Expect to see plenty of boyz (and girlz) in the Hood on Friday, August 24, 2012. Mt. Hood, Oregon to be exact, for the start of the epic relay race that is Hood to Coast. This 199 mile race is now in its 31st year (Joe Rubio, the head honcho of Running Warehouse, ran the race in 1990 and 2010 – read all about it here).
According to the Hood to Coast website, this is the largest relay race in the world. With 12,600 runners and 3,600 volunteers spanning the lengthy course distance, we’ll take them at their word.
There’s no hurdle during Hood to Coast that can’t be overcome with the help of 11 other runners on your team, two reliable supply vans, and a witty, memorable team name (the Nike Dairy Airs, the Logger Joggers, 60% of the Time We Run Everytime, Lost in Pace, and Irreconcilable Distances are just a few of our favorites from last year).
Covering about 200 miles takes a bit of time, even for top teams. Last year, the Knoxville Track Club (minus 10 points for the straightforward name, y’all) blazed through the course in 18:05:07, but most teams cross the finish line around the 25 to 30 hour mark. And since it’s a relay, that gives a good bit of downtime for team members when it’s not their leg to run. It’s a perfect time to hone your van nappin’ and scenery peepin’ skills. But in the end, runners of this race almost universally have a blast and almost certainly gain a few great stories along the way.
Learn more about the race at www.hoodtocoast.com. If you’ve run this race or plan to, share some details with us below!
Asics DS Trainer 18 Men's Shoe
The DS Trainer has long enjoyed a strong following among dedicated runners. A slimmed down trainer combining lightweight performance with a touch of stability, this classic lineage now enters its 18th rendition and shows no sign of slowing down.
And as you can see, big changes are in the works. In this update, the DS Trainer receives a sleek redesign from the ground up. From a dual-layered midsole to a new lightweight upper with style that screams “fast,” this version is sure to catch the attention of runners looking for a performance-oriented design for both training and racing.
What to Watch For
- Revamped Upper: A new seamless design sheds weight and increases flexibility without compromising breathability.
- Traditional Heel Design: After the clutch-collar heel design in several previous versions, this update reverts back to a more traditional heel collar design.
- New Support System: Along with other Asics models, the DS Trainer 18 switches to Dynamic Duomax for a smoother, yet still supportive ride.
- Reduced Weight: Asics claims weights of 9.1 oz (Men’s size 9) and 7.6 oz (Women’s size 8), down from 10.4 oz and 8.8 oz.
Yellow/Black/Red DS Trainer 18
Purple/White/Neon Yellow DS Trainer 18
Asics DS Trainer 18 Men's Shoe Medial View
Asics DS Trainer 18 Women's Shoe (Catalog View)
Here’s the deal: you love how technical running fabrics pull moisture away from your skin to keep you dry and prevent chafing. But dang, after just a few uses those things can smell worse than a week-old tuna sando.
Synthetic materials used in running apparel are designed to wick moisture – that means the water in your sweat evaporates away, but the funk can all too easily remain trapped in the fibers of the fabric if the apparel piece is not properly cared for. Improper care can also cause these fabrics to lose their moisture-wicking properties.
What can you do? Here’s a little secret: Penguin Sport Wash. Okay, it’s not actually a secret, but it is a great way to keep your technical apparel fresh and to increase its life. This detergent actually restores factory-applied waterproofing (DWR) and restores the wicking properties of Dri-Fit®, Under Armour®, Coolmax® and other engineered polyester fibers. That’s some seriously hard work from a little bottle of suds.
So now there’s an easy way to avoid being that guy or gal. The one who shows up for an a.m. group run who’s already got the stank goin’ with some wicked un-fresh apparel. Make Penguin Sport Wash your new friend!
Nike Zoom Victory 2 Men's Spike
The Nike Zoom Victory has been the go-to shoe for 800-1500m runners looking for elite level performance. At a featherweight 3.4 oz, the Victory has had little competition in weight, and the aggressive spike plate delivered unbelievable traction on the track. Though practically nothing needed to be “fixed” in the original Victory, the Swoosh still manages to improve upon the storied mid-distance spike in version 2 with an improved upper fit, while retaining all that was good about the aggressively fast shoe.
What to Watch For
- New Upper: A soft mesh material provides a comfortable fit for the Zoom Victory 2, while Dynamic Flywire around the midfoot keeps the foot locked down and secure.
- Carryover Platform: The oft-praised midsole/spike plate combination of the original Victory is retained in this update.
Black/Grey/Volt Zoom Victory 2
Volt/Gold/Black Zoom Victory 2
Royal/Crimson/Volt Zoom Victory 2
Nike Zoom Victory 2 Men's Spikes
New Balance 870 v2 Men's Running Shoe
Lighter and better fitting, the New Balance 870 v2 makes for a smooth stability trainer with a hint of speed.
(View Men’s 870 v2 and Women’s 870 v2)
- New Last: The 870 v2 takes on a new shape to give the shoe a more comfortable, running-specific fit.
- Reduced Offset: In keeping with current trends to promote a more natural foot position, New Balance lowered the heel to toe differential of the 870 v2 to 8mm.
- Lower Weight: New Balance was able to shave weight from the shoe, bringing the weight to a reasonably light 9.8 oz. in a Men’s size 9 (8.3 oz. in a Women’s size 8).
We liked the original New Balance 870 for its good support and responsive ride, though because it was a new model without much promotion, the shoe did fly under the radar for many runners. For this second iteration of this modestly lightweight trainer, New Balance has revamped the shoe into something we feel will catch more attention.
All of our testers appreciated the fit of the 870 v2. The upper is soft and forgiving, ensuring a snug fit without becoming uncomfortable. The upper surrounding the heel is very padded, allowing it to fit a variety of heel widths without being overly tight or loose.
We were impressed with the cushioning supplied by the 870 v2. Though soft, the midsole delivers a surprising amount of bounce and rebound. The reduced heel-to-toe offset gives the shoe a natural feel when both midfoot and heel striking, and the transition to toe-off in this shoe is almost effortlessly smooth.
In all, we were hard up in finding faults with the 870 v2. The accommodating upper in combination with the smooth ride make this shoe a winner. The 870 v2 has much to offer for a wide variety of runners seeking a performance stability shoe.
“This is a great match for longer uptempo work or for daily training.” – Daniel
“The 870 v2 provides a good amount of support, but not to the point where it inhibits the flexibility of the shoe.” – Joanna
“The toebox and midfoot feel slightly narrow for my tastes; probably not the best for those with a wider foot.” – Callie
New Balance 870 v2 Women's Running Shoe
Mizuno Wave Musha 5 Women's Running Shoe
Mizuno’s supportive performance offering is back in its 5th iteration. Fans of the previous version of the Musha will still have plenty to like in the Musha 5. The midsole of the Musha 4 is retained, so expect the same responsive and bouncy ride to be offered in this update. The upper gets a few notable changes, including a decrease in the number of overlays and a change in the overlay material. These updates are set to reduce the shoe’s weight to 7.4 oz in a Men’s size 9 and 6.2 oz in a Women’s size 8 (as measured by Running Warehouse).
What to Watch For
- New Overlay Material: Gone are the shimmering overlays, replaced with a soft suede-like material fabricated from recycled plastic bottles.
- Weight Decrease: We weighed the Men’s Musha 2 and 3 at 7.8 oz. The latest Musha came in for us at 8.5 oz, so the expected drop to 7.4 oz while still using the same platform is a pretty big deal.
- Carryover Platform: The well-received mid/outsole combination of the Musha 4 returns unchanged in this update.
Green/Anthracite/Lime Wave Musha 5
Blue/Electric/Zinnia Wave Musha 5
Mizuno Wave Musha 5 Men's Running Shoe
Running Shoes, Sneak Peeks
Do What You Wanna Do with the Amphipod Customize Your Run Belt
A fully customizable running belt? With attachments for nearly every on-the-run need? This might be even better than MacGyver’s Swiss Army Knife and duct tape.
Amphipod set a new PR with their “Customize_Your_Run” belt series, which allows you to choose the hydration and storage products that are right for you, and attach them to the Amphipod RunLite AirStretch Belt. From SnapFlasks to Reflective Race Number Tabs, the range of products available will equip you for your adventures on the trails, roads or race day.
Which products can you mix and match?
First off, you need the belt itself, onto which you can attach all of your other accoutrements.
Amphipod RunLite AirStretch Belt
Amphipod SnapFlask 10.5 oz. Module 2-Pack
Amphipod SnapFlask 8 oz Module 2-Pack
Amphipod Ballistic Endurance Pouch
Amphipod Rapid Access Pouch Large
Amphipod Rapid Access Pouch Small
Amphipod BeltPod SmartView Pouch
Amphipod SnapGel 4 oz Module
Amphipod SnapPod Endurance Module
Amphipod Reflective Race Number Tabs
Nike Zoom Elite 6 Men's Running Shoe
The Zoom Elite is back in its first update since its successful reintroduction earlier this year. This latest version of the neutral performance trainer features a new upper design, adding dynamic Flywire around the midfoot for a better fit. This update inherits the midsole and outsole of its predecessor, so fans who liked the ride of the Zoom Elite can expect the same smoothness and responsiveness.
Nike Zoom Elite 6 Women's Running Shoe
For this update, Nike reports a weight decrease of about an ounce for both Men’s and Women’s models (9.7 oz Men’s size 10; 7.8 oz Women’s size 9).
What to Watch For
- Redesigned Upper: Nike’s proprietary Flywire wraps around the midfoot to provide support and a more personalized fit.
- Unchanged Platform: Both the midsole and outsole carry over from the previous version of the Zoom Elite.
Black/Grey/Volt/Silver Zoom Elite 6
Platinum/Pimento/Orange/Silver Zoom Elite 6
Grey/Pink/Black/Silver Zoom Elite 6
Grey/Volt/Pink/Black Zoom Elite 6