This weekend, Tropical Storm Ela brought the island of Oahu a little extra rain. In between showers, the sun came out to heat up all that moisture in the air and turned Oahu into a sauna, so Don and I have spent the weekend seeking out various forms of indoor entertainment and prioritized those that also included air conditioning.
My usual go-to, inside, climate controlled activity is a trip to the movies, but Don needed a new pair of running shoes and we just saw Jurassic World last weekend (as a side note, I’m not sure I’ll want to go hiking in the Hawaiian jungle again anytime soon), so we instead headed to Be Fit Kailua for an air-conditioned shopping adventure.
Unlike most men, Don LOVES shopping- I kind of hate it, so I guess we have flipped the usual stereo-typed gender roles here (yay us)- and his most favorite type of shopping would have to be shoe shopping. I remember going sneaker shopping with him when we were dating and he badgered the poor sales rep at a generic chain shoe store (not even a specifically sports shoe store) with so many questions about the sneakers he was trying on that even I just wanted him to pick-a-damn-pair-and-pay-for-them-already so she could maker her measly commission. Don puts a lot of thought and analysis into his shoe-buying experience, so when I bought my latest pair at Be Fit Kailua and received the extraordinary level of attention to detail in their customer service that I can only assume Queen Elizabeth’s staff puts into her lunch order, I knew Don would also be buying his next pair of sneaks there as well.
After hearing me proclaim my undying love for the minimalist Topo shoe, Don started thinking that maybe he should give something different a try. After talking with Jeff about his flat feet and the shoes he normally wears, yada, yada, yada (I tuned out and started looking at all of the cool running gear for sale), Don was presented with three very different pairs to try on. One, made by Brooks, was more traditional and similar to what he normally wears, another was a zero-drop, minimalist shoe similar to mine but made by a company called Altra, and the third pair, made by Hoka (which are the pair he ended up buying) were the complete opposite end of the spectrum from the minimalist shoe.
The Hoka shoe, as you can see, has a lot going on. This shoe has tons of padding which helps reduce the shock of each footfall, provides a little more stability than the average shoe, and has a slightly rockered toe to ease break-over. It looks like a beast and like it would be heavy and cumbersome on your feet, but when Don handed me one of them, I was surprised at how light it was. Don waffled between the minimalist shoe and this one because I think he was surprised at how much he liked the feel of all that cushion, but after jogging around the parking lot (I stayed inside in the AC, see ya, sucker!) this was the one that felt the most awesome to him.
He took them for their first run today, and he is not yet proclaiming undying love but is proclaiming a serious amount of like. Sometimes these things take a while. I scolded him for not reducing his miles enough for such a big change (he did three). I mean, when someone recommends you run FEWER miles and at a SLOWER pace, I feel it’s a golden opportunity that should not be wasted. Don, however, has something called pride and insisted that a three mile run was shorter than his average distance. Whatever. He was already in the shower when I made it back from my three miles (yes, we started at the same time, thanks for asking).
Hopefully Don will come to love his new sneakers as much as I love mine. Change takes time. Next weekend, we are signed up for another 5k (my second!). I am feeling some trepidation about this one because it is called The Grueler (sounds super fun, doesn’t it?) and features a “grueling, trail portion.” My good friend Shawna, in all her wisdom, pointed out that the trail part will distract me from the fact that I’m running because I will have to think about what I’m doing instead of obsess over the fact that I STILL CAN’T SEE THE FINISH LINE, DEAR GOD, WHERE IS IT?????? I hope she is correct.