Variety is the spice of life. Not only is a new take on life good for the brain, it’s good for athletic motivation too.

If you’re committed to another sport, why would you consider doing a workout that does not mimic what you’ve chosen? Complementary sports can not only benefit your overall strength and conditioning, it can pay dividends in the long run to your sport of choice.

We’re all about looking forward to the changing season, trying something new and reigniting our an active groove. Read on for our JackRabbit ideas to shake up your activities as we race towards fall.


Strength Work: Strength training has so many rewards for the runner. If you want to see some rewards without upping your mileage (or don’t have the time to do so), adding in some strength and mobility training can yield results.

Take to Runner’s World or YouTube and you’ll find a whole range of strength training for runners including conditioning sessions using only your body weight, great for travelers and fix-it-quick home training sessions.

Recommended Gear: Comfortable, form fitting workout gear is all you need and a pair of stable cross training shoes. From a longevity and safety standpoint, we recommend not wearing your favorite running shoes. Save them for the forward motion they are designed to support. Think you need to go to the gym for strength workouts? Not necessarily. Stretch bands, free weights and a small medecine ball are plenty to give you a full body workout.


Rowing: Rowing is a great cross training benefit for swimmers for core strength and shoulder power without getting tight. Not to mention mental training; spend 5 minutes on a rowing machine and you’ll be begging for a treadmill minute.

Recommended Gear: Ditch your silicone hat and goggles (unless you usually wear them out of the pool) and grab some hip-friendly athletic shorts and a shoulder-free tank to get into your row zone.


Trail Running: Step away from the training plan and just go run. No distances to reach, no checkboxes to mark off the training plan. Your engine is trained and ready, so take it on an adventure to a place with a view. You’ll realize you don’t always need a finish line to reach your runner’s high.

Recommended Gear: Firstly, ditch the earbuds. You’re going to need your wits about you on the trail. Quality sunglasses are essential for keeping your eyes on the trail (literally) and a specific pair of trail running shoes. Think you don’t need them? I know a first hand of an athlete who ended up in the ICU after sliding on some slick rock using road shoes for the trail. I had to call the ambulance and support her off the trail. Don’t risk it, runner friends. (The athlete is ok, by the way.)


Working on your Mind: You might already think you’ve got multi sports sorted given you’re already doing three sports. Why add in anything else? Follow the unwritten rule that triathlon has a fourth discipline in there: swim, bike, run, mental preparation.

Recommended Gear: Step away from the gear! Leave the watch, music, heart rate monitor at home and go gadget ‘naked’! Don’t track anything! Okay, if you must have the data – cover your watch screen with masking tape and turn off notifications! Being present and in the moment will serve you well when you’re racing. It’s been proven in scientific studies (Read Peak Performance by Brad Stulberg and Steve Magness if you’re dying to know more) that the mind gives out before the body does, as a means of self-preservation. We’re not telling you to push yourself over your limits (consult a doc folks before any workout program!), but a little introspection, pushing into the discomfort zone can be good for the endurance soul.


Cross Country Skiing: Superb for the cardiovascular challenges of cycling and maintaining leg strength. Added bonus is balance and coordination, as important skills for both mountain biking, group rides as well as riding in the urban jungle. You’ll have to wait until the snowflakes start to fall for this one giving you plenty of time to wax up your skis in preparation!

Recommended Gear: Always the challenge of being freezing outside, but you warm up super quick when you XC ski. Keep the tush warm in long, flexible tights (we’re fans of compression all the way), add on a few wicking layers, a vest or jacket, including the hat and gloves, and you’re ready to glide on.


Yoga: The benefits of yoga for runners and other athletes are many; yoga has it all! Flexibility, breath control, conditioning, strength, mental training (can you keep quiet for an hour?) For runners, secure in their leg strength, it might come as a surprise that holding a yoga pose requires using all the leg muscles on a variety of planes – ones you might not be used to using on your daily run.

Yoga is an all body experience, when was the last time you worked out your wrists, neck, lower back? Our challenge to you is schedule a 30 minute yoga ‘app’ appointment three times a week for 30 days and report back how you feel at the end.

Recommended Gear: Your yoga mat is your required gear of choice, flexible clothing that doesn’t ride up or down is key. While yoga poses are meant to massage the inner organs, there’s no reason in traumatizing your inner organs if your workout gear is cutting into you!

Look for wide waistbands, and longer torso tops and for men who want to avoid the t-shirt-over-your-head-look in downward dog, take on a men’s workout tank and wear it with your pranayama pride.


Follow JackRabbit and our running lives on Facebook where we share training tips, interviews and gear guides for every runner’s lifestyle.







The JackRabbit Fall 2017 Running Shoe Guide is our collection of shoes we have highlighted as the best currently available, and a few we can’t wait to be released very soon.

From speedy, race-day shoes, to the best training shoes, these are the running shoes we recommend to maximize your comfort and optimize your performance. If you’re looking to change your footwear as the leaves change color, use this handy list to find the running shoe style that is best for you!



Hoka One One Clifton 4

Hoka One One Clifton 4: $129.95. Runner’s World just gave this mighty shoe the ‘Best Update Award’ in their round up of shoes and we cannot agree more. This version of the Clifton has a wider base for more stablity without compromising the comfort and performance of this bestselling shoe from Hoka Hoka One.

Runner Type: Neutral

Men’s Hoka One One Clifton 4
Women’s Hoka One One Clifton 4

Salomon Sense Ride

Salomon Sense Ride: $120. As leaves begin fall on the trail, the Sense Ride provides the right blend of cushion, traction and protection to suit everyone from a first-time trail runner to an ultra-runner. Whether you’re looking to glide smoothly over gentler terrain or take on technical single track with confidence, this lightweight trail shoe delivers.
Runner Type: Trail

Men’s Salomon Sense Ride
Women’s Salomon Sense Ride

Adidas Adizero Boston

Adidas Adizero Boston: $120. BOOST midsole means this shoe has both cushion and spring. Boston means it was crafted spefically to be fast and to go long, with a lightweight and breathable mesh upper. Whether used for race day or training runs, the 6th iteration of the adizero Boston is the shoe for breaking PRs.

Runner Type: Neutral

Men’s Adidas Adizero Boston
Women’s Adidas Adizero Boston

On Cloudflow X

On Cloudflow X: COMING NOVEMBER. We’ve fallen in love with “On” this summer. The uniquely designed Swiss-engineering in this shoe results in an outsole that provides incredibly soft landings and explosive take-offs, meaning you spend more time effortlessly moving forward. The Cloud X is the perfect shoe for athletes who don’t define themselves by any one sport, or any one type of workout.

Runner Type: Neutral

Men’s: Coming Soon
Women’s: Coming Soon

Asics Dynamis

Asics Dynamis: $160. The first of its kind in the ASICS line up, the Dynamis model takes an entirely new approach to fit with the cutting-edge BOA® Fit System, replacing traditional laces with an easy-to-use precision dial. No messing with your laces, just turn up and stay securely locked in.

Runner Type: Neutral

Men’s Asics Dynamis
Women’s Asics Dynamis

Asics Dynaflyte 2

Asics Dynaflyte 2: $130. The first version of Dynaflyte showcased the light FlyteFoam midsole, engineered for speed. Building off that success, the brand new Adapt Mesh upper in the new Dynaflyte 2 is designed to follow the movement of your foot for improved flexibility, lateral stability, and maximum comfort. The stealth black color is also a winner in our team!
Runner Type: Neutral

Men’s Asics Dynaflyte 2

Women’s Asics Dynaflyte 2

Nike Zoom Fly

Nike Zoom Fly: $150. This year, Nike set out to break the 2 hour marathon with it’s VaporFly Elite. The Zoom Fly is the everyday, hands-on version of that performance racer. Feather light with maximal cushioning, this shoe is intended to move at top speeds. With a style that looks fast even when standing still, flywire cables lock you in tight, while a carbon-infused nylon plate propels you forward… even if your marathon time is slightly longer than 2 hours.
Runner Type: Neutral

Men’s Nike Zoom Fly

Women’s Nike Zoom Fly

Brooks Ghost 10

Brooks Ghost 10: $119.95. The Ghost 10 is an all-around great neutral shoe with ultra-plush Brooks DNA cushioning, yet packs plenty of responsive bounce. The open toe box and engineered mesh is a great combination of support and light-weight feel, for either quick fall workouts, or long runs through the changing leaves. The great price-point and design is the reason this shoe continues to be a favorite of runners everwhere.

Runner Type: Neutral

Men’s Brooks Ghost 10

Women’s Brooks Ghost 10

New Balance 1080 v8

New Balance 1080 v8: COMING NOVEMBER. Everything from the engineered mesh upper, to the full-length Fresh Foam midsole, even the little hexagons on the sole, are all constructed for purpose. New Balance used runners’ feedback to create the updated data-driven design, the result being a supremely cushioned ride in a great performing shoe. Lace up and run on!
Runner Type: Neutral

Men’s: Coming Soon

Women’s: Coming Soon

Saucony Guide ISO

Saucony Guide ISO: COMING NOVEMBER. After a decade of positive reviews on the Guide, the 11th version recieves ISO fit to lock the foot down and provide additional stability in the arch. Also updated is the new PWRFOAM midsole to provide a more responsive feel underfoot, while maintaining the tried and true lightweight stability the shoe is known for.

Runner Type: Pronator

Men’s: Coming Soon
Women’s: Coming Soon







Heather Jackson takes on the best pros in the world as she races Ironman triathlons all over the world. She shares with us her take on the world of swim, bike, run and her approach to training and how her Hoka One One shoes will fly her to the finish line.


JackRabbit: You have a varied athletic journey to Ironman triathlon. You’ve played division one soccer, ice hockey, and track cycling. What did all the sports in your bring to your performance in triathlon?

Heather Jackson: I played so many different sports growing up: soccer, ice hockey, gymnastics, tennis, softball, basketball, horseback riding, lacrosse…actually I guess one of the only sports I didn’t compete in when I was a kid was swimming!

I think my background across so many different sports made me really in tune with my body. A lot of triathlon training and racing is about knowing how hard you can push and for how long, or determining what your body needs at a given moment in a race, or what your body needs in a given training week i.e. more or less rest.

I am very self aware and I think this has helped me in triathlon, which is actually the first individual sport I’ve gotten into. It’s me making decisions about my body rather than being on a team surrounded by 30 other girls. I think the different sports also taught me a lot of mental toughness in sport that maybe someone just getting into triathlon without an athletic background doesn’t have. I have so many images, mantras, or just key thoughts I can draw on to push to another level.

JR: Patience is key in endurance sports. You race both Ironman distance (140.6 miles to those who are counting!) and half Ironman (70.3 miles for those who don’t want to do the math). What physical and mental lessons have you learned from transitioning between the two?

HJ: I race both distances in triathlon and each definitely have their own physical and mental requirements. I think the 70.3 distance is more a physical test of your body because the fastest girls are racing these anywhere from 4 to 4.5 hours depending on the difficulty of the course. You can really dig deep for that amount of time across the 3 different sports and leave it all out there.

I think you can train to race the half Ironman distance hard and fast and really test yourself physically. I think this is partly because they are a little less scary. Worst case scenario, you’ve pushed yourself to your max and you are just getting onto the run, or maybe you are a few miles into the run and you are cramping and have to walk. At the end of the day, it’s only (I know to some this is still quite long!) a half marathon that you have to walk/jog/shuffle/make your way through to finish the race.

I think the full Ironman distance is more of a mental race than physical. Sure, you have to be physically fit, although I know plenty of individuals who were not that fit and just hopped into one to complete it.

Ironmans are such a long day that it’s more a test of your mental will to stay focused and aware and patient throughout the whole day to keep your body moving forward as fast as it can over about 9 hours (for female professionals). It’s more a mental journey with yourself constantly checking in on if you’ve fueled enough, hydrated enough, can you push any harder? It’s just self-talk all day.

I think I’ve learned that physically, the half Ironman distance is harder. The training is faster, more intense, more anaerobic efforts to get you quicker and fitter. Ironmans require more mental strength (I believe). Because sure, at 20 miles into the marathon you need to be fit enough to finish the 6 left, but most likely you are. It’s more a mental test of your own will to not stop and walk because your legs are sore.

JR: Triathlon is a summer sport. Which means heat, heat, a little more heat with some humidity added in for the most part. What’s your game plan for competing 9 hours in such intense conditions?

HJ: Well, currently I am down in Tucson, AZ and the temperature outside is 104 degrees. It’s 8 weeks out from Kona right now and so we’ve come here for my final block, as we have done the past couple of years.

It takes about a week to 10 days to acclimate to this kind of heat and be able to train somewhat decently in it; I’ll just put it out there that the last 3 days have wrecked me!

I’m talking walking home from what should have been a standard run! But after spending two months here, I get to the big Island and it feels cool compared to Tucson.

JR: You’re known for the edgy style you bring to the tri game. How does that represent you as an athlete, and as a person?

HJ: It’s funny because I was never that edgy when I was younger and I still don’t think of myself as that edgy, haha. I was definitely a goody-two-shoes all growing up (ask my siblings), went to a boarding school that required a certain dress code every day, and then went to Princeton University for college; more khakis and polo shirts.

So I think it was just twenty years of that built up and then I moved to California after college and met my now husband, Wattie, who was the total surfer, flat-brim hat-wearer, covered in tattoos. I remember the first time I saw him I just thought, “Wow, just like the surfer Californians you see in movies!” hahaha!

It was really Wattie who encouraged me to have a bit more of an open mind of who I was. I remember before I got my first tattoo I was wicked nervous that my Mom was going to murder me! But at the end of the day, we have one life to live.

What’s a little ink on your skin representing something about you? Or, what’s cutting your hair super short for a new style or coloring it? First off, you can always change it back. Secondly, how you look, what you wear, or anything about your appearance doesn’t change who you are as a person.

It doesn’t change how kind you are, your character, if you have compassion, are a nice person, or anything like that.

JR: You’ve traveled extensively before triathlon (Heather spent time in Asia) and now with your racing. What does a global perspective bring to your mindset?

HJ: I spent part of my junior year in college studying in Japan at Fukuoka University and then I taught English for a year in Chiang Mai, Thailand after college. Those were definitely two very different cultures but both huge eye-openers for me, along with some of the other countries I’ve been fortunate enough to get to visit through triathlon.

I think having seen these different cultures really helps me keep perspective at the end of the day in regards to my racing. I know how fortunate I am and sure, I get upset if a race doesn’t go as I’d like, but at the end of the day I get to compete in a sport every single day while there are so many millions of people across the globe just trying to find food and water each day.

JR: Technology now plays a role in triathlon from your gear to your data. Explain to us how much you rely on data and gear and how that enhances your physical talent and training.

HJ: I’ve started to rely more and more on data as I’ve progressed up to the full Ironman distance. Primarily, I use a watch for my runs that has pace and heart rate (I used to just use a basic watch with a timer) and a power meter on my bike rides, which records the power you are pushing, your cadence, heart rate, speed, and a number of other things.

I also use a little device each day called a Masimo MightySat, which measures your heart rate and your oxygen saturation level, as well as a few other measurements that help tell you if you are dehydrated.

A lot of this data is mainly for my coach, as he lives in a different city, so he needs all of this to judge exactly how a certain training day went or how I’m feeling and recovering.

For me, the pace/heart rate watch and my Pioneer bike computer have really helped nail my pacing in the longer distances, as I tend to go out way too hard. That is fine in the shorter distances, but it can backfire across a 9 hour day so I would say the biggest take away from the technologies is just to learn pacing.

I use these every day in order to report back to my coach, but I’m also not an athlete that dwells on the numbers or lives and dies by them. I trained and raced for so long without any of it, that sometimes you just need to get out there and ride or run at what feels hard without caring what your exact pace is or how high your heart rate has spiked.

JR: Let’s talk running! Especially what it feels like after biking 112 miles. What have you learned from your early days running on the soccer field and transitioning to marathon distance mileage for Ironman?

HJ: Oh yes, how I miss those soccer days! I actually love running like that; short, speedy bursts in soccer, or basketball, or tennis, etc. In my run training, I love the days where I have 1km repeats or shorter, hard efforts where you are just trying to give everything you have in a short time frame.

I still do a lot of that within my marathon training but when it comes to the marathon itself, it’s totally different. The marathon is more about being strong and not losing your form or letting your body break down to a point where it becomes completely inefficient and you are just sloppily trying to drag yourself forward. My coach (fellow Hoka One One athlete, Joe Gambles) keeps emphasizing “efficiency”… you need to be as efficient as possible to expend the least amount of energy. So we do a lot of strength work, both in the weight room but also running hills.

JR: Tell us about your Hoka One Ones and which styles you wear for training and racing and why they work for you?

HJ: Oh man! Tough one, as there are so many that I love. I guess my two main go-to’s are the Clifton 4s for training and the Clayton 2s for racing.

The Cliftons were the first Hoka’s I ever tried and fell in love with immediately. Each updated version that has been released has just been better than the last. I love training in them because they are a little bit bigger than a race shoe with more cushioning and support so I can do long, endurance runs, or even longer Ironman pacing efforts and I don’t turn up sore or thrashed. I can recover quicker and be ready for my next session that day.

I love racing in the Hoka Claytons because there is still quite a bit of support and substance to the shoe, but it is light and feels like a racing flat.

JR: You finished an amazing third at the Ironman World Championships last year. Kona has a huge legacy in the sport of Ironman; what did it mean to you to step onto the podium and what are your thoughts going into the race this year?

HJ: Making it on the podium last year was an absolute dream come true! It’s something you can dream about over and over and then it actually happened and I think it took a couple of months for it to sink in that I had actually stood there on the podium.

It would be an absolute honor to be able to stand on the podium again and that’s what I’m training day-in-and-day-out for. This entire season has been all eyes on October 14th and getting myself in the best shape physically and mentally I can be on that day and hope that that puts me somewhere near the front 🙂

JR: And finally, one question we ask all athletes. What are three songs that motivate you in life, sport and racing?

HJ: This might be the toughest one!!! Well, I obviously have to put a Pink song on here, if not all Pink songs 🙂 I will go with Pink’s “Raise Your Glass” because it’s currently the song I listen to before all races and tend to have in my head the whole day. I also just love the message of it. I could honestly put almost all of her songs on here though. I have to put 3 songs on that count as 1 🙂

Basically there was “Eye of the Tiger”, Eminem’s “Lose Yourself”, and Whitney Houston’s “I Wanna Dance with Somebody” that we used to blare before every single hockey game at Princeton. It would be 30 girls in our locker room just getting pumped up, jumping around and getting ready, so any of those three songs make me think of those four years and still get me pumped and ready to leave it all out there.

And lastly, not because of anything to do with the song or what it’s lyrics say (which I’m honestly not even sure)…but Blues Traveler’s “Run Around” will forever remind me of driving to soccer practice and soccer games every single day for probably 5-6 years starting from when I was probably 10 years old. I played on about three different travel teams for soccer AND for ice hockey.

JR: Thanks Heather!



Hoka One One Clifton 4s
Hoka One One Claytons


Come with Heather Jackson on her journey to the Ironman World Championships in Kona, Hi. by following her on Twitter.






New Balance was born in Boston, founded by William Riley, an immigrant from England, in 1906. Riley created the company when he was inspired by a chicken foot; not many companies can tout that as their inspiration!

Read on to learn more about the amazing history of the iconic New Balance US brand.


The year is 1906 and William Riley is sitting in his backyard watching some chickens. If this were today, he’d probably have a urban coop and a latte in his hand, but back then we can only imagine what was his beverage of choice.

As New Balance lore goes, the three-toed chicken foot and the way it supported the body was an inspiration for Riley to create a three-toed arch supports which he deemed would give the human foot ‘New Balance.’

At the time a pair of New Balance arch supports sold for the same price as a new pair of shoes – a hefty investment. They were picked up by firefighters and policemen and their reputation of a high quality product was secured.

Of course, New Balance had to make it through the Great Depression like everyone else and so it wasn’t until 1938 they expanded their product mix and moved into the shoe business. Built upon their reputation for quality products, the business took off and the first version of the quality ‘athletic’ shoe was born.


Enter the 1970s and the running phenomenon explodes in the US. The famous letter ‘N’ was born on the New Balance shoe and the conscious decision to ‘name’ their shoes with numbers over model names.

The ‘320’ was the shoe that stamped New Balance’s reputation in the running world.

It was suede, it was blue, and it was awesome.


Time has moved on and New Balance still remains the last major American athletic shoe company that still makes a portion of its shoes in the US. Approximately 20% are still made in New England (well, 70% of the shoe is made in the US). Manufacturing is a challenge, and New Balance is respected for making a commitment to US manufacturing as part of its company mission.

Domestic manufacturing is a fundamental part of the New Balance brand identity and commitment to responsible leadership. In addition for the European market, they still continue to build shoes in the North of England, a tradition that has continued since the early parts of the last century.



New Balance famously did not sponsor professional athletes for a great portion of its history – a path that consolidated their ‘we’re endorsed by no one’ tagline in marketing campaigns to emphasize that New Balance running shoes were for every kind of athlete.

However, time moves on and today New Balance supports an amazing array of athletes from classic track and field runners to basketball, soccer, even cricket and most recently cycling.

Women track and field stars are well supported by New Balance both on and off the track. Follow some of the track and field stars sponsored by New Balance such as Olympians Jenny Simpson, Emma Coburn and Brenda Martinez. Their stories as as impressive as the running shoes they race in.


Jenny Simpson
Emma Coburn
Brenda Martinez





New Balance Fresh Foam Zante V2
New Balance Fresh Foam 1080 V7
New Balance Fresh Foam Vongo V2




Interview with HOKA ONE ONE Pro Athlete Kyle Merber



Hoka One One pro middle-distance runner Kyle Merber (USA) took the time to sit down for a chat with JackRabbit to talk about his running career, staying injury free and the lightness of the Hoka One One Clifton 4


PR: 1500M = 3:34:5

PR: Mile = 3:52:2

WR World Record Medley Relay: 9:15:50 Nassau, Bahamas, 2015

JackRabbit: Describe for us what a ‘day in the life’ of a professional runner might look like?

Kyle Merber: Life is good as a professional runner. Everyday I wake up, and my only goal is to improve my fitness. That means a good solid breakfast, and plenty of time to take in my coffee. I generally wake up early enough to see my fiancée off to work before having time to myself to get ready for practice.

We meet as a team with Coach Gags there watching over us. After crushing a workout, we will get some food before heading off to the gym for a lift. After that, it’s about 2pm and I am home with more or less nothing left to do except nap/recover/watch TV. If I have a second run I will do that just before preparing dinner.

Honestly, there’s nothing to complain about in my day.

JR: You’ve experienced injuries along the path of your running career. How have you physically and mentally overcome the injury/recovery and moving forward? Any advice for JackRabbit runners?

KM:Like many runners, I have been hurt. My success is contingent on minimizing these occurrences and managing them well when they do come up. In the midst of an injury, it’s all about being pragmatic and figuring out why it happened and what I can do to fix it.

If it’s serious enough to sideline me, then maintaining fitness in the pool, on the bike and in the weight room is key. That requires mentally being present in the moment and controlling only what I can, right now.

JR: What’s your perfect mile?

KM: My perfect mile is one that picks up as we go. I like to build into the pace to the point that the kick is already there and set up for me as we approach the final turn. No hard shifting of gears, just faster and faster each step. Ideally the track is lined with fans and they’re getting louder as we pick it up.

JR: You race both 1,500 and 5,000m. What’s a favorite speed workout we can share with the JackRabbit running tribe?

KM: The 1500 is certainly my specialty which requires a serious blend of strength and speed.

I like doing intervals at mile pace with the rep shortening as you go. Things like 1000 + 600 + 400 + 300 + 200 or just a bunch of 400s with a couple minutes rest.

JR: You’ve been running in Hoka One One shoes for a few years. Tell us about your experience and what this unique type of shoe has added to your running.

KM: I think like a lot of people, I was a bit hesitant on HOKAs until I actually tried them on. I came on with the brand in 2015 when they were just really breaking through and I was skeptical of such a game-changing concept. But then I wore them and I saw the light!

JR: You train with the New Jersey*New York Track Club. What does being part of the team and being coached by the legendary Frank Gaglinano mean to your training and your life as a runner?

KM: I knew I wanted to run for NJ*NY well before joining the club, because running under Gags was always the dream. Getting the opportunity to be exposed to such a well of knowledge and experience gives me so much confidence in the training and who I am as an athlete. He keeps things fresh and fun to the point that you want to do this forever.

JR: Most athletes have a moment in their early years when someone, it could be a coach or a more experienced athlete, inspires them. Who inspired you to be a runner?

KM: In 1996 after winning a gold medal in the Atlanta Olympics, Derrick Adkins came back to his old elementary school to speak. It just so happened that I was sitting in the crowd and got the opportunity to meet him and grab an autograph.

Right after that day, I went home and asked my mom to sign me up for track. I told him that story 12 years later when I was breaking into the national scene as a high school athlete. You never know who you may be inspiring in the crowd!

JR: As a professional runner, you become the leader, the one who inspires alongside being the athlete. Tell us about your involvement with the Hoka One One Long Island Mile and what that event means to you?

KM: The Hoka One One Long Island Mile is my baby. I was working for my co-meet director, Brendan Barrett, at Sayville Running Company while in college and we were thinking of ways we could connect the professionals, with the high schoolers, with the weekend warriors. Our idea is now held in my hometown of Huntington and is entering it’s third year.

We start with community miles, and the paces pickup before finally an elite men and women’s mile. Getting a chance to showcase the sport to young athletes in my own backyard is my own investment in the sport for tomorrow.

Hopefully people will walk away feeling extra motivated for their upcoming XC season. And I believe crowding the track and getting high-fives from Olympians right before witnessing a sub-4 minute mile can do that.

JR: What inspires you to lace up your track shoes day on day

KM: Some days I go out with my “runner hat” on and others I go with a “racers hat.” I love just going for a run on trails, feeling good, relieving stress, and talking away with friends. That’s often motivation enough.

But on workout days, it’s about getting better and challenging myself to see how good I can be. I like to say I am addicted to smaller numbers. How small can I get the numbers of my mile time?

It helps knowing that there is a reason for why I do it but it’s also for a better life that I want. To me, a better life means helping others and I can do that through my running.

JR: And finally, one question we ask all athletes. What are three songs that motivate you in life, sport and racing?

BM: If I could only listen to three songs for the rest of my life they’d be: The Scientist by Coldplay, The Way You Look Tonight by Frank Sinatra, Piano Man by Billy Joel

JR: Thanks Kyle!



Hoka One One Clifton 4 Mens
Hoka One One Clifton 4 Womens



Follow Kyle Merber, his running life and the Hoka One One Long Islance Mile event by following him on Twitter.







Middle distance runner and Olympian Brenda Martinez (USA) took the time to sit down for a chat with JackRabbit to talk about her track career, New Balance and why giving back is so important to her.


JackRabbit: What might a typical day in the life of a pro runner look like as you enter race season each year?

Brenda Martinez: A typical training day for me consist of a consistent schedule for workout days such as waking up at 5am. I get my equipment ready and tend to feeding my dogs and cat and taking them out. We leave the house by 5:45am and make the drive down the sea-level and depending on the traffic it can take an hour and 15 minutes to arrive to our training location.

We spend about 3 hours start to finish of the workout that consist of warm up, drills, workout, cool down and about an hour of more drills, hurdle flexibility and core. We eat and make the drive back home and this can be around midday. I nap and once I wake up I go for my second run and have dinner after. Bedtime is usually 10pm.

JR: You represented Team USA in Rio and have just returned from the IAAF World Championships in London. Your sport allows you to travel worldwide. Michael Phelps famously said he had traveled the world, but only saw the black line of a pool! What’s your experience of competing overseas?

BM: I always feel fortunate being able to travel and race and I completely agree with Phelps.

My profession requires to stick the routine so there is lots of time spend in my hotel room but I’ll try and make effort to have dinner with a friend or by myself. Not much of tourist activities for me.

JR: You were quoted as saying the 800m race is such that the distance chooses you! What is your take on racing twice around the track and the preparation an athlete goes through to maximize performance on the double lap?

BM: It’s such a hard event that requires the foot speed and the strength to last the rounds. I don’t think I will ever get a handle on the event but I always look forward the challenge. The 800 meters can go all sorts of ways and it makes the event exciting to watch and it unfold over 200 meters.

JR: You’ve been running in New Balance shoes. Tell us about your experience working with the company and the support they give you and your mentoring?

BM: I’m will always be grateful to New Balance and the believe they have in me since day one. New Balance genuinely makes you feel like a priority and you get this sense of family which I can appreciate. They have been such a big part of my girls camp and have provided gear that goes all the way for their season.

JR: Let’s talk shoes, after all, they’re arguably the most important part of a runner’s kit (save your mental kit of course!) What are your go-to shoes for training and for racing.

BM: My go-to shoes are the fresh foam 1080’s. I can do much of easy runs and they can take the mileage. They are so comfortable too. For racing on the track I go to the MD 800s and if I’m somehow racing on the roads I will go to the RC 5000 flats.

JR: You train with the legendary coach Joe Vigil, who also trained the likes of Meb Keflezighi and Deena Kastor in their careers. What does having his experience and mentoring mean to you?

BM: Working with Coach Vigil is a game changer, but also probably the toughest coach out there. He has been instrumental to not only training but my life. He has brought out the best in me and he will always remind and encourage me to be my best on and off the track.

Coach Vigil has been a great to my husband as well and will help in anyway possible so that Carlos can learn to be a better coach. He is all about educating and sharing his knowledge to others.

JR: Most athletes have a moment when someone champions them and guides them to make the most of their talent. Who inspired you along the path to being a world class athlete?

BM: My life is indebted to Coach Vigil and he is the reason why I have good life and I am running well. His teachings are valuable and I try to learn as much as I can. He is the reason why I started my girls camp. Anytime I have goals to share or if I am going thru something in training, he is only a phone call away.

JR: You spend time mentoring girl runners at the camps you host in Big Bear, California. As a powerful voice for these young ladies, how do encourage them to dream big?

BM: I can talk about the good, the bad and what makes us human. I share my story with them but they also share their story. I feel that I have learned so much from these young minds and to see them happy is my ultimate goal. We keep touch and I assure them that I will be there for them.

JR: Imagine it’s the middle of winter; it’s dark and cold. What inspires you to lace up your running shoes day on day?

BM: When you’re in the bulk of training and at times it hard to get up and run. I just find a way to jump out of bed and I constantly have to remind myself that there are young girls the look up to me and I want to be my best for them.

It helps knowing that there is a reason for why I do it but it’s also for a better life that I want. To me, a better life means helping others and I can do that through my running.

JR: And finally, one question we ask all athletes. What are three songs that motivate you in life, sport and racing?

BM: My playlist constantly changes, but as of right now these are my top 3 songs: Shakira: Me Enamoré, Al Green: Love and Happiness, Selena: Baila Esta Cumbia

JR: Thanks Brenda!



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Follow Brenda Martinez, her race season, training adventures and committment to mentoring girls through her running camps on Twitter.




BOOST your running to the next level with adidas performance footwear


Running shouldn’t suck. It shouldn’t be something you dread and only feel decent about once it’s over. It’s supposed to feel good, and release endorphins, and provide you with more energy than it takes. If it doesn’t feel this way for you, perhaps your shoes are draining your energy. Literally.

With the wrong running shoes, you could be suffering dreaded “energy loss,” instead of “energy return” which helps your runs feel lighter, smoother, and easier. Obviously we don’t want to lose energy, so the question becomes: How can we achieve endless energy?


Imagine holding a dense rubber ball in your hand, arm stretched out in front of you, at about eye level. Now drop the ball. What happens? It bounces pretty high, almost to your shoulder. What you just witnessed was energy return in action.

What is the adidas boost?

Often a demonstration in most high school physics classes, we witness the ball’s stored kinetic energy unleashed as it returns towards the point we dropped it from.

The molecular structure of the rubber is arranged in such a way that very little of the energy is lost when it impacts the ground. Therefore, energy return = minimized energy lost. This is an important concept for runners to understand, as we want to minimize energy loss as much as possible to make our runs “easier”.

Ok, so why don’t we just make a shoe out of the ball that bounced really high then? Well, because the weight of the shoe would be so heavy that it would mitigate any advantages gained from bounciness. Also, it would be so uncomfortable that no one would want to wear it.

Now, in your other hand, you have a ball of equal size, but this one is as soft and squishy as the pillow you sleep on. We drop it from the same height and what happens? SPLAP! It mushes onto the floor.

This ball exhibits great energy loss, which means minimal energy return. But man would those shoes be comfortable! If only a material existed that simultaneously contained both high elastic and high cushioning properties.

What is the adidas boost?



BOOST is adidas’s new midsole technology that is comprised of thousands of little thermoplastic polyurethane energy capsules. I’ll state the obvious, yes, they look like styrofoam packing material. I assure you this material belongs on your feet and not in a cardboard box. These spongy-springy capsules create a rebound effect that minimizes energy loss, which as we learned earlier, means they maximize energy return. What all this means to you, is an ultra-comfortable running experience without sacrificing performance. Be both fast and cushioned. Have your cake and eat it too.

Utilizing this new midsole has catapulted adidas to the top of the running world. To be sure, adidas has certainly held a significance presence in the US market since the 80s as a lifestyle and streetwear brand, largely in part thanks to hip-hop culture such as Run DMC.

As for athletics, they’ve consistently been known worldwide in sports such as soccer, tennis, and wrestling. It’s important to note, that adidas started in running, so this is not a new venture for them. Rather, it is a returning to their roots. Running is very much ingrained in adidas DNA.


When BOOST was launched in 2013 as the midsole for the adidas Energy Boost, adidas hailed the new technology as a “running experience unlike any other”. The following year, adidas released Pure Boost, a shoe which was simultaneously lauded by both sneakerhead and performance runner alike. In fact, BOOST has been so successful for adidas, that they’ve implemented the technology in everything from lifestyle shoes, to sport-specific cleats.

With all the BOOST options available, this begets the question: Which adidas BOOST should I be running in?

Adidas Boost Comfort


If you want maximal comfort and want as much style and BOOST as you can fit into a shoe, go with either the PureBOOST or UltraBOOST. You’ll love the way you look and feel as you’re cruising down the road or just kicking around town.
Adidas Boost Speed


If you find yourself moving at high speeds on a frequent basis, the Supernova and Energy Boost offer increased responsiveness with a sock-like upper to meld performance with ultimate comfort. The smooth and flexible ride provided by these shoes is perfect for your daily run.
Adidas Boost Competition


Now, if you’re looking to turn the dial up to full tilt, and need a performance racer that’s going to help you break your marathon PR, the Adizero is right for you. Whether you’re using it for tempo runs, daily training, or race day, this fast and light shoe is built for racing.

Regardless of your level of expertise or application, adidas has carefully considered adapting the BOOST technology to fit your needs. We no longer need to choose between the hard, uncomfortable rubber ball in one hand, or the structureless, pillowy ball of fluff in the other.

We can put them both down and pick up an adidas BOOST model that is as responsive as it is comfortable, resulting in a feeling of endless energy.



Adidas Ultra Boost
Adidas Supernova
Adidas Adizero