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Spring 2012 Volume 11, Number 1

2012 Spring Shoe Review

USA Cross Country

US Olympic Marathon Trials Cover photo by PhotoRun.net

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MEDIA PARTNER www.usatf.org


TABLE OF C ONTENTS Volume 11 Number 1 Spring 2012

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Publisher’s Note

Publisher’s Note 6 Eder By Larry By Larry Eder

Group Editor Christine Johnson christinej.ssm@gmail.com

Youth Running Shoes

Founding Editor Gina Sokolich ginasok3@charter.net

Hall, Mack Win USA Cross Country Titles in St.. Louis

Managing Editor D. M. Strauss morunner@earthlink.net

Spots Going Fast for GO! St. Louis Events

Group Publisher Larry Eder, Shooting Star Media, Inc. P.O. Box 67, Fort Atkinson, WI 53538 larry@runningnetwork.com 608.239.3785 Fax: 920.563.7298 Advertising Shooting Star Media, Inc. SSMadvert@gmail.com 608.239.3785

By Cregg Weinmann

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Youth Running Shoes Off the Wire... By Cregg Weinmann 11

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Hall, Mack Win USA Cross Country Titles in St.. Louis By Jon Gugala Off the Wire... Something to Believe In

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2012 U.S. Olympic Men’s Marathon Trials

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By Dan Hunter

Spots Going Fast f17 or GO! St. Louis Events Coffee with the Coach

By Mike Arenberg

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Something to Believe In By Cregg Weinmann By Jon Gugala

2012 Spring Shoe Review

Design Richele Collins RicheleCollins1@verizon.net Copyeditor Marg Sumner Red Ink Editorial Services MargSumner@aol.com Contributors Larry Eder, Cregg Weinmann, Dan Hunter, Mike Arenberg, Jon Gugala, PhotoRun.net, Elliott Denman Special Projects Adam Johnson Eder

Missouri Runner and Triathlete is produced and published by Shooting Star Media, Inc., P.O. Box 67, Fort Atkinson, WI 53538. Publisher assumes no liability for matter printed. Publisher assumes no responsibility or liability for content of paid advertising and reserves the right to reject paid advertising. Opinions expressed are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the Publisher. Copyright ©2012 by Shooting Star Media, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form without the written permission of the Publisher. www.morunandtri.com

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March Event Calendar

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2012 U.S. Olympic Men’s Marathon Trials By Elliott Denman By Dan Hunter USATF Annual Meeting – Day 1

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USATF Annual Meeting – Day 2

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By Elliott Denman

Coffee with the Coach By Mike Arenberg

Race for for The Cure NW NWA WA 19 Cure 2012 Spring Shoe Review By Cregg Weinmann

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OZARK

March Event Calendar

30 USATF Annual Meeting – Day 1 By Elliott Denman • New Faster 10K Course • New 5K and 10K Age Group Awards USATF Annual Meeting – Day 2 •CoolBy10K Finisher Medal Elliott Denman

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PUBLISHER’S NOTE

2012 Off to a Busy Start Welcome to Missouri Runner andTriathlete, digital. In 2011, we had to make some tough decisions, and in order to keep MO Runner alive, we went digital. We’ll be doing four issues in 2012. We hope that you like it. Please pass it around to your friends. The weekend of Feb. 11, I was in New York City at the New Balance Track & Field Center at The Armory. They hosted the 105th Millrose Games. I have to admit that I was one of the naysayers. How does one take the Millrose Games and move them out of Madison Square Garden (MSG)? I had gone to the MSG U.S. Open on Jan. 28. Nice meet, with 5,800 fans, and Asafa Powell and Veronica Campbell Brown burning up the 50 meter sprints! On Feb. 4, I was in Boston for the New Balance Indoor Grand Prix. A night of great racing. Jenn Suhr surprised herself and broke the AR for the pole vault, jumping 4.88m, or 16 feet! Jenn is the #1 pole vaulter in the world. With delicate Achilles tendons, Jenn and her coach-husband, Rick Suhr, watch those legs and feet like the equipment they are. Then came Feb. 11. In Fayetteville, Arkansas USATF sponsored the USATF Classic. Jillian Camerena Williams set an AR in the shot—19.89m, or 65-3.75! Less than an hour later, in NYC, Bernard Lagat broke the AR for 5000 meters, running 13:07.15! Ten minutes later, in Arkansas, Galen Rupp broke Bernard’s 2-mile record, running 8:09.72! That morning, Bobby Mack won the U.S. cross country title in St. Louis. In the women’s race, Molly Huddle and Sarah Hall, wife of Ryan Hall, who had just taken 2nd in the U.S. Olympic Trials-Marathon, ran to a photo finish—less than 1/100th of a second between them! Sarah Hall was named the winner. In December, St. Louis hosted the annual USATF meeting. It was a meeting that showed how far we have to go. Some good things are going on, but our sport needs to figure out what it really wants to do. In 2013, St. Louis will host the USA XC once again. Be there and support your sport.

Regards,

Larry Eder Publisher, Missouri Runner and Triathlete President, The Running Network, LLC

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REVIEWS

YOUTH RUNNING SHOES Winter 2011

by Cregg Weinmann

The national focus on childhood obesity has prompted a grassroots response by parents, coaches, and educators to start where kids are physically and gradually reverse the trend. Many of the athletic shoe companies—at least eight—are supporting these efforts by broadening their offerings of technical footwear products to equip kids who are adopting new exercise habits. Certainly, the shoemakers benefit from the sales of these additional footwear styles, but the products do promote a healthy activity while reducing or preventing injury during running. Here we give a look across the board at running shoes for kids to train in.

adidas Supernova Glide 3

The Supernova Glide is the workhorse of the neutral running shoe line from adidas. Its strengths are great cushioning and fit, both in the adult and child versions. The uppers resemble each other with open mesh and synthetic overlays; the ankle collar bears the strongest resemblance. In the child’s version, some of the midsole materials have been substituted to reduce cost. The midsole is a generous slab of EVA, but the adiPrene crashpad has been pared back and the forefoot lacks the extra insert of adiPrene+. The outersole is much the same, but relies on full-length carbon rubber for durability, providing much the same ride as the adult version but scaled for the needs of children, i.e., durability and more flexibility. $70 ($110 Adult) Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feel with neutral biomechanics Shape: semi-curved Construction: Strobel slip-lasted, EVA Strobel board Sizes: children 10.5–13.5; youth 1–6 (M width)

Brooks Kid’s Ghost

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ASICS Kayano 17 GS

The Kayano is the latest of the quality ASICS shoes to be made available for children. The adult version features great cushioning, fit, and stability, and those attributes are mirrored in the kid’s shoe. The uppers are similar— open mesh and asymmetrical lacing—but the youth version scales down the size of the stretchy Bio-Morphic Fit panels on either side of the eyestay. The midsole has the same healthy chunk of Gel cushioning and the stable contouring that the Kayano is known for, which is great for high-mileage training. $90 ($140 Adult) Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feel with mild to moderate overpronation Shape: semi-curved Construction: Strobel slip-lasted, Solyte Strobel board (heel) Sizes: youth 1–7 (M width)

New Balance 860

With its balance between high-mileage cushioning and responsiveness, the Ghost has become one of Brooks’ best neutral shoes. The upper of the Kid’s Ghost is a bit tougher than the open mesh of the adult version: closed mesh with supportive overlays. The midsole features the same Hydroflow cushioning, but the foam has fewer pieces and so is a bit less responsive; however, because of the reduced forces exerted by children’s lighter weight, there’s no compromise in performance. The outersole is the typical carbon rubber, including the support in the shank, which is perfectly serviceable. The result is a shoe that works well for kids, thanks to its similarity to the adult version.

The 860 has been one of the bestperforming stability shoes in the New Balance running shoe line. The KJ860 for children features the same open mesh upper (for its breathability and comfortable fit), with a few materials substitutions to improve durability. The midsole employs the same shaping and geometry as the adult version for stability and cushioning, but features a two-density midsole without the rubbery N-ERGY inserts, which would be little used by the much lighter child-sized runners. The outersole uses a more durable rubber compound over much of the sole, with fewer flex grooves and some extra stitching in the toe cap to extend the life of the shoe. Overall, the performance has been replicated for younger runners to enjoy.

$65 ($100 Adult) Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feel with neutral biomechanics Shape: semi-curved Construction: Strobel slip-lasted Sizes: children 10.5–13.5; youth 1–7 (D width)

$60 ($100 Adult) Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feel with mild to moderate overpronation Shape: semi-curved Construction: Strobel slip-lasted Sizes: children 10.5–13.5; youth 1–7 (M, W widths)

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REVIEWS

YOUTH RUNNING SHOES Winter 2011 continued Nike LunarGlide+ 3

The overall success of the LunarGlide franchise, both in sales and performance, has made it among Nike’s most broadly available products: from toddler’s 2C to men’s size 15. The adult version features a well-cushioned and stable ride, and the children’s version has been adapted to provide the same. The uppers are the same—closed mesh with synthetic suede overlays and a supportive thermoplastic heel clip that improves the heel fit and support—except where adapted to the smallest sizes. The midsole is the same Dynamic Support throughout the size range: Lunarlon foam in a Phylite foam carrier that’s shaped for stability and lasting cushioning. $55 Child/$82 Youth ($100 Adult) Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feel with neutral biomechanics to moderate overpronation Shape: semi-curved Construction: Strobel slip-lasted Sizes: children 10.5–13.5; youth 1–6.5 (M width)

Puma Cell Ikonis Jr. The Ikonis doesn’t align directly to a Puma shoe for adults that’s sold in the U.S., but it’s strongly connected to the Complete running line. The upper will look familiar to those acquainted with other Puma running shoes, like the Complete Velosis. The upper is open airmesh supported by synthetic overlays at heel, toe, and eyestay, with additional support from the Puma form-stripe. The midsole is a generous slab of EVA cushioning—simple, but effective. The outersole is fulllength carbon rubber, proven for its durability. The performance is a consistent blend of reliable durability and cushioning, which is particularly useful for active children. $45 Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feel with neutral biomechanics Shape: semi-curved Construction: Strobel slip-lasted Sizes: children 11–13; youth 1–7 (M width)

Reebok Zig Sonic

Saucony Kinvara 2

The Zig technology has been an effective cushioning technology for Reebok, and has worked well for sizes all the way from a toddler 4 to a men’s 15. Both the adults’ and children’s versions feature cushioning and fit, a testament to Reebok’s experience making shoes. The uppers are as close to the same as possible: closed mesh, vented through the saddle with minimal overlays and a smooth interior. The midsole is the same corrugated ribbon of EVA that provides its well-cushioned ride, with small patches of carbon rubber in the high-wear areas of the outersole to keep the weight down where possible.

The Kinvara 2 opens the door to minimalism for children in the same way it was brought to its adult line: by offering cushioning and a great fit without anything extra. The upper is stripped down without giving up the touches of comfort where needed. The airmesh and minimal overlays make these shoes light and all the better for running fast. The midsole is responsive and durable ProGrid Lite EVA, proven for its great cushioning, with a slight drop from heel to forefoot of only 4 millimeters. The outersole is arranged in triangle-shaped lugs for traction with carbon rubber only in the high-wear areas to keep the weight down. The combination of light weight, excellent cushioning, and responsiveness earned the Kinvara 2 honors as our Best Youth Running Shoe.

$75 ($100 Adult) Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feel with neutral biomechanics Shape: semi-curved Construction: Strobel slip-lasted, EVA Strobel board Sizes: children 4–13.5; youth 1–7 (M width)

$55 ($90 Adult) Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feel with neutral biomechanics Shape: semi-curved Construction: Strobel slip-lasted Sizes: children 10.5–13; youth 1–7 (M width)

CREGG WEINMANN is footwear and running products reviewer for Running Network LLC. He can be reached via e-mail at shuz2run@lightspeed.net. Copyright © 2011 by Running Network LLC. All Rights Reserved. No part of this article may be stored, copied, or reprinted without prior written permission of Running Network LLC. Reprinted here with permission. www.morunandtri.com

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Off the Wire

Hall, Mack Win USA Cross Country Titles in St. Louis

PhotoRun.net A move in the last kilometer of the race put Bobby Mack in the lead to win.

PhotoRun.net

ST. LOUIS – Sara Hall (Flagstaff, Arizona) and Bobby Mack (Raleigh, North Carolina) each used late charges to outrun the competition as each won their first career USA cross country titles Saturday at Forest Park in St. Louis. The championships consisted of six races for men’s and women’s categories, with national titles on the line for junior, masters and open divisions. The nation’s premier cross country event, the championships featured $35,000 in prize money. The senior women’s 8K saw pre-race favorite Molly Huddle (Providence, Rhode Island) take command of the lead pack that included Hall, five-time USA cross country team member Renee Metivier Baillie (Bend, Oregon), Liz Costello (Knoxville, Tennessee) and Laura Thweatt (Boulder, Colorado). After 3K Huddle held a one-step advantage over Hall, with Costello close behind. Over the final 2K loop, Huddle looked to be in charge but could never pull completely clear of Hall. Charging down the home straight, Hall made one final rally to edge Huddle at the line in a photo finish. Hall and Huddle were both timed in 26:51. Costello held on to finish 3rd in 27:18. In addition to the national titles on the line in St. Louis, open and

Sarah Hall made a final rally to edge Molly Huddle at the line in a photo finish.

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junior men and women will qualify to represent Team USA at the North American, Central American and Caribbean (NACAC) Cross Country Championships March 17 in Port of Spain, Trinidad.

JUNIOR WOMEN The junior women’s 6K was the first of the day to determine the Team USA spots for NACAC, and University of Michigan freshman Shannon Osika waited patiently among a group of runners to earn her first national title, winning the race in a time of 21:05. Margaret Drazba (St. Mary’s, West Virginia) took 2nd in 21:08, and Macy Bricks (Clovis, California) took 3rd in 21:11.

JUNIOR MEN In the junior men’s 8K, Syracuse University freshman Jace Lowry (Paragon, Indiana) used the same strategy as Osika as he waited until the final hill with a group of five runners to attack and take home the victory, winning in a time of 24:55, three seconds up on the University of Minnesota duo of Adam Zutz (St. Francis, Minnesota) and Aaron Bartnik (Eden Prairie, Minnesota), who both ran 24:58.

PhotoRun.net Joanna Ziegler wins the first championship race of the day in the women’s masters

OPEN MEN In the final race of the day, Mack ran patiently behind Aaron Braun (Flagstaff, Arizona) as they led a pack that included Josh Simpson (Morgantown, West Virginia), Chris Rombough (St. Paul, Minnesota) and Jeff Schirmer (Carbondale, Illinois). Over the last kilometer, Mack made his move on the final hill on the course, pulling away to run 35:42 for a 10-second win over Braun. Simpson took 3rd in 36:04.

MASTER’S CHAMPIONSHIPS National championships were also decided for masters’ men and women at 8K with titles on the line in 5-year age groups beginning at age 40 and up. The first championship race of the day saw Joanna Zieger (Boulder, Colorado) take the overall masters’ women’s title, running 30:05 for a 16-second win over Jody Hawkins (Blooming Grove, Texas). The overall masters’ men’s title went to Christian CushingMurray (Santa Ana, California) as he ran 26:09 for a 3-second win over Rusty Snow (Santa Barbara, California). L Shannon Osika waited patiently among runners to earn her first national title

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LE B A T S X A M E BLAD

ill stop sed and you w is m e b ill w s ur speed, thday to your run, yo be a mess, bir ts p ill a w d a e g lif in al n ci Your so ive cushio ut nothing ut. Its progress ill convince you to care abo o d e. te vi in g in e b ning shoe to b e. It w n d ri ru t a ly ai re d g r a u u yo g you want while giving yo oe is everythin sh is h T . g in n but run


Spots Going Fast for GO! St. Louis Events Marathon Relay Closed, 5K Expected to Sell Out Soon ST. LOUIS – If you and three friends or family members were thinking about registering to run in the 2012 GO! St. Louis Marathon Relay, it’s too late. The relay officially sold out in early February when capacity for 500 total teams was reached— the earliest this race has reached capacity in the event’s history. And registration for the 5K, capped at 2,500, is trending toward an early sellout by mid-March. Entries for the marathon (3,000) and half marathon (15,000) also continue to come in. The popular half marathon, presented by PNC Bank, had 13,500 registrants last year, making it one of the largest 13.1-mile fields in the U.S. The GO! St. Louis Family Fitness Weekend, taking place April 14–15, is Missouri’s largest competitive fitness event, attracting more than 25,000 participants annually. With events appealing to athletes of all ages and abilities, the fitness weekend has become a national model for other running organizations and communities, looking to inspire residents to make community wellness a priority. In addition to the family fitness events, the innovative GO! St. Louis Read, Right & Run Marathon program for students is in its 10th year of inspiring children to read 26 books, right the community with 26 good deeds and run 26.2 miles in 6 months. Online registration closes April 4, but people will be able to register for open events during the Health and Fitness Expo

April 13–14 at St. Louis University’s Chaifetz Arena. There is no race-day registration for the marathon or half marathon. Among the many race features for participants is a stylish Brooks technical shirt for marathon, half marathon and marathon relay participants and cotton shirts for others, a high-quality finisher medal for all participants and a marathon course that includes views of the Gateway Arch, Busch Stadium, Anheuser-Busch Brewery and Forest Park. Additional race details: • Water and Gatorade available at 17 aid stations along the marathon course, as well as at the start and finish • Boston Marathon qualifier • USATF certified courses • More than $20,000 in prize money, including prize money for all age group winners • Michelob ULTRA after party • Athlete tracking • Corral start For additional information, visit www.gostlouis.org

Photo by Tim Parker

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SOMETHING TO BELIEVE IN What the 2012 Olympic Team Trials Marathon Will Mean for U.S. Women

PhotoRun.net

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By Jon Gugala One hundred and eighty-three women toed the line on Jan. 14 in Houston at the start of the 2012 U.S. Olympic Team Trials-Marathon. Over the next 26.2 miles, 35 women would race faster than they ever had before. Five American women ran faster than 2:30:00, which has never happened in a race before, Trials or otherwise. And the top four women were all under the shattered course record. By the numbers, U.S. women’s marathoning hasn’t ever had a better day. But this year’s Trials, while being something to celebrate in the present, will have greater significance in the history of the sport. Houston represented the beginning of a new chapter in American distance running, and the Trials were only its opening paragraph. Shalane Flanagan, the daughter of a former world record-holder in the marathon Cheryl Bridges (nee Treworgy) and 2:18-marathoner Steve Flanagan, did not disappoint. After all the moves were made—which Flanagan covered seemingly without strain—she made her own, a 5:24 25th-mile, and it was over. She led three other women under the previous course record of 2:28:25 (Colleen De Reuck, 2004), including runner-up Desiree Davila, 2:25:55; Kara Goucher, 2:26:06; and Amy Hastings, 2:27:17. Flanagan, 30 years old and in just her second marathon, earned her first Trials win at the distance in as many attempts, punching her ticket for her third Olympic team. She notched a PR 2:25:38 (a 3– minute best from her 2010 NYC debut 2:28:40). And she set a Trials record. The first thing the 2012 Trials will be remembered for will be the date that Shalane Flanagan asserted her dominance over the pantheon of U.S. women marathoners. The 2012 Trials were her Mount Olympus, the equivalent of Ryan Hall’s race-statement from the 2008 men’s race. This wasn’t out of left field. Flanagan came in the heavily-touted favorite after the two fastest fall tune-ups in the field (69- and 70-minute half marathons), a summer 10,000m USATF championship, and a bronze medal at the World Cross Country Championships in March 2011. “I knew I was capable of something like this,” she said, “and I believe I’m capable of something even faster because this was tactical. “It’s encouraging to know that I’m making progress with each marathon.” That’s right: After a runner-up in the 2010 NYC marathon and a decisive victory in the Trials—the running equivalent of batting a thousand—Flanagan says she hasn’t gotten it right quite yet. But Flanagan wasn’t able to completely enjoy the moment. There was no glory lap for her, and for good reason: 28-year-old Davila. “Desi was charging hard, and I just told myself I had to have one last gear if she came up on me,” Flanagan said. “So I tried to approach it like a track race, and know that it was the last hard mile, and if Desi pulls up, I’ve got to have something.” For Flanagan, there was no celebratory flag-waving like men’s winner Meb Keflezighi because Davila is a lurking monster that will eat your puppy. If there was one individual who has inherited the spirit of Joan Benoit

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Samuelson, the 1984 Olympic Gold medalist, it’s Davila. Remember the ’84 Olympics and Benoit’s mile-4 break that she would never come back from. Then examine the start of the 2012 Trials. After a 6:11 opening mile and a gob of women 12-abreast that filled the channel of the Trials course, someone had to step up. Someone had to keep the race honest. It wasn’t Flanagan. It wasn’t Goucher or Hastings. It was Davila. “I figured, let’s get this thing going,” she said. Davila dictated the pace for much of the race, and was more responsible for the course record than Flanagan was. Sure, Flanagan won, Davila did not. You could argue that Flanagan’s was the better strategy. No argument there. Davila is the inspiration coming out of the Trials, and in a sport that consistently struggles to build its fan base, maybe what we need is more like Davila, gutting it out at the front, keeping it honest. And maybe, someday, like Benoit, making the break that no one goes with to their regret. At the 2012 Trials, Davila confirmed that she is the real deal; that the 2011 Boston Marathon, where she was the runner-up in a PR 2:22:38, was no

PhotoRun.net

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fluke,and that she is not playing paddy cake. She is mean and will grind you out. “You had to break people like Amy, unfortunately, and that’s the only way you can do it, by keeping the pressure on,” she said. “I did the job I needed to do.” But for Davila, the 2012 Trials will have a significance that lasts for the rest of her career. It’s because she lost. “Going into the last mile, it was this internal conflict where I really wanted to make a push and see what I had left, and at the same time I knew Kara was right behind me, and I knew that Amy had made huge surges throughout the race, and I couldn’t assume she had been dropped,” Davila said. “It was like, ‘Should I push again, or protect this spot?’ “Ultimately, it was like, ‘Relax, finish it up, and get the job done.’” As she said this to the assembled journalists at a post race press conference, Davila, retreating into her black jacket, looked like she was going to cry, big eyes ready to tear over and a puckered lower lip. She seemed more disappointed than 4th-place Hastings. Davila didn’t come into the Trials to make the Olympic team. Davila came to the Trials to win, as she did when she came to Boston in 2011, and as she will at the Olympics in London. Anything else for her, as it was in Boston, represents failure. In Boston, she didn’t have the legs. In Houston, she didn’t have the guts. And that’s what she’ll remember. “I didn’t really have enough confidence in being able to catch Shalane and making another surge, and I didn’t want to lose the spot that I had,” Davila said. Davila potentially had the fitness to challenge for the win, and when oppor-

PhotoRun.net tunity was there, lacking “confidence,” she played it safe. At this point in Davila’s career, the win is the carrot that is driving her. Her loss in Houston is something that she will ruminate on as she returns to the dirt roads of suburban Detroit in preparation for London 2012. And then there’s Kara Goucher. RunBlogRun predicted she’d be in the hunt and, true to form, Goucher, the quintessential competitor, was in the lead pack the whole time. Riding Flanagan’s and Davila’s coattails was fine with Goucher. “I never really imagined myself winning this race based on my short period of time to train for it,” she said. Goucher endured a mid year stress reaction. She adapted to a new coaching philosophy with the Jerry Schumacher group. And she’s the only woman in the top four who has a kid. But it didn’t matter. In the race, Goucher did all she needed to do and not a bit more. She let Flanagan and Davila go, secured her spot from Hastings, and enjoyed the view. That the circumstances were arrayed

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against her didn’t matter; she’ll reenter training with momentum toward competition at the Summer Games, where, history tells us, she is most deadly. Finally, for Hastings, she’s proven that she will emerge as a marathon powerhouse in the coming years. The 27-year-old (the youngest in the top four), in only her second race, refuted the notion of a sophomore slump, going with the moves and even making a few of her own. She will be the athlete with the steepest improvements in the coming years. In Houston, after dropping back and nearly losing contact—

PhotoRun.net again, as she’d yo-yoed with the lead pack previously—Hastings surged to the front and led a 5:25 twenty-one-mile split. “I was trying to test the waters and see where everyone was,” she said. “I was trying to see if I pushed the pace anyone would drop. It didn’t work out, but I’m fine with the way I raced.” What is so commendable about Hastings’ performance is she did just that: she raced, as she did in her first experience with the distance at the 2011 Los Angeles marathon, where she settled for runner-up in 2:27:03.

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Hastings shows a dynamic range of distances she’s able to compete in. The runner-up in the 5000m at the 2011 USATF championships, she lopped off 34 seconds from her previous best, setting a PR of 15:14.31. She also advanced to the finals of the event at the 2011 World Championships. While her Olympic plans for the marathon may have ended, they’re favorable elsewhere. Expanding into the top eight, there were plenty of stories from the 2012 Olympic Team Trials that will resonate over the next 4 years. First, Deena Kastor is back. Running a 2:30:40 for 6th is a respectable performance from the most recent mom in the top eight. Expect to see her in a world marathon majors race soon, and running faster. And who knows? She might even return to the Trials track this summer, psyching out girls 10–15 years her junior. Also, Clara Grandt, who broke 2:30 in her debut at the 2011 Boston marathon (2:29:54), confirmed that her performance bona fides by running 2:30:46 for 7th. She was the youngest athlete, at 24 years old, in the top 10. Clearly, she has a bright future ahead of her, and will emerge in the next 4 years as the next big thing. Janet Cherobon-Bawcom, the 33-year-old former Kenyan who earned her citizenship in November 2010, was the women’s x-factor going into the race, and she showed she’s not just hype, finishing an impressive 5th in 2:29:45—her first sub2:30 result. This girl doesn’t even have a shoe sponsor. Finally, Alissa McKaig, 25, who has previously run a pair of unremarkable races (2:37:29 in New York, 2010; 2:38:23 in Daegu for the World Champs), finally popped a good one, with her 2:31:56, eighth-place finish. But the overarching issue is that 2012 shattered a longstanding Trials truth that will never recover. Historically speaking, before 2012, if you were a woman and you ran sub-2:30 at the Trials, you’d be draped in the American flag and clearing your schedule for the end of summer. After 2012, this is no longer true. Now, you are only guaranteed top five. And, though only time will tell, it may have even shattered the importance of that number for American women, period. Put the top-three women in a time-trial race with good conditions, like London or Berlin or Chicago, and they will go faster. 2:30 is now truly nothing but a number. What the top five women did on Jan. 14 may prove to be in American women’s road racing something akin to what Sammy Wanjiru did for Kenyan men’s at the 2008 Olympic marathon with his 2:06:32 Olympic record. By redefining accepted possibility, America’s corps of women marathoners is now writing its own story, and not merely following in the footsteps of the past. The 2012 Olympic Team Trials have showcased the revolution in American women’s running, pure and simple. Never has the U.S. been deeper in talent, showcased in the three-loop course in Houston. The women have reached a new pinnacle, and where they go in that rarified air is at their discretion. The aberrations of Kastor and Benoit-Samuelson have now been filled in by this next generation, and what we have is a pack of mid-2:20s women nowhere near the peak of their talent. They will take us not only into the 2012 London Olympics, but also into a new era. L

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2012 U.S. OLYMPIC Men’s Marathon Trials

By Dan Hunter As the sun began to rise to reveal a crystal clear day with crisp, bracing temperatures, a robust field of America’s best marathoners answered the gun at the start of U.S. Olympic Men’s Marathon Trials–the first step toward the 2012 Olympic Games in London. Of the 111 starters, only little more than a dozen runners could realistically harbor hopes of a top-three finish that would be required to make the team. No sooner had Frank Shorter fired the starter’s pistol than pre-race favorite Ryan Hall surged to the front to assume command of the early pace. With an opening mile of 4:50, Hall signaled to the field that there would be no warm-up miles today. The race was on. An impressive pack–Abdi Abdirahman, Meb Keflezighi, Dathan Ritzenhein, Mo Trafeh, Brian Olinger and, eventually Joseph Chirlee–gathered behind Hall and locked in for the challenge they suspected would be coming from the defending Trials champion. Keeping the pressure on, Hall began to string together seemingly-unending mile splits ranging from 4:43 and 4:57. By mile 8, Chirlee had dropped back. With the clock car displaying a forecasted finish time of 2:06, Hall continued to challenge those who dared to hang with him. Olinger, a talented steeplechaser and 10,000 meter runner, was the next casualty. Prior to Trials race day, Olinger had never raced longer than 7 miles. After a 4:49 ninth mile, he went out the back door, soon to drop out. With the lead pack down to five, the half was passed in 1:03:25. After a 15th mile in 4:56, Trafeh, showing the strain dropped back quickly. In less than 2 miles, Trafeh would be

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Photos by PhotoRun.net

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through the final miles to seal the victory in 2:09:08–his fastest marathon by 5 seconds. His PR improvement would have been larger had he not slowed to grab an offered American flag from the crowd. A smiling Hall crossed the finish line 22 seconds later. And Abdi - grateful and jubilant as he finished 17 seconds behind Hall - secured the coveted third Olympic team berth. A valiant and sustained rally by Ritzenhein came up about 40 meters short as he finished in 4th–missing the final Olympic spot by a mere 8 seconds. After the wave of fatigue and disappointment prompted a few tears, an obviously distraught Ritzenhein quickly regrouped, displayed uncommon composure, and offered his assessment: “I’m in shock. I want to be a marathoner, but maybe it’s not in the cards. Maybe I’m not meant to run the marathon. I’ve gone through so much [with my injuries]. At one point, I thought I may never run again. It will take me a little bit to get over this. It wasn’t meant to be today. Life goes on.” And with a hint of his future Olympic plans, Ritz concluded by saying, “It’s back to the track...” And if, as expected, Ritz competes this summer in the U.S. Olympic Trials in track & field in his hometown of Eugene, one of the larger Hayward Field ovations will be prompted by Ritzenhein’s introduction at the start of the men’s 10,000. L

PhotoRun.net 1:10 behind the four leaders. Once only four remained, the mind games most certainly began. A negative thinker in this little pack would know that one in this quartet would not be making the team. The optimist would realize “Hey, I only have to beat one of these guys and I’m going to London.” As this foursome began the final 8-mile loop in front of the finish-line crowd, Abdirahman–the Black Cactus of Tucson–began waving his arms in an overt effort to exhort the fans. The crowd’s eager response of louder support was enough to ignite an adrenaline-induced Abdi to surge to the front, a lead position he clearly relished, but held only momentarily. In the 19th mile, after an unending diet of sub-5:00minute miles, evidence of strain and fatigue was detectable. Ritz, working the hardest, was beginning to lose contact. Even after 2 slower miles (5:00 and 5:01 - the slowest of the race at that point), Dathan was 24 seconds behind the lead trio at the 21–mile mark. In the ensuing miles, conversation among the three leaders was observable. Was a “deal” in the works? There was. In a post race finish line interview, Meb confirmed the pact; “At that point in the race, I said ‘let’s work together and make this team.” But Ritzenhein was not through. Down but not out, Ritz stayed focused. Even though at one point the leaders were out of his sight, Dathan began to claw his way back: "I rallied as hard as I could. I kept telling myself that someone will come back. They did - but not enough.” Ritz was closing on Abdi, but he was running out of real estate. Meb, maintaining remarkable late-race leg speed, motored

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COFFEE WITH THE COACH

INVICTUS RULES INVICTUS Out of the night that covers me, Black as the Pit from pole to pole, I thank whatever gods may be For my unconquerable soul. In the fell clutch of circumstance I have not winced nor cried aloud. Under the bludgeonings of chance My head is bloody, but unbowed. Beyond this place of wrath and tears Looms but the Horror of the shade, And yet the menace of the years Finds and shall find me unafraid. It matters not how strait the gate, How charged with punishments the scroll, I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul. – William Ernest Henley

By Mike Arenberg I have been writing columns for Missouri Runner and Triathlete for 6 years now. The majority of my columns have featured physiological topics. I am a physiologist, but I’m also a coach and I value all things that make athletes perform at their peak. In our focus on physiology we perhaps lost touch with the great philosopher-coaches and their intriguing approaches to preparation and competition. The biggest factor in my mind is not training, but what kind of mindset you train with, as well as what kind of mindset you compete with. I learned this firsthand last year as I trained for and competed in The Furnace Creek 508, a 508-mile bike race through the Mojave Desert. Here’s where the Invictus rules I play by came into full focus. Invictus is a short Victorian poem by the English poet William Ernest Henley (1849–1903). The title Invictus may be translated from the Latin as undefeated or unconquered. The poem was written while Henley was in the hospital being treated for tuberculosis of the bone. He’d had the disease since he

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was young, and his leg was amputated below the knee shortly before he wrote the poem. This poem is about courage, and holding on to one’s dignity despite the indignities life places before us. When I first read this poem I was stunned at how powerful and positive it was. When I read that he wrote it after having his leg amputated, all I could think about was “what an amazing attitude!” Could I take this same attitude about adversity and make it an approach to life, training and racing? I started talking to young athletes about this, thinking that the next time something in life doesn’t go their way or something in a long cycle of training doesn’t go their way, having this kind of attitude could be powerful and contribute to their success. To me the poem is about self-mastery. Mastering others is strength, mastering yourself is true power. The essence of what we do in running or triathlon is enduring, persevering to the finish. To be successful and to truly enjoy the challenges, we need to overcome obstacles. Not just overcome them, but overwhelm them with a positive attitude.

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The Invictus rules are as follows. 1)Be bold. Fortune favors the bold. Be bold and challenge yourself! Set a goal to achieve something that is so big it excites you and scares you at the same time. It must be a goal that is so appealing, so in line with your spiritual core, that you can’t get it out of your mind. If you don’t get the chills when you set a goal, you’re not setting big enough goals. In the end, the journey toward these more challenging goals will be more meaningful. 2)Amat victoria cuman (Victory loves preparation). After you set a goal, prepare for it properly with respect for the goal and with a sense of purposeful determination. What fun is this? Why all this hard work? Where will it get you? The philosopher-coach Brutus Hamilton said, “It is one of the strangest ironies of this strange life that those who work the hardest, who subject themselves to the strictest disciplines, who give up certain pleasurable things in order to achieve a goal, are the happiest of men.” 3)Quocunque jeceris stabit (Whichever way you throw me, I stand; the motto of the Isle of Man). In Invictus, Henley gives example after example of him being positive, even thankful, although life has not gone his way. When things don’t go your way in life, in training, or in a race, check your mindset and think not only about what you’re thinking, but how you’re thinking. What’s your attitude when things don’t go your way? When you’re injured or sick? Are you being positive? Are you being upbeat? Smile when things get tough and you’ll find it easier to land standing up, wherever life throws you. 4)Be courageous. Author and diarist Anaïs Nin wrote, “Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.” I am reminded, too, of the words Christopher Robin spoke to Winnie the Pooh: “Promise me you’ll always remember: You’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.” Be brave in training and you’ll have a better chance to be brave in your race. Train yourself to be brave. There are great wells of strength in all of us. The harder you work, the harder it is to surrender. 5)Pain is inevitable, suffering is optional. Endurance training and racing always involve a certain level of discomfort. I won’t tell you to ignore it, but I will tell you to embrace it and deal with it, in an Invictus way. My crew chief for the Furnace Creek 508 wrote the word Invictus on the back window of the van. Every time the van would pass me I was pleasantly reminded about the option I had to suffer or to smile, be positive and deal with it. After all, this is where I wanted to be. I choose to be here in the desert and I am not suffering even though there is a great deal of discomfort. Why? Because this is where I choose to be. Alfred Lord Tennyson’s classic

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poem Ulysses runs through my mind. In the poem, Ulysses describes, to an unspecified audience, his discontent and restlessness upon returning to his kingdom, Ithaca, after his farranging travels. Facing old age, Ulysses yearns to explore again. For most of this poem’s history, readers viewed Ulysses as resolute and heroic, admiring him for his determination. Endurance athletes understand this restlessness, determination and discontent. Endurance athletes understand the final line in his poem and this yearning to explore again our personal limitations. “Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will to strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.” Endurance sports are different than, say, football. You need courage in football because large guys are going to hit you really hard. You have no choice. But a marathoner does have a choice. You can back off—or stop, step off the course, sit down and call it a day! It takes deep perseverance, resilience and courage to push yourself, rather than be pushed by someone else. You can make your own rules about how you want to think and the attitude you have when training and racing. I truly believe there is a crossover with our attitudes on the athletic field and our attitudes in life. With this in mind we need to be careful with what we think and how we think. An unknown author once wrote the following. Watch your thoughts; they become words. Watch your words; they become actions. Watch your actions; they become habits. Watch your habits; they become character. Watch your character; it becomes your destiny. Your destiny and the goals you choose and the races you compete in are strongly influenced by your thoughts. The difference between a great outcome and a poor one can be one, small, good positive thought or one, small, positive word. INVICTUS RULES. — Coach Arenberg Coach Michael Arenberg has an M.B.S. in exercise physiology from the University of Colorado. He has been a competitive distance runner and triathlete for 39 years, completing 28 marathons and 15 Ironman triathlons, including 3 times qualifying for the Ironman World Championships. He has coached U.S. men’s and women’s Olympic Trials qualifiers in the marathon and two top-10 finishers in the U.S. Men’s Marathon Championships, as well as multiple Ironman World Championship qualifiers. Coach Arenberg is available for coaching and can be contacted at makona94@aol.com If you have a training question for Coach Mike, send him an e-mail at the above address. While he is unable to personally respond to every question, answers will appear from time to time in Missouri Runner and Triathlete.

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2012 SPRING

SHOE REVIEW SHOE REVIEWS: Neutral—iii • Performance—iv • Motion Stabilizing • vi

ll things are relative to their frame of reference. This A simplified explanation of relativity pairs well with a quote attributed to Albert Einstein, who had a passing

running. We describe their attributes and point out if and how the familiar has been changed, and we share some of our weartesters’ feedback. So whether you’re trying to find out what’s new, what’s changed, or what’s best for you, we’ve got you covered.

Our frame of reference, from a running perspective, was explained almost 225 years ago by Isaac Newton. Newton observed, theorized, and described gravitation and the three laws of motion (among many other things). Simply speaking, our frame of reference is about running on Earth, where the mass of the planet is greater than ours, so we are pulled toward it. We apply a force to the Earth and it gives back an equal force.

As we’ve said many times before, knowledge is your best ally. To make good choices for you, you must know the shape of your feet and understand the way they move. If you don’t, you may find your local running specialty store to be a source of good advice and information. There are many shoes appropriate for your running, but if you know your foot shape, foot motion, and footstrike, you can focus on shoes that meet your needs, not someone else’s.

acquaintance with the topic: “If you can’t explain it simply, you don’t understand it well enough.”

In this Review, we’ve looked at and weartested shoes in the three basic categories of motion stabilizing, neutral cushioning, and faster-paced/performance

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—Cregg Weinmann, Running Network Footwear Reviewer

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RUNNING NETWORK LLC PARTNERS

WELCOME TO THE RUNNING NETWORK’S 2012 SPRING SHOE REVIEW

American Track & Field www.american-trackandfield.com

I just returned from the 2012 U.S. Open, an indoor track meet held in New York City’s Madison Square Garden. Among the performances there were the fastest women’s 50 meters in 12 years (6.08 seconds, Veronica Campbell-Brown), the second-fastest men’s 50 meters ever (5.64 seconds, Asafa Powell), and a spirited battle over the mile between Silas Kiplagat and Bernard Lagat. Kiplagat prevailed, 4:00.65 to 4:00.92. Two weeks before, I witnessed the first Americans to make the 2012 Olympic team in our sport. Meb Keflezighi surprised everyone but himself and his coach, Bob Larsen, by running with Ryan Hall and Abdi Abdirahman for 23 miles, and then pulling away to win. On the women’s side, Shalane Flanagan and Desiree Davila dueled for 24 miles before Shalane gained some daylight. Kara Goucher held on for third, after being challenged by the surprising Amy Hastings, who finished fourth. Most of these athletes, as well as local road races and running events, are sponsored by the very companies featured in our 2012 Spring Shoe Review. While companies like adidas, ASICS, Brooks, Mizuno, New Balance, Nike, PUMA, and Saucony are major sponsors, all 44 brands we monitor put back into the sport that they market to—to the tune of over $100 million a year!

Athletes Only www.atf-athlete.com Athletics (Canada) www.athleticsontario.ca Austin Fit www.austinfitmagazine.com California Track & Running News www.caltrack.com Club Running www.rrca.org/publications/club-running Coaching Athletics Quarterly www.coachingathleticsq.com Colorado Runner www.coloradorunnermag.com

As you look over this Spring Shoe Review to determine what shoe you’ll run in over the next few months, we ask that you visit your local running store—that bastion of the running community—and support the brands that support your local running. And please, follow your local heroes in our sport. Several of them will be big surprises in the 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials for Track & Field in Eugene, Oregon June 22–July 2.

Get Active! www.healthclubs.com

See you on the roads and at the track!

Latinos Corriendo www.latinoscorriendo.com

Greater Long Island Running Club’s Footnotes www.glirc.org

Marathon Guide www.marathonguide.com Michigan Runner www.michiganrunner.net

Larry Eder President, Running Network LLC

Missouri Runner & Triathlete www.morunandtri.com Running Journal & Racing South www.running.net

AWARD WINNERS BEST SHOE

BEST SHOE

RIN G 201

Motion Stabilizing

Performance

Neutral

SP

BEST SHOE

SP

2

RIN G 201

SP

2

RIN G 201

2

RunMinnesota www.runmdra.org RUNOHIO www.runohio.com Track & Field News www.trackandfieldnews.com

adidas Supernova Glide 4

Mizuno Wave Elixir 7

BEST NEW SHOE SPRING 2012

Nike Lunar Eclipse+ 2

BEST RENOVATION

BEST RENOVATION

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USATF’s Fast Forward www.usatf.org USATF–New England’s Exchange Zone www.usatfne.org The Winged Foot www.nyac.org The Winged M www.themac.com

Brooks Pure Cadence

Saucony PowerGrid Hurricane 14

Scott MK 4

Youth Runner www.youthrunner.com

Reviewer: Cregg Weinmann Project Coordinator/Editor: Christine Johnson Designer: Kristen Cerer Proofreader: Marg Sumner, Red Ink Editorial Services Shoe Photography: Daniel Saldaña, Cregg Weinmann Advertising Sales: Running Network LLC, Larry Eder, President, 608.239.3785, larry@runningnetwork.com Publisher: Larry Eder, 608.239.3785 Website: www.runningnetwork.com For a Media Kit, please visit our website. This 2012 Spring Shoe Review is produced independently by Running Network LLC for its partner publications. All shoes reviewed were tested by experienced, competitive runners who were matched to the biomechanical purpose of each shoe model. Copyright © 2012 by Running Network LLC. All Rights Reserved. No part of this publication may be stored, copied, or reprinted without prior written permission of Running Network LLC. Running Network LLC and its partner publications suggest that, as with all fitness activities, you meet with a healthcare professional before beginning or changing your fitness regimen.

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March Event Calendar Event dates and times are subject to change. Refer to race website or contact event director for up-to-date information.

March 4 Little Rock Marathon Little Rock, Arkansas Come out and celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Little Rock Marathon. Starting in the River Market at President Clinton Avenue and Sherman Street, the Little Rock Marathon, Half Marathon and our new 10K are a running and walking tour through the scenic streets of Arkansas’ capital city. Walkers have an 8-hour time limit. www.littlerockmarathon.com

to put your athleticism to the test? If you answered “yes” to any of these questions, mark your calendar and get ready for the Indoor Triathlon! Registration packets are now available and must be returned by March 18. Contact Danielle Schroeder at 314-685-3800, ext. 222 for more information. No race day registrations. www.ymcastlouis.org/carondelet-park-rec-complex

March 31 Sedalia Half Marathon Sedalia This is the 30th running of the Sedalia Half Marathon. The course is certified, and run on paved city and county roads with a 1-mile loop at the start, then out and back in a largely rural setting. Enter by March 15 to be guaranteed a race t-shirt. Register at Active.com or call 660-827-6809.

March 10 Shamrockin’ the Roads Springfield Kappa Delta Sorority at Drury University is hosting a 10K run, 5K walk/run and a Kids 1-Mile Fun Run to benefit its national and local philanthropies. Profits will be donated to Prevent Child Abuse America and Isabel’s House, the Crisis Nursery of the Ozarks. Prizes will be given to the first-, second- and third-place winners of each event. www.drurykd.org

March 17 St. Patrick’s Day Parade Run St. Louis The 2012 St. Patrick’s Day Parade Run takes place on Saturday, March 17 at 9 a.m. One of the largest events of its kind in the St. Louis area, with more than 13,000 participants, the 5-mile run travels the streets of downtown and midtown St. Louis. www.stpatsrun.com

March 24 Alton Half Marathon Alton, Illinois The 2nd annual Alton Half Marathon is presented by The Telegraph. Proceeds from the event and the 5K Run/Walk will benefit Newspapers in Education. For more information contact Dawn Formea at 618-4632516 or dformea@thetelegraph.com altonhalf.thetelegraph.com

March 25 YMCA Carondelet Park Rec Complex Spring Indoor Triathlon St. Louis Ready to set a new personal record? Training for a big race this summer? Want

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NEUTRAL adidas Supernova Glide 4

$115

Always aimed at performance, the Supernova Glide 4 is a redesign that ups the ante. The upper returns to a breathable, engineered mesh unlike any used in previous versions; it’s supportive while flexible. The redesigned ankle collar adjusts to the heel shape, thanks to a healthy measure of memory foam. The lacing connects to the logo stripes for support, but is articulated at the bottom for better flexion. The midsole continues with the cushy feel, but achieves a better balance of resiliency and responsiveness in its ride. The forefoot’s blown rubber formulation has been thoroughly dialed-in, providing good traction and durability, and the adiWear heel is hardwearing. Performance is enhanced by a significant weight reduction, while maintaining the fit and ride expected in this series, and earning the Supernova Glide 4 honors as the Best Shoe in the Neutral category.

BEST SHOE Neutral

SP

RIN G 201

2

“Fit well, was lightweight, and felt great while running. I wore them every day for the first week and put close to 60 miles on them, and they just keep going!” Updates the Supernova Glide 3 • Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feet with neutral biomechanics to very mild overpronation • Sizes: Men 6.5–15,16,17,18,19,20; Women 4.5–14 • Weight: 12.2 oz. (men’s 11); 9.6 oz. (women’s 8) • Shape: semi-curved to curved • Construction: Strobel slip-lasted, EVA Strobel board

Brooks Defyance 5

$110

The Defyance 5 flirts with performance weights while delivering high-mileage protection. The switch to DNA cushioning, what appears to be a little less plastic in the shank, and a paring back of the overlays are responsible for the trim-down. The upper swings back to a more closely woven mesh, and the saddle features four elastic eyelets that flex with the foot, maintain secure lacing, and improve articulation since the eyelets are separated from each other. The midsole offers Brooks’ DNA for the first time here, smoothing the touchdown and transition of the foot throughout the stride, as well as improving the cushioning and responsiveness of the shoe. The outersole appears identical to Round 4, except for minor alterations in the heel. The Defyance remains reliably effective, so runners looking for performance in a neutral shoe should give it a serious look. “Quite snug and comfy. Immediate ‘soft’ feel, like slippers, but responsive while running. I think Brooks has come a long way and [it’s] done a great job designing a good, all-around, versatile shoe for the average person.” Updates the Defyance 4 • Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feet with neutral biomechanics • Sizes: Men 7–13,14,15 (B,D,2E); Women 5–12,13 (2A,B,D) • Weight: 11.4 oz. (men’s 11); 8.9 oz. (women’s 8) • Shape: semi-curved • Construction: Strobel slip-lasted, EVA Strobel board

K-Swiss Blade Max Glide

$120

The Blade Max Glide (and its fraternal twin, the Blade Max Stable) is new to the K-Swiss running line and is the first road outing for the Blade Max technology. The upper features a seamless interior thanks to no-sew panels at the heel, midfoot saddle, and toe-reinforcing upper; the rest is closed mesh. The midsole features K-Swiss’ new Blade Max configuration, doubled-up columns that attach to the blades, providing more cushion for larger runners than the earlier Blade-Lite set-up could handle. The outersole adds some carbon rubber to the high-wear areas of the heel and blown rubber to the medial forefoot, while the blades occupy the remainder. Overall, runners seeking a firm and responsive shoe will find it here; it’s a durable high-mileage choice for the neutral-footed. “Good fit with a comfortably plush feel. Pretty flexible and responsive ride. It’s a good shoe.” NEW • Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feet with neutral biomechanics • Sizes: Men 6.5–13,14,15; Women 5–11,12 • Weight: 12.9 oz. (men’s 11); 10.1 oz. (women’s 8) • Shape: semi-curved • Construction: Strobel slip-lasted, EVA Strobel board

Mizuno Waverider 15

$115

The Waverider has long been Mizuno’s premier neutral shoe. Round 15 features changes that are substantive and represent what’s shifting in the entire Mizuno line. The upper sports a few changes—the double-layer, uniform open airmesh is almost like last season’s—but now features a gauze-like mesh for extra support over the airmesh along the lateral vamp and into the medial arch. The lacing has been better articulated so the fit flexes with the foot better. The midsole foam has a smoother, more responsive feel, and the Wave plate has been adapted, resulting in a better overall footstrike. The outersole has the same basic set-up: unchanged in the heel, but the forefoot has realigned flex grooves and the hinge-like SmoothRide inserts have been added just behind the metatarsals for a more responsive feel. This update breathes new life into a dependable icon. “They fit comfortably, with very good toe room, and the cut for the ankle fits right. The bounce and flex make the shoe feel great for my long runs on the roads.” Updates the Waverider 14 • Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feet with neutral biomechanics • Sizes: Men 7–13,14,15,16 (D,2E); Women 6–12 (2A,B,D) • Weight: 12.0 oz. (men’s size 11); 9.4 oz. (women’s size 8) • Shape: semi-curved • Construction: Strobel slip-lasted

New Balance 1080 v2

$135

Last year’s category award winner has undergone significant change—it’s even better this time out. The ride and cushioning are about the same, but the shoe is more than 10% lighter. The upper has a similar two-layer mesh, pared back overlays that are welded where possible, and a new full rand, yet it’s actually more open and bends well where the foot flexes. The midsole has been reshaped, the rubbery crashpad inserts have been replaced with Abzorb so that it’s a little lighter weight without sacrificing cushioning, and a new, lightweight element called N2 sits under the heel to cushion the heelstrike and is responsible for much of the weight savings. The outersole sports significantly redesigned flex grooves and a rubber configuration that improves the forefoot feel. The Stability Web has been replaced with a torsional support called the T-Beam, which is smaller and lighter, yet as effective. The net effect of the new 1080 v2 is more performance. “Snug fit, quite comfortable. A little tighter in the toe box than I like—odd for NB—might need to go up half a size. The feel on the road is very cushy, but not mushy. They seem really pretty durable.” Updates the 1080 • Recommended for: medium-arched feet with neutral biomechanics • Sizes: Men 7–13,14,15 (D,2E); Women 5–11,12 (2A,B,D) • Weight: 11.5 oz. (men’s 11); 9.0 oz. (women’s 8) • Shape: semi-curved • Construction: Strobel slip-lasted, polyurethane Strobel board

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PERFORMANCE adidas adiZero F50

$110

The adiZero running line continues to broaden and now approaches a dozen shoes for faster-paced running. The F50 reaches Round 2 with both a new approach called Sprintframe and minor tweaks to the upper and midsole molding. The upper is a closed mesh with thin, no-sew overlays over the forefoot—only the toecap features any traditional stitching. The heel is supported by the Sprintframe, upswept arms of EVA that secure the midsole to the upper while offering a bit of extra support. The midsole is the effective adiPrene/adiPrene+ combo that has worked well for adidas. It also sports the ForMotion cassette that both stabilizes and cushions the ride without being overbearing. The outersole is almost a full-contact bottom, but for a small gap under the shank, shaving some weight without affecting support or traction. The result is a performance shoe that’s lightweight but substantial enough for daily training. “These have a very nice fit; not too snug (just right for me). A great, lightweight shoe for faster runs. Breathes well. Feels good. Good support and traction. I love them.” Updates the adiZero F50 • Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feet with neutral biomechanics to very mild overpronation. • Sizes: Men 6.5–13,14,15; Women 5–12 • Weight: 10.3 oz. (men’s size 11); 9.0 oz. (women’s size 8) • Shape: semi-curved • Construction: Strobel slip-lasted

ASICS Gel-Noosa Tri 7

$120

The Noosa comes to the U.S. market from the ASICS subsidiary in Australia. Its roots are in triathlon; it’s really a Gel DS-Trainer in disguise. The midsole is the same chassis as the DS-Trainer with its stable and nicely cushioned ride, along with its wellarticulated forefoot flexion. The balance between engineering and minimalism has extended here to the upper with a stretchy mesh and few overlays, but it’s still secure through the midfoot. It sports perhaps the loudest colorway seen since the ’90s. Another feature is a phosphorescent toecap that glows eerily in the dark. An elastic stretch lace (included) may be substituted for the traditional laces for rapid triathlon transitions and a snugger midfoot fit. The result is a shoe with excellent stability and cushioning that’s versatile enough for hard training miles and longer races. “They snug up around the feet and hug them nicely throughout the run. Very stable-feeling shoe. Whether running on the road or cruising the foothills, my feet were always nice and secure feeling.” Updates the Gel-Noosa Tri 6 • Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feet with mild to moderate overpronation • Sizes: Men 7–12,13,14; Women 6–11,12 • Weight: 11.6 oz. (men’s size 11); 9.1 oz. (women’s size 8) • Shape: semi-curved • Construction: combination Strobel-lasted, Solyte Strobel board (Solyte 55 heel, Solyte 45 forefoot)

Brooks Pure Cadence BEST NEW SHOE SPRING 2012

$120

The Pure Cadence is the most substantial of Brooks’ series of Pure shoes. Weighing in at a “whopping” 10.5 ounces, it’s not quite minimal but it’s definitely performance-oriented. The upper is supportive, featuring an elastic Navband that crosses the navicular bone supporting the fit and working with welded overlays to provide a smooth interior and good support. The midsole geometry features a 4-millimeter heel-to-toe drop and is designed to flex with the foot. Contoured pods on the perimeter of the outersole allow adjustments for pressure from the foot or the surface, and provide protection while keeping the weight down. The full outersole offers durable traction even though it’s thin, and features a split between the big toe and the others for better articulation at toe-off. The combination of lightness, low-profile geometry, and performance earned the Pure Cadence our Best New Shoe honors. “Even though these shoes are very light, the reinforced toe doesn’t lay down across the front of my toes. The shoes have a roomy fit that gives my forefoot all the play it wants. The shoe snugs up around the instep nicely. Interesting how a minimal drop shoe feels more stable without a lot of support.” NEW • Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feet with neutral biomechanics • Sizes: Men 6–13,14,15; Women 5–12 • Weight: 10.5 oz. (men’s 11); 8.4 oz. (women’s 8) • Shape: semi-curved • Construction: slip-lasted

Li-Ning Liede

$80

The Liede is the second running shoe to come to the U.S. market from Li-Ning. Very light, it borders on racing or minimalist, while meeting the performance and durability needs of runners looking for a shoe for faster-paced running. The upper is a gauzy mesh with film-like welded overlays; it wraps the foot securely, though it doesn’t offer much support. The midsole is a wellshaped, injection-molded EVA that’s flexible and well cushioned. It features a 6-millimeter heel-to-toe drop, making it more of a transitional shoe (moving from traditional drop to minimal), but with more of a distance racer’s feel. The outersole uses rubber only in the high-wear areas, and the flex grooves provide a feel for the road, allowing the foot mobility from heelstrike to toe-off. The bottom line? The Liede is a versatile shoe designed for faster-paced runs, whether racing or training to race. “Secure fit, but a ‘barely there’ feel. Pretty well cushioned and responds nicely, especially for a wispy shoe. I like its versatility.” NEW • Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feet with neutral biomechanics • Sizes: Men 7.5–13; Women 6–11,12 • Weight: 7.1 oz. (men’s 11); 5.6 oz. (women’s 8) • Shape: semi-curved • Construction: Strobel slip-lasted, EVA Strobel board

Mizuno Wave Elixir 7 BEST SHOE Performance SP

RIN G 201

2

$120

The Elixir has been an effective and consistent performance shoe. Like the other Mizuno shoes in this Review, the Elixir has undergone considerable change. The upper is open mesh with a wild, sublimated print that draws a fair share of attention. It’s not simply window dressing, just the beginning of the changes. The overlays have been designed in more of a saddle-like configuration, and it returns to a traditional lacing design that’s successful in its simplicity. The midsole benefits from the resilient Alpha Polymer and the redesigned Wave plate that work together to provide a smoother performance ride than earlier versions. The outersole continues with the durable X-10 carbon rubber heel and G3 forefoot, integrating effective traction and light weight. This combination of light weight, stability, and a responsive ride earned the Elixir honors as our Best Shoe in the Performance category. “Overall, an exceptional shoe. Durable, comfy, and supportive enough for daily use, yet light enough for those pickups and longer races. The only downside is the forefoot. I ended up with a few tender spots in the forefoot after running on gravel.” Updates the Wave Elixir 6 • Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feet with neutral biomechanics to mild overpronation • Sizes: Men 7–13,14,15; Women 6–11 • Weight: 10.9 oz. (men’s 11); 9.1 oz. (women’s 8) • Shape: semi-curved • Construction: Strobel slip-lasted

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PERFORMANCE New Balance 890 v2

$110

When it was introduced last year, the 890 made a splash thanks to its innovative materials and serious performance. Round 2 presents a couple of refinements. The upper has subtle changes to maintain support without affecting fit: reshaped, no-sew overlays in the forefoot and welded saddle supports shave grams from an already-spare starting point. The gaps in the overlays at the throat allow better articulation with the foot as it moves and make the upper more flexible. The midsole geometry has been reworked by reducing the heel-to-toe drop slightly and resculpting the heel bevel for a smoother touchdown. The outersole sports more durable rubber in the forefoot, as the reshaped midsole encourages a fuller landing. The result is a peppy and durable high-mileage trainer that’s light, flexible, and versatile. “Very snug fitting, much like the previous model of the 890. I still really like the way they fit my feet, snugging up around the middle of the foot. Many of the lightweight training shoes I have tried have some sort of pressure spot somewhere in the upper, but these have absolutely none. Very comfy from heel to toe.” Updates the 890 • Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feet with neutral biomechanics • Sizes: Men 7–13,14,15 (D,2E); Women 5–11,12 (2A,B,D) • Weight: 10.4 oz. (men’s 11); 8.1 oz. (women’s 8) • Shape: semi-curved • Construction: Strobel slip-lasted, PU Strobel board

Nike Zoom Elite+ 5

$105

A brand new shoe, the Zoom Elite replaces the Lunar Elite. The midsole shifts back to the Cushlon-and-Zoom Air partnership favored by many fans of the original (the recent resurrection, not the late ’70s version, for those of you who go that far back!). This version is soft, yet provides a firmer and more responsive ride than did the Lunar Elite. The combinationlasted construction features a small fiber board to stabilize the heel and gets a big assist from the snug fit of the heel. The upper is a well-tailored, quasi-racer fit of open mesh with a minimal and newly developed system of midfoot straps that create a saddle-like framework that does an impressive job of securing the foot to the midsole. The outersole returns to the BRS 1000 heel with Duralon blown rubber in the forefoot. A lateral forefoot waffle tread provides additional cushioning, while medial waffles are more durable and provide a bite on softer surfaces. The effect is a reliable shoe for faster-paced runs. “They fit well, have a roomy toe box and tighten nicely around the middle of the foot. I’m not usually a Nike fan, but I liked this shoe. Comfortable ride and good cushioning, as well as stability. This is a good shoe.” Replaces the Lunar Elite+ 2 • Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feet with neutral biomechanics to very mild overpronation • Sizes: Men 6–13,14,15; Women 5–12 • Weight: 11.3 oz. (men’s 11); 8.9 oz. (women’s 8) • Shape: semi-curved • Construction: combination Strobel-lasted, fiberboard (heel), EVA Strobel board (forefoot)

Pearl Izumi Kissaki

$130

The Kissaki takes its name from the business end of a Samurai sword. The implication is swift and agile which, not coincidentally, describes its performance. While similar in profile to the Streak and IsoTransition, Pearl’s competition offerings, here the cushioning inserts are larger, the midsole is more generous, and the addition of an EVA Strobel board add up to a comfortable shoe for up-tempo running. The outersole is durable enough for daily training, and segmented for excellent flexibility. The upper offers a close fit and seamless interior that’s kept lighter by the use of welded overlays and a medial wrap at the laces. The tongue is open only on the lateral side, which substantially shores up the foot. The Kissaki is a responsive, flexible shoe that wraps the foot securely for faster-paced runs and longer races. “These felt great the moment I put them on. I really liked the upper support for my feet. The stitched tongue gives it a secure, solid feel, while keeping things cool and dry ... no blisters or hot spots.” NEW • Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feet with neutral biomechanics • Sizes: Men 7–13,14; Women 5–11,12 • Weight: 11.4 oz. (men’s 11); 8.9 oz. (women’s 8) • Shape: semi-curved • Construction: Strobel slip-lasted, EVA Strobel board

Scott MK 4

$130

Round 4 of Scott’s MK series (originally the Makani) has morphed into something different. The upper is open mesh over the toes and closed mesh on the saddle/rearfoot. The Ergologic Fit has been better integrated; here the gusseted forefoot and enshrouding saddle meet more cooperatively to wrap and secure the foot. The midsole foam, called Aero Foam, is completely new and resilient. Scott takes a new approach by combining the solidness underfoot with sidewalls molded into a matrix of deep grooves that resist compression without the deep flex grooves in the midsole. This allows both the necessary flex and full heel, while preserving the integrity of the lighter-weight foam longer. The midfoot is now supported solely by the carbon fiber shank, making the shoe purely neutral. The outersole is simplified: a thin carbon rubber throughout, grooved at heel and toe, textured for the traction regions, and pared away in the low-wear areas. It’s a durable and effective set-up. The combination of innovation, fit, and performance earned the MK4 honors as one of two Best Renovations in this Review.

BEST RENOVATION SPRING 2012

“Great fit, snug in the midfoot but with good room for my toes. Well-cushioned, but not too soft. Really love the ride.” Updates the MK 3 • Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feet with neutral biomechanics • Sizes: Men 8–14; Women 6–11 • Weight: 9.6 oz. (men’s 11); 7.6 oz. (women’s 8) • Shape: semi-curved to curved • Construction: Strobel slip-lasted

Under Armour Charge RC

$120

With the Charge RC, Under Armour moves in a new direction, or at least toward the fullfilment of promise. The upper trades on the compression fit Under Armour is known for, from earlier versions with a more run-of-the-mill close, stretchy fit. The upper design is split: The snug forefoot wraps from the arch to the fifth metatarsal and is overlapped by the rearfoot saddle that extends to the metatarsal heads, securing the shoe. The midsole is injection-molded EVA that provides consistent cushioning. A TPU plate adds a little flex and support to the shoe and stiffens it a bit. It also makes it more responsive in the larger sizes, though less so in the smaller sizes. The outersole is traditional carbon rubber in the heel and blown rubber in the forefoot, but it’s arranged in small pods to reduce the weight. This new direction is a positive step for Under Armour Running, and provides another quality performance shoe option. “Between the fit and the flex in the very front of the shoe, my forefoot is allowed to move in the way it wants, instead of how the shoe wants me to [move]. The ride is firm and it feels good.” NEW • Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feet with neutral biomechanics • Sizes: Men 7–13,14,15; Women 5–10 • Weight: 10.4 oz. (men’s 11); 8.2 oz. (women’s 8) • Shape: semi-curved • Construction: Strobel slip-lasted v | Running Network 2012 Spring Shoe Review www.morunandtri.com

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MOTION STABILIZING         



Powered by gradual tweaks in fit, technologies, and materials, the Adrenaline has become the bestselling shoe in running specialty. Round 12 addresses the usual types of refinements that are made between technological jumps. The upper is slightly different with HF-welded overlays on the lateral side smoothing the interior. The stretchy saddle-like lateral overlays now feature stretch at the top and bottom and have been repositioned for a more conforming fit. The midsole has lost the plastic supports in favor of a reshaped sidewall and more specifically directed grooving in the crashpad. The forefoot features Flextra, a compound tailored to both gender and shoe size, to improve flexion and cushioning in the forefoot. All are positive changes for runners looking for stability and cushioning, and especially good news for Adrenaline GTS junkies. “Overall, they feel comfortable. Especially the fit—snug over the arch—and the mesh feels fresh while running. I also very much like the cushy feel and stability of the shoes.â€? Updates the Adrenaline GTS 11 • Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feet with mild to moderate overpronation • Sizes: Men 7–13,14,15 (B,D,2E,4E); Women 5–12,13 (2A,B,D,EE) • Weight: 12.1 oz. (men’s 11); 9.3 oz. (women’s 8) • Shape: semi-curved • Construction: Strobel combination-lasted, fiberboard (heel), S-257 Cushsole EVA Strobel board (forefoot)

Mizuno Wave Inspire 8

$115

Round 8 sees the most significant changes to the Inspire yet. The breathable upper has overlays that are substantial at heel and toe, thin along the medial and lateral sides, with HF-welded overlays from heel counter to eyestay laterally with a stretchier material at the toes. The lacing set-up provides a little stretch and, since the upper group of eyelets flexes separately from the lower set, allows the foot controlled freedom. The midsole manages a softer touchdown with contouring, as Mizuno began rolling out last season. The asymmetrical Wave plate gets some tweaking to boost its effectiveness and perhaps lightens it up. The outersole features redesigned flex grooves, especially the hinge-like SmoothRide inserts in the forefoot, and the ride is a bit better. The fit and performance are the best assets of the Inspire, a franchise that continues to improve as it matures. “Very light shoes, especially great considering how much cushion and support they offer. This is my first time trying this brand, and I highly recommend Mizuno. I am converted.â€? Updates the Wave Inspire 7 • Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feet with neutral biomechanics to moderate overpronation • Sizes: Men 7–13,14,15,16 (D,2E); Women 6–12 (2A,B,D) • Weight: 11.8 oz. (men’s 11); 9.0 oz. (women’s 8) • Shape: semi-curved • Construction: Strobel slip-lasted

Nike Lunar Eclipse+ 2 BEST SHOE Motion Stabilizing

SP

RIN G 201

2

$135

Lunarlon’s introduction in 2008 launched a new line of Nike shoes; the Lunar Eclipse takes top billing for its plush reputation. In Round 2, the heel clip has been pared down; it still anchors the heel fit, but lightens things up a little. The midfoot adopts a self-adjusting framework of straps to secure the foot during motion, a task previously managed by Flywire. This new system is more effective. The closed mesh features no-sew overlays and has a soft, luxe feeling, even where the midfoot straps secure the foot. The unchanged midsole was well dialed-in with Round 1, as the Eclipse benefited from being a later arrival to the Lunar party. The outersole uses the same molding but now features “environmentally preferredâ€? rubber, which is tough and good for traction. The combination of fit, stability, and plush feel earned the Lunar Eclipse 2 our award for Best Motion Stabilizing shoe. “Overall, a fun shoe to have on for a run. It transitions very smoothly from heel to forefoot for a quiet, gliding run. I run 250–300 miles per month. Minimal wear after 100 miles. Seems to be very durable.â€? Updates the Lunar Eclipse+ • Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feet with neutral biomechanics to moderate overpronation • Sizes: Men 6–13,14,15; Women 5–12 • Weight: 12.4 oz. (men’s 11); 9.6 oz. (women’s 8) • Shape: semi-curved • Construction: Strobel slip-lasted, EVA Strobel board

Puma Faas 800

$100

The latest shoe in Puma’s Faas lineup, the Faas 800 provides stability through geometry. The midsole is shaped for full-ground contact to improve stability, while supportive molding in the medial sidewall retains integrity and durability. The midsole adds some stability with its canted shape (the medial side is just a bit taller than the lateral side), but the ride is still similar to the Faas 500 or 550. The upper is lightweight, featuring a supportive saddle of no-sew synthetic suede, and the form stripes are more prominent here, providing their support unobtrusively, but effectively. The outersole is minimal in design, with EverRide blown rubber in the forefoot and EverTrack carbon rubber in the heel, but only in the highest-wear areas. Though the 800 is on the heavy side, it’s still light for the amount of built-in stability, so it’s a more-than-fair trade-off. “Nice, light feel, fit securely. Good cushioning and stability, the way I like them.â€? NEW • Recommended for: medium- to high-arched feet with neutral biomechanics to mild overpronation • Sizes: Men 7–13,14,15; Women 6–12 • Weight: 11.6 oz. (men’s 11); 8.8 oz. (women’s 8) • Shape: semi-curved • Construction: Strobel slip-lasted, EVA Strobel board

Saucony PowerGrid Hurricane 14

$140

Spring 2012 ushers in significant changes to Saucony’s mainline shoes and the Hurricane features two such changes to its

BEST RENOVATION midsole. The first is a switch to PowerGrid foam, proven in the Cortana last fall. The second is the adoption of 8-millimeter SPRING 2012

geometry (the drop in height from heel-to-toe) allowing a more moderate footstrike, thought to improve running form and efficiency. Perhaps most impressive is that it’s at least 5% lighter. The upper adopts an articulated eyestay to wrap and move with the foot, thanks to the stretchy midfoot insert called SaucFit. The outersole features more surface contact yet has a reduced amount of rubber, and redesigned flex grooves improve flexibility and stability. The combination of stability and cushioning, lighter weight, and improved performance earned the Hurricane honors as one of two Best Renovations in this Review. “The Hurricane has been my shoe of choice for the last 5 years. This is a totally different shoe, but what a change. I love them! They are much lighter, but fit as well and have a cushier and more stable ride.â€? Updates the ProGrid Hurricane 13 • Recommended for: low- to medium-arched feet with mild to moderate overpronation • Sizes: Men 7–13,14,15 (D,2E); Women 5–12 • Weight: 11.9 oz. (men’s 11); 9.3 oz. (women’s 8) • Shape: semi-curved • Construction: Strobel slip-lasted, EVA Strobel board

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PureProject

®

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brooksrunning.com/pureproject

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Fast Forward

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Area Runners Earn Phidippides Award Larry Kirk (Old Monroe, Mo.), Betty McKenzie (Wichita, Kan.), Dan McKenzie (Wichita, Kan.), and Alan Poisner (Overland Park, Kan.) recently earned a Phidippides Award from USATF for their participation in road races in 2011. They were one of more than 430 USATF members from around the country to receive the award. The Phidippides Award is a participation-based recognition award for USATF members 40 years of age and older. Athletes earned points based on their age and the number of races they finished during the 2011 calendar year (see inset below). The award is free to those who qualify.

Top Row (left to right): Dan & Betty McKenzie, Alan Poisner, Bottom Row: Larry Kirk

“I am so excited to win this award and have already run three marathons in 2012, so I am hoping to earn it again this year,� offered Larry Kirk. The program will be offered again in 2012, so be sure to run your races and get them submitted to USATF for recognition. For more information on the Phidippides Award visit www.usatf.org/masters. How to score points towards earning your 2012 Phidippides Award 1. 2.

1.

4.

Join USATF at www.usatf.org/membership Run races on USATF certified courses and earn the following Phidippides points: 5 km - 5 Mile = 1 point 10 km - 15 km = 2 points 10 mile - 1/2 marathon = 3 points 25 km and longer = 4 points At the end of the year the following point totals will determine the level of award the runner is eligible to receive: Gold: 40-59yrs (20 pts.) 60-79 yrs (16 pts.) 80+ yrs (8 pts.) Silver: 40-59yrs (16 pts.) 60-79 yrs (12 pts.) 80+ yrs (4 pts.) Bronze: 40-59yrs (12 pts.) 60-79 yrs (8 pts.) 80+ yrs (2 pts.) Submit your Phidippides application form by January 31, 2013 Visit www.usatf.org/masters for complete rules and to download the Phidippides Application

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Express MacDowell, Pirtle-Hall Lead Area Runners at U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Marathon

Mark Your Calendar USATF Championships

Adam MacDowell, 32, of Webster Groves, MO. and Jackie Pirtle-Hall, 29, of Saint Charles, MO. lead all area runners at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials - Marathon on January 14 in Houston, Tex. For the first time ever both the men’s and women’s events were held together. MacDowell, representing Big River Running Company, finished 37th in a personal best time of 2:17:27. PirtleHall finished 70th with a time of 2:44:22. She was followed across the line by Ann Marie Chappel, 33, of Country Club, MO. (85th; 2:46:05) and Raquel Stucky, 36, of Pretty Prairie, Kan. (125th; 2:51:08)

SM

www.usatf.org/calendars 6/9 6/9 6/9 6/17 6/17 6/22 7/5 11/12

PhotoRun

Ozark Assoc. Open & Masters T&F Champs. Mid-America Region Open T&F Champs. Missouri Valley vs. Ozark Border War T&F Meet Missouri Valley Assoc. Junior Olympic T&F Champs. Missouri Valley Assoc. Open & Masters T&F Champs. Ozark Assoc. Junior Olympic T&F Champs. Region 9 Junior Olympic T&F Champs. Missouri Valley Assoc. Junior Olympic XC Champs.

St. Louis, MO St. Louis, MO St. Louis, MO Liberty, MO Liberty, MO Chesterfield, MO Lawrence, KS Lawrence, KS

USATF Open

REGION Track & Field Championships

Stroupe 4th at U.S. Olympic Team Trials 50 km Race Walk

St. Louis Looking for an opportunity to compete on the track or in the field? Women (ages 14 and over) and men (ages 16 and over) are invited to compete in the USATF Mid-America Region Open Track & Field Championships will take place in St. Louis, Missouri on June 9-10.

Patrick Stroupe, 27, of Armstrong, MO. finished 4th at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials - 50 km Race Walk on January 22 in Santee, Calf. His time for the 31 mile event was 4:19:43.

Here and There At the USA Masters Half Marathon Championships (Feb. 5, Melbourne, Fla.) Keith Long of Beaumont, Kan. finished 4th in the men’s 50-54 masters championship running 1:17:53.

The championships, hosted by USATF Ozark, will be held at St. Louis University and will feature events from 100m to 5,000m, relays, a full slate of throwing and jumping events. Athletes from all over the Midwest are expected to compete.

www.usatf.org/calendars

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USATF Annual Meeting Accomplished track and field writer and athlete Elliott Denman travelled to St. Louis in December to cover the USATF Annual Meeting. Denman is a longtime correspondent for American Track & Field and RunBlogRun, and was recently named the 2012 recipient of the Stan Saplin Sports Media Award. The award is presented annually by the Armory Foundation to a journalist, public relations professional, executive, filmmaker or broadcaster who has made a significant contribution to the promotion of the sport. The following are excerpts from articles that first appeared in American Track & Field.

DAY ONE By Elliott Denman ST. LOUIS–Just as lofty spirits carried the day on Wall Street, so did the expectation levels on day one of USA Track & Field’s Annual Meeting. Yes, optimism reigned as delegates flocked into the Hyatt Regency Hotel–within shouting distance of the famed St. Louis Arch–to map plans for the sport’s American governing body heading into Olympic Year 2012. “What a year of accomplishment 2011 has been,” said USATF President Stephanie Hightower, citing an array of dominating American performances at the World Championships in Daegu, South Korea, the World Youth Championships in Lille, France, and more. “And we plan to do even better in 2012.” She cited such athletes as Jesse Williams, Dwight Phillips, Desiree Davila and Ajee’ Wilson as keys to American optimism. Buoyant, too, was U.S. Olympic Committee CEO Scott Blackmun, the keynote speaker. “Among our most memorable Olympic moments over the years are those from track and field, and we expect many more in London.” A lot more was made clear at the Opening General Session: • Blackmun said the USOC’ had raised over $300 million in sponsorship funds, and a huge chunk of that will be allocated to the many national federations for athlete development, team organization and transport to the Games. (But some $200,000 of USOC funds had been used to back 2008 Olympic 400-meter champion LaShawn Merritt’s bid to regain full Olympic eligibility, following the completion of the penalty phase of his disqualification on a drug charge.) • USA Track & Field’s own budget for 2012 now stands at $23.9 million. As USATF treasurer Kenneth Taylor put it, “this is the largest budget in USATF history.” And he emphasized that “USA Track & Field is financially sound.” • When the USA hosts the World Junior Championships at Hayward Field in Eugene, Oregon, it will represent a major stride for the nation, which last hosted an IAAF World Championship in 1992, the World Cross Country Championships at Franklin Park, Boston. (But don’t expect USA to host the World Outdoor Championships anytime soon; the financial barriers seem insurmountable.) • For years, many have been suggesting the staging of the first World Relay Championships, and the good news, reported

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by IOC Council vice president Bob Hersh, is that the IAAF has at last given approval for the event. “But the devil may be in the details,” said Hersh. “They approved the idea but set no dates. It would have to be in odd-numbered year (to avoid conflicts with existing events); 2013 may be too soon, so maybe it will be 2015. Again, maybe.” • Erin Taylor-Talcott, Shore AC racewalker from Owego, New York, will make history as the first female participant in a men’s Olympic Trial event. Since Taylor-Talcott, a two-time national champion, has clocked a 4:41 for the 50-kilometer walk, with the men’s Olympic Trial standard pegged at 4:45, she will be allowed to compete in the men’s National 50K to be held January 22 in Santee, California (a trial for both the IAAF World Cup in May in Saransak, Russia, and the Olympic 50K in London.) Still, she’d be ineligible to compete for the nation in either event, since these are officially men’s events, with no women’s equivalents. • USA Track & Field is making a huge, integrated marketing and promotional push, led by the Max Siegel firm. Siegel, formerly a member of the USATF Board of Directors, has vast experience in such other sports as football, baseball, hockey and basketball, which he hopes to translate to track and field. Already on the books: staging of the US Open Track and Field Meet Jan. 28 at New York’s Madison Square Garden, filling the date vacated by the Millrose Games, which has moved to the New Balance Track & Field Center at The Armory, and a giant digital billboard to be placed high above New York’s Times Square, promoting track and field on all levels. • USATF staged 57 national championship events in 2011, and over 6,000 sanctioned events, in all disciplines within the sport. • USATF meets continue to generate solid TV ratings, and heading into 2012 expectations are even higher. One thing USATF Interim CEO Mike McNees plans to amend is the financial basis for many domestic telecasts: “It’s a crime that USATF buys the time for these meets,” said McNees. “We are going to turn that around,” McNees promised.

DAY TWO ST. LOUIS – Track & field is about to hit the Great White Way. USA Track & Field, the national governing body for the flagship Olympic sport, will soon install its giant video board above New York City’s Times Square, as a key element in its campaign

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promoting the U.S. Open Track & Field Meet coming to Madison Square Garden, Saturday night, Jan. 28. The video board, and the meet itself, are being staged in partnership with Madison Square Garden, partly in reaction to the loss of the classic Millrose Games, which moved uptown to the New Balance Track & Field Center at The Armory on 168th Street and will be held at its new location on Feb. 11. The U.S. Open is planned as a fastpaced, high-quality meet dotted with international athletes and supplemented by local scholastic, collegiate and club teams and athletes, at the completely renovated Garden facility above Penn Station. It will run from 7 to 10 p.m., taped and telecast by ESPN and screened on Sunday, Jan. 29. Jamaica dash greats Asafa Powell and Veronica Campbell are among the first major international invitees. Do not, however, expect to see Usain Bolt running at the Garden. “Usain Bolt will never, never, never, never run indoors,” said Teddy McCook, the Jamaican who is the IAAF area representative for the North American, Central American and Caribbean Athletic Association. “His coach would never allow it. Usain Bolt [at 6 feet 4] is just not built for running 60 yards or 60 meters indoors.” While the scheduling of the Jan. 28 meet has gained general applause, McNees and other USATF members are the first to admit that the group has long suffered from a fractured membership and fractured communications. Spearheaded by interim CEO McNees and president Stephanie Hightower, USATF readily acknowledges it has major problems in these spheres, but they aren’t sitting on their hands. At last, they are taking corrective measures. A much-improved website, featuring in-depth athlete biographies, is one phase of it. And a big new marketing and promotional push is another. “We aren’t even close to reaching our potential, and that’s pretty clear,” said Hightower at the first of the two scheduled “Coffee with the CEO and Board” sessions. “That’s why we are wide open to new ideas,” continued Hightower. Retaining its membership—in an average year at least 40% of USATF’s membership base, primarily in its youth constituency, simply disappears—is another big part of it. And growing its adult

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membership base is a major corollary. “We need our people to know you don’t have to leave USATF just because you’re 18 years old,” said McNees. “Track’s something you can do competing at every level. Not everybody has the ability or the potential to compete in the Olympic Games of the World Championships. But there’s a place in the sport, whatever level you’re at.” A key to all that is continued growth of the club system, where local clubs provide competitive opportunities that the national governing body can’t do on its own. But there’s a major debate going on within the club system, too. Just as many elite, world-class athletes decry the USATF’s prescribed limitations on corporate logos on competition uniforms, primarily at major, televised events—a situation that prompted long, heated and still unresolved debate within USATF’s Athletes Advisory Committee yesterday— the clubs are beginning to fight the same battle. With the USATF Fall Cross Country Championships coming up in Seattle next weekend, many clubs are faced with the task of acquiring new uniforms because their old logoed ones failed to adhere to USATF size regulations. Many ascribe these regulations to USATF’s contractual ties to the Nike Co., its principal corporate sponsor as well as sponsor of the Olympic Trials late next June in Eugene, Oregon, the heart of Nike territory. Call it one more hot potato issue. [Editors’ note: Corporations carefully protect their logos and their brands. It should not be surprising that our sport’s sponsors protect their logos and sponsorship opportunities.] Unlike previous procedures, at least these things are now out in the open. Little now is swept under the carpet. The lines of discussion remain open. That, in itself, represents progress. Just as was done at the 2009 Berlin and 2011 World Championships, the three racewalking events on the program of the 2012 London Olympic Games will be held apart from the main stadium—in London’s case, at an iconic park location just outside Buckingham Palace. “I guarantee you it will be a spectacular setting,” said Bob Hersh, vice president of the IAAF Council. The men’s and women’s 20K races and the men’s 50K will be staged over an L-shaped 2K-loop route.L

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USOlympic Marathon Trials www.morunandtri.com Spring2012 Volume11,Number1 CoverphotobyPhotoRun.net MEDIAPARTNER www.usatf.org

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