Friday, May 3, 2013

What to Wear Running: Puma Faas & Puma Running Gear

About three years ago, Puma Running sent me some gear. I'd never run in Puma before, so I was interested to see how it compared to my old standbys. I was looking for a few things, including comfort and durability, which is why I'm doing another blog post now, years later.

Nike top from circa 1999
When it comes to gear, I've always loved Nike. Their stuff just lasts! I've had this red top since 1999. Seriously, kids running in my last 5k are younger than this shirt! But, it still looks good, wicks sweat and lets my skin breath. I knew Puma looked fresh and was interested to see if it stayed that way (I had heard rumors that it falls apart).

Three years later, I still LOVE this blue tank. It looks great on - I get compliments
Puma top 2010
when I wear it. The two layers of silky fabric are comfortable up to 80 degrees. The built-in sports bra has silver threads that haven't popped and (hopefully) help prevent stinkiness. The pleats around the neckline hide "poke through" when I'm chilly. And, the sports bra is strong enough for serious runs if you're an A or B cup. Most importantly, as I shift from being a runner to a multitasker, this top has successfully come along for rowing, yoga and cycling adventures.

Puma's running shorts are also holding up really well. The
Purple Puma shorts, another fave top
pockets still zip, the elastic is strong, the lining is hole-free and the style is classic. I have them in purple and black. Current color trends mean the purple ones look modern even though they're a few years old.

For shoes, I became a runner in Saucony back when they were touting stability. Brooks and Asics were my brands when I became a marathoner and wanted something a little fleeter. Now, Brooks Cadence and Saucony Kinvara time share my runs along with the Puma Faas 500.

The first shoes Puma sent weren't a good fit. The 8 was too big and the 7.5 too small so I donated them to charity and gave up on getting to test the brand. Lucky for me, Puma didn't give up and sent me a second pair a year later (about two years ago) - the Faas 500. They sent my friend the Faas 300 to test and photograph. The sizes were right, so we got down to running.

I still love the Faas 500 after two years, uncounted miles of  running, a few trail hikes and South by
Faas 500 Photo copyright: Dana Underwood
Southwest - I was wearing them when I met Jimmy Fallon (it was a Nike event but I still rocked them). What I like: The color is hot. The weight and minimal materials are cool. They hold on gently, so my natural mid-foot strike can flow.  Unlike my Kinvara's, the nylon hasn't split and, unlike the Cadence, they never made my feet cramp. Detractors: As a mid-foot striker, I wouldn't mind if the heel was less built up. That would be a great way to drop weight without losing structure. Also, when I corner, the loose hold of the shoe means it slips a bit around the toe box, so I have less control.

According to my friend, the Faas 300 are really only good for road running. They need to be laced tightly because otherwise they slip if you pronate. If you're looking for a racing slipper, and not something that you can also trail or city walk in, these might be good for you.
Puma Faas 300

Thanks again to Puma for the chance to test. Happy running!