April Runs

… hikes, kickbikes, skis and more

Archive for the category “Gear”

Tough as a Sheep

Yes, that is what I want to be. But not just any sheep that freezes to death once winter sets in. I want to be as tough as a merino, the daring sheep breed surviving on the cold steep slopes of the Southern Alps in New Zealand.
But before I become this tough, at least I want to experience the feeling of merino wool on my hands…

After two evening runs earlier this week, both times I returned home with half frostbitten fingers. You see, I don’t like running with thick gloves (there comes one of my old biathlon habits again). V. did not want to witness that anymore so she ordered Santa (or baby Jesus?) to come to bring me a present a bit earlier than usually. She couldn’t have thought of anything better: As of today, I am the proud owner of Icebreaker’s 200 g/m2 Merino Wool Glove Liner.

I tested them immediately (6 km in minus seven degrees, my iPod freezing after 2 km’s): Thank you, Santa, the gloves are perfect! I don’t usually get excited by any special gear other than good running shoes but honestly, gloves this warm and thin at the same time ARE doing the trick. To me, discovering merino equals the GoreTex ‘aha’ moment ad I am one seriously happy camper tonight.

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Thank you for my August 100M

My dear reader will excuse me for using the ultra-terminology in the title of today’s blog post but I simply cannot help it. After the pitiful mileage of the past months, in August I was suddenly offered a tremendous window of opportunity: I could go running 5 times a week! This resulted in a bit of a sleep deprivation (but I have suffered from this already), several logistical hiccups and… a beautiful total of 164 km!
Foto0117As many good things in life, I couldn’t have done this alone. This is my thank you to everybody who helped me to get out and run almost every day, often at impossible times:

V, for always being there for me.
E+S, for making me wanna be a better person.
I, for being out there, virtually.
L, for inventing the Summer Challenge.
All other runners and bloggers, for loving running.

Thank you, Czech Bloggers!!!

Slightly irritated (as I just managed to cuddle the little nipple-devil to sleep) I opened the door. Luckily our postman always rings twice.

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THANK YOU, guys, my eyes are full of tears as I am unpacking the beautiful presents for the little jogger-to-be…  I never would have thought that belonging to a virtual running-blogging community feels this good. Of course now we have no excuse but to come to Prague and to run and drink beer again. So we will!

Juneathon Day 1: Shoes

Many things have changed in my life since I joined (and completed) my first Athon in January this year. First of all, our beloved April passed away and I keep being grateful for the idea to name my blog after her. (My own original idea was Wounded Knee as my knee has been playing games with me for the past 2 years but heeey, no pain – no gain!)

Furthermore, I now consider myself a runner. I have been running (and racing) since January and enjoying it every time. Throughout the months I found out it is not for the weight loss or to tick off some imaginary box. No. I run because I like doing it. I like to feel the air in my hair, to smell the river next to me on a summer evening, to feel the fresh water drops on my body when having a shower after the run. In particular, I like the endorphins hitting me each time after about 4-5 km of running :-).

Juneathon jogging challenge: Run every day.

In January, I managed to exercise every day and came to a total mileage of 400+ km out of which 130 km was running. In June, I want to go out there running each of the 30 days. The total of 100 running miles would be great, the other activities are less important.

Juneathon blogging challenge: Make a picture at each run.

Today, on Day 1, I present you my running buddies.

Until recently I only had one or two pairs of running shoes and it was fine. But 2 weeks ago, the shopaholic girl in me couldn’t resist a major discount on the Salomon trail shoes and Asics Nimbus. Both these new pairs are probably the cheapest shoes I’ve ever bought so don’t blame me… As the matter of fact, I took the pair of Nimbus for their Juneathon maiden voyage today and they ran great!

Happy Easter Running

The Easter weekend is almost over and it was good. My mother and April enjoying themselves with good food, talking and cuddling, me and V spending two mornings on the road (10 and 12 km). Both our runs were easy going and rather enjoyable. We managed to run next to each other, talk a bit, focus a bit, get tired but not too much… I think we found a pace that is ‘runnable’ at the 1/2M next month. Mum is leaving tomorrow morning and this might have been the last time for her to be with April.

Btw, this is the picture we chose for our Team AprilRuns shirts:

Thoughts on running gear

Back in the eighties, when I was a teenager, for running I needed a pair of sneakers, old sweatpants and a shirt. As a biathlon runner, I only used long pants and long sleeves to cover my knees and elbows. The shoe choice was limited by what the local store (or any Czech store) had to offer: there was virtually only one company (BOTAS) that produced something that distantly looked like a running shoe – and we were all happy to use it.

No discussions about pronation, supination, cushioning what so ever – as there was no point to discuss something that could not be helped by changing the gear. If you needed something and it was not available, you found your way around – either lived your life without it or made it yourself. I am sure my friends remember the times of sewing our own cycling bags, rebuilding the famous Favorit ‘racing’ bikes, gluing an entire epoxy canoe or tailoring our guns by hand-carved stocks made of prefab wooden thresholds.

Throughout the years, somehow I lost track of the developments in the running business. I should have known better as I witnessed other sports developing quickly as well. So when I picked up running a couple of months ago, the impressive list of necessities hit me straight away:

Training shoes for running on the road, training shoes for unpaved trails, running socks high and low, compression socks, winter pants, summer pants, running bra’s of all kinds, drinks and gels, drinks and gel belts, tech T-shirts of all kinds, reflex jackets, summer and winter underwear, softshell, coolmax, H2Port, running gloves and a beanie, iPod, wireless headset, sport testers…. The list seems never ending.

The thing is I love gear and gadgets and frankly, sometimes I do buy more than I need simply to have it and to enjoy the fact that in 2012, the technology (and our attempts to sustain the free market economy) enables us to use so many interesting tools. Having a choice feels great. But deep down, I am a simple girl. Next time, you might see me running in a pair of old sneakers, old sweatpants and a 500+ times washed cotton T-shirt with fading colors of my old sport club, smiling and enjoying the road.

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