This morning was a training run 'with a twist'. I went to the gym to do my run because today was going to be another "minimalist' day. In order to do this, I had to run two separate runs. So I brought my Saucony shoes with me to the TM as I began Run #1 wearing the Altras. In keeping with the direction to 'ramp-up' slowly with Minimalist shoes, I chose to run for only 1.4 miles.
I walked for 1/4 mile and then sped up to a 11:00/pace for 1.14 miles. It was a pretty cool run albeit a short one. The shoes fit snugly around the middle and rear of the feet, but the larger toebox provides a lot of room for my toes. There is some cushioning provided by the pad in the shoes, and so far, it appears to be sufficient, but it is definitely a lot less than the feeling in my Sauconys.
My running form is a little different when I run in the Altras. I feel like I am standing up straighter. And I am definitely mid-striking; I can feel the extra bounce in my landings and push-offs. A few hours after the run, I could feel a little tightening in my big toes which I assume was due to them being more involved in my stride. I like the feeling of being more nimble on my feet.
When I reached a mile, I had gone as far as I had intended for this second run in the Altras. So I stopped the TM, sat down on it and started to switch to the other pair of shoes. I can only imagine what people were thinking! Hahaha! "Hey, that guy's changing his shoes on the Treadmill! Why the heck would he be changing shoes? That dude is weird!" LOL!
Then I ran in my regular Saucony shoes for another 3 miles. But for this run, I decided to make it a modified interval workout -- after each mile, I increased my pace by 20-30 seconds/mile. I started at an 10:54/mm pace. Then for the next mile, I ran at a 10:40/mm pace. For the last mile, I sped up to a 10:10/mm pace. I wanted to go another mile at 9:45/mm but I ran out of time -- I had to get showered and head into the office.
So, it wasn't the fastest set of intervals I have run (usually I run 9:30/mm intervals), but I enjoyed the run (especially the Altras), and sometimes enjoying a run is just as important as pushing yourself. Doing the whole "minimal shoe-to-standard shoe crossover" made a big change in my normal routine. I like to run outside but until I get acclimated to these new shoes, I think I will be spending Tuesdays at the gym.
Hopefully, I will be able to start running 5K and longer runs in the Altras in early March. In fact, it might be cool to run the Penguin in the Park 5K on March 24 in the Altras and see how they perform at race pace. After that, maybe a Long Run.