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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have always used my training shoes to run races. However I was looking thru the Road rRunner Sports catalog where they list the weights of all the shoes. My shoes (Nike Pegasus weigh 12.6 oz.) That is about average. The racing flats/light trainers they list at almost 3 oz less. Who wears racing shoes and do you think they offer more than a psychological edge. I'm thinking that 3 oz x alot of steps might make a difference even in a short race.
 

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Skip the lightweight Trainers unless you really know you can benefit. Lightweight Trainers are pretty awesome, but not everybody can benefit from them. If I were a coach I'd tell all but my elite to just barely sub-elite athletes to stay away from true racing flats. Because if you're not at that high level where a few ounces may make you better able to hold on at the end and speed your leg turnover by that sliver of a second for benefit, you may do more harm than good to use them. So if you haven't used them in Training, skip them.<br><br>
Moving forward, if you're not doing, say, sub-5:30 miles, I'd recommend getting yourself a lighter weight (note, not light-light weight) solid Trainer shoe and using them ONLY for races. That's what I do. It gives me the mental edge. But I've also done enough training in them to know they will last a hard 26.2 miles without much blistering on the feet. The premise behind this strategy is that I get both the support and cushion my body needs.<br><br>
If you have the money, go get yourself and pair and start doing speedwork in them. But if you are a larger runner, you may find yourself wasting your money, because the light weight racers/flats are flimsy and will break down after very few miles, especially if you have more mass to carry around.
 

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I use racing flats for most road races. I also wear Nike Pegasus for training. The racing flats are much lighter. I use Brooks T Racers for 5/10Ks. They're only about 6 ounces, so less than half the weight of the Pegasus. I use the flats only for racing and the occasional track session. I have no solid data, but the flats do make me feel faster and my PRs at those distances came in the flats. I recall the day I got them I ran a normal 10K training route and at that time it was the second fastest 10K I had ever done and easily about 2 minutes or so faster than I had ever run that route before.<br><br>
For longer races I was wearing Saucony Fastwitch-Speed until they wore out. I now use an Addidas model, but don't recall the model name. They weigh closer to 8 ounces and have slightly more support. My HM and fully mary PRs have come in this type of shoe. Again, I pretty much only wear these for racing, but I have done a couple long runs in them to see how my feet would hold up.<br><br>
I'm not a real big guy, but I have weighed in the upper 170s when using these shoes and had no problems. It helps that I'm a midfoot striker because these type shoes really don't have any heel cushioning.<br><br>
As a guess I would say the flats let me run around 5-10 seconds per mile faster, but it could be more.<br><br>
My Brooks shoes are several years old and I may replace them this year. I'd like to try the new Zoot flats.
 

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I just got a pair of lighter shoes for racing and track workouts in October (NB 330). They're pretty good, but I wouldn't want to run more than about 10-15km in them. I wore them in one race, and felt a bit beat-up afterwards. Track workouts, on the other hand, were great in them.<br>
For longer races, I echo Thor's idea. You need that extra bit of support.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the advice. I'm certainly not a fast runner and I really was thinking more about a lighter trainer than a true racing flat. I'm about 190 and I think a racing flat might lead to injury. Thor I may take your advice and get a lighter trainer to use for speedwork/races. If nothing else it may give me a mental boost to wear different shoes to race in.
 

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YES. I don't do the same, but only because I go through running shoes like there's no tomorrow, and the costs would be expensive, but I love lighter weight Trainers. Do your speedwork and races with them, then you'll also gain that mental edge. I used to run with Trainer/Racers (but not flats) and would know that as soon as I slip them on, pyschologically it was like putting on a new, fresh set of legs. But they can beat you up, they wear quickly, and your body will tell you right away (but always after the fact) when you need a new pair. When my financial situation gets better, I hope to pick up a pair of Asics DS Trainers. Used to LOVE those. I had tried the Nike Zoom Milers but kept popping the damn air chambers rendering them useless.
 

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I use a Brooks Burn, they are a lightweight trainer for some people, I just use them on the track and for race day. I like the lower heel and flexy sole, but perhaps they contribute to my constant injuris also.
 

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I'm in the same boat, RS. I'm on my 7th consecutive pair of Asics Gel-Cumulus shoes, use em for both training and racing. I'm trying to decide now if I want to accept the additional risk of using a racing flat, especially for Boston where I'll be dealing with a lot of downhill pounding. But I'm also trying to cut over 8 min off my marathon time and get down below 2:50.<br><br>
I've been running injury free for two years now. I had some leg problems 4 to 5 years ago, but my weight was 170-180 back then. I'm down to 145 now.<br><br>
No answers for ya, but I'm also interested in feedback.<br><br><br>
Mike
 

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If you're an Asics fan, get yourself to a running store and try on a pair of DS Trainers (not the DS Racers). The DS Trainers will offer more support and cushion.<br><br>
If you like the feel of them, then lace 'em up for some of your speedwork sessions. You're doing quality and long enough sessions where you will get a very good idea on whether you can wear them for a full marathon. But you will feel the pounding in your body. That there is no question. And Boston is a tough one for that. Me, personally, I'd rather have my regular trainer shoe or a cushioned light trainer.<br><br>
But again, let me slap a disclaimer on this and say that I haven't raced in a true light weight training shoe in a while.
 

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I've had a heavy-duty pair (about the same weight as your Cumulus) for regular and/or longer training runs, and a semi-racing flat pair (my Mizuno Wave Precisions, which come in just under 10 oz) for my speedwork and races. I do have a set of true racing flats (Brooks T5), but I only break that out on rare occasions (track speedwork where the surface is a little softer.)
 

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I generally run with two pairs of shoes, same brand and use the lighter ones for track and races. But there is not an entire amount of difference... 10.5 for my trainers, and 9.5 for the racers. Probably more of a psychological benefit to me, I probably run just as fast in both.<br><br>
When I first got lighter shoes, I ran with them exclusively for about a month, just to make sure they wouldn't wreck havoc with my body. I mean if they hurt after a 100 miles, or you can't do long runs with them, I'd skip it and stick with the trainers.
 

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I train in my Sorrell Arctic boots, that way when I race in my Brooks Adrenalines I feel like I'm floating.<br><br>
Now if I could just figure out why my knees always hurt...
 

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It is dribbling like this that keeps us on a clear path to the top of the standings.<br><br>
My single biggest fear in my sporting life is that they will discontinue my Adidas Response Cushion shoes and I will need to find a new model. I am so terrified of trying new shoes. Probably mostly due to the potential of dropping 120 bucks on a pair shoes that will end up being donated after 4 miles and one case of PF.
 

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<br>
Thanks for the feedback Thor. My coach's husband, who is also going for 2:50 at Boston this year, also recommended the DS Trainers. I guess I'll give them a try.<br><br>
At 9.6 oz, they're only about 17% lighter than my Gel-Cumulus, which weigh in at 11.5oz. But with the pounding I'll take on the downhills at Boston, its probably better to play it safe. Plus coach tells me that I need to recover from Boston quickly so I can get going on my Madison training.<br><br>
Mike
 

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I believe that most people train in shoes that are over built for them and that can lead to injuries. I usually train in racing flats or light weight trainer and reserve a pair of medium weight trainers for those days when my feet are sore.<br><br>
While not everybody can run in flats on a regular basis, I think it is a good idea for most runners to have a variety of running shoes to choose from, ranging from flats to heavier trainers. Mix the flats into your training schedule, that way you are comfortable with them when race day comes around. You will definitely be faster in flats: I think the rule of thumb is a second per mile per ounce.<br><br>
Victor
 

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Dude. Except I use Brooks Ariels.
 
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