Nike-Free

Give me a treadmill and I’m good. That was a lie. Weeks after running on the NordicTrack S20 I feel like had this urge to check my gait, like I know how to do it. Thanks to YouTube I had some tips what to look for. Spoiler: shoes talk next.

I am flat-footed and by definition is an overpronator. In shoes terms, I need stability running shoes. I knew this for a fact long time ago which is why I’ve been looking for a shoe that would fit me best. Commonly known shoes are Nikes but for serious runners not all Nike running shoes are equal. Nike’s Structure is what I need but far in several visits to shoe shops and Nike factory outlets, Structure isn’t always available.

Two years ago I bought a Skechers Go and on the same month I received a Nike Free Rn. I liked both and started to love the minimalist Free Run. Long term use, however, cushioning and support seem to matter. The Skechers Go has more cushion but support is a question.

Back to result of my own gait self-test, video of me running reveals that I actual don’t over pronate. My amateur eyes say so. Wear patterns show the same thing though. My soles have even wear.

Two years later this is what my Skechers Go’s sole look like.

Last Monday I braved traffic and chances of getting COVID-19 just to confirm my gait analysis. Runnr stores are known to offer this test so I purposely went to their Ayala Town Center branch. It was a disappointment. Their equipment was under repair and their staff lack empathy (oops, work stuff).

Good that ATC has options. I moved around and found stores with accommodating sales persons. Mizuno had tempting offers. Buy a pair of Inspire 13 and get other models for P500-P1500 only. Inspire 13 is their stability running shoe that cost around P6K. It looks solid but felt heavy.

Next store was it for me. Asics was selling their pricey Gel Kayano 26 for just P5.5K but only for their gray pairs. It didn’t take long for me to swipe my card as Gel Kayano always appears among the top recommended stability shoes.

My first ever Asics shoe.

I have racked up 15Km with the Gel Kayano 26 and the forefoot cushioning is obvious. Heel seems stiff until now but I’m not complaining. Few more break-in runs and that should improve. Besides I land heel first on my slow paces. Yesterday I hit 6.8 min/km using the Gel Kayano 26. Today I did 6.6 using the old Skechers Go. Hmm. Maybe I need to try a Hoka. Whatever, I’m Nike-free.

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Mood: 2/10 Honks! (Can’t believe November is almost over.)

The Nokia 5800: A Perfect Bum Tool

This lovely piece of Finnish cellphone has been with me for more than a week already after I succumbed to my wife’s persistent request to replace my 3-year old Motorola L6. Besides, the old cellphone is becoming to be the cause of failure-to-communicate since its speaker conked out due to countless drops and misuse. And needless to say, in my current bum status, not clearly hearing an initial job interview over the phone is a no-no—justification, justification, justification.

So far since I bought it though, I haven’t had any job calls. But why should I care, this phone after all isn’t just a phone. If there’s one phone that will make one happy even while his much awaited calls seem unlikely to happen, it is the Nokia 5800. There’s just so much to this phone that job hunt frustrations can be easily forgotten and that killing time can become a habit.

The Nokia 5800’s touch pad meets expectations although I’ve read that upgrading the firmware version from V11 to V21 will improve its response. Right now I care less and might not care about it in the near future after learning from Nokia Care that it will take at least two hours to do the upgrade.

This model is part of Nokia’s ExpressMusic series and true enough it sounds crisp either through its earphones or its loudspeaker. I don’t recommend connecting it though as an input to the car’s stereo as the MP3 quality varies thus affecting the volume of each music file that other than watching out for potholes while driving, one would have to deal with adjusting the music volume all at the same time.

The Nokia 5800 comes with a 3.2 MP that is great for shots under bright light—e.g., daytime—and just like any other low quality/resolution cam, it doesn’t perform well under low light conditions. But you get what you paid for, right? Paying P14,900 for a phone one shouldn’t expect an SLR-like quality. Don’t get me wrong though, for a bum, for a blogger (both of which best describes me), this is more than enough. I just hate it though that there’s no option to turn the camera shutter sound totally off (there are 3 other settings but none that makes shooting discreet). It’s a skeuomorph and I don’t like it.

Shots of places in Manila taken using the Nokia 5800.

I love most of the videos (mp4 format) that comes along with this phone. The resolution is unbelievable. Even those I’ve shot came out almost on par with my Sony handheld video recorder. However, I discovered that the mp4 format has to be converted at least to wmw for it to be played once transferred to the PC. Good thing I was able to download a converter from Freewarehome.com.

Others raise their eyebrows at the guitar pick that comes along with the strap of the cellphone. But I don’t, as I prefer using it over the stylus, except when I’m in the mood to kill time by texting using the handwriting feature which I’m now starting to learn and appreciate.

With the hectic time I have right now both at school and at home where my favorite photo subjects are—my wife and kid, it might take me another week more to discover and learn the other features that this perfect bum tool has. I’m just wishing though that next time I’d hear another lovely HR voice saying, “…Mr. Nacionales, this is to inform you that you are scheduled for an interview…” When that time comes, I’m quite sure she’d hear me clearly say, “Yes…I’m coming”.

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Mood: 3/10 Honks!