Today I wanted to take some time to dive into our shoe fitting process. At 605 Running Company our goal is to work with you on your journey to finding the right shoe. This is no easy task as many of you know. There are several factors to take into consideration when purchasing a new pair of shoes. Things like cushion vs. responsiveness, neutral vs. guidance vs. support, heel-to-toe drop, fit both lengthwise and widthwise, shoe lacing, brand loyalty, and finally style and color. There are literally thousands of running shoe options available to you the consumer. Our job as a running specialty outfitter is to provide you with the most options possible and offer the tools necessary to make your personal shoe purchase.
Buying a pair of running shoes is a highly individualized process. At the 605 Running Company our team does not work on a commission basis. We don’t offer special spifs (sales, performance, incentive, funds) to employees to sell specific shoes. We work with each individual for as long as it takes to help find the right shoe. If necessary we are happy to order different styles, widths, and colorways for you. This is a service that we offer with no obligation to buy the shoes once we get them in the store, we assume all of the risk. Sometimes this process might take five minutes and sometimes this process might take days.
Yes, I said days. Runners are a unique breed of athlete and we invest a lot of time and money into our sport. Our goal as a running specialty outfitter is to help you make educated choices when choosing how to spend your dollars. This leads me to our return policy. Sometimes a shoe that feels good in the store, on our treadmill, turns out for whatever reason to not be the shoe that is best for you. We understand and want to help you through your shoe purchasing journey. At the 605 Running Company we offer a 15 day return policy. Each shoe is evaluated on a case-by-case basis and in-store credit is always available, or if the shoe is able to be re-stocked a cash return may be granted. Our return policy is a standard bearer of our business ethics and a statement of what our customer service means to our business.
We are a local business which means our dollars stay within our community and we provide jobs right here in Sioux Falls. I could write an entire blog piece as to why this is such a critical component to our local economy. We’d like to think that what we have to offer as a running specialty outfitter far outweighs the competition. We sponsor local races, support local athletes, invest in our community, and truly love running.
As we head into the Memorial Day weekend let’s take a moment to give thanks for the freedoms we have to participate in sport and lead healthy active lifestyles. At the end of the day we are thankful to all of our loyal shoppers and supporters. We truly believe that we offer a valued service and strive to be a successful small business champion of Sioux Falls. Enjoy the holiday, shop local, and run hard. We will be open all weekend and would be thrilled to help you find your next pair of running shoes.
Greg "PEPSI" Koch
605 Running Company
During my time at work I’ve met several folks signing up for the Sioux Falls Half Marathon on September 11th, 2016. This to me is very exciting. As a staunch supporter of this fantastic local race I always get excited to meet the people running in my home town. What is even more exciting to me is the number of people that are signing up for this race as their very first half marathon! To me there is no greater distance than the half marathon. You have to be dedicated to training, but you don’t have to sell your soul to the training to get ready for the race.
Recently, I was asked to write a training plan for a newer runner preparing to run Sioux Falls. I got so excited writing the plan that I thought I’d share it today to encourage others to take on the Sioux Falls Half Marathon as their first half. This plan includes the 605 Summer Race Series - $50 to run three races that build you up to the half marathon distance. This is a very affordable way to get some race experience which I find to be critical when running your first “BIG” race.
Please note that I am not a private coach and that I present this plan based solely off of my own personal running experiences. This plan is geared toward beginning runners – if you’d like private coaching services we have a highly skilled and qualified contact: email@example.com
Finally, I’d also like to plug my good friends at Sanford Health. We will once again be sponsoring a 10 week runner’s strength training camp that would be a great complement to this training plan. I’ve been working with the team at Sanford all year and they have helped me become the best possible athlete I can be and I highly recommend them for training services.
Greg "PEPSI" Koch
I think Greg did a great job of capturing the race and weekend in his blog post, but I wanted the opportunity to share a few of my thoughts coming out of the weekend. I was pumped that Greg accepted my recommendation that he make his first marathon the Lincoln Marathon, and I was glad to hear it did not disappoint.
I was extremely excited to get Greg and his wife Chelsea down from Sioux Falls on Friday night. The Nebraska race team that I helped found (LRC Racing) has hosted a pasta feed two nights before the race for the past five years, and I wanted to introduce Greg to the running culture we have worked to create down here. These are incredibly competitive individuals who just enjoy the sport of running! We had some catered food from Noodles and Company, while everyone brought some food to share, buffet-style. We've always had this team social event two nights before, because it allows each individual runner to eat what they feel comfortable with the night before. I mean, who wants two pounds of spaghetti sitting in their stomach on race morning?
I was glad to hear Greg say he wanted to get out for a short run on Saturday morning. Not only did I need the motivation in getting out on a rainy morning, but I thought it would be in the best interest of Greg to do something...anything. I did offer to "walk the hills" though, to avoid any unnecessary fatigue. Greg, being the strong runner he is, politely declined. We then splurged on a breakfast of "knock-off" Lucky Charms, and they were off to Lincoln for the day (stopping at the Gretna outlet mall, of course).
When we met up again Sunday morning, I was essentially a tour guide. I navigated backed up traffic to the point that Greg and I could jog about a half mile to the start, and about 10 minutes before race time, we meandered to the appropriate corral.
From the minute we crossed the start line, my goal was to make the first half of the full marathon seem easy, and I think I succeeded in doing that. Greg did a great job of laying out the race in segments, so I won't rehash that, but I really focused on running a calm race. Despite areas of the race where it is easy to say "I feel good, so I'm going to go", I knew that if he could reign it in, it would be especially beneficial in the later stages of the race (especially miles 20-26). All that to say, he ran a great first half in just under 1:54 and came in under his goal of 4:00! While I like to take a little credit for it, the truth is, Greg would have been able to do that whether I was there or not. I maybe just made it a little more fun.
One lesson I will take from this is the importance of picking the right shoes to run a race in (it's ok to have multiple pairs for different conditions). I went with the Mizuno Wave Inspires, and my foot would have welcomed something with a little more cushion in it. I've only been able to run two miles in the past 10 days as I suspect the extra support in the Inspire caused me to bruise the bottom of my right foot. Regardless, my experience with helping Greg get to his goal was all worth it.
Well, that weekend went by really fast. I’ve been struggling all week to write-up my recap of the race I’ve spent the sum of 2016 preparing for. I honestly wasn’t prepared for it to go by so fast. Mentally, I was ready for a long grueling experience. My mindset was all business and I totally overlooked all of the fun a race weekend brings. At the end of the day I got to spend 3 days with Chelsea (which was so needed), meet-up with some great people and oh-by-the-way run a marathon.
On Friday Chelsea and I set out from Sioux Falls around noon. We traveled to Omaha were we met up with storeowner Logan and his wife Jenna. From their house we made our way to downtown Lincoln for packet pick-up.
I’ve never been much for buying swag or shopping in general, but at the packet pick-up Chelsea demanded that I buy a tee shirt with Abraham Lincolns face on it stating that “I run this city”. I thought the packet pick-up was very well organized and easy to navigate. There were multiple vendors and many other races being promoted at the expo. After visiting the expo it was off to dinner.
This was the real treat of the night. We got to enjoy a pasta dinner with the Lincoln Running Company Racing Team. The night was full of fun conversation about the race and featured plenty of good food. Chelsea and I agree that we will need to host something similar for our Sioux Falls running friends leading up to the Sioux Falls Marathon in September.
On Saturday morning we woke up to drizzling rain and cool temperatures. Logan and I agreed that a run was in order to stretch out my legs and shake off some car ride rust. We ventured off into the rain for a light 5k run in the rain – although it was cool and wet, the consensus was that the conditions were manageable for tomorrows race. We shared a light breakfast at the Watley house and made plans to meet up in the AM for the race.
From there Chelsea and I ventured off for a day of shopping at the Nebraska Crossing Outlet Mall. Located between Omaha and Lincoln this has become a favorite shopping destination for Chelsea and I as we usually find good deals and they have Voodoo Taco, which is where we grabbed lunch (yup tacos for lunch!). After our shopping trip we ventured to Lincoln to find our hotel. We stayed at the Chase Suites hotel - $70 a night, full kitchen, plenty of space, located near shopping and food, and most importantly clean. Once we found where we’d be staying for the night we did some more shopping and exploring. Dinner was at Granite City (I knew the menu and had a sandwich that I trusted). We ended the night at the movie theater that featured select seating with reclining chairs – Jungle Book!
All things considered I slept remarkably well. My alarm was set for 5am and I woke up at 4:40am. For breakfast I had a Clif Energy Food oatmeal pouch (Banana Maple), a Honey Stinger Waffle, Gatorade, and coffee. Chelsea awoke at 5:30am and we packed up our room and got ourselves ready for our Watley shuttle service by 6am. Logan and Jenna scooped us up and we were off to the starting line. Traffic near the race was a nightmare. We got somewhat close and pulled into a parking lot – with that we said our goodbyes to the girls and we were off. We jogged a couple of blocks to the starting line, snuck into a bathroom, and in no time at all we were in the coral listening to the national anthem. It all happened so fast. Before I could blink we were running the race.
Miles 1-3: We started off pretty easy – in total we had three different watches to track pace and time. Logan quickly realized one of his watches was not going to work so we planned on discarding that the first time we saw the girls. For those first few miles we averaged around an 8:50 pace and took things pretty easy. The girls were at mile 3 where we dumped the watch and my jacket.
Miles 4-8: As we settled into the race we began to pick up the pace mile after mile. At around mile 6 Logan encouraged me to take things easy. At the next split we slowed down my 2 seconds. I joked saying something to the effect of “I really toke that one easy eh”. Logan in his wisdom pointed out that had we not backed it down we may have run significantly faster. Having Logan there to guide me through the first half of the course was amazing. We spotted the girls again at mile 8 cheering us on – things were going very well at this point.
Mile 9-14: This section felt like a parade to me. We continued to glide along at a perfect pace and Logan was pumped about how things were going. This put me at ease and made the 1st half of the race very breezy. After the first 13.1 miles I had secured a half marathon PR and was cruising into the second half of the race. Logan dropped at the halfway point and from there I was on my own.
Mile 15-19: The majority of my training was focused on this section of the race. I knew that the second half of the race was a long out-and-back course. My hope was to find a group I could settle in with to maintain pace, but it didn’t take very long for me to discover that that strategy was not feasible. If I wanted this it was going to be done on my own. During these miles I found myself focused, but my pace was slowly starting to fall off just a touch. My fueling strategy was to take something every 6 miles; I got a little thrown off here as I fueled at mile 17 slightly earlier than scheduled. At mile 19 I passed Logan and the girls for the final time and dumped my belt and held onto my last GU like it was gold. I had made the turn and was still ahead of pace.
Mile 20-23: Mile 20 is no joke! I originally thought that this is where I began to do the marathon shuffle, but looking back at my splits I did a decent job of maintaining a pace. I was a little off my goal pace, but continued to battle through these miles. This is the point where the weather started to change a bit and I noticed I was getting cold. It had been dizzily most of the morning, but here I found myself facing more wind, more rain, and more struggle. My mental game needed to be on-point here and I found my self focusing on the fact that this was the furthest I’d ever run, things had been great thus far, and I was nearly home.
Mile 24 – 26.2: This was the marathon shuffle. I worked all race to be prepared for this moment. My hands were now numb from the cold and I was actually happy it was my hands and not my feet. I knew I was close to the finish and that I had enough time in the bank to finish within my allotted goal time. While my body was sore I found myself enjoying this portion of the run a lot more than I thought I would. The grain was in the silo; all I had to do was cross the finish line. As I entered Lincoln Memorial Stadium a surge of adrenaline hit me causing my pace to quicken. I heard Logan yell my name following that I was announced over the stadium PA, which was pretty cool. After crossing the finish line I grabbed my medal and following that I finally got my blanket.
Post Race: While wondering through the post race food line I enjoyed a class of Pepsi, a sugar cookie, two donut holes, two bottles of water, and a bag of sun chips. I found my crew, hugged my bride, and without much fanfare we headed to the car. Once we got to the car the most entertaining part of the day took place. My left leg went in just fine, but every time I’d attempt to raise the right leg my hip would cramp up. After what felt like 10 minutes (actually probably 3) I was finally in the car with my jacket on and a bottle of Gatorade in my hand. We ventured over to Logan’s parents house for a much needed shower. Following that we grabbed some post race pizza and Chelsea and I were on the road home.
Pace: 9:06 per mile
Place: 471 out of 1063
For the time being I’m done talking about marathon running! My next adventure will be riding the Mickelson Trail with Chelsea on our bikes. Following that I haven’t scheduled any races yet, but I’ll be sure to keep everyone posted.
Greg “PEPSI” Koch