Last year Desiree Linden won the
Boston Marathon, becoming the first American woman to win the iconic race in
over thirty years. Despite the disastrous weather leaving her soaked from the
top of her head to the bottom of her Glycerins, Linden still managed to smile
as she crossed the finish line. Training for hours and running hundreds of
miles to prepare is one thing, but to be like Linden and still smile at the end
of the day requires relentless optimism and dependable running shoes. Luckily, as
a professional athlete for Brooks, Linden has plenty of both.
Linden’s life motto is “keep showing
up.” It’s this persistence that allows her to keep going race after race, year
after year. Of course she needs to be physically fit to run marathons (that’s a
given), but it takes just as much mental preparation to be able to push herself
at that caliber.
Before winning in 2018, Linden ran the
Boston Marathon six times, and she’ll compete again on April 15. And even if
the results don’t pan out as she’d like, there’s a 99% chance that she’ll keep
showing up to marathons across the country because that’s just who she is.
This “keep showing up” mentality is why
the dependability of the Brooks brand (who have sponsored her since 2006) is so
important to her. Linden knows that year-round she can trust Brooks Glycerin shoes
to support her and give her comfort during her runs.
never had a Glycerin that I felt uncomfortable putting on and logging a long
run in, right out of the box,” Linden said. “Trends will come and go, but the
Glycerin is going to outlast all of them.”
She’s been running since high school
and wearing Glycerins since college, so when it comes to shoes, the 35-year-old
knows what’s best.
DNA LOFT is a stellar cushion, and there’s just the right amount,” Linden said.
“In the Glycerin 17, the upper fits like a glove, and the material is very
breathable and well ventilated.”
points out that though the shoe is an important part of her success, it doesn’t
possess magical powers.
“You do the running,” Linden said. “It doesn’t bring anything fancy to the table because that’s your job, but it’s never going to take away from your run.”
In less than a week Linden will show
up to compete in this year’s Boston Marathon with hopes to defend her title, no
doubt sporting a pair of her favorite shoes.
For all your running needs and to purchase a pair of the new Brooks Glycerin 17, visit eastbay.com.
What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think of the following cities: Boston, Paris, Barcelona, Tokyo, London, and Stockholm? Is it their rich history? Or their gorgeous scenery? There are many things that tie these amazing cities together and one of these connections is that they all play host to some of the world’s greatest marathons.
ASICS designed six special colorways of their famous GEL-Nimbus 20 that pay homage to both these incredible locales and the thousands upon thousands of runners who accept the challenge of running in these historic marathons.
We got a chance to sit down with ASICS Marketplace Merchandiser Paul Lang to chat about the inspiration behind the ASICS City Icons Pack and why the GEL-Nimbus 20 is the perfect shoe for every aspiring long-distance runner.
Let’s talk about the cities that were chosen for this pack— what went in to the selection process?
“For this collection, we chose global cities that have a deep marathon tradition; locations where runners find themselves surrounded by beautiful architecture, gorgeous parks, and passionate athletes all chasing big goals. The history of Boston, the beauty of Paris, the energy of Barcelona, Tokyo’s electric nights, London’s majesty, and Stockholm’s grace are all captured in unique ways, while the shoes share a design DNA that brings the collection together wonderfully.”
I’ve heard that the shoe colors are based on the official race colors of that city’s marathon. Do the colors take inspiration from the city itself? How so?
“Each model uses a base inspired from a major running moment in its respective city. The name of each city is boldly splashed across the side of each shoe to tie the collection together, but with color unique to that city’s story. ASICS is the official footwear sponsor of the Paris, Barcelona, and Stockholm Marathons, so those shoes actually feature the official race colors of those cities. As an added bonus for those three models, each features a lace loop of the official race logo.”
It looks like each sockliner has callouts of city icons. Can you tell us what is featured for each city?
“Each of the models actually has two city icon discoverables:”
The Boston Marathon is one of the world’s largest races and, every year, many of the best runners test their mettle along the grueling course. We got a chance to talk to two of this year’s biggest names, Desiree Linden and Shadrack Biwott, about what they’re looking forward to, how they’ve prepared, and which Brooks Running shoes they’ve been rocking to train for the event.
by Emery Skolfield, VP Digital Marketing Footlocker.com/Eastbay
What’s the number one thing on your bucket list?
Is it learning to play the guitar? Skydiving? Running a marathon?
Everyone has their own set of lofty goals they want to achieve. But when I signed up for the New York City Marathon, it was less about fulfilling a lifelong dream and more about forcing myself into motion. Life is busy. I have an involved job, three kids, and tons of travel. Basically, I have a lot of really great excuses not to exercise. But I needed to do something. And for me, the New York City Marathon was that something.
But signing up was the easy part. The real challenge was in finding the mental and physical strength I needed to conquer 26.2.
In the early days of training, when I was ramping up from zero to 15, 20, 30-plus miles per week, I had some discouraging days and disappointing runs. Even several weeks into training, there were days when a 7-mile run felt awful — days when I just wasn’t feeling it.
This is where the real challenge started. When you have a bad training run, it’s easy to project those feelings onto how you’ll perform on race day. But you have to trust that on race day, when it really matters, you’ll perform. I’m proof that you will finish the race, as long as you:
1. Hold Yourself Accountable
The first time I ran a marathon, I only trained for 8 ½weeks. That definitely wasn’t enough. Most training regimens call for 18 weeks of prep. Find something that fits your schedule and do your very best to follow the plan. If you’re going to skip anything, make it a weekday run. Weekend runs ramp up quickly, getting as high as 20 or 21 miles, because they’re meant to stretch you out — preparing your mind (oh, yeah, and body) for distance. That stretch is important.
2. Push Your Limits
Your body does what your mind tells it to do.
This is a remarkable truth, one you’ll learn over and over throughout your marathon journey. Say you are scheduled to run five miles on a Tuesday: After a long day at work or school, you force yourself to lace up and hit the pavement. Three miles in, you want to quit.
Three days later, you wake up at 5 a.m., drink a tall glass of water, and set out on an 18-mile training run. And, somehow, you crush 15 miles before you even think about stopping to walk. It’s all about where you set your goal. The bigger, the better, because it’s all about your frame of mind. The further out you set the goal, the further your body will carry you and the more you will accomplish.
3. Choose The Right Equipment
Throughout my marathon training, I tried a few different running shoes before settling on the Nike Zoom Fly. Making sure you have the perfect pair is really important. Trust me, you don’t want to be uncomfortable and miserable for 26 miles. Here’s a look at my top five picks.
Ultimately, this was the best race day shoe for me because of its lightweight feel and soft cushioning. I don’t need a ton of support or overlays from a running shoe, so the breathable Flymesh and Lunarlon cushioning were the right combination for me. The Zoom Fly needed virtually no break-in period, so I was immediately ready to lace up and get started.
The 1080 also has great cushioning, thanks to the full-length Fresh Foam. It holds up through high-mileage training, and has a snug upper fit in case you’re looking for some lightweight support. As an added bonus, there’s a New York City Marathon color that looks really clean.
ASICS has a great reputation with serious runners. The Kayano 24 has a lot of support, so if you need help correcting your stride or stabilizing your arch, this is definitely the shoe for you. This one also has a marathon edition with a printed upper that celebrates the city.
This shoe can do it all. The Pegasus 34 is super fast and responsive, so you can’t go wrong here if you’re looking to improve your times. It’s also got Flywire cables that wrap over your foot and make sure you’re really locked in.
The Vomero still feels fast, but it has an added layer of cushioning that nicely absorbs impact and creates a really smooth ride. It’s a great compromise between energy return and comfort.
It’s important to remember that there’s no be-all-end-all marathon shoe. Everyone runs differently, so you need to choose the right pair for you. And while finding that perfect fit is obviously critical to success on race day, the rest of your gear can make or break your run, too.
The New York City Marathon is in early November, so I needed lightweight layers that weren’t going to rub or chafe. My choice in running apparel actually ended up being the most important, because, at the last minute, I made an addition.
4. Run With Purpose
A lot of people get their names printed on their race-day shirts. It’s a great idea, because along the route people will cheer you on by name, and it helps keep you motivated. But I didn’t want my race to be about me. So, instead, I had “Unity Not Division” printed on my shirt, and it changed my entire experience.
We’re living in a time when people are out to scare us. I had been in New York for a week leading up to the race, and I was getting a lot of texts asking if I was okay and how I felt about running after Tuesday’s attack in Manhattan. But, while that event was definitely present as a backdrop to the race, it’s not what people were focused on that day. They were focused on standing strong and running strong.
What makes the New York City Marathon so special is its diversity. When you run through the five boroughs, you go through so many different neighborhoods. Ten miles in Brooklyn showcases so many cultures and backgrounds, and it’s so cool. Everyone is blended together along the route and everyone is supporting the exact same thing. The marathon course is literally marked by all these people strung together holding hands.
And these people aren’t pro running fans. They’re just people. People who live in this city and this country. People who appreciate the diversity of the event and coming together.
Inspired by one of the biggest marathons in the world, crafted by one of the most trusted brands in running. On the first Sunday in November, tens of thousands of runners from across the globe gather in the city that never sleeps for the New York City Marathon. And every year, ASICS honors the massive event by creating a special version of their famous Gel-Kayano shoe that pays homage to the race. This year’s shoe is particularly exceptional. We got a chance to chat with ASICS Marketplace Merchandising Manager, Paul Lang, to find out what makes this shoe a must-have during marathon season.
1. Their Design Is Inspired By Famous NYC Cultural Attractions
“Our idea this year was to tell the story of the city across the shoe’s upper. From the Statue of Liberty to dollar pizza slices, we wanted the theme of this shoe to represent the city of New York and all that it stands for.”
2. These Are The Latest In A Long Line Of ASICS ‘NYC Marathon’ Shoes
ASICS has been creating special ‘NYC Marathon’ versions of the Gel-Kayano for years now. Last year, the shoe design was inspired by the stamps a sightseer would collect while traveling, and two years ago, the look was based around the graffiti you would see as you ran around the Big Apple.
3. They Are Built Specifically For The Long-Distance Runner
“The GEL-Kayano is really our flagship model, so you’re getting the best of the best technology and performance. The 24 has a DuoMax Support System that enhances your stability but also really keeps your foot in the proper position during longer distances.”
4. You Can Expect Big Things For The Future
“We are actually working on next year’s version of the ‘NYC Marathon’ shoe right now. It will be the 25th anniversary of the GEL-Kayano so we are going to do a lot of cool things. The design is inspired by the bright lights of New York and the illumination of the human spirit.”
Make sure to grab your own pair of the special ASICS GEL-Kayano 24 ‘NYC Marathon’ shoes as you start to log those long miles. Eastbay offers them in Men’s and Women’s sizes.