Tuesday, May 19, 2015

HMC: a little up, a little down, a little up a little down!



What a weekend for running. ..

Did you see the Diamond Leagues?

No I wasn't running either of them but the telly was on and they didn't disappoint. 

I could have travelled to PE for SA Master's Athletes champs, but with only one slow track race to my name in the last couple of years it wasn't really an option. (A couple of my friends won medals and if champs is in Cape Town next year, who knows? )

Then there was some arbitrary 12km road race in Town, but the thought of running with 10 000 people sounded stupid. (Had a free entry and I gave it away!)

What about a trail race? Well I could have stayed local and run 21km in the Constantia vineyards,  but I didn't. .. I was up at 04h30 to head out to Somerset West for the Helderberg Mountain Challenge 24km with 1800m climb and part of a mountain series, now that's a little more up my street...

Owen set us off before the sun was up and I took off down the road with the whole field on my tail... the downhill didn't last long as we turned off the road and onto the mountain trails. I was joined at the front by Dylan and to my surprise the two of us started to open a lead!

With Nic and Martin in the field behind I didn't think they would let us get away. There was no sight of Bernard who had found another lift to the start the night before so I didn't have to pick him up! 

I kept the pace honest and hoped Dylan would blow (not very friendly of me...) But after falling to pieces two weeks ago at Jonkershoek things were going a lot better! 
If you haven't run the race let me tell you this: last year the race had scared me and I wasn't planning on running it again! Scared yes scared of falling off/down the mountain, some places are so steep it's not for the faint hearted! 

First time round
Back to the race, it took us about 25min to reach the real climb! No more gravel. I looked back and guessed we had about 60sec on whoever was chasing. That wasn't going to be enough for me to keep them at bay! But there was still lots of climbing to do and I had Dylan to drop, so I pushed on! I thought I had the better of him as we hit Porcupine Buttress. We weren’t fast, but our lead was growing as we pushed on to West Peak. I scrambled up a couple of rocks and hit the flat bit before the last climb to the check point. Plan one win the King of the Mountain, tick (I didn’t take the title as someone in the 15km was faster). Plan 2, not get caught before the 2nd climb.

I lead the down and Dylan and I chatted as we dropped off the high points of the mountain and onto the contour. I wasn’t putting the body on the line, I was thinking 3h00-3h30 of running and just ticking along. At the end of this “contour” we had to slide down the gully to the next contour before dropping to the gravel road and heading back up. Someone was chasing hard but was still 60+sec back and we were climb again, so I reckoned we would open the gap again. We didn’t! It was Bernie chasing and he caught up on the climb, he had started 7 minutes late and had worked hard to pass the rest of the field and catch us.

I was still leading and I think Bernie was happy in 3rd with the 2 of us, but Dylan was feeling good and the steady pace we had set for the first loop had left him with energy, so he kicked pass me. (Maybe I should have gone with him, but maybe I would have blown). I stepped aside and told Bernie to chase, he did, but not with the speed he had caught us and Dylan pulled ahead.

I thought I would close on Dylan as we climbed Porcupine Buttress, but NO he was now 60-90sec ahead.

Right Turn, time the head for the DOME, having run this last year I know what was ahead, and I believe I was going well, but Dylan and Bernie were gone! I only got to see them as they headed down, Bernie was about 90sec behind a flying Dylan, and I was now about 5mins back. With the Peak ticked I started my descent Nic was in 4th about 2mins behind me…

Taken by Jaco Roux of http://extremejogging.blogspot.com
You can see the top of the Dome in the distance, Jaco is climbing up while others are heading down, it's not far now Jaco!



It wasn’t enough because Nic caught me before the saddle. Last year at this stage I was a broken man, but not this year, and while we had to pass the tail end of the 15km race I was about to push (politely) through the field and close the gap Nic had opened, all too late as he whizzed through the check point at the top and down out of sight. I was moving ok and passing lots of the 15km guys who were all more than happy to let us pass. On lap one I had stayed upright on the descent down the gully sliding on my feet, this time round with tired legs I was leaning back onto my hands as well.

The rest was easy and I ran strong for the last 5km in… Bernie had caught Dylan and finished about 17min ahead of me with Dylan about 15min ahead of me, while Nic had opened 6min… Back to the drawing board for me I need to close the gaps that are opening in the last downhill km, or am I just getting to old to dance down the mountains?


What Garmin had to say

Saturday, May 9, 2015

JMC 2015

The plan was simple, go out easy and be running well at the end...

Like most of my plans I tend to only stick to them rather loosely and when we were set off, and I took the lead! In my defence the pace was slow and it's one way to control the race, I kept an eye on Ms Garmin and she told me I could, should be able to, run that pace for an easy marathon (I mean flat), so I stayed in front...

I stayed in front with two youngsters till we started climbing (about 2km in) Then Bernie joined us and one of the 'kids' dropped off. By 5km I had backed off a bit and the other 2 had opened up about 20m on me with Nic about 20m behind me and Chad on his tail. It was early in the race and I was still relaxed and running easy. The view down the valley was amazing with a low laying mist covering the sleepy town of Stellenbosch!

Amazing views

6.5km down and the real work starts, as we turned off the gravel road onto a single track up the mountain! I watched Nic and Chad chasing up the switchbacks, they were moving faster than me, but not fast enough to catch before it flattened out. Out front Bernie was flying and the fast pace of the kid had slowed. With the single track now following the contour it was fast running and I started to close on the kid, the running was easy as with the fire of a couple of months ago the path was clear.

But this is a mountain run and at 9km we started climbing again... I slowed and Nic caught me and the kid whom we had been gaining on on the contour, not wanting to be dropped he push up the climb with Nic leaving me 20sec behind. With the climb and the tricky bit at the top out the way we hit the next contour. It was also clear of bush so I closed in on the kid and passed him. Saying that, Chad did the same to me!

While passing me I told him Nic had a 40sec lead on us, and he was on the main climb of the day! Chad started the climb, but he hadn't dropped me and I 'pushed' pass, I was still feel ok and while most of the climb is runnable, after an hour of racing and with 26km still to go, it's more about power walking...

Picture taken from :Jaco Roux

I dropped Chad and over the next 2km (490m climb!!!) I climbed up to Nic... I needed the hill to be longer, because with him only a couple of meters ahead we hit the top... He took off and I set off chasing. My chase was slow, Lucky for us the fire hadn't reached this section of the mountain... OK unlucky for me! I couldn't get going fighting the bush, or long grass! First Chad past me and while I was hoping I could get some of the down hill done before being caught again Julian wasn't waiting for that... Oh to be that young... he just hopped down without a worry in the world! There was no bouce in me, but this was the shortest of the 3 "scary descents".

Can you see the down hill? 
Martin must have made up a lot of time on the downhill and caught me just before the drop to the next check point... I watched him through the check point and took a split I had lost 2 minutes! But I didn't feel all was lost, as the legs didn't feel to bad and there was still a bit of running to do...

So with only the last descent to go I didn't hang around but started down the face of the mountain!!! To give to a clue as to just how steep this descent is, we drop 100m in the first 500m then drop a further 150m in the next 500m! Andrew came past and put a minute into me before the bottom, I was down now and maybe, just maybe I could get running again...

It wasn't fast, but the gap to Andrew stayed at 60sec, so I was going alright, which was a good sign since I had wacked my knee on the way down... I hadn't fallen, just the edge of the path had disappeared under my foot and I had landed on my knee! I set my sights on Andrew but the gap stayed the same, but then the 24km guys (and girls) joined our route. New plan, aim at catching them one at a time... This was working well for a couple of km till I rolled my ankle! I kept moving and it warmed up and started working again. But I had slowed and was no longer catching the 24km guys.
Check point 3
I stopped at Check point 3 for a drink and a guy from the 24km race went by. Good someone to chase and to keep me moving forward. Running on the gravel road was easy and I passed him and took the climb up onto the single track with him right behind me. Opening a gap on him was hard work and every time I openned a couple of seconds he would close on the rough stuff... This cat and mouse game was working at we were closing in on Andrew who was taking strain.

He kindly stepped off the trail and let me pass, by then it was my turn as the guy from the 24km race had closed and was now the stronger runner. There ahead was the road down, I was sure I would catch him again... On dear, the legs had had enough and with 4km still to run how was I going to get to the finish...(SLOWLY!)

I made it to the single track down, now on a good day without, 4 hours of running in the legs,  this would have been fun, even more so before the fire, but today I was running on wobbly legs and things were slow... I remember standing at one section: A steep downhill about 20m long and thinking there is no way I can get down there without killing myself! But I couldn't stand there forever so I started down with little steps then tensed up my whole body and went for it... That hurt, but I was down in one piece and then back on the road... just a short section before the DAM, and the dam wall!

To get down I started on the stairs, the first flight was OK, but the 2nd... Oh dear, my legs gave way, or I tripped over nothing, or I missed the step and down I went, like a sack of potatoes. Lucky not down the stairs but onto the bank on the side. I rolled over and sat there looking down. A Father and son looked up at me and contemplated walking up to see if I was ok! I moved, then froze... I thought I was going to cramp! I moved again, NO it is a false alarm.

I hobbled down the stairs and into the Dam wall just before Andrew and 4 others caught me... Lucky those stairs had railings so I was able to keep going, Then we popped out at the base of the wall and with 2km left it was time to stretch out and race for the finish... NO not me, the others took off leaving me plodding along with Andrew (who was also stretched today) But then, just after he had told me he wasn't up for a sprint finish my adductor spoke to me... Slow down! I listened. ..

4h07:56 I was finished, in more was then one! But with 39.1km and 2400m climb it wasn't really a bad effort I place about 8th and 3rd 40+
Recovering with Eddie

Sunday, April 26, 2015

FKT TABLE MOUNTAIN

FKT: Fastest Known Time

OK so  I'm a little competitive, but who isn't... I can remember back when I was only "knee high to a grasshopper" saying to my mom, who was in the kitchen cooking for us 5 kids: "Time me I'm running round the house..." I can't remember what the FKT around the house was, but it will stand forever as the house now has fences and gates!

One of Cape Town's top trail runner, Ryan Sandes, is alway looking at staying at the top of his game and also looking for ways at exciting other trail runners at pushing themselves (Not that this is really needed in Cape Town). With 2 well known FKT's to his name, the Fish River Canyon in 6h57 and the Drakensberg Grand Traverse, with Ryno Griesel, 41h49. Now most people can't just pop out and do one of those routes, specially us guys in Cape Town, so he thought: How about one in our backyard, we do have this mountain most of us play on week in and week out...

After a couple of rekkie runs he sets off from Suikerbossie restaurant and 2h02 later he ends at Kloof Nek car park... The challenge was set!

It didn't take long for the local trail runners to take up the challenge, and times started appearing on the Red Bull leader board. Now having run on almost every path on the mountain I looked at the route and decide that while Ryan's time might be out of my reach I could get close to 2h10.

A number of friends have run and normally working in pairs they have a car at the end, but I have no such plan and on a Saturday morning I park my car outside the restaurant.

While it's a hard way to race, it's fun to stand there and say to yourself: Let's do this.  I hit the start button and it's me alone racing the clock. Having run the first section in a race I know what time I hope to get up Llandudno corner in and 26:40 to the old fence is good enough. I had taken it easy and now I hoped to use the saved energy to take on the Twelve Apostles. I feel I'm running well, and it's the perfect morning to be on the mountain. I'm not the only guy racing the clock... as I passed a couple of other runners.

With Kasteels in sight I take my next split, at the turning to the dams, 68:10. The Valley of the Red Gods takes us to Platteklip,  I love this leg through one of the most spectacular trails on the mountain.  I pass another group of FKT'ers and one of my UCT athletes,  Nic is with them, they cheer me on as I climb out of sight.

25:45 (1h33:55) at the top of Platteklip, no time to stop and chat to the hikers as it downhill from here and the clock isn't stopping! The hikers look on in amazement as I bounce down the gorge. I haven't descended that well in years and while I know it isn't fast my legs feel good as I turn onto the contour path 16:24. The next group of runners include my friend Mark, they've just been running on the face of the mountain and are heading down the same way as me. Mark cheers me on and then tucks in behind me to push me to the end. I almost overshoot the turn down Kloof corner, 10:39...
Careful guys we're coming through I shouted, politely, as I race down the stairs to the road. (5:17) Now I really should have swung a left over the bank and taken a short cut to the finish, the visitors centre in the car park, but I stayed on the road, 2:19... to finish with a time of 2h08:35.

With only Ryan's time faster I was happy with my effort and set off on the road (11.5km) back to the car.

The story doesn't end there. ..


The happiness didn't last... that evening I read on Facebook that Martin had popped out at 16h00 and racing the setting sun had beaten the clock 1h59:56...

Now remember I told you I had a competitive side... well I can, and have beaten Martin in most of the races the two of us have lined up together so his time of sub 2 kept me awake all night tossing in my bed thinking about getting out there and running my own sub 2!

After Church I checked out his (and Ryan's) times and runs on Strava... oh boy this told me lots!  I had taken the first section to easy they had run that climb over 2 min faster 24:00 up their Twelve Apostles crossing was 3 min faster. I was already 5 minutes off the pace. Surprisingly I pulled 60sec back through the Valley of the Red Gods.

Only a couple of seconds had separated them at the top of Platteklip,  but Martin. .. WOW he had thrown caution to the wind and 11mins later he was on the contour path! (I could never match that but I could get to the top faster than he did... or could I?)

Sunday's weather was perfect and I still needed to run, so that afternoon I headed out for a 2nd crack at the FKT!

This time I wasn't only racing the clock but also the setting sun..

I went for it from the start hitting that first climb a lot harder than the day before! 25:30, still off the pace but better.

Ahead lay the Twelve Apostles and I kept pushing looking for a second here and  second there... 65:00 at the next split,  still over 2 minutes off the pace. I was shattered and there was no way I could keep it up so I stopped... (don't try racing two days in a row, there is a good chance your legs won't like it!).

From the top of Kasteels I called Dawn to tell her the changed plans,  and she drove through to pick me up and to see the setting sun..
Top of Kastels



I'll be back later in the year,  maybe not to break 2 hours, but to get to Platteklip on time...

Monday, April 20, 2015

TRACK and TRAIL

Having last run on the track in Noveber 2011 I thought it time...

OK that isn't altogether true, one of my athletes is making a comeback on the track and this was a way I could challenge him to his race...1500m! To even the playing fields he had to beat me by a second for every year I'm older than he is!

warming up on the track

The gun set us off and I let half the field go. Back in 2011 I had started hard and hurt, I wasn't letting that happen again. In the hunt for nothing more than sub 5 min I past the first 100 in about 19 sec so things looked good.

By all means I was only racing the clock, but as I past through 400m (78 sec) James yelled from the side: Why are you so slow, there is a 60 year old ahead of you! (it was a masters meeting) A 76 sec lap took me though 800 and it felt great to be running fast. (That is fast for an old trail runner)  While you can still push a track race is great, I thought I had upped the pace again but instead I had put in another 78. 300m to go and the 60 year old was still ahead, (and James was still yelling at me!) but I was closing... this wasn't for anything but only to keep James quiet... it took a lot but on the final bend I moved past him and sprinted home in 4:46.6.

I must say I'm sorry that was the last race of the season can't wait for October to race again. So is this where my future lies? racing on the track?

NO

Ake was in town for a few days and I joined him and Will for a little at the Nek on Sunday morning...

A little different from tartan track
It was a perfect morning to be outdoor and there is no better place than the mountain for an easy long run...

The view over Constantia
We took Smuts track to Maclears...

That would be the top...
From there we took the face of the mountain to Platterklip!

It took me forever to catch them!
Looking out over cape Town
We didn't descend into the mist looking for the city, but headed back to the Nek through The Valley of the Red Gods...

It was a great morning out, and while I plan to run a couple more track races in the years to come, the mountain will always be my home!

See you on the trails...

Monday, April 13, 2015

OCEANS



With Easter and therefore Oceans part of history there are a couple of things we can do:

1) forget it happened and move on. ..
2) live in the past 
3) hate the past and set about making it your life's work to break it down.
4) know what happened in the past and use it to build a better future. 

I might know what happened,  but I don't know why it happened... So let's tell you my Good Friday Story! 

We were up early and even with the cold winter weather settling it was far from cold. The cold front would only brush the Mother City on Saturday. 

All too soon I found myself on the start line listening to the race briefing. The start was different this year as we set off in the opposite direction!  It was a nice start and I soon found myself setting the pace! 

Maybe I set out a little hard but as they say: Fortune favours the brave...

Look if the big names were not going to take it out I wasn't going to hold back. Up past Rhodes Men and onto the gravel road I lead. I wasn't racing Thabang or Eric (they would fight in out to the finish with Thabang winning by less than a meter!) I was racing Nicholas for the 40+ prise and while the going was good I had to go for it. There were 4 guys just off my pace and we had a gap on the rest of the field. 

Surging for the front at the start of the single track
I had been working hard so I slowed the pace on the next single track but the guys would have none of it and they took control of the race after that.
I wasn't out of it I was still in the pack at on the long climb up to Tafelberg Road it wasn't it the single track that I let them go. As we crossed the road I was all of 10sec back,  and had planned to make my move after the next bend...

So much for my plan, the legs had stopped working and fighting the wind wasn't fun anymore.  I passed 2 caps and a pair of glasses on the path they had been lost to the wind.  I now had sweat and dust in my eyes and in wiping them I lost a contact lens! Not good for trail running. 

Fighting the wind
I took a split to the leaders, they had 30sec on the next 2 and I was 50sec back. Time to up my game and go for 3rd... 

Having rounded Devils Peak it was time to climb to the saddle and close the gap... I didn't! Knowing the rest of the field was chasing I pushed on dropping of the saddle and taking the upper contour back round the mountain. It wasn't easy going for me I wasn't seeing 100% and the legs seemed tired! Then it happened I was caught... no not Nic maybe I still had it I was aiming at the block house then maybe I could get into race mode and keep him at bay. Christian was next catching me in the same place as last year,  and the just before the downhill Nicholas pull up behind me... maybe I should have taken the vertical decent first and put a bit of pressure on him but the race was out of me... 

Yes it's that vertical and Nic is getting away
We were now above Rhodes Men again and while I was running hard someone else caught me... I wasn't letting him past so I pushed on down the single track but once on the gravel road I couldn't hold him back anymore.  

He didn't fly away. .. so on the next climb I took him again through most of Newlands forest this would happen,  it was good to be racing again and not just out for a casual trail run. 

He got away in the last km leave me in 9th (2nd 40+).

Garmin called the race:
23.4km
2h07:36
With 1500m climb

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

HOW'S YOUR TRAINING GOING?



So with the weeks disappearing each one faster than the last. Oceans is almost upon us and if we haven't been doing the work we are going to be found wanting. 

The question is am I going to be found wanting or have I done enough? Then again I could have over done it and I could be lining up with heavy legs, only time will tell! 

So let's have a look at the log book... as they say hind sight is always 20-20, and the log book is just that! 

So just how far back am I going to look?  Well I ran a marathon February 15 and after a recovery week it was time to start the Oceans buildup. 

Week 1:
Was really just getting back into running and the most important sessions came on the weekend with 2h20 on the mountain on Saturday and 21km of tempo on Sunday. 100km logged! 

Week 2:
Started well with 2 session,  one of 30 x 200m and the other 2 x 5km.  But because of the Argus cycle tour I only got one decent run of 2h25 on the mountain. ( I did sneak in a couple of hills 2 x 1km hill with 130m climb! ) 80km logged!

Week 3:
First full week.. 2 session, first 3 x 3km and a set of 35 x 200m then I rounded the week off with 2 hours on the mountain and 30km tempo on the road. (I also snuck another trail hill session of 3 x 1km with 130m climb) 112km logged!

Week 4:
This is week 4 and with 25 x 400m last night and a hill session planned for Thursday I might get though another good week. I just need to not be lazy on the weekend! 

Week 5:
The last week of training and I have sessions of 1000m's and hills lined up so maybe things are moving in the right direction. 

Watch out Oceans I'm racing ready or not... are you?
TRAINING ON THE MOUNTAIN

Monday, March 9, 2015

SHOES

I've run in a lot of shoes over the years...

The first shoe I can remember is a very old pair of New Balance that I joked with my running partner I could feel the ground through. (that wasn't a good thing for that pair of shoes!)

Then from about 1986 I mostly ran in Nike, (Pegasus, Pegasus Racer, Skylon, spikes...) I also had a pair of Reebok and Asics. I don't remember all my shoes, but that more or less takes me to 2006! I was now running in Montrails (still have a pair of Streaks and Rockridge that I take out from time to time). I even owned a pair of Salomons (hope they've learnt something about shoes since then...)

But now it's 2015, so what do you see if you look at my shoes?

Dawn's shelf in the middle


I have been very lucky over the last 10+ years and haven't had to buy a lot of the shoes I run in, but the question is would I buy any of the shoes I own? and how do they run, might they work for you?

VIBRAM TREK PRO
These have 1400km on them..

Now not everyone is into Fivefinger, but as a kid I use to run around barefoot, and then at the end of school I had a pair of spikes. Zero drop has never been a problem for me and I liked the idea of 5-fingers so this is my 2nd pair. Other than the struggle one sometimes has in putting them on I enjoy running in them. I must say that while the 'shoe' was new I thought the nobbles felt funny when walking in them (but not while running), but now with a couple of miles on them they feel great. I would be lying if I said they were still perfect after all those miles, the fabric between the big toes has worn though! I really like running in them and run my last Marathon in them.

NEW BALANCE MR10v2
Only 570km on these..

This shoe is a little like the racing flats of the 80's and 90's but with only a 4mm heel toe drop. This shoe has a some cushioning so as you hit the ground it has a little give, but not too much. Have run a couple of Marathon in this shoe and it's still good for a couple more miles...

VIVOBAREFOOT STEALTH
These are new only 60km
This is a new shoe to me and not really like any other shoe I've run in! Now Nike's got "Air", Asics have "Gel", New Balance have "Fresh Foam", so what have Vivo got? Well, in short nothing... or should I say 3mm of rubber.

Now this is a barefoot shoe, so things are going to feel a little different as you run, let me explain my feelings:

Let's start with just standing there, you're not on stilts or standing on your bed about to run, you are firm on the ground, well 3mm of rubber, so you feet are protected. So off you go on a run: While the shoe bends with your foot and as you push off there is no give, all your power is used for pushing you forward... you fly through the air and hit the ground. If your foot is out front it will feel hard as you bang your heel into the ground... I like to think I run like a champ so my foot is striking the ground under me! This shoe is make for this style of running. Now the shoe isn't fitting my foot like a glove, but in a barefoot shoe you want your foot to move like it would is it wasn't wearing a shoe. my foot hits the ground again and it's like landing on a rubber carpet it's like someone has rolled out a rubber mat the whole lenth of my run who wouldn't run barefoot if that was the case?

I know I've only run 60km in these shoes, but I want to have a guess that I will not only reach 1000km but 2 or even 3000km before I need to toss them! (no Air to pop, no Gel to move, or foam to crush!)

NEW BALANCE 610
420km of on and off road

They say this shoe is good for road and trail, and for a "normal" it works well... But I've been running is minimus shoes and my body has become more responsive!

I can feel that I'm balancing on a high heel, and I have even started to feel the shoe "give" as I push off steeling my forward motion. But this is me, and if you like a heel and all the cushioning there is nothing wrong with this shoe.

NEW BALANCE MT10
This Pair 300km

This is the trail version of the MR10's. I love this shoe it looks great and feel nice on the foot, this is 2nd pair I've had, the first pair I put on 2217km. I've run every type of trail in them and as they wore thin I ran lots of road in them. Now I'm a softy so while I have raced a couple of trail races in them I feel the rocks too much, so... (enjoy racing cross country in them)

NEW BALANCE MT1010v2
100km of racing
Only use this shoe for racing as while I really enjoy wearing them I don't want to destroy them... the first pair I only got 635km in them, and in that time they needed a bit of shoe patch!
I don't think any shoe is perfect! The problem is the grip, while is works well and you can go anywhere in them sometimes they (the knobs) can break loose!

NEW BALANCE MT00v2
0km run!

I haven't run in these shoes and I might never get to run in them... I've done a couple of walks with them on, so let me tell you why I don't think I can run in them!
They are a zero drop, which I like, but the shoe is to deep to it cuts into my ankle bone. Now I still like the look of the shoe so I put in a heel raise and that solved problem one. But I have a 2nd problem, the toes are just to tight for me. Now I've only walked a couple of times in them, but I feel my toes are crushed and after a 30min walk my feet need to rest. (after running a marathon in 5finger my feet feel fine!)

VIVOBAREFOOT TRAIL FREAKS
40km 4h45 on the mountain

You don't get a pair of shoes like this and not take them up the mountain. I had been chatting to a friend who had owned a pair, but didn't enjoy them to much because when the shoe bent it bent on her toe and she would pick up blisters! So before I went for a run I took the dogs for a walk in the Green Belt. I had no problems, so the next day I looked to the mountain and headed up...
Now to test a pair of trail shoes I like to head to the manganese mine, but with that side of the mountain burnt I had try something else... Maclears beacon via the Valley of the Red Gods.
The shoe fits your foot like a glove and the shoe almost molds to your foot. I climbed straight up from the Nek and for climbing it's good to have a light shoe. The next week while climbing up Platteklip I noticed that the studs bent and slipped if you caught the edge of the rock you were climbing up or down, but if you've 'slipped' a couple of times it's ok as you know you aren't going to fall, it's just a little fright at first. But not all the running was climb, I also had a could of single tracks to run on... If the ground isn't pointy rocks or loose stones weeving along the tracks are great. with a thing sole you do get to feel the ground which slows me on the rocky ground, but they are fun to run in. Now both weekend runs had a bit on road in them...

Tafelberg Rd heading back to UCT
I know this is a trail shoe, but in most trail runs you are stuck on the road for a bit... and this isn't made for road it feels more stable on winding through forest trails.

So there you have it a look at a couple of the shoes I'm currently running in...