vibram soles got Jim Whittaker to the top of Everest. If their soles can do that they can do anything. Well, almost anything. They can't make me a sandwich. But if they did make me a sandwich I'm sure it would have bacon. All the best sandwiches have bacon.
I do intend to put my new kicks to good use in the very near future. And yes, I'll tell you about it here. On August 31st there is a ten mile trail race in Davidson. I put this race on my schedule back in January with every intention of not breaking my leg in March. Yeah, about that. I guess Shakespeare was right. Regardless, I've been back on the trail for nearly a month and despite my slow pace I've got the racing itch. I can see this going one of two ways. My dream would be a first place finish followed by champagne, a medal and the ability to eat dairy. Reality will most likely be a finish near the back of the field with my lungs coming out of mouth. That sounds nice too though. Besides, The Little Italian keeps telling me ice cream doesn't taste that good. The fact that she always says it with a spoon hanging out of her mouth does make me question her honesty. Just a little.