Call me crazy, but when the end of January was nearing and I had yet to succumb to all the colds and sickness going around, I kinda did a little happy dance inside. But alas, it was too soon.
It must’ve been the very last day of what seemed like the longest month ever when my sinuses started to play up… and from that day forth, I started feeling particularly under the weather… struck down with some sort of virus come head cold.
This meant I spent the few days before the London Winter Run 10km unsure as to whether I’d be physically able to complete it. Considering that I haven’t been running much for the last few months adding illness into it seemed like a challenge that I didn’t want to take on. But then part of me didn’t want to miss the run as I’ve run this event every year since it began back in 2015…
So I made the decision to go along, enjoy the atmosphere and just run the distance without pressures of time or pace. And that is exactly what I did.
What I also did was commit the cardinal sin of wearing new kit on race day but I figured as I wasn’t actually racing it’d be no different to testing out the kit on a decent length run.
The kit being from Under Armour including the newly released HOVR Phantom running shoes which I had a very good feeling about having worn them for an evening (of standing, not running) earlier in the week.
This February, saw the London Winter Run return for its fourth year. Having run the last three events I was particularly not keen to miss out this year. My current 10km PB was set on this course in 2017 so that’s yet another reason it holds a special place in my heart.
This years event was as enjoyable and well organised as all previous ones. I avoided using bag drop to enable me to go straight to the start line and get going on what turned out to be a very chilly day (…to be expected in the middle of winter) but I braved the cold a little at the start by taking off my extra extra layers (lol) which paid off as I warmed up considerably when I got moving.
Personally, I love running a course that I’m familiar with. I know what to expect and I know where I am even without a GPS. I also knew where to expect the water staton but I’m sure I remember thinking they could have done with one more water station regardless of the cold, I was still super thirsty.
As ever, the polar bears (not real ones) at the finish make for the perfect photo opportunity with your medal. This year, we didn’t get the medal we were promised after an issue with customs (I wasn’t even aware till the day as I didn’t ever receive an email with my start time and that nugget of info).
As far as I know, we will be receiving them at some point so when that day comes I’ll probably share a picture on Instagram as a throwback!
A number of weeks have passed now and if you’ve seen me in that time you most likely would’ve seen me in the UA HOVR running shoes, if not the whole outfit.
And I’ve not just run in them (they got a little run around on the tennis court too!). As a fan of similar technology in the past, I like the responsiveness of the shoe when your foot makes contact with the ground.
It was fascinating to hear about how the shoe designs came about – think chamois from cycling shorts made into running shoes – mind blown. If you’re into this sort of thing, they have an 8mm offset which has worked well for me as a mid-foot striker and weigh just 227g.
I wear a size 5 in the Phantom even though they advise to size up 1/2 a size but that’s because I have wide feet and think I’m probably really a 4.5 anyway so bear that in mind if you’re thinking of trying them.
It’s been difficult keeping the light grey ones box fresh but I guess the worn look is more impressive, huh?!
UA HOVR™ Phantom Running Shoes
As of 2023, Under Armour do still sell the HOVR Phantom 1 (the version pictured and worn in this post) but the current version is 3.
You are gonna love these if… you like a responsive running shoe that almost feels like running on clouds
Think twice if you… are not a fan of a sock like fit / feel.