Made for Her, the PUMA RUN XX

PUMA releases its first women’s specific running shoe!

For too long, running shoes have been made for men and then redesigned to fit a woman’s foot shape. This season, PUMA is rewriting that narrative with the Run XX NITRO, a running shoe made for her.

Named for the woman-specific double X chromosome DNA sequence, the Run XX stands behind PUMA’s ‘Run for Her’ positioning to prioritize female runners’ needs in the way we build and engineer our products. In collaboration with the University of Massachusetts Biomechanics Lab, PUMA launched a research study recruiting 224 runners who logged more than 36,000 miles over eight weeks. In conclusion, 81 percent of women in the study preferred the Run XX over the control shoe and said they liked the cushioning and responsiveness of the Run XX over the control.

“This was the first time we conducted a large-scale study on female runners and the results will help us shape our approach to women’s running shoes going forward,” said Erin Longin, General Manager of the Run/Train business unit at PUMA, adding, “I believe this study will help us to continue to support female runners and keep them running longer.”

The Run XX features a progressive, female-specific design. Featuring an updated fit that hugs a woman’s heel, instep, and arch, the running shoe’s new firmer NITRO Foam midsole is the perfect balance of durable and lightweight. The shoe’s RUN GUIDE promotes proper alignment and increased stability for longer distances.

“As a runner myself, I want to know my running shoes will support by own biomechanics because women are made differently, and the Run XX does exactly that,” said Erin.

Run XX NITRO will be available from 24 June 2022 on PUMA.com, PUMA Stores, Totalsports, Superbalist, and selected retailers with a retail price of R3199.

 

Irvette van Zyl joins ASICS

ASICS is proud to announce the signing of Irvette van Zyl. Van Zyl is a long-distance runner with multiple South African titles and is the current women’s 50km ultramarathon world record holder. The Pretoria-based runner strengthens ASICS South Africa’s road-running athlete portfolio into 2022 and beyond.

“It is very special for me having a brand like ASICS – that has over 73 years of high-performance brand heritage – believing in me backing my dreams and goals,” said Irvette.

According to Irvette, aside from the performance aspect of the brand, she is a big believer in the importance of sport for mental wellbeing. “So ASICS’s ‘sound mind, sound body’ philosophy really resonates with me. When I go for a run in my ASICS, my mind and body are in sync, and it just sets the tone for my day,” she said.

Irvette made her marathon debut at the 2012 London Marathon, after which she turned her attention to shorter races on SA soil. Not long after, she began focusing on marathons and ultramarathons. She ran her best time of 2:28:40 at the 2021 Xiamen Tuscany Camp Elite Marathon in Siena, Italy. In May 2021, she broke the world record for the women’s 50km in a time of 3:04:23, bettering the previous record by almost three minutes.

Irvette races in the METASPEED™ Sky, a shoe developed at the ASICS Institute of Sport Science in Kobe, Japan, after utilizing the data accumulated from its athletes over the past year. Stride-style runners such as Irvetter take a longer stride once they increase their speed, but their cadence primarily remains consistent. Thanks to an energetic midsole foam and a propulsive carbon plate, Irvette will be able to conserve more energy while maintaining her pace at the later stages of the race.​

“The METASPEED™ Sky is an amazingly speedy shoe to race and train in,” she said, explaining how her focus for the rest of the 2022 season is on bettering her 10K and half-marathon times, distances in which she has won SA national titles in the past. “Then, towards the end of the year, I will be looking to do a quick marathon, so hopefully, all the speed work on the shorter distances will go a long way to increase my speed,” she concluded.

Modern Athlete will be meeting with Irvette next week to discuss the move to ASICS and what this means for her career going forward. To be the first to hear all the news make sure to follow us on Facebook.

Four Runners Break Sub 4 Minute Miles!

In celebration of Global Running Day which took place on 1 June,  Under Armour hosted the UA ALL OUT MILE grand finale event which saw hundreds of athletes including elite athletes, novice runners, top club runners, celebs, sports personalities and the general public going all out to take on the ‘1 Mile Run’ around the iconic Green Point Athletics Track.

For the 2nd consecutive year Under Armour hosted its popular Global UA ALL OUT MILE campaign, where runners from across the world have been lacing up and training to record their PB over the iconic 1 mile (1,6 km) distance. The campaign kicked off in May and concluded on Global Running day with  14 events hosted in key territories across the Globe with Cape Town playing host to the South African leg.

With an impressive exhibition of running on display, an unprecedented total of 4 elite athletes managed to break the sub-4 minute barrier with Justin  Kemboi from Kenya crossing the finish line with a time of 03:59.02  to take top prize as the winner in the Men’s Elite category.

20-year-old South African favourite Prudence Sekgodiso blistered through the field to secure bragging rights as the fastest in the Women’s Elite race with a time of 04:43.17. Other notable runners on the night included: Blitzbokke Captain Shakes Siviwe Soyizwapi, South African professional boxer and IBO cruiserweight champion Kevin Lerena as well as  Stormers outside centre Ruhan Nel.

The Mile, much like the 100 meters and the marathon is still widely considered one of the most iconic distances and the pinnacle of athletic excellence. The first sub-4-minute mile was smashed in 1954 by Roger Bannister. His time of 3:59.4 has since been broken by over 1600 athletes worldwide. Two unmatched records still stand today in the ladies’ and men’s categories. The men’s world record stands at 3:43.13, set by Hicham El Guerrouj of Morocco in 1999 while the women’s record sits at 4:12.33 held by Olympic sensation Sifan Hassan, set in July 2019.

However, the mile isn’t only for a  ‘pro’ or Olympic athlete, it’s the ideal fitness distance for runners looking to test their speed and endurance, regardless of age or ability. UA recognised the massive appeal that the distance holds and wanted to create a campaign that would challenge runners and encourage them to reach their best.

Commenting on a very successful event, Under Armour South Africa MD Darren Cooke says, “It has been amazing to see the ALL OUT MILE  campaign come to life, particularly here in SA. Those in attendance were treated to a superb display of running with many setting new PBs.  It has been an honour to host some of the top elite middle-distance runners and at the same time bringing the local running community together. Under Armour is dedicated to helping athletes, both pro and amateur, to continuously assess and improve their performance and this was definitely achieved with the ALL OUT MILE campaign.”

“One of the highlights of the evening was definitely the spectacular Elite men’s race, culminating in four world-class performances by 4 athletes running the mile in under 4 minutes. What an absolute privilege to bear witness to an incredible feat,” concludes Cooke.

Top 4 Male Elite Runners on the night:

  1. Justin  Kemboi – 03:59.02
  2. Matthew Kipsang – 03:59.02
  3. Ashley Smith – 03:59.86
  4. Christopher  Swart – 03:59.98

Win with the All Out Mile!

From inspiration to perspiration the UA ALL OUT MILE provides the motivation, the coaching, and the training plan to run your fastest mile. Starting this May, unique stories from around the world will highlight thousands of runners achieving their personal best.

By joining the UA All Out Mile, you gain access to training routines and workouts from UA’s elite coaches, athletes, and Human Performance experts. Registration will automatically grant you access to a free 3-month UA MapMyRun™ MVP membership you will be able to log miles and access exclusive training plans and video tips throughout your journey to your best mile.  

Our Race Calendar is Back – Bigger and Better!

Our Race Calendar is back at last after more than two years on hold due to the COVID pandemic, and we’re going bigger than ever before with it! Compiled by our Ed Sean Falconer, it is now two months instead of one, so this edition contains May and June fixtures, allowing you to plan further ahead.

Secondly, we’ve included hyperlinked icons that you can click right here in the mag to take you to the event website, or to send a mail to the event organiser, and best of all, you can go straight to the online entry portal for those events that offer this option, so you can get your entries in quickly and easily!

Our goal is to make this calendar your ‘one-stop shop’ for all your racing planning, and in coming editions we plan to add still more to this expanded Race Calendar.he has combed through all the races to make sure our version includes all the fixtures for running, obstacle racing, track & field and so much more! Find your province, find your event

Soweto Marathon is Back!

Sold out year on year, The People’s Race, Soweto Marathon will officially open entries for the 2022 edition come Friday 27 May. Taking place on Sunday 6 November 2022, the race route will continue to honour Soweto’s rich history as it takes runners through the tour of Soweto, so says Soweto Marathon Trust Chairman, Sello Khunou; “We’re delighted to announce that all is on track to host the Soweto Marathon post our two year hiatus. The 27th edition will bring with it a tremendous gratefulness for life as we honour those lost to Covid-19 and all the struggles associated with the pandemic.  We also encourage all would be participants who have not vaccinated to do so ahead of the race in November for preservation of all our lives.” The race will consist of three different distances – the 42.2km standard marathon, the 21.1km half marathon and a 10km run – all of which start and end at the iconic FNB Stadium in Johannesburg. Follow Soweto Marathon’s pages for more details www.sowetomarathon.com Soweto Marathon Facebook Soweto Marathon Insta Soweto Marathon Twitter