Thursday, June 25, 2009

My Review: Saucony Progrid Xodus

Saucony Gift Certificate Promotion

Saucony and Onlineshoes.com have teamed up to offer a web promotion to the blogging community. When I was contacted by the rep from Onlineshoes.com to participate, I declined. I, personally, have never worn Saucony and did not feel comfortable writing about the company's products. Not to be outdone, the rep offered ME a gift certificate so I could try out Saucony myself and write a review. Snap!! :-)

My first big decision was which product to field test. I already have three pairs of shoes I am rotating, each with about 100 miles. I did NOT want to get another pair of running shoes. They would fall apart long before I put 500 miles on them. I went to Onlineshoes.com and reviewed the Saucony products. I spend a lot of time, not only creating web sites, but using them as well. The first thing I look for in a web site is apperance, ease of use, and response times. The Onlineshoes.com site is very well designed. It didn't take long for the Progrid Xodus Trail Shoes to catch my eye, for a couple of reasons.

1. I did not have any trail shoes.
2. They were a Runner's World Editors Choice

I added the shoe in my size to the cart and proceeded to checkout. When I went to pay, there was no option under Pay Pal to use the gift certificate I had been given. In Onlineshoes.com's defense, I had been told to use a credit card, and by proceeding down this path, I was successfully able to order my shoes without any problems. It was a big bonus for me that Onlineshoes.com offers free shipping. I hit the submit button and proceeded to wait.

Just as advertised, seven to eight days later, UPS dropped the shoes off at my door. I couldn't wait to try them on. Having done my home work, I ordered the Xodus true to size. That would be ten and a half for me. The first thing I noticed when I put them on my feet is that the fit was just a little tight around the forefoot. With Onlineshoes.com generous return policy, this did not concern me at all. I decided to take them out for a spin, and it ended up not being a problem.

To get to the trails behind my neighborhood, I had to run about 0.3 miles in the street. The stiff Vibram soles felt, well, stiff. They are a lot sturdier than the soles I am used to. They are not heavy, however, weighing in at about the same weight as my road running shoes. Once I made it to the trails, the shoes really began to shine. The Vibran sole gripped the loose gravel trail securely as I ran up and down the hills. The shoe was very light on my feet, very comfortable. The padding was just right.

The upper part of the shoe is made out of three different materials. There is the leather, which provides all the support. There is the light fabric in the toe box and the tongue, then there is the "side netting" that allows the foot to cool and remain dry. It is very comfortable, and the non-slip shoe laces are a bonus. It's easy to see why this shoe won an Editor's Choice from Runner's World.

Over all, I really like the shoes. I have an hour or so trail run this weekend coming up, and I can't wait to take them out to Red Top Mountain and give them another go.

THE CONTEST

The moment you have all been waiting for :-)

For your chance to win a $75.00 gift certificate for a Saucony product at Onlineshoes.com, tell me in the comments to this point what was/is the greatest impact your endurance sport has had on your life, and why! On July 2, 2009, my lovely assistant will pick a winner from all eligible participants. If you live outside the continental United States, you are not eligible. Sawry!!!

Leave me some comment love. Go!!!

Wes

24 comments:

Blaine Moore said...

Wes - no need to put me in the drawing for the gift certificate, but I thought I'd share where my sport has affected my life the most anyway...

I ran my first marathon in 2000, and then in 2003 started running them more frequently (on the order of 2-3 or more per year.)

In the Summer of 2004, I invited a random woman stretching on a park bench to join in on the repeats my team was doing in a nearby park. She wasn't decided at that point whether she was going to run the Maine Marathon or the Half Marathon, but we struck up a conversation, one thing led to another, and now I've been married for 3 years.

Had I not been a runner, I wouldn't have met my wife and my life would be a lot different than it is now.

Carolina John said...

well, I got into triathlon to stop smoking. it keeps me off the cigs and in great shape. When i finished my first sprint last year it was an amazing feeling. i came in last in my age group but i knew i had won back my health and happiness. now i'm totally an addict.

Jess said...

I lack an amazing or inspirational story, and I would say that the biggest effect running has had on my life is that it has affected my sleep -- all those early morning training runs:) Does my lack of pizazz disqualify me?

Lily on the Road said...

First off, can I move in with you and Dee Dee so I'm eligible?

Second: I LOVE Saucony's NO matter what, that's all I run in (on).

Third: I'm going to tell you anyway! ; )

After a serious illnes, surgery and recouperation all the while going through a messy life altering split with the man in my life, I started running.

It kept me sane, gave me the opportunity to meet the friends I have now and gave me my health and healthy (sometimes) attitude back. I've lost weight, gained friends and for being my age I am active and ROCK because most of the peeps my age act and ARE old!

Bet you're sorry you asked, LMAO!!!

Stuart said...

No need to enter me, just wondering but they look heavy, watcha think?

Lisa Slow-n-Steady said...

It's been a life & attitude changer - I now view each day blessed with good health as something to celebrate and I have an outlet for that celebration. Hence, I smile more.

"You've got one life. Live it and enjoy."

Juls said...

"Sawry"
I always find it interesting which word you will intentionally misspell.

As for the contest, I'll probably skip it. It's hard to pick just one aspect.

Missy said...

OK, I played mine all wrong, my onlineshoes contest! I gave it all away SO here's my chance...

Greatest impact - staying healthy AND confirming to all of my friends that I really AM insane. At least my non tri friends. I'm just goal driven, period, in whatever I do. I don't totally suck at it so I stick with it. OH, fun and friends, you can't beat that kind of impact.

Saucony was the second brand of shoe I ever had - changed a long time ago because my 'model' changed but I'd love to TRY AGAIN.

Kevin said...

Does meeting such cool peeps to train and race with. Ahem, Wes,cough. Count?


But seriously. In 2002, when I hit my heaviest at 320 pounds, I new I had to make a change. When I heard about the peachtree, I knew I had to do it even though I couldnt run for 30 seconds. It was a lofty goal but I was determined to do it. I did it and now, seven years later I am training for my first Ironman. I never in my wildest dreams would have thought I would be doing this. Running/Triathlon has truly changed my life, and have given me the opportunity to meet such awesome people.

Ryan said...

Here it is Wes,

Lose an inch...gain an inch.

"What?" you say.

Lose an inch from the waistline and it magically makes the "wang" look and inch longer.

Lets just say that changing at the pool is no longer a problem since I have lost 3 inches off the waistline :-)

Firefly's Running said...

Wes, I love Sauconys so here's my story:

I started my road into running by getting involved with Team in Training for the 2nd time in 2007. I raised money for charity in memory of my father, who died from leukemia. It was the 1st time that I became serious in this sport. I started to really enjoy running even thru a major injury. I believe that my determination to fight thru everything that tried to stop me - financial and physically - helped to build the rest of my life. Everything outside of running changed during this time. I met my current fiancee, Josh, during the time as well. It was our love for running and blogging that brought us together. He's my best friend and biggest supporter in anything that I have done. If we had not been involved in running, I do not think we would have met at all. I thank running for all of the gifts that I have received.

Shannon said...

I want you!

Keep reading Weslicious....I want you..to give me an opportunity to win those shoes!

LBTEPA said...

Well I'll leave you and your gorgeous assistant some comment love even though you won't send me anything (((hugs)))
BTW I'm currently running in Sauconys and I really like them, never used them before and will be happy to buy another pair.
Endurance sport in my life: hours of sweaty, ipod-and-gel-fuelled 'me time'

teacherwoman said...

Oooh, I love the knew kicks, dude! Way to go!

I have learned through injury after injury that the pure joy from just being able to get out there and run, or bike, or swim, is enough for me. I don't need to run a marathon or a sub 20 minute 5K. And, it makes me feel better.

Perry said...

I started running marathons in 1996 and haven't stopped since. My joggling has become part of my identity. Running is a permanent part of my life that keeps me healthy and focused. It's made all other aspects of my life greater.

I should say that I wasn't a fan of running at first. It took 8 years before I could actually claim I liked running. Only stuck with it that long because it gave me a good excuse to juggle.

Perry, 44

PS. Great story Blaine!

Sarah said...

The impact that endurance sports has had on my life? It's been the definition of 'CAN'. There are so many times that I would say there was something I couldn't do. But with each little mountain I climb, I realize that not only am I capable of doing it, but that it makes me a stronger and better person. And showing that to other people helps motivate them as well. It's a win/win ;)

WannaBe5Ker said...

Wes, it is cool to see that you have expanded to trail running...

Here's my experience, which I recount after a pretty much two-year hiatus from running, but I am starting to come back...

In my first incarnation as a jogger/runner, I loved seeing the different places I travelled on foot--the Jersey Shore (I did a ten miler with Larry the Lighthouse and Wendy Windmill!!!), Disney World and Vermont, for starters. My cool experience is that I went to Milwaukee once for a conference when I was a pretty new runner and did my C25K run downtown. I made note of a wine bar, I passed on my run and came back ALONE later that evening and tried some groovy wine and chatted with the French-Canadian owner and just had a really neat experience that I never would have had if I had NOT been a runner. So I will get there again!

PS--I had a pair of Sauconys about a decade ago--so comfy!

Darlene said...

Triathlon has helped me find myself. It has made me believe in myself and taught me to have the self-confidence I never thought I could ever have. There is not one moment that I would point to that defines this...as I truly believe it is the journey that has gotten me where I am.

That being said, I completed my first tri in the Summer of 2007. I will never forget the feeling of crossing the finish line. It changed my life.

And....I picked the one of the most expensive hobbies on the planet. So, sign me up for this drawing. :)

darlene.nyce@gmail.com

Stef said...

I can pinpoint the one moment that triathlon changed my life. I was standing out on the cold and dark run course of the 2006 Silverman, thinking that all of these people are normal working folks like me. Yet they had the discipline and dedication to train for an iron distance race. I wanted to be like that.

And then, in a moment, it hit me. I, a person with absolutely no background or experience in swim bike or run, had to train for the Half Silverman.

Finishing that race made me realize that I could start a real business and gave me back the confidence that for awhile I did not know I had lost.

Marni said...

Triathlons have impacted my life in so many ways..school, family, friends and learning how to overcome obstacles.
Before IMFL I was 100% obsessed with triathlons. I was training for my first IM and totally focused on myself. I met Karel but couldn't find time to begin a relationship with him in the few months before my IM. I didn't want to lose him, but didn't know how he would like it that I was obsessed with tri's.
He ended up coming to IMFL (2006) and cheering for me. During the last 6 miles of the run, I had a 50 min. lead and Karel told me "you're going to kona!!" At that moment, I yelled to Karel "I love you!" for the very first time.
That was a moment I will always remember. Not because I told him I love him for the very first time but triathlons keep me grounded and I focus on quality training and I always enjoy my time with my husband, friends and family. Training is part of my lifestyle but it isn't my life. The sport has shown me that I can be a die-hard triathlete without letting it consume my life. I am thankful I have Karel, supportive friends and family because I try to get better as an athlete without letting it interfere with the most important people in my life.

New Balance said...

I started running in January of this year so I guess you could call me a babe. I realized this year that being 25 and married for three years without kids is absolutely NOT old and I shouldn't be acting as if I'm going to have to live 'like this' forever. By 'like this' I mean 5'2" (not that I could change that) and about 50 lbs over weight.

So, as a way to set a goal and stick to my cardio, I signed up for a 5K Cancer Challenge at my alma mater Indiana University that was 10 weeks away. I set out to run in honor of my hero, my rock, my Nana. She was a cancer survivor of 43 years!! The last time I spoke with her was the day after the race (I ran the whole thing, she was oh so proud!) as she passed away a short week later.

Thirty-one pounds lighter, I am now training for a winter marathon and run 5+ miles a day. My Nana's favorite novel was Gone with the Wind and with it her favorite line, "After all, tomorrow is another day." Since that 5K and her passing, I have made that line my fitness and life motto. There are going to be days that you don't get your run in because eventually and inevitably LIFE gets in the way. But thats what is so amazing about running, you can always pick up where you left off the next day and the road is never the wiser.

Viv said...

Wes this triathlon/ruunning has changed me. It really has. I found out that I have the heart and strength of an athlete, me fat ol' Viv had the heart and mind to push beyond anything I ever though was never possible. I really need to dig deeper on this because what I wrote here does not begin to touch the tip...
The next best thing it brought was an amazing ammount of people who have now become friends. People I could call or email and they would be there. I love this community of endurance athletes and it would never be without the sport.

Meaghan said...

My story is simple - I train so I can eat. Okay, so that might sound a little dramatic, but I have lost 80 pounds due to diet and exercise and kept it off for over a year. I decided to try a triathlon after reading some very inspiring blogs, including yours Wes! I completed my first sprint last August and plan to do a few sprints and my first Olympic this summer. My biggest physical challenges have been learning to swim and fiding shoes that don't kill my flat feet! My biggest emotional challenges have been dealing with family who just don't understand "why" I do these crazy races.

Annette said...

OK - I'll try to keep it brief, but here it is - the impact my endurance sport has had on me:
I grew up in a family were self-confidence was basically non-existent. Everything I accomplished, my parents took credit for getting me there. (They were good parents, they just didn't have much confidence in themselves, either.) I started running at 30, and though I had gained a lot more confidence in myself, I still had a long ways to go. Running was something I achieved by myself. No one else could take credit for it. It was all me. It instilled a self-confidence I never had. That confidence became a part of me and transferred into everything I did. Now I take pride in calling myself a runner. It has given me confidence to do things I never thought I could (or would) do. :)