Gear I love

Sometimes I get questions about my gear. Sometimes my brother makes fun of me because he thinks I have too much gear (he also doesn't drink water on 10-mile summer runs). Either way, if you clicked this link, you're curious about what I use. So here's the rundown.

Road Shoes

Currently I'm rotating between three pairs of road shoes. I like for my road shoes to have more cushion to protect my joints from the concrete jungle, so you won't find any minimal shoes in my collection.

New Balance 890: light, neutral shoe with lots of cushion and a breathable upper. I usually wear these for speed work, but I also recently gave them a whirl at a marathon and was happy with the result.

Mizuno Wave Rider: I originally bought the Wave Rider 14s, and now I have a pair of 15s waiting in the closet and 16s on the way in the mail. I like the solid footing of these for distance running, and the forward rocking motion of the shoe, similar to the Karhus above. After about 250 miles on the 14s, I injured my foot right where the shoe collar hits my left foot. Not sure if it's the shoe's fault or not, but I am putting wearing them on hold for now. I'm hoping that the 15s and 16s have a lower shoe collar since I already have them in the arsenal. 

Newton Distance Performance: extremely light, zero-drop shoes. They also have the Action/Reaction technology that is designed to help rock your foot forward without wasting energy. I use these for shorter distance runs to give my feet some variation in my weekly workouts. So far I don't use them for longer runs yet, but I might build up to that.


Trail Shoes

Because trails are soft and more forgiving, I like a variety of trail shoes from minimal, no cushion to beefy, cushioned shoes and some in between. There are lower-drop shoes in my collection which help me develop other muscles and allow me to have a better feel of the trail when I'm running. 

Brooks Cascadia 8: Comfortable from the time you open the box. These shoes are a little beefier trail shoe that have a higher heel-toe drop. Although they have significant cushion, they don't feel heavy or sluggish.

New Balance 20 Trail Minimus: These shoes are my favorite cross trainers. They fit well into the spin bike pedals, and they are great for weight lifting and other group exercise classes. I've moved away from using these on the trails because I prefer the shoes with a rock plate and some cushion. But if I knew a trail wasn't very rocky, I would wear them. Here's my original review of these. Also if  you order these, there is a mesh summer version and a solid upper winter version. The ones pictured below are the summer version.

New Balance 1010 Trail Minimus: These are my new favorites because they bridge between the New Balances 20s and the Salomon XR Missions. I had to add an insert because they come without one, and the seams were causing blisters under my big toes. They are a perfect balance of cushion and protection with a low profile to help you feel the trail. Plus they're very roomy in the toe box. Go here to read some more details about the shoe (scroll to bottom of the post).

Socks

For long races and recovery, I am a huge fan of compression socks. 

I like these knee-length compression socks: 

Swiftwick Pursuit Twelve -- perfect for shorter legs

Feetures Elite Ultra Light -- great foot and leg compression

Pro Compression Marathon -- fit longer legs well, plus have tons of colors

***If I am ever running in rain or through water, I have to wear Injinji toe socks. They are the only ones that keep blisters from forming between my toes when it's wet out.

Fuel

My go-to gel choice is anything made by Hammer. Their gels are fruit based and don't add refined sugar, which I've been trying to avoid. Apple Cinnamon tastes like a slice of apple pie -- so darn delicious.

I also just like to eat straight-up fruit on long runs, and chips are great too. 

Lately I've been sticking to plain water, but in the summer months, I will add in some Nuun to make up for all the sweating I'll be doing. 

For long trail runs, I use this Camelbak hydration pack for carrying water. 


Recovery

I use a variety of tools and fuels to help me recover, here are some of my favorites: 

Tart cherry juice -- I have the concentrate and make my own mix by adding a little apple or grape juice into water with a couple spoonfuls of the tart cherry juice. 

Thera Cane Massager -- especially helps with knots on your back, neck and feet.

j/fit 36" Black High Density Foam Roller -- great for loosening the larger muscles in your legs, especially glutes.

Running Books 

Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen

A Life Without Limits: A World Champion's Journey

Eat and Run: My Unlikely Journey to Ultramarathon Greatness

Once a Runner: A Novel

Run Less, Run Faster, Revised Edition: Become a Faster, Stronger Runner with the Revolutionary 3-Run-a-Week Training Program