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Pre-run Review of the Inov-8 Trailroc 150 Minimalist Trail Shoes

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  • Sunday, February 08 2015 @ 09:40 pm EST
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Running and Fitness

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Ever since New Balance discontinued the Minimus Trail MT00, and even though I stocked up on a couple of extra pairs, I have been on the lookout for a new ultra lightweight trail shoe that is currently in production.

A few weeks ago I bought a pair of inov-8 Trailroc 235 shoes to fill the role of "robust trail shoe" which I might use in my next Ultramarathon. The 235 is such a great shoe that I thought I would take a look at the other shoes in the Trailroc line. I was psyched when I discovered an even lighter-weight shoe, the Trailroc 150. I am a big fan of the inov-8 Bare-X Lite 150 which I use for my 5k road racing shoe, so I had hopes that the Trailroc 150 would be great, too.

The black shoe pictured below is the Trailroc 235. The florescent yellow shoe is the Trailroc 150 (I really like the bright flashy color scheme!). Both shoes are from the "Zero" category of inov-8 shoes which means there is no difference between the height of the forefoot and the height of the heel. Both shoes are made on the inov-8 "standard" last which is supposed to provide more room in the toebox than inov-8's performance last. I only wear zero drop shoes with a wide toebox, so the Trailroc 150 should have been a good option for me.



There are a number of reviews and videos on the web that are mostly positive (and helped me decide to order the Trailroc 150 in the first place). Unfortunately, the Trailroc 150 has a number of issues so I didn't take a chance running in them before returning them.

The outsoles of the 235 and 150 are pretty much identical in lug pattern (they seem to be made from the same mold). The lugs are not huge but fairly aggressive. You can see a slight difference in the outsole as it wraps up around the outer edge. The 235 has a 6mm footbed and the plane of the footbed surface is pretty much even with the top of the outsole edge. The 150 has no footbed and the plane of the footbed surface sits down inside the "valley" created by the outsole wrapping up around the edge. This minor difference is huge for the fit of the shoe. In the 235, my pinky toes have a lot more room since they can push out into the flexible upper material. In the 150, my toes were trapped in the narrow canyon and could not splay properly.



When I compared the 235 and 150 side-by-side (both the same size), the 150 seems to be just a bit narrower as you can see here:

Newnan's Lake 15k Race Report 2015

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  • Thursday, February 05 2015 @ 08:50 pm EST
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Running and Fitness

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This past weekend I ran in the Lloyd Clarke Sports Newnan's Lake 15k. Weather was sunny and cold, great for racing, as seems to be the case almost every year.

Here I am in my final push to the finish:


Photo by Maya Comia

I finished in 58:20, won my age group, and pulled off a lifetime personal best at this distance by 1 minute 30 seconds. Huge PR!

I am really happy with the results because I was able to do this at the tail end of marathon training with legs that were definitely not feeling fresh. I was able to finish the race strong with my last three mile splits 6:12 each.

More photos:

Linode now offering 10 bucks per month plan

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  • Thursday, February 05 2015 @ 07:14 pm EST
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Linux, Open Source, and Tech Stuff

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Linode is an outstanding VPS provider.

I have been a happy Linode customer since 2010 (over five years). During that time, Linode has provided many free upgrades (more memory, more disk space, ...).

image

For their birthday last year, Linode announced a $10 per month VPS plan. This lower-cost plan is still hosted on Linode's ultra-reliable Linux servers with all-SSD storage and tons of performance. For more details, read their blog post:

https://blog.linode.com/2014/06/16/11th-linode-birthday-10-linode-plan/

Trail Running the Ohio Buckeye Trail, Hocking Hills

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  • Monday, February 02 2015 @ 06:49 am EST
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Running and Fitness

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I have started a personal tradition to go on a long trail run whenever I am in Ohio to visit my parents. Even though I lived within an hour of the Hocking State Forest area trails when I was younger, I never used them for trail running. There are many trail areas that I never even knew existed!

Christmas 2014 was my second long trail run in the Hocking Hills. On my inaugural run a couple of years ago, I ran from Old Man's Cave to Ash Cave and back along the Buckeye Trail that travels through the state park and most of those trails were at least familiar from my younger years. This time, I wanted to explore parts of the Buckeye Trail that were new to me.

The Old Man's Cave parking area on State Route 664 makes a good starting point because of the heated visitor's center that includes working water and restroom facilities year-round. Note that some of the trails in the park are undergoing major maintenance and are currently closed or re-routed.

Based on weather reports I decided to do my run a few days before Christmas rather than trying to run on Christmas Day. It was cold but there was no real rain. I first ran north from the Old Man's Cave parking lot. There are some notes on finding the Buckeye Trail from this location below.

I ran the Buckeye Trail to the Hocking Hills Climbing and Repelling area parking lot which is about 3.5 miles one-way. If you just wanted to see the Climbing area, the parking lot on Big Pine Rd / CR 11 is going to be your best bet.

The Climbing area has some amazing rock formations:







I had left some notes of my running plan with my parents, and even though I wanted to continue northward along the Buckeye Trail at this point, I followed my plan and returned to Old Man's Cave. My plan from here was to run to Ash Cave as I had on my previous visit. This time I ran "up top" on the Gorge Overlook Trail instead of down in the gorge along the creek due to the trail maintenance and closures.

Rose Lake was beautiful to look at.



I suggest enjoying Rose Lake from the dam area and not by running around it on the shoreline trail. The trail is steeply cambered and not much fun.

From Rose Lake I made it to the fire tower:



This time I took a picture at the top:

Standing At Work

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  • Wednesday, January 21 2015 @ 08:42 am EST
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Fun Stuff @ Work

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I have been standing pretty much full-time at work since 2011 and I am still quite happy using my Custom-Built Standing Workstation in my current job.

I do have my laptop on the lower desk surface in case I need to sit down, such as after a particularly hard morning running workout. However, I tend to only sit down at meetings and meals during the work day.





Today I was rocking my Skora shoes which are zero drop (no elevated heel) as are all of my shoes these days. I have no need for knee, hip, or back pain thank you very much.

Gainesville Brewery Run 5k - Race Report

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  • Sunday, January 11 2015 @ 08:54 pm EST
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The Inaugural Gainesville Brewery Run was hosted by First Magnitude Brewing Company on December 14, 2014.

The race course was out-and-back on the Gainesville-Hawthorne trail. All of the event facilities were located at the First Magnitude brewery. The start/finish line was just a stone's throw from the brewery so it was a very short walk from the finish line to claim a free delicious beer and grab some food. Besides the indoor taproom, the brewery has very nice outdoor seating area with trees and picnic tables which was perfect given the weather of race day.

The paved bike path made for a fast course. I was able to stick with Dan Clark until the turnaround point, but he went on to win the race in 17:09. I am happy with 2nd overall and a time of 17:38.

Top finishers received a boot full of beer!



Nice 2nd place award medal to go with the longsleeve t-shirt:



Here is a photo of the top 3 male finishers, all named Dan:

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