This email I sent to Altra says it all!
I am an avid runner, who just in the last 3 years, has fallen in love with trail running, and not just trail running, but ultra trail running. My transition from running all roads to running mostly all trails began in 2010 when I fell in with a local running group. It was a rocky, pun intended, beginning. On the roads a 7 min mile pace was pretty easy, what a surprise that the technical trails around here slowed me down, and not only slowed me down, but required more from the small muscled in my ankles and feet.
A local running store put me in some really heavy, inflexible shoes that wrecked my gait, and my Achillies tendons! After my first trail race, the Uwharrie 40mile mountain run, I was out with Achillies tendonitis for 8 months, but with a second place finish under my belt as my first ever trail race (and ultra trail race) I was hooked and wanted more. I patiently biked, swam, and physical therapy-ed my way back to the trails, this time with shoes I was much happier in, the NB101’s- low profile, straight lasted, and minimal shoe! Immediately things felt better, however, the tread on them was lacking, they were slippery on wet technical trails (here on the east coast its all rocks and roots,) and they wore out so fast. The upper basically just ripped off after a few months. I have been searching since 2010 for trail shoes that my feet love….enter the Lone Peak 1.5.
A friend of mine works at a running store and has similar taste in running shoes, recommended the Lone Peak 1.5 to me. At this time I was only a month out from racing the Grindstone 100 in VA and was a bit reluctant to switch shoes so close to my first 100 mile race. Unfortunately, the government shut down closed the forest that Grindstone runs through, so I had to find another race fast! I was lucky and got into Pinhoti, which gave me another month to really get used to the Lone Peak’s. With my longest run in them only 20 miles, I knew they were going to be my racing shoe anyway!!
I brought an older pair of shoes just in case, but never even gave them a second thought during the race.
They were everything I have been searching for in a shoe! Great grip, wide forefoot that accommodate my wider (since minimal running) foot, straight lasted, which allowed for proper proprioception, soft enough foot bed, but firm enough that I didn’t feel all the little sharp pebbles on the trail. They even felt great on the few miles of pavement! I was just amazed, and in love. All summer long 30 miles into training runs the bottoms of my feet would just ache, and there I was crossing the finish line in 22:59 and my feet were just about the only thing that didn’t hurt! No black and blue toe nails, no blisters, in fact I belong to a running club, and I took a picture of my feet right after the race to prove how great my feet looked. (several people just ran Virgil’s Crest, Leadville, and a handful of other races and all of their feet looked terrible post race.)
I will certainly be continuing to run in my Lone Peak’s for my next race, Mountain Mitchell Challenge 40, in North Carolina, and will be looking to try more of your shoes soon!.
Rachel Bell Kelley