Your relationship with your running shoes is a bit of a mixed bag. Sometimes you hate them looking accusingly at you from the shoe rack, judging you; making you feel guilty that you’re not getting out there training enough. Sometimes they’re supportive friends, giving you the bounce you need to run that extra mile. On the whole, I had grown quite fond of my shoes. But they were getting pretty knackered and the time had come to say goodbye.
It’s important to change your running shoes every so often. If they become too worn, your shoes become less supportive, thus increasing the risk of injuries. For me, the bottoms of my feet had started to blister – just another pain to add to the aches and pains of running which I didn’t want to deal with. They say that you should change your shoes every 450-550 miles as a rough guide, but it does depend on other factors, such as whether you run on the road, your weight, etc. You can also look for signs such as asymmetric wearing (I run weirdly, so I had this problem) or for tears in the upper part of the shoe.
Running shoes are pretty pricey if you want some decent ones (which you really should if you’re training for a big event), but if you’re sneaky you can get some decent deals. So: the makers of running shoes churn out more shoes every season. However, more often than not, they are essentially exactly the same shoe (give or take a few enhancements) as the last season, or the one before that. So if you know the shoe type that works for you (I like Asics GT-2000) you can look them up online and buy an older model, or previous season’s colours, for a decent price. I think I saved around £20 on my shoes, and that was upgrading from the GT-2000 v2’s to the GT-2000 v3’s (I know – I am crazy). I’ve seen savings of over £50 off RRP on the web but you’ve probably got to have a bit of a shop around.
New shoes arrived the other day and it turns out they’re GLITTERY. I half expected them to have the flashing sides, like the kind that were THE THING TO HAVE when I was about eight (although I never owned a pair as my feet were weird…childhood traumas). But they’re good and I bounced along as I took them for a 5K spin. Well, I bounced for about 3K and slogged the rest. But that wasn’t the shoes’ fault. It was a hot day; I probably set off too fast and pushed myself to maintain that pace, which I did for most of the run and then died a bit in the last kilometre. I felt pretty sick actually. BUT I obtained another 5K PB of 00:23:04 and have since ran a sub 23 minute 5K. No pain, no gain. Good old shoes (well, new shoes).
After I returned, I had to rapidly de-sweat as I was meeting friends to go for a meal in York that evening. We went to the Yak & Yeti (Gurkha) Restaurant, which is a Nepalese restaurant that I’ve been wanting to go to for ages. I’d never had Nepalese food before and I was excited to try it. My sister went to Nepal earlier this year and said it was the best place she’d ever been to. Beautiful place; amazing people. She was also there for the April 2015 earthquake (another worthy cause #prayforNepal). I suppose that’s a different story and one that is still unravelling.
But cuisine-wise, Nepal is such an interesting country, due to both its cultural and geographical diversity. This is something that was reflected in the Yak & Yeti’s menu, which ranges from traditional dumplings, to rich daal, to stir-fries, to hearty curries, many of which were named after trekking feats such as Everest or Annapurna. We decided to order a load of dishes and share them so we could try a bit of everything. We started with the traditional dumplings ‘momos’, which tasted so beautiful – fresh and tangy yet with depth of flavour and spice. We then had the Everest lamb, a chicken and a beef dish, with a creamy Maakso Daal (black daal) and Bhuteko Bhat (Nepalese style rise fried in ghee with cumin, garlic and vegetables). All the food was served on little metal plates and the serving sizes were perfect. The flavours were complex and aromatic and I thoroughly enjoyed the meal. I would definitely recommend going there as an interesting alternative to your classic curry night or just for a good quality meal. You won’t regret it.