Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Drymax Maximum Protection Run Mini Crew

I'm really excited to give these Drymax socks a tri, I mean try. My feet have kind of held me back from more running events as they tend to blister. Always in the same place, no matter what intervention I try. My last half marathon was run with duct tape. Lame I know, but I was deperate. I really have high hopes for these socks which claim to be 25 times dryer than regular ones. I will update when I know for myself.
By the way the socks are coming from, which offers free shipping to Canada! Nice.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Sugoi Raglan L/S jersey

It's almost easier to describe what this jersey isn't as opposed to what it is. It's not flashy or techy, nor hot off the euro runway.
However it is a garment at the top of the pile and so it's my go-to winter endurance sweater. It's a workhorse and it hasen't let me down when I ride, ski or run. It has elastic cuffs and waist and three generous pockets out back, and the only knock against it is the lack of wind block. But really that's minor because it's hard to pry this jacket off my shoulders. I also am pleased with the longer cut in the frontside waist that doesn't ride up past my navel when I ski or run. This is noticable on some of my other and more expensive jackets.
At this point if you pass a someone on the trail like the guy above with that jersey, it's probably me.


Friday, February 19, 2010

Olympic volunteer jackets

The Vancouver Olympic workforce uniform was designed by Hudson’s Bay Company design team, The bright blue is inspired by the scenery of the Sea to Sky region linking Whistler and Vancouver.
The smart design permits the uniforms to be used for both the Olympic and Paralympic Games. Snaps and velcro will allow the Olympic ring to be swapped for the Paralympic emblem.
Now you know.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Five gear no-no's when nordic skiing

This past weekend was the Canadian Birkebeiner ski festival. Five race distances attracted about 1500 skiers of all abilites.
I was in the 31km event, and an exciting part of the day was eavesdropping on skiers talk about their choice of clothing before the race. "Oh how many layers are you wearing?, and ten minutes before the gun, "I'm not sure what to put on."
There were some items of clothing I saw in the barn before the race that still baffle me.
So I've compiled a list, and remember most folks were out in minus 8 degree celsius weather for 3-6 hours.
1. cotton, head to toe sweatpant matterial. (It's not the '70's anymore)
2. leather, no not chaps just 30 year old mittens.
3. shorts, yup, shorts????
4. treated cotton, as in welding pants and matching coat.
5.down. great for apres ski, but lousy on the trail.

I looked high and low for denim, but I came up emty this year, the only thing worse than dungarees for skiing is lulu lemon flair pants. Give your head a shake ladies.

I wish sometimes I could ski with a camera to capture the insanity, but nordic skiing is hard enough.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

LaSportiva Crosslite trail running shoes

I don't consider myself a shopper, more of a buyer. In other words, I thoroughly research my purchases before I pull the trigger.
These shoes on the other hand were not the shoes I had intended to run on. I was set on a pair of Salomons, but the fit and feel of the Sportivas turned me around.
Aside from the ridiculous light weight of these shoes,(311g) they have serious lugs for traction. More than I will need on my runs along the North Saskatchewan river, but I figured they would be great for winter too.
They exceed my expectations for grip in the snow and, as I never run in icy conditions, they negate the need for anything else for winter running footwear. In fact the lugs are a bit dangerous decending wooden stairs, as they tend to catch on the leading edge and propel me forward.
I am also a big fan of the screeguard covering most of the lacing system. This is really smart as even small debris can ruin a good run. The uppers are mostly mesh for cooling an even feature reflective surfaces on the side.
Although they are not marketed as a forefoot shoe, the lack of heel cushioning and flexible midsole makes these a perfect winter or trail shoe for someone who runs on Newtons in the summer.

PRICE: About $100 CDN

Monday, February 8, 2010

The Season

The amazing Canadian outdoor clothier Arcteryx, has funded a 22 episode series documenting five of their sponsored atheletes.
It worth a look. I combines a few of my loves: being outside, beautiful cinematography and the Pacific Northwest.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Rapha Arm Warmers

As with my leg warmers, see below, I have tried numerous pairs of arm warmers over the years with mixed results.
Either they are too loose at the top or too tight at the bottom. But the Rapha Arm Warmers are Goldielocks.
They're lined with fleece and they use Italian Roubaix fabric that feels almost like 2mm neoprene. They are a tight fill all over and have a tab on the top to help with pulling them on. Although more pricey than other garments, these are the gold standard and the sexy Euro attention to detail are a must have for any gear junkie.
They come in only two colours, black and white and the reverse.

about $60

Monday, February 1, 2010

Vibram Fivefingers KSO

A few years ago a friend of mine gave up his dream of developing a shoe that fit like a glove.
He discovered the Vibram fivefingers and quickly became their biggest fan.
Over time I saw the need for such a shoe, and jumped on the wagon.
Sure they look kinda odd, fit wierd, but get past that and you have a shoe for everything.
Honestly I have worn this shoe in all conditions, and have tried it in most sport applications where a binding
isn't needed. (Injinji even makes socks to fit the Fivefingers.)
I wore them a few days ago in the surf, thus the white wax on the toes, and I forgot i was wearing them within a few minutes in the water.
They saved my toes and soles on the sharp coral and lava and gripped the board tight.
The KSO(keep stuff out) is a tight fit around the circumfrence of the ankle and shielded me from the sand while running on the beach.
On land and water the fivefingers go with me everywhere.
Their line-up is expanding to leather uppers so check them out.

*Note* I would recomend buying the shoes a bit small if you can do it. They only come in full sizes and they expand with use, especially in the water.

about $80