Friday, April 13, 2012

Love at First Run

I am a big fan of New Balance running shoes and have been wearing them for the last decade, pretty much exclusively.  In fact, the only time I cheated on NB and wore another brand was when I won a pair of Brooks shoes from a local 10K trail series.  The bad (and good) thing about NB shoes is that they retire their shoes very quickly, sometimes every year they make a new model.  This is definitely disruptive if you have found a model that you like and want to keep buying, forever and ever.  The positive thing is that it means that unsold old models end up at a reduced price at places like Joe's New Balance Outlet.  If you are at all a fan of NB stuff, I strongly suggest checking out this site, which has some great deals on shoes and apparel.  The catch is that it is all NB brand.

New Balance 101
NB 101T, $36 on sale
The other day, I bought another pair of running shoes from Joe's New Balance Outlet.  They had an extra 10% and free shipping over $50.  They also still had these shoes in, which I really love, so this is the 4th pair I have bought.  They were $36 after the discount.  Badass, I know.  Downside? $36 didn't qualify me for free shipping, so I did what any good running addict would do and thought about what other running stuff I wanted/needed.  I had recently, finally caved in and decided to retire an old pair of bright yellow nylon shorts that chaffed me terribly every time I ran but for the longest time couldn't muster the strength to throw away.  Therefore, I rationalized that I should get a new pair of shorts.  I looked at what was available in my size and inexpensive, and settled on the 1107GBL (sometimes the NB numbering scheme seems like overkill, right?) or Run Short.  They were $18.  Here is the description:

New Balance NBx Run Short
NB Run Short, $18 on sale
This short was made with the most active runners in mind, with creature comforts like reflectivity, ventilation panels and a music-friendly pocket. Featuring X-Static® fabric and a comfortable waistband, this 3" short will keep you cool and comfortable no matter how long or far you push your limits.

That sounded good to me.  I bought the black and blue trimmed pair.  When they arrived, I was skeptical.  Three inches is very short and I hadn't accurately envisioned that length.  They are also tight, kind of like boy shorts and hug my thighs/buttocks.  Well, turns out the NB Run Short was Love at First Run.  I took them out for a spin and they were magically comfortable, lightweight and there was no chaffing.  Despite the significant amount of sweating I do in TX spring weather, they did not get heavy and wick very effectively.  Also important, they have a nice pocket in the middle of the back which is big enough to hold a key and/or ID card.  I think it was designed to hold an MP3 player, but I always clip mine at my waist.  Other snazzy benefits: special silver fibers to reduce odor (they do smell very clean after washing, but they haven't had many wears yet), reflective stripes on the front and back and an ICE strip built into the pocket (you can put emergency information on it).
All in all, a very good purchase if I do say so.  I intend to wear them in a 10K road race I am doing tomorrow, which is looking like a warm and sweaty start at 75F and 90% humidity.  Yup, that's TX.
A few days ago, I bought a pair of Pro Compression socks for $30 (regular price of $50).  I have never tried compression socks before but often get sore calves and have heard they can really speed up recovery if worn between workouts.  I am excited to give them a whirl and hopefully won't feel that I wasted my money.


  1. Did the shorts ride up at all? Do they have elastic around the bottom of the legs and something to keep them down? (I don't really know what it is called or how to describe it but to say that it won't move like SkinnyRunner is always talking about her BIC bands not moving at all when she wears them because of what's on them.) Thanks!

    1. Great question! I do often have problems with nylon shorts riding up but did not experience that with this pair (one of the reasons I like them so much). There is no elastic holding them in place at the base of the shorts, although I do have other shorts like that which are great for reducing chafing. Hope that answers your question!