Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The Trail Running Boom

Wednesday--December 12, 2012---I had a nice run out towards Lime Hollow and ran on the orange tractor trail. I went off the main trail a little bit and ended up in some brush. I pushed along the overgrown trail all the way to Limehollow road. I then got back onto the main trail and ran along. I felt nice and strong today and the sunshine really helped to brighten things up since we have had so much clouds and rain and snow shower type weather.  I ran really strong the whole way running low 6 minute pace.  My topic of thought today is sponsorship.  I have some support but I would love to see what other connections I can make.

Thursday---Off Day--Skaneateles with Ashlee---Perfect day! Ate food at the Blue Grill Bar and toured the shops. It was a day of walking on Sunshine!

Friday---Head-lamp run around town.  I dropped some movies off, a check for Acidotic Racing for our new snowshoe gear, and then set out towards Groton on 222.  Tons of traffic with all the students done with classes.  Ran nice and relaxed and logged 80 minutes and 22 seconds of running.  Did one slight climb otherwise the running was flat or rolling.  There was a lot of cars everywhere so I kept to the very far shoulder off of the road.

Trail running has been a sport that has grown dramatically in the last few years. There has become a real drive for professionalism and more and more road-runners are giving the trails a shot in the likes of running professional.  I have always loved the trails and that is a major reason why I am getting a graduate degree to manage such facilities.  I have had great support for my running through great partnerships with sponsors.  With the growth of professionalism and trail running as a mode of activity and competition, there are more and more companies investing in trail running design.  Companies are producing trail running-specific apparel (Pear Izumi), hydration systems (Ultraspire) new energy gels (CarBoom)  and trail running shoes (Scott, Mammut, Treksta, Technica, Dynafit).  All these companies had a start in some other form of sport but have now transitioned  into the market.

Here are some brand new companies in the trail running segment:

There shoes are similar to Hoka One in that a bigger stack height makes the shoe rugged and well cushioned for the long trail events.  I really like what Technica is doing with there shoes as they will not only be able to handle well on the rugged Finger Lakes Trail, but will succeed anywhere.  The shoes have nice light uppers and a rocker design to the shoe that works great going uphill and down.  I would love to get my hands on a pair and test them out soon especially on the trails this winter as a shoe that performs in winter can perform anytime of year.  Technica is all about a larger platform and really this shoe probably combines both elements from brands such as Karhu, Scott Sports and then the Hoka One build of the shoe which should make for an amazing combination.
Here is a link to their website:

Scott Sports:
Scott has always been a biking and Tri company similar to Pearl Izumi but has just recently burst onto the scene in the US with trail running. They have become a sponsor of big races, athletes such as Sage Canady and Joe Gray and are about to launch in 2013 a stellar line of shoes for the trail.  I have recently tested a road pair of Scott's and I think they are great.  Very similar to Karhu in their rocker geometric shape of the bottom of the shoe which enforces mid-foot strike just like Karhu's fulcrum technology. Scott makes some great shoes so look out for them. They also have amazing outdoor winter apparel that I have fallen in love with as I bought two 1/4 zip tops from them. Really nice internal fleece and strong polyester outside. Breathes well, keeps you warm, and has great colors. This company will continue to do well.

 This is a Swiss Alpine Brand that this Spring 2013, is launching a trail running line of shoes.
I have seen Mammut apparel for winter sports and it is top notch like the quality of North Face, Marmot, Mountain Hardwear, ect.  I am very excited to find out that they will be debuting trail shoes to their alpine pursuits.  Mammut also has a cool logo- a wooly mammoth, who doesn't want to wear something with a mammoth on it! I do not know much about the technology except the shoes look light and have rugged outsoles which should make the shoe grip well on trail and snow.  

Lastly, One of my sponsors: Karhu!!!!!!
The Karhu Forward Trail!!!
Karhu is a Finnish running brand meaning "Bear"  Their logo of course is an awesome bear with a mountain-like whip through the body.  Karhu uses Fulcrum technology to help propel one from heel to forefoot. These shoes are amazing and for someone with a narrow foot, these shoes fit like a dream.  I have not had the chance to try the Karhu trail shoe but I would like Karhu to make a trail racer soon as this shoe is more of a trainer. The trail shoe of Karhu seems to be more like the Stable 2 which is a great light trainer but the fulcrum plate might end up with too much mud on the inside of the plate. The brand has a great partnership with Craft Sports and the apparel from these companies are amazing.  Check them out!

Thank you for the use of the images and I hope that this post will provide some better insight on new trail running lines of shoes.  

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