Long distance running in shoes with metal studs

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 PPP 11 Nov 2021

So I half-foolishly bought a pair of VJ Sarva Xante with metal studs:

They were a bargain and hoping they can replace carrying running crampons when it’s not too high up. Might come in handy when it’s a bit icy to run safely in city.

What’s the general consensus in running in such pair, in hills and trails? Does it make horrible noise on road and does it scrape rocks (like trekking poles do)? 

I’m also toying with the idea of using them for Cheviot Goat 55 miler which is mainly on hill paths and slabs that cover Penine Way… 

 yorkshireman 12 Nov 2021
In reply to PPP:

Not the same but I've got a pair of Salomon Snow Cross with metal spikes (and a built-in gaiter) which I've had for about 4-5 years and only done about 350km in despite living in the Alps and running about 2,500km per year mostly on trails (admittedly I switch a lot of my running to XC skiing over winter).

They're OK on roads where it's packed frozen snow after it has been ploughed, especially if there's black ice underneath, but if it's a normal road with icy patches I think you're better off just being careful and picking your way through. I do a few local 'Trail Blanc' races in the snow and if it's well covered and/or powdery I prefer to use normal trail shoes with gaiters. I certainly wouldn't use my Snowcross  for anything approaching ultra distance as I don't trust their comfort over longer distance.

I've also got a couple of pairs of YakTrax which I prefer to take with me to put on over my normal trail runners when I get to sketchy sections rather than committing myself to studs for the whole run.

As for noise and scraping rocks, I'd be more worried about lack of traction in those situations and of course you will be wearing down the spikes. You said they were a bargain but coming up at 140€ for me - guess you didn't buy them from the link?

 Nic Barber 12 Nov 2021
In reply to PPP:

I depends on the construction of the midsole and dobs. You will always clatter about on road and wear the dobs down quickly.

I've done long days in the original Inov8 Irocs and had no issue. These had a fair bit of cushioning and some design to help soften the impact of the dobs on your feet

I also used a pair of VJ Bold (more aggressive orienteering shoe) in the Trigger race in 2017, when there had been now the day before the race and a decent thaw overnight, but still quite a bit of ice. I seem to remember the bottoms of my feet aching a lot after that, but I was glad I chose them for the grp on the icy bits. The western edge of Kinder was ankle deep in wet slush which softened the feet up nicely in the4th hour of a long hard race - my feet were very tender, on the base but also elsewhere from the lack of softness of the upper. The aching was likely magnified by the stretches of flagged path, harder trail and road at the end of the race. Still one of my top days out mind.

I wouldn't do the Cheviot Goat in aggressive dobs like the Bold, but the Sarva looks a bit more cushioned. However, the uppers look like they don't have much on them so the rest of your feet may suffer if you wear them for that long.

 DaveHK 12 Nov 2021
In reply to PPP:

If they were cheap then why not but my feeling is that this kind of shoe isn't really very useful for UK conditions. I think they're probably best on the sort of hard packed snow trails you get in colder climes rather than the variable conditions we get here. Normal fell shoes plus microspikes is more versatile for the sort of conditions we get plus something like the Kahtoola KTS for winter in the big hills.

 tlouth7 12 Nov 2021
In reply to PPP:

Orienteers often wear shoes with dobs, they are unparalleled on really severe off-road terrain. Especially wet wood (e.g. logs and footbridges) and wet rock (though they leave marks on the rock).

They clatter on roads and can be a bit sore if the sole eventually breaks down and the dobs push into your foot.

I have never worn then myself for more than a couple of hours' run in a single day (but for many days in a row), but then orienteering shoes are slightly different in that they have very little spring under the heel.

 Justaname 12 Nov 2021
In reply to PPP:

I've run up to a marathon distance in some Inove8 Arcticlaw 275 and they were fine. The sole feels clumpier and heavier but the overall (claimed) weight is still pretty low so it must be perceived. They do make you sound like a horse running along the pavement and you wouldn't want to do more than a few miles on the road in them, but last winter they certainly came in to their own (having been sat in a box for 2 mild winters since buying them).

I would only use them when its icy / snowy, due to the noise and scratching, they also put holes in your lino. I'd wear regular fell shoes for anything else.

Post edited at 14:06
 greg_may_ 12 Nov 2021
In reply to PPP:

I used dobs all the time for orienteering, as others have said, there is not much to beat them in dark dank driech woods.

I have used oRocs up to about 30km, feet were pretty sore by the end. I've used them for MM events, and on day two it was not fun. Similar with ArcticClaws, use them a lot over the winter, or when the terrain is utterly sodden and I know I won't be on much tarmac.

Would I use them for long runs by choice? No not if I knew I'd be on any hardpack or road. 

Will I always have at least a pair in my house? Yes, usually 3 pairs between the various orienteers in the house! I do rate them, but they are a bit specific IMHO.

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