Spring in your step March 22 2016, 0 Comments
It's that time of year when some of us wonder when we are going to have to do the spring wardrobe switch. The weather, of course, does not go out of its way to make the decision easy, and temperatures swing wildly over a twenty-degree range making any fixed decision in either direction incorrect for at least part of the time.
For the ZEMgear barefoot shoe runner, an equally weighty decision has to be made in respect of footwear - when to switch from those warm winter Heroes and Apexes so as to avoid reproachfully steaming feet at the end of the run? I wait for them to be too warm, rather than switch early and suffer from cold feet - at least warm feet are flexible and don't hurt. This decision was reinforced by the experience of setting out on a balmy spring day last year wearing a pair of summer shoes and climbing above the snowline on the surrounding hills, hobbling back a half hour later with painfully cold feet.
So the decision has been made. The Terras are in waiting for a warm, sunny day, unless I plan to climb high. Meanwhile the Heroes will be used until the snow is completely gone. My 360s are used indoors where conditions are controlled, and for flying where swollen feet make having elasticated shoes a huge boon. All of them have that wonderful feet-on-the-floor feel that simply doesn't come with standard shoes.
ZEMgear Heroes at home in the snow February 11 2015, 0 Comments
Last weekend I went away with a running group for a Winterfest. One of us lays a trail using blobs of coloured flour - you can see from the picture that on Saturday it was blue. When the trail is laid, the rest of us follow it, navigating such deliberate obstacles as places where the trail disappears so that we have to fan out and find it, and others where it doubles back on itself.
You can also see that we ran on a lot of snow and ice, which makes for hard work when it is either broken up or deep. I was wearing Apexes on Friday evening and Sunday morning, and Heroes on Saturday. My feet were toasty warm through all three runs, and, even in deep snow, I never had the discomfort of snow getting into the ZEMs.
The reason for this harks back to the orignial ZEMgear designs which were for playing beach volleyball. They are fully elasticated, fitting snugly to the feet and ankles (I can testify that on beaches no sand gets in). Likewise, the winter versions don't let in the snow and the Thermoprene material ensures that feet stay warm while running.
They were all good runs, Saturday's longer than expected as we got lost, eventually clocking over 20km and instilling even more confidence in me that snow and ice are no obstacles for a good pair of barefoot shoes!