The Accomplice and I headed up to NYC this weekend to meet up with a friend in town from Brazil & check out some Hoka One Ones in person (there’s a sad, sad lack of Hoka dealers in the entire DC metro area). The Accomplice is in need of some new running shoes and was willing to give the Hokas a try.
We took the bus up early Saturday morning and arrived around 11am. We scored a great hotel room at the newly opened King & Grove on 29th. Well situated & very nice! We partook in cocktails at the bar as well, which were very nice, if exorbitantly priced even for New York.
After dropping our stuff, we set off to find Hoka dealers in the wild. According to their website, a place called Surefeet sold them. We trekked up to 86th & bounded into Surefeet only to find…a ski boot shop. And a distinct absence of Hokas. (Reasons to call ahead!) We spoke to an employee who assured us that we weren’t completely crazy & they were switching their store over from summer to winter gear. He said that a running store close by did carry them, though, and gave us some vague addresses for these running stores.
We started walking back downtown in search of these mythical running stores (dude conveniently left out the “West” portion of W 77th) but really just ended up pinballing our way through the city & stopping at every running and triathlon store in the area. Triathlon stores that you can walk to are such a novelty! I was also looking for a running shirt as my 5am packing job excluded that particular crucial item. I did finally find something that fit & was likable enough to want to wear it again at the Niketown on 57th. Niketown overall was kind of a disappointment though. There were 5 floors of stuff yet they don’t carry the plus sized range that I know they make. WTF, Nike? Your football displays are not so awesome that you can’t give up 5 cubic feet of space for a few extra sizes.
Anyway, after a few hours of purposeful wander, we finally toddled down to the Super Runner shop so the Accomplice could get up close and personal with some Hokas. I was also pretty excited to test out the rest of their range and learn more about the differences in their shoes. Unfortunately, we were for yet another disappointing shopping experience as the dudes at the running store had no idea how to sell the Hokas. We asked questions about the line & how they worked & they had no clue. They didn’t even pronounce them properly! Even so, it gave the Accomplice a chance to try on their one type (Bondi Bs) and sprint around the store (why no treadmill, dudes?). The verdict was a tentative thumbs up with more research needed.
I took the opportunity to try on some Bondi Bs as well. They’re different than the Evos! For one, the upper is completely different (no chance of chafing on my big toe). Two, it felt like a squishier and smaller ride. I didn’t really feel like I had the giant platform I have with the Evos. Dunno. I will make a point of trying them on again if I’m ever in a place that carries them.
We completed our afternoon walkabout with some super late lunch & a return to the hotel to meet up with our Brazilian friend. Only, our friend went AWOL & we were too tired to do much but drink & hang out until our reservation at Craft later in the evening (which was excellent: A++ would nom again).
In total, we did about 8 miles of walking on Saturday. Other than my new running shirt, I got a very sore formerly broken foot due to wearing sandals that are so old they’ve run out of cushioning. They’re also held together with a strategically placed twist tie, so perhaps it’s time to think about replacement.
On Sunday we got up bright and early for a 7 mile run. The Accomplice ran off immediately (she has become such a seekritly fast runner) & I settled in with some trepidation about how my legs were going to hold up to the mileage. My short runs were full of pain and woe this week. As it turned out, I shouldn’t have worried. The first two miles were definitely the worst & my calves were always on the edge of some serious Do Not Want, but once I turned into Central Park & got distracted by all the scenery & people, I started to think it wasn’t that bad. I followed the road around & ran smack into a duathlon race. The course was open, so I got to spend a few miles dodging speedy racers.
At my turnaround, I hopped off the main road & onto some of the trails for variety. I ran along a brindle path, tackled a few hills, and even hopped up a steep dirt mound. I realized as I left the park and headed back to the hotel that I was feeling great & was actually going to run this whole 7 miler. Mile 5.5-6.5 were a little tiresome, but I firmly blame that on tourists who were trying to do their best human bulldozer impression by walking 4 abreast on the sidewalk & not moving for anything. The last half mile I slowly started to speed up until I was doing the final 30 seconds of the run at a sub-10 min/mile, which is practically sprinting for me.
And then I fell upon Starbucks for nourishment because I haven’t run that far since June & ow.
With lighter spirits and heavier legs, the Accomplice and I packed up the hotel, headed to lunch, & finally got to spend some time with the friend we came up to the city to see. It was a great trip overall and we got in some great running and eating, and even though it was technically a travel weekend, I feel pretty refreshed for the coming week.