You’re racing through the snow covered evergreens. A powerful energy pulses through your legs and carries you faster and faster along the single-track trail as you become one with the natural world around you. Sounds good, right?
Here’s a better description: You’re churning through the snow in the biggest, heaviest running shoes you have ever worn. Your pace per mile is made up of double digit numbers even though your effort is approaching red light territory. Your huffing and puffing after only half a mile and your legs have suddenly turned into wobbly sand bags. Forget about becoming one with nature, you’ll be lucky if you even remember your name after 30 minutes.
OK, it’s not that bad. But, it is difficult. And for a beginner like me, it takes some patience to learn the proper technique. After several short snowshoe runs, I think I’m beginning to get the hang of it now. Efficiency will come with practice, but I’m already feeling better about my upcoming race in a couple of weeks.
For the beginner, the most important consideration is the snowshoe you wear. If you pick the wrong one, you’re going to be so discouraged you may give up before you really begin. Many outfitters carry a line of light-weight snowshoes, but take your time and do some research before spending your money.
I am running with a new pair of Gold 12 racing shoes given to me by Crescent Moon Snowshoes in Boulder, CO. They are light-weight, aluminum framed, have a 3-claw traction system, and the best snowshoe bindings in the business. Check out the video below to see how these bindings make it easy to secure your shoes before you hit the trail.