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Winter Running in Texas

I was holding my Yaktrax in my hand, wondering what the point was in hanging on to them during the move to Texas.  I figured I’d never need them again, but I have a hard time parting ways with any running gear, regardless of its utility to me.  That was a few days before Christmas.  Little did I know that I’d be needing the Yaktrax before the week was over.

Christmas day started out with rain.  A lot of rain.  Then the temperature dropped below freezing and we got a decent amount of snow (for Texas, anyway).  Of course, having the rain before the snow meant that the ground was covered in ice.  I realized that when I started taking the first two dogs for a walk Christmas night, and slid all over the place.  I put my Yaktrax on before heading out to run with Green Bean.

Winter running combo - YakTrax and GoreTex shoes

Winter running combo – Yaktrax and GoreTex shoes

I never did use my Yaktrax much when we lived in Kansas City.  I tried them once on my favourite trail, but since it is an incredibly technical trail with tons of large rocks and roots, the Yaktrax kept getting pushed off the side of my shoe.  The only worthwhile method of adding traction for those trails was to put screws in the bottom of your shoes (sheet metal screws, with the head sticking out the bottom – you just need to make sure you don’t buy screws too long, or you’ll be stepping on the pointed end through your insole!)  I had long since removed the screws from these shoes, and so I decided to give the Yaktrax another whirl.  Since I stayed on the sidewalks, they worked surprisingly well.  No slipping, and I was able to get my miles in with Green Bean.

The other seemingly useless running gear that I didn’t get rid of were my GoreTex trail shoes.  GoreTex keeps the water out, but allegedly still lets your foot breathe.  In theory, they sound great for running in the rain, but they don’t drain very well (aka, don’t drain at all) so any water that does get inside stays there.  Plus, if it’s warm enough to rain, these shoes make my feet sweat which just adds to the moisture problem (they don’t breathe that well).  But, they are awesome for running in the snow.  Feet stay dry and warm and comfortable.

I have no idea when I’ll be able to wear these shoes, or use the Yaktrax again.  But now that I know that I’ve used them once in Texas, I won’t be getting rid of them anytime soon!

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