I've taken the plunge and registered for the ultra marathon. If you want proof that I've registered, you can find it here. Whether or not I can finish it remains to be seen - mostly because I've reached the point of being sick of trying to kill myself to run farther than 15 miles.
I live in a very hilly neighbourhood (yes, they do exist in Florida!) and trying to run those miles on the hills and in the heat is proving difficult for me. However, I don't want to train again next year, so I'm going to give it a go this year.
I did finally give up on trying to do it all barefoot though. I managed to get a half-marathon distance barefoot and it was great. Unfortunately my aging hip joints screamed at me for a few days after that, so I decided to wear shoes. I wore my Merrells (yes, I am wearing men's shoes...see below for colour commentary) for a long time and managed to get to 15 miles before the hips started screaming.
So I finally did a stoopid thing. I went to a shoe store and bought a pair of shoes with a 4mm heel rise. Yes, I know that 4mm is not a lot. But when you're used to 0mm, 4mm may as well be 6-inch stilettos (you know I had something else there first, right?). Ever tried to run in those? Yeah, me either (6" pumps would put me at 6'2", which is taller than 99% of the men I know...ain't happening). But I digress...
I have no idea which shoes I'm going to wear for the ultra, which is in 5 days.
I wanted to list for you the things I hate about big cushy running shoes:
- I can't feel the ground, so I trip over my feet. Literally. I can't tell where the ground is because I'm hitting it too soon (this goes along nicely with my teeth being in the wrong place, due to braces...but that's another story too).
- A heel rise makes for sore calves.
- ...and sore knees
- Ever seen a baby walk when you first put shoes on them? Yep, that's pretty much what I look like running.
- They're heavy. I don't care how light they are, they're heavy.
- They're hot, especially when you have to wear socks too...which is always.
- Most of them are butt-ugly. Who comes up with the putrid colours of running shoes?
- They aren't shaped right
- All the other runners in my neighbourhood comment on the fact that I'm wearing shoes!
But, to be fair, here are the things I like about big cushy running shoes:
- ...I'm still thinking
- OK, my hips actually don't hurt when I'm finished running - despite the fact that everything else does.
I'm pretty sure that if I ever run again after the ultra, I'm going back to barefoot. When the race is over, I promise to give you an update, because I know I've tortured you all for months with the antici
...pation! Be careful what you wish for though; it'll be either very short or very long. :)