Monday, May 30, 2011

MOMAR Burnaby Race Report

Team ELM takes an early CP at our pre-race step ahead! Congrats to ELMers Vicky, Lynn, Kathy, Jenn, Chris and theCourtenay crew on an awesome race!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Salomon Trail Runner Review

Happy Friday Friends!

I should be doing admin work on the computer right now. No scratch that- what I should be doing is playing outside in that sunshine! But, instead, I am procrastinating my tedius small business owner tasks and doing a shoe review instead!

Those who run with me know I am a Salomon trail runner through and through. There are many fantastic trail runners on the market but Salomons fit me just like Cinderella's slipper. And that is really what it is all about- choosing a shoe that: A fits you perfectly and B delivers the goods for the demands you place on it.

I probably started wearing Salomons years ago for the cool toggle-style-quick-lace system:) when I picked up my first pair of XA Pros. Today I have 3 different pairs of Salomons on the go and I thought I would give my thoughts on how they compare on the trails.

Props go to Marc at Valhalla Pure, Courtenay, for giving me a stellar deal on my Salomons and inviting me to trail test the newest shoe in the family: Crossmax.

#1 Crossmax (neutral). This is the first neutral option trail runner put out by Salomon which is perfect for my foot type. You can get them with medial posting for additional pronation control if you like.
What Salomon says:
High mileage training shoe for neutral runners who want one shoe from door to trail.

What I say

These felt like slippers when I put them on and I just knew I had to have them.

Lightest of the 3 styles- feels super fast on non-technical trails.

Socklike fit- ohsocomfy and very low-profile/minimalist feel.

Great forefoot cush that feels great on the pavement and easy to moderately technical trails

Low profile tread- not as agressive as the wings or XA pros

Less stable than the wings or XA pros-feels like you are standing higher up in the shoe with a shallower cup depth.

In summary these are perfect for a fast trail race on low to moderate technical terrain, casual trail runners and those who want one shoe they can run in safely on the road and in the trails. I have been wearing them everyday to work with my clients and teaching my outdoor Bootcamp classes in addition to less technical trail runs. LOVE them.

#2Wings (available in Gortex or regular)
What Salmon says:
Lighter for 2011, this top of the line trail running shoe balances cushioning and agility via Salomon's ACS system.

What I say:

Super all round cushioning in the sole and uppers- great for those prone to injury/impact. Can feel sloppy to someone who isn't used to all the cushioning.

Warm/weather resistant/great winter trail runner. Hot in the summer. Heaviest of the 3.

Aggresive tread- like putting your 'big girl' tires on your mt bike in the muck of winter.

Excellent responsiveness in uber-technical terrain. Low set heel cup combined with sturdy uppers and wicked tread make this a tie with the XA pros for technical terrain.

In summary these are my go-to trail runners for everything and anything. I prefer doing hi-mileage runs in these as they keep my feet and body happy with the extra cush- without compromising on agility/function. LOVE them.

#3 XAPros (available in Gortex or regular)

What Salomon says:
Agile, durable and stable on the most demanding trails, the XA Pro 3D Ultra 2 gets a streamlined profile and improved durability thanks to a new outsole geometry.

What I say
All the same benefits as the Wings but without the same level of cushioning.

These are fast and furious trail shoes that feel much harder under your feet compared to the other two. Trail specific with minimal cushioning can feel abusive on a body that doesn't tolerate high levels of impact. Perfect for those who can handle the force and want to get that 'grip it and rip it' feeling under their feet. Ultimate fast & technical racing shoe.

Lightweight , very breathable and the most cool of the 3 in summer. The non-gortex version dry super fast. The mesh fills up with dust so your toes will get dirty however!

Super agressive tread will literally pull you up the mountains.

Summary- ideal race shoe or perfect shoe for anyone that can handle the impact of limited cushioning. LOVE them.

What trail runners are you loving? I would love to hear your reviews too!

PS ELM Members dont' forget:: Next Weds, May 25th is our semi-annual after hours shopping night at Valhalla! Great deals so you can pick up your own pair of Salomons:)

Happy Trails!


Tuesday, May 10, 2011

My new favorite island

This past weekend I made an escape over to Saturna Island for a girls get-away filled with good food, fun fitness and great friends:) 9 of us in total spent the weekend in a beautiful log cabin, weaving old Rapattack fire fighting tales, creating new memories, feasting on great food and kicking up dirt all around the island.

50% of the island is National Park and that means fantastic forest lands, protected trail networks and unspoiled vistas. The highlight was a long ridge trail on a crazy side slope that hovered hundreds of metres above the coast below. Herds of deer and wild goats dotted the hill side that was covered in a lush green grass & wildflower carpet. Amazing. One of the most beautiful/breathtaking trails I have ever been on in my life. Belly flipping steep and views to die for. The only problem is it wasn't long enough! I could have followed that trail for days...

Instead I rode it the first day (15k loop with a steep climb up before hitting the ridge trail) with a few of the girls (so fun and freaky at the same time) then fast packed a great 10k route along the coast for a modified brick workout:) Then on Saturday I got up ridiculously early and ran back up to the ridge trail a couple of times for a good loooong solo 4hour run. After that it was on to the winery for a tasting and tour followed by a nap! Perfect day:)

Here are some pics from the Island...

Lisa and I at the summit!
Awesome single track...

Scrambling with the girls on the rocky, coast trail...

Crazy spring orchids...

Lighthouse point just after sunrise on Sunday morning...

Wonder where my sneakers will take me next...


Thursday, May 5, 2011

Gear that moves me

Time to kick up some dirt! ELM's popular off road clinics kick off this month:

Adventure Running 1::3 begins tonight at 5:30pm- and this session includes a detailed training program to prepare racers for the Kusam Klimb on June 18th

Off Road Half Marathon training begins May 14th and runs for 14-weeks on Sunday mornings leading up to the Log Train Trail or other race of your liking:)

I am getting geared up for my first Adventure Race of the season- MOMAR Burnaby!! I am not a super huge consumer but there are a few key items that I use day in and day out and I am always thankful to have them with me on my big adventures. Props go out to my favorite gear that moves me::

Team ELM Rocks!

It was a busy race weekend with ELM'ers kickin it all over the place!

Down in Victoria TEAM ELM raced the new course in the TC10K and they did amazing! The team was made up of ELM clinic participants- many doing the 10k distance for the very first time. They had amazing race tales...and...TEAM ELM came 5th in the Club Category- bonus!

Up in the Valley TEAM ELM gaver on the Snow to Surf Relay once again- 4th year and 4th podium finish we took GOLD again this year! We had a clean race (with 8 legs that is the biggest challenge), got to eat chocolate medals and we had our fastest overall time yet! For those who have not yet experienced this massive team event here is a quick outline for ya:

Leg 1: Uphill run in ski boots up a snowy run (I think this part takes longer than the ski!) followed by a downhill ski - Deb Rolston!

Leg2: XC ski - Lo Superstar Lanning!

Leg3: 6k Downhill Run down the mountain road- Kathy Campbell!

Leg4: Another 6k downhill Run down the mountain road with 1k off road - Lynn Swift stand in!

Leg5: 14k mountain bike ride (first 6k on the road:() to Comox Lake- Me!

Leg6: Kayak across Comox Lake to Cumberland - Janine Martin!

Leg7: Road bike through Cumberland, back to Courtenay via Royston - Audrey Erlandson!

Leg8: Run to the Courtenay Marina and Canoe to Comox- Lyse Fortin and Rani Johns!

Way too much fun!

Can't wait until next year...might need to find another relay event before then cause it is way too much fun!

What next? MOMAR! Then Kusam!!