Friday, March 28, 2014

Under Armour Running Shoes by Shauna Harrison

Shauna's shoes (most of them)

Hi, my name is Shauna and I’m an Under Armour® trainer and yoga instructor. Thanks to childhood memories of not even being able to run a whole mile in PE, I often grapple with identifying myself as a “runner.” But I do run! I run hills, stairs, sand dunes, trails and streets (sometimes all in one training session). According to MapMyFitness, I run a total of 20 miles/week. And I love it. So, ok…I’m a runner, too.
I just happen to be a runner with not-your-average-shoe needs. Thanks to Under Armour, I’m also a runner with a not-your-average-shoe closet.

Wait UA makes running shoes? YES! And great ones! Below are a few of my favorites.
First, my feet – that way, you can see if my needs might be similar to yours. I have low arches and hypermobile feet (surprise, surprise, yogi). I’ve been wearing medical orthotics since I was about 8 years old. I need stability, structure and cushion. The minimalist trend is not for me. Here are some of my UA favorites:
UA Speedform Apollo, Micro G Spine Evo & Monza
·      Design/Technology: UA’s latest running shoe with sweet technology. The Speedform was actually manufactured in a clothing factory, which gives them a performance apparel type fit!
·      Fit and Feel: These bad boys are super light, flexible and comfortable. Generally for my needs, “flexible” isn’t all that appealing. However, I had no problems with the Speedform right out of the box (I don’t usually recommend that, but couldn’t help myself!)
·      Wear: I’ve worn the Speedform for conditioning runs (hills, stairs, some trail, minimal flats) and one flat, short (4-ish miles), speed run. I was happy with them for both types of runs, but I could really feel the benefit of the lightness in the shorter, faster run. They earn their Speedform name.
·      Design/Technology:  Very durable. Good traction. The “spine” provides a ton of stability. The Micro G foam midsole supplies cushioning. Sometimes rocks get stuck in the spaces on the soles.
·      Fit and Feel: The UA Spines have been my favorite UA running shoes since the first version emerged. For my needs, these shoes are perfection. I love their stability and support.
·      Wear: I use the Spines for almost any kind of run. Bonus: I use them for other training as well. They work well for jump rope, circuit training and even some minimal lateral training. This is essentially unheard of for running shoes, which makes me love them even more.
·      Design/Technology: Lighter than the Spines, not quite as light at the Speedform. The suede mid-foot overlay gives these shoes some extra support. The outsole is made to stay in contact with the road.
·      Fit and Feel: These do give a smooth run. The stability is a close second to the Spines. The Micro G® makes them feel cushiony.
·      Wear: The Monzas work well for most of my running workouts. I mix these in with my Spines for a go-to shoe. I will use them for other workouts as well, but they are not quite as stable, laterally.
The rest of the guys in my shoe collection have also done their time on the streets, trails and sand. Many of them are great but hopefully focusing on these three gives you a starting point and helps you find what works for you. Remember, take your time, work with someone with can dissect your stride and identify your needs, and get out there and sweat every day!
Shauna drops a forearm stand in the UA Micro G Spine Evo

Thanks to our guest blogger, Shauna Harrison. Get more Shauna in your life on Instagram (@shauna_harrison), where she is well known as the inventor of and inspiration behind #SweatADay. She also is the creator of Hip Hop Cycle® and Muscle & Flow fitness classes. This blog was not reimbursed in anyway in exchange for this post. Just giving a different perspective from a recognized athlete. Happy running!