Sunday, July 24, 2016

Salming Distance 4 Review

Salming Distance 3 was recently released and I have not had a chance to review that edition yet. Rumors started that Salming D4 limited edition was going to be released during the summer. Sure enough pictures started to leak out of an "all black" shoe called D4. D4 was first released in Europe and a couple of weeks later in USA. A little bit of a strange release as D3 was recently released and Im not quite sure why. One thing I know, Im glad they did. Its such an great update.

Salming Speed, Distance and Race have been around for three years now, with only few tweaks as updates for each edition and year. Salming D4 Limited Edt is the biggest update so far on the Salming Running original shoes, not Miles or the trail shoes included.

In this update you will find all the technologies from the earlier editions: Runlite (update, lighter and more responsive)  Exo Skeleton, Torsion Efficiency Unit, TGS 62/75

D4 has a 2 layer construction instead of 3 as the earlier editions of  Distance had and is to the most part seamless. The upper feels a lot lighter and hugs the foot in a less compressed way. As mentioned above the foot is secured by a 2 layer construction and the Exo Skeleton helps to secure the foot from moving to the sides. It has been a very hot and humid summer here in NJ, and the D4 has been handling it very well, the mesh feels light and breathable In some case the overlays on running shoes can interfere with the shoes mesh and the breath-ability. The D4 has minimal and strategical overlays that does not interfere.

 Im allergic to brands who does not pay attention to the laces. Salming does a great job with the laces and D4 ones has stayed tied. They are on the  thinner side and can cut in on top of your feet if you laces them to hard.

Color, D4 limited edition comes in an "all black color with some red details, kind of a stealth look. Its either you hate it or love it. I love the black color but Im aware that black might not work for everyone, its personal preference.

The biggest change when it comes to the midsole is the new Runlite midsole material and the new outsole material TOC66 (Traction Outsole Control 66). Its now lighter, has a more responsive feel to it and are more flexible. I hate to use the sentence "the shoe feels faster" but that's just the way the new Runlite midsole material and the shoe makes you feel. With the responsiveness and flexibility you get a less restricted toe off and a smoother flow.

The rest of the midsole/outsole stays the same, you find the same Torsion Efficiency Unit as older version of Distance and the same outsole traction pattern. Ive now 90 miles on my D4 and so far no wear and tear on the outsole.

Sum Up
Its a weird release for sure but Im very excited. D4 brings more joy to my run. Its a great update that makes sense. Salming has done small tweaks over the years on the Distance, but D4 is the first one were you can really tell the difference. You will still find the same original idea behind the original Distance, but D4 has now received a well needed face lift,

Distance 4 is now a great contender to other brands marathon racing shoes, like Adidas Adios Boost and New Balance RC 1400. D4 feels lighter, more responsive and it feels like the shoe comes more to life, compare to older versions of Distance. D4 is like a Distance with a Turbo Charger! 

Ive used D4 to all kind of runs and D4 can handle them all. I wouldn't hesitate at all to take D4 the full 26.2, or just use it as my daily trainer. You can throw anything on D4 and it can handle it all.

Now since  D4 is closer to a marathon racer, I'm curious what will happen to my old Salming marathon/tempo shoe, Salming Speed!

Disclosure of Material Connection: I receive Running shoes from Salming Running North America as part of their Salming brand ambassador program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Boston Marathon 2016

This was the first Boston Marathon that I did not really know where I was standing, when it comes to training. Usually I have about +1000 miles, all outdoors. This year, Jan-Feb were all on treadmill, after midnight, after work. Usually in bed at 2am. Running with a newborn is a real challenge and I had to get my miles in whenever I could. March and April I did most of my runs with Ella in the stroller, most of my miles I could keep my target pace but it was tiring. So with that in my mind, I was not really sure. All I knew was that I had done my very best and in the end that is all you can do. I couldn't have done this training without all the support from my wife Erin! Taking care of Ella when I have been on the treadmill in the middle of the night!

Weather forecasts called for warmer weather but the forecast were mixed. I was not sure how warm or cold it was going to be. I was prepared for hotter conditions, salt tab and I also brought two gel flasks with SOS rehydration, plus I would get two new bottles at mile 14. As fuel this year I had been training with UCAN generation, I would also get two Untapped Maple gels at mile 14 as back up.
Again I was picking Salming Running Speed 3 as my shoes. I used Salming Speed last year as well and I know they will give the best protection and feel for the 26.2.

This year we also decided to go up Sunday, which meant early morning, 4am and of course Ella did not let us sleep at all. So I think that the lack of sleep had a big impact on my Monday performance.

This was also the first year I had to take the bus out to Hopkinton. I meet up with two team mates from Team Wicked BonkProof  , Carsten and Zach. Before the race we sat by the start, close to Porta Johns with no lines #protip.
The heat had already started to hit us, around 60-65f, not perfect as you have to sit and wait for 3 hours. But I enjoyed really great company. Still the plan was to run a sub3.

As the race started the temp had reached 70f, everything felt good and I tried to control my pace, not to bank time on the downhills. Even if the split did not hit the 6:45 I had planned for I was not worried, first couple of miles were all under 7. I made sure to hydrate well, first a sip of SOS and then a cup from water station. Im not a strong runner in the heat (must be my Viking blood) and at mile 7-8 I started to feel that I wouldn't be able to keep a sub3 pace the whole way to Boylston Street. Time to go for plan B, run steady an safe to secure a BQ for 2017. I always make sure I have a back up plan. My last couple of marathons I have been forced to make pit stops to empty my blatter. At mile 10 the first stop came. It probably only took me 30 sec but still annoying. This was not my only stop, about 5 miles later it was time for #2. It was not an emergency stop but I played it safe. I'm not sure why I had to go #2 but I would think the heat had a big part of it, maybe the UCAN but I have been fine during training. I think I lost about 3 minutes at this stop.

I was carrying my second load of UCAN in a AmphiPod belt and two small 4oz bottles, as soon as I had finished those at mile 13, I ditched the belt as it started to chafe when the bottles were empty. As mentioned above I was going to receive two more bottles of SOS and two gels at mile 14.
13.1 I passed around 1:31:45, for a second I was thinking of picking up the pace again as I was thinking this is not to much behind, but again I stayed with plan B to run steady and BQ.

When you hit the Newton Hills (mile 16-21), your really get a proof if you have been running smart. I look around and I see runners who start to walk. Still keeping a steady pace and counting down the Hills. Finally Im at the HeartBreak Hill and I see another Swedish runner, I cheer on him and he respond "I'm smoked". At the top of the hill you know its mostly downhill to the finish. Here I take the first of my two gels, UCAN was not enough for me and the full 26.2. Second gel I took 3 miles later. These two gels helped me to keep up the pace for sure. I did try to pick up pace where I could but mostly I played it safe. Its always great to get closer to the finish line and the last miles closer to Boston. I think this is the first year I have been focusing more on the crowd, trying to suck in the atmosphere. At mile 25 my left hamstring started to cramp up, I stopped for a few to massage it and then pick up my pace again, this happened again on the final stretch, not a big deal. I played it safe again and stopped.

Best Reward
My time ended up being 3:12:35, not my best time but Im very proud of myself for how I ran it and with all preparation and sleepless nights I been thru. The best reward was to see Ella and Erin. She such a happy girl and when she grabbed my medal I knew she one day will be a Unicorn Hunter!

Also a big shout out to Salming Running USA for all help and support, Im so proud and honored to be able to wear Salming and Swedish gear!

Also Sundog Eyewear, great eye wear for a sunny day, like Boston Marathon day was!

Caleb Masland for great coaching and training plan. Adjusting my runs to fit my schedule, treadmill and stroller running! Best coach out there!

Pros 2016:
-Meet Ella and Erin after, best reward ever!
-Great hydration plan (not UCAN included)
-Prepared race plans, turned to Plan B when A did not work and did not stress out about it.
-New BQ
-Meet TWB lads
-Salming Gear! (Split shorts, Race singlet, hat, Speed3)

Cons 2016:
-Energy source, UCAN did not last the whole 26.2 for me. Used back up gels (pros to be prepared)
-Pit stops, could have been the heat. Did not eat anything that im not familiar with.

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Salming Miles Review

Salming Miles Review
Salming Miles is a brand new shoe from Salming Running, meant to go the long distance. According to Salming: "The purpose of the Salming Miles running shoe is to add a more cushioned shoe without compromising the Salming concept and principles. It is built to stand the tear and wear of long distance asphalt and tarmac running. Miles has a Drop 4mm construction but compared to the popular and award winning Distance model, Miles has more heel and fore foot cushioning and the new responsive Recoil midsole compound."

Miles is compared to the Salming's other trainer "Distance". To me "Distance" is more of a performance shoe. When comparing Miles with Distance  its a big difference. Miles is a lot of shoe. When I say a lot I mean a lot of everything, I will go in detail under each section of the shoe. Distance is more snug and has a more performance oriented feel to it.

Weight: 11.4oz, size 9 US
Drop: 4mm
Stack Height: 25mm heel - 21mm forefoot

Before this review, I have used "Miles" during my Boston training, so far I have put over 300 miles on my pair.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I receive Running shoes from Salming Running North America as part of their Salming brand ambassador program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Miles offer a seemless upper made out two layers of mesh , plus the " Exo Skeleton" that keep the foot in place. The upper is very roomy with an oversized toebox for a great toe display. At first I did not like how the mesh kind folded unnaturally in the forefoot but after a few "break in runs" it seems like the mesh has adopted to my foot or molded itself after my foot if you like.
The toebox is very roomy and there is plenty of room for your toes to display. When looking at the upper it seems like its a lot going on. When I first saw pictures of "Miles" I thought "man that is a lot of overlays". The darker blue stripes has no function its just part of the visual design.
Laces are of a strechy round fabric, that helps to secure the fit. Salming did not go cheap on the laces, they offer probably the longest laces I have ever seen........

Salming offer a new midsole compound called Recoil. After 300+ miles the Recoil still looks like new. Recoil makes Miles shine, the shoe weight is about 11oz but with the energy return that Miles
offer the shoe feels lighter while you're running. You can easy pick up the pace with Miles and take advantage of the Recoil midsole energy return. 
Miles has a lot of outsole rubber and deep lugs, according to Salming website the lugs are 8mm deep. The thickness of the rubber feels a bit overkill to me. According to the website the outsole should provide great grip on "gravel, rocks and roots" as well. As I understand this shoe is built for roads in mind and I cant quite understand why Miles has these deep lugs and amount of rubber. The durability of the rubber has been great but is on the firmer side. The lugs/rubber still looks like new after 300+ miles as well. For sure the lugs and rubber provide a great grip on all kinds of surfaces and it makes the shoe almost a hybrid road/trail shoe. Midsole also offer a torsion unit for some extra sturdiness in the midfoot area.

Sum Up
It took about 50 miles for me to really start enjoy this new shoe offer from Salming. At first I thought the Miles was to clumpsy and to much shoe. But as the shoe was "broken in", I started to really enjoy the energy and protection Miles offered. I was surprised how well the new Recoil adopted to my running, long runs no problem, the protection is there.  When I wanted to pick up the paces, the Recoil compound responded really well and Miles felt light on my feet.
The outsole rubber and the lugs under shoe felt a bit to much. All other Salming road shoes has a thinner layer of rubber and the durability and grip has worked great, Miles could use the same amount of rubber as its Salming siblings for a better road feel and lighten up the shoe. Miles might be the Ultrarunners dream, it can for sure go the distance, has enough protection and offers great grip on both roads and trails.
I have to give Salming credit for the laces, some companies goes cheap but that is not the case here, the only thing is, you can cut the laces in half and you still have enough.
I ended up doing most of my Boston training with Miles and I like the shoe a lot, of course their is room for improvements but Miles fits in well with the other Salming shoes.

Other Reviews:

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Salming Speed 3

This is the third generation of Salming Speed. Over the last three years its pretty much the same Speed with smaller tweaks every edition.

Changes for the second version was a re designed wider toe box where the overlay offered more cover over the big toe, more durable rubber and a new sock liner.

On this third version the toe box is back to the version one edition and the Runlite mid-sole compound has been updated. The upper is back to version 1 edition ( a tiny bit wider), the over lay over the big toe is removed.

Many runners are probably going to question Salming for not offering more updates and a new version of Speed and the rest of the original line up, after all this is the third year with no changes visible for the eye (other then color changes). This include myself, sure thing it would have been exiting with a brand new Speed this year, but on the other hand the small changes Salming has done are making the shoe better and better.  In my opinion Speed should probably kept the name just Speed and not Speed 2 and 3 until they make more visible changes. Maybe called it Speed with Runlite V.2?

As for the color, Speed now comes in a color I would call Netherlands National Soccer Team orange. If you like bright colors as I do you will love it, but if youre more on the beige side it might pop out a bit to much. Salming has always been known for their bright colors and Speed3 will for sure pop out in the running peleton.
From left: Speed1, Speed2 and Speed3

So for this review I 'll focus more on the new midsole compound Runlite V.2 (All Salming Shoes of 2016 has the new Runlite, except Miles) My initial review of Salming Speed you can find here:

The original Runlite had a firmer and aggressive feel to it. With the new Runlite V.2 you will get a more cushioned feel with a more energy return. The Salming Speed feels more cushioned and you get "more" out of the shoe. Ive now 160 miles on my Speed 3 and the durability of the compound is much improved. Usually at this point start to see the compound starting to break down but Runlite V.2 is holding up without showing any sign of wear.

I loved the feeling of Speed 1&2, Speed 3 carry over the same feeling but you get more energy out of the Runlite V.2 and Speed 3.

Salming Speed is my choice for Marathons and Speed 3 will be on my feet at Boston Marathon April 18th. Speed gives me enough protection and put me on a good spot over the Newton Hills and the final 6 miles after the hills. Last year I used Speed 2 for my new personal best and I cant wait to see what I can do with an improved Speed 3. Speed is definitely a shoe that keeps you protected over the 26.2 miles.

 More energy, more cushion and more durability is how I sum up the new Speed 3.

Check out Salming Speed here:

Disclosure of Material Connection: I receive Running shoes from Salming Running North America as part of their Salming brand ambassador program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”