Helios, La Sportiva review spring 2013: Going like barefoot with the new Helios

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As there are many vendors around for trail running shoes in the meantime. La Sportive is one among these, that are having a long history already in designing and producing shoes. La Sportiva has a new mountain running homepage. There you could find many new infos on their new shoes and appearals.This is the La Sportiva Homepage for Trail Running:

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http://mountainrunning.lasportiva.com/

Go to http://www.lasportiva.com/index.php?id=1611&L=2#.UX0lbEmOVP0

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for the trail running section and more infos on available shoes.

These are the new Helios for men. These shoes are also available for woman. And there are many other different colors available.

schuhe

But i think i have a new favorite shoe for my short distance trails. Helios, La SportivaAlso they are perfect for just daily running over rough terrain normaly around 20 km but also will support you until maybe 30-50 km very good. La Sportiva set this shoe on their homepage for short distances.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I use normally size 45 in saucony for example and these are just half size bigger (45 1/2) and they fit just fine.

As mentioned the Helios you can get in many different color combinations. I got mine in Grey / Orange. They look just very good. Feeling very light, but also look of high quality.

Check out the La Sportiva Homepage for the Techsheet. Here are the details from there:

 

Tech Info (from the Homepage)


Upper: Soft EVA laminated to a breathable mesh with abrasion resistant “Poly-Cap” at the toe and heel. The external high frequency frame is applied to a nylon net.

Lining: Air-Mesh only at the back

Midsole: shock absorbing, injected EVA with MorphoDynamic technology and 2mm anti-shock insert.

Sole: MD Extra Light FriXion AT with VA lugs

Ramp-angle: 4mm, similar to 5 mm heel drop

Weight: 460g (pair size 42)

Size: 36 – 47,5 (including half sizes


 

As you can see, the have a very little drop. That is the difference between heel height and toe height. This allows for a more natural foot position, than normal running shoes. It’s more orientated into the barefoot direction. Normally in running shoes you would have a drop of above 8mm. With only 231 gr. it’s quite light.

As you are maybe using barefoot shoes. Or want to move from your normal shoe to a more natural way of running, then helios is a good step into it. With a minimalistic running shoe like merrells trail glove or minumus new balance, your you are missing probably some cushioning for longer races. With the helios you get a well cushioned and but also highly breathable trail running shoe. For breathabilty you have the thin mesh in the upper.Helios, La Sportiva

 

Facts in short

  • Look: colors are:  grey-orange, grey-blue, grey-red (all men), green-pink, green, light-blue (all woman)
  • Feel: comfortable, durable (probably, still testing), light, easy, sensitive
  • Grip: gives good grip on all grounds
  • Durability: I will update this section, as soon they have more miles on the speedo.
  • Pros: light, sensitive, great for short distances, nice feeling, good grip, water drains well, dries fast, for warm weather ideal, foot can breath well (maximum ventilation)
  • Cons: depending on your foot, maybe not good for longer distances on rough terrain, cause your foot will need more support from your sole. Maybe not good for muddy ground
  • Comfort: gives a very light and comfort feeling inside while running
  • Testing environment: Road, single trail, going through rivers
  • Consulsion: I have been using the new Helios model now for over two weeks at distances around 20-50 km and they are great. The are very light and i can feel the ground i ran on. The sole is not that tick and they are sensitive. I can hardly feel the weight of that shoe and they give good grip on any ground. A great shoe, also for longer distances, but keep in mind that you might need some stabilty support from more stable shoes like the Crosslite or Ultra Raptor, when going for longer races and your foot is not uses to go these distances, without. But anyway, i can really recommend the new Helios.

 

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Review #new CrossLite 2.0, La Sportiva

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I have been using them now for several races and i want to write shortly some things about the CrossLite 2.0 (c-lite) from La Sportiva.

GOPR0090-1I used them once in a race, where they saved my knee with their stable and good footbed support. My old shoes had been quite worn out and after changing them, at the middle of the race against the new crosslite, the foot and my knee got stabilized again and i could finish the race.

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Anyway, it’s not a bad idea to change shoes in a race anyway. The same applies for training. I now have about 10 shoes, where i can choose from the best, that fits best to my current needs and trail it is going to.

Shiny red color. But for trail running, this shiny state does not last long. 🙂

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They give good grip, like the raptor, they have a solid and stable sole with enough knobs to give very good support and muddy and slippery ground.

GOPR0095-2Also they are quite light. DCIM100GOPRO GOPR1033 DCIM100GOPRO

 

Conclusion

The have been proven as a solid shoe for long ultra races. I have been using them for even more than 100 km races. They stabilize the foot very good. Also the sole is excellent for all terrains. On mud, snow and rocky grounds they work out very good.

They give enough space to the fore foot and have a enhanced cap. That saves your toes from pushing against the race. Some might it feel it a little bit to stiff while running downwards. Since this is an Italian model, you have to try them. Someone that has a bigger forefoot, might feel it as to narrow at the front.

 

Tech Specs:

WEIGHT: 10.7oz /     300g

LAST: Tempo 2

FIT: Medium/Wide

UPPER: AirMesh/ Uretech

LINING: Mesh (back half and tongue only)

MIDSOLE: MEMlex/ TPU stabilizer

DROP(mm):   8mm

CUSHIONING: 32A

SOLE: FriXion® AT/ Impact Brake System V-Groove

SIZES: 38-47.5  (half sizes)

COLOR: Black

ITEM NUMBER:16F

PRICE: $110 USD

size 45,5 (UK11) Red

 

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Adventurous: New snow and snowfall at 1300m, Trail Vallée de Joux, 19.5.2013

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Hey, any season was available during the race.  What a great one. But honestly, it was most of the times quite cold, but there has been rain, sun, snow and snowfall during the race. Most of the wintertime’s had been at the beginning during the first and second climb upon 1500m. But as said, you should have been prepared. Otherwise it could become quite cold in the mountains.

As said the race started at 6:15 right at vallorbe DCIM100GOPROand finished at the sports hall in Le Sentier. From there you have to go back to vallorbe by train on you own costs. There is no lift from the organization and the train ticket is not included in the starts fee. You could have you luggage transported from the start to the finish or you can take the train in the morning from the finish to the start. Anyway, you should take that into account. DCIM100GOPRO

There had been wind and snow and fog from 1300m to 1500 m.

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Great weather changed into snow and vica versa. Very nice landscape and an easy and not very technical race. You could chose between 18, 33 and 56 km. The 56 had been shortend about 1,5 km because of weather condistions.

Altough the track was not difficult, it was sometimes very muddy and slippery because of the rain during the race and before. Temperates have been between -2 and 9 degrees.

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In the mountains there had been a lot of snow.

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Every finisher got a slate slap with cheese and sausages on it.

 

Here is the slat slap.

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Thats the finish line.

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Trail Vallée de Joux

Trail Vallée de Joux 2013

Track Length: 54.3km
Altitude Range: 748m (Min Height: 776m ~ Max Height: 1524m)
Total Climb: 2147m | Total Descent: 1894m
Address: 1337 Vallorbe, District du Jura-Nord vaudois, Canton de Vaud
Latitude: 46.7088911
Longitude: 6.37265386

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Here is my grading. Any comments appreciated.

  • grading overall: 8 pts
  • difficulty: 3 pts
  • markings: 8 pts
  • organization: 8 pts
  • food: 8 pts
  • costs: 6 pts
  • fun: 7 pts
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Trail Challenge des Seigneurs, 13+14.4.2013

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Two runs in two days for three UTMB points. First on saturday there is the “Défi des Seigneurs” with 74 km, starting a 7 o’clock in the morning.

Start

Défi des Seigneurs 2013

Track Length: 74.8km
Altitude Range: 373m (Min Height: 181m ~ Max Height: 554m)
Total Climb: 2372m | Total Descent: 2393m
Address: 67110 Niederbronn-les-Bains, Arrondissement de Haguenau, Bas-Rhin, Alsace
Latitude: 48.9575180
Longitude: 7.63865726

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On the next day at 10 o’clock you can start for another 25 km called “MAC6”

 

MAC6, Challenge des Seigneurs 2013

Track Length: 24.7km
Altitude Range: 339m (Min Height: 233m ~ Max Height: 572m)
Total Climb: 764m | Total Descent: 773m
Address: 67110 Niederbronn-les-Bains, Arrondissement de Haguenau, Bas-Rhin, Alsace
Latitude: 48.9574331
Longitude: 7.63870806

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And if you have registered for both races, then you’r doing the “Challenge des Seigneurs” and will get 3 points for the UTMB.

http://www.lesvosgirunners.com

Since my french is not that good, i had some difficulties getting that right. But anyway. It had been a nice race. Adrian Brennwald had taken the first race and also was the first one at the finish.

Winner Défi des Seigneurs 2013

I like the nice atmosphere and the friendly staff. Everything took place at the sports stadium in Niederbronn and as for the first day, there had been about 200 runners, for the MAC6 there have been about 600 runners altogether. It was kind of a family event on Sunday. There have been also other distances with about 50 and 10 km. so everyone could find the best distance for his skills or which distance seems most preferably.

After registration you have been given three presents. Two mustard’s and a really nice local beer.

Gifts

The has been really delicious local food and pasta.

Niederbronn and the surrounding mountains are part of the Vosges mountains. They go up to 1400mD, but the race was ranging between 200 and 550 (Grand Wintersberg). On the Sunday at the Grand Wintersberg, they have been playing the alpenhorn, what reminded me a bit of Switzerland. 🙂

Vosges

Here is my grading. Any comments appreciated.

  • grading overall: 7 pts
  • difficulty: 3 pts
  • markings: 10 pts
  • organization: 8 pts
  • food: 8 pts
  • costs: 7 pts
  • fun: 7 pts
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Ultrabericus, straight trail, 16.3.2013

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Nice run in a beautiful landscape with a perfect organization and very friendly and helpful supporters. IMAG1777

I arrived by car from the direction of Switzerland. You have to take account of the highway fees. Going to and going back had been about 30 euros altogether.IMAG1755

Also there might be a lot of traffic from and to Italy around Mailand (Milano). The hotel with three stars has been just fine and very good.

The weather was in between 5 and 10 degrees. The sun had glimpsed sometimes through and sent some warm beams to all runners.

The race started at the great Piazza dei Signori in Vicenza, in the middle of the town at 10 o’clock in the morning.IMAG1787a This has been quite a reasonable time. Since many races start very early. The last could finish until 23:30 in the night. There had been about 700 registrations. 600 managed to get into the finish.

About every 10 – 15 km, there had been a checkpoint, with all what you wanted: orange, banana, figs, water, iso drinks, salted nuts, cheese, cake, biscuits and so on.

The race was also open for twin teams. They run both one half of the race. The winner was about 6 hours. It was a not very technical race, with some single trails and not difficult gradients.

Every finisher got a medal and a small light bag.

 

Ultrabericus Trail 2013

Track Length: 67.3km
Altitude Range: 397m (Min Height: 22m ~ Max Height: 419m)
Total Climb: 2145m | Total Descent: 2148m
Address: 36100 Vicenza, Vicenza, Veneto
Latitude: 45.5472071
Longitude: 11.5464623

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  • grading overall: 7 pts
  • difficulty: 3 pts
  • markings: 10 pts
  • organization: 9 pts
  • food: 9 pts
  • costs: 7 pts
  • fun: 8 pts
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Must check out: Trail Running Shop in the Netherlands: Scarabee

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If your close to Valkenswaard (near Einhoven), you should have a look at Scarabee. The shop has a lot of trail running brands like salomon, north face. And they have everything to try out and are very helpful. And they know their stuff and can give you many tips and hints if you want. all i know of are trail runners themselves. Also they have a lot of shoes from Merrell, Fivefingers, La Sportiva. Everything you can think of. Also shipment if free if you order from Europe.

http://www.trailrunshop.nl

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I’m now part of the UTMB in 2013

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UTMB Official Video – The North Face® Ultra-Trail du Mont-Blanc®

Today i got my official confirmation letter. After that i had still to register for the race, but now i’m registered for the UTMB. I still have to send my doctors certificate and hopefully will complete this last task by the end of this week. I have kept my coefficient of two for the next year 2014.

For those who do not know what i’m talking about or just want to get an impression of the race:

All in all there have been so many runners trying to get a starting place. Every year there are more runners trying to get a race number. I have read about 10.000 runners trying to register. Not only UTMB, but for CCC, TDS and PTL altogether. But still there are a lot. So i thought, why not do it this year. I have put so many effort into preparation already until now. So, what will be the situation next year.  So i decided to take the race this year.

 

 

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UTMB bib race ship

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Got my number. After donating i got the last of 50 numbers for this years utmb. Will get my number next week. Great. So i’m registered for the utmb this year. I will write more later. Hiphip huray. 🙂

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Registered for two runs. Happy running. :-)

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Registered today for two runs.

and the

07.30 a.m. Grosse Scheidegg
10.40 a.m. First (second time through)
12.10 p.m. Oberläger Bussalp
16.00 p.m. Schynige Platte
18.30 p.m. Burglauenen
21.00 p.m. Wengen
23.30 p.m. Männlichen
05.00 a.m. Alpiglen

On the Eiger trail there are already 240 male and 40 female runners registered and only 400 are allowed. Seems like, that this race will be booked out before the start.
So you should hurry to become registered. Looking forward for this race. It starts on the 20.7. at 5 o’clock in the morning.
And the finish for the last one to be in time is on the 21.7.13 at 9 o’clock in the morning.

Missed already a race in Vicenza (Italien), since have been to late. The http://ultrabericus.it has been already booked out since last month. So keep an eye on the race before.

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