Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Found my Socks!

Well I wasn't really looking, so in a way they've found me. I had given up on finding a good pair and put all my faith instead on taping and foot lubricants; Duck tape, Bag Balm, Body Glide and such. However I think I've found my brand - Drymax! No I'm not sponsored by Drymax, frankly I'm not fast enough to be a sponsored runner and no I have no financial interest in the company.

All of that said I really dig them. I liked them so much that I've started giving out pairs to some of my triathlete/runner friends. In fact I'll mail a pair to the next 3 people to email me about wanting to try them out, no worries on the shipping. The catch is that they are sized large, men's 8.5 to10.5 or women's 10 to 12.

So back in August Olga gave me five pairs, I gave away three and trained and raced on the last two. Back then I gave them away because I didn't see what the big deal was about these socks. Then Donald had a post about them on his blog. After racing successfully on a pair I shared my positive result with him not realizing that he in turn would forward my name to Drymax. They got in contact with me and asked if they could send me some socks to test. Pretty nice.

So far I've been mum about it because I was going to wait until the end of the year to give them a final review but I don't think I need to wait that long. They've performed superbly in my day to day training, pacing at the Rio del Lago 100-miler, the Skyline to the Sea 50k and just recently the Dick Collins Firetrails 50-mile race. Both Skyline to the Sea and Firetrails were races where I went all out and I had no problems with blisters. I haven't had a blister since August, not even at Rio del Lago where the fine sand got into my shoes and feet (I forgot my gaiters). They have worked very well for me. My socks don't feel damp after a long run.

The place I usually get and have the worst blisters is in my toes. When I train I get blisters in my toes. When I race I get blisters in my toes. Some of you know that when I race I pre-tape the bottoms of my feet but that does nothing for my toes. I've just learned to suck it up but now things are looking up. I'd like to see how these socks perform in a dry 100-miler with fine dirt and sand like Western States or Rio del Lago, then again on a wet one like Kettle Moraine and Bighorn this year. We'll see, they'll be part of my standard gear from now on so I'll have many opportunities to try them out in different conditions.

The kit they sent me came with a book that showcased all the different sock varieties they offered. For example they had socks for hot and cold weather running. They even had socks specifically made for trail running which has a little more padding, cut higher to help protect the ankles and in colors that look good with mud. Personally I run in their standard running sock because I like my pairs cut low. If the trail running socks were cut low I would use them.

This leads me to a couple of things I hope they produce in the future. I hope they produce trail running socks that are low-cut and that they make their standard running socks in colors other than white. The running socks are predominantly white and after a day on the trails they have that permanent dirty look. No one knows when your shoes are on but they bug me nevertheless. Overall I'm quite happy with my Drymax pairs, especially since I didn't expect they would make such a difference.

Lastly, these socks will go well with my new kicks which will be the topic of my next post. I don't remember being this excited about gear and racing this late in a season. It's um...very, very cool. I hope this groove lasts all the way to mid-December.

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23 comments:

  1. Very neat! I agree on color for regular socks though, since I like what I call "road version" (but, opposite to you, I like them high, and I don't like much padding of trail sock). So they are making a special sock for me:) Drymax rock!
    BTW, what was that I had hanging? Email me, you confused me.

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  3. Xmas time for your feet! Am I right to assume that you got some new Vasque's as well? Looking forward to that review.

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  4. Sweeeeeeeeet! Free stuff is always a good thing. Glad to know it's not just me that can't get socks white again. I like to run in ANY color but white.

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  5. I'm a recent convert to Drymax. Long-time Injinji fan. Olga turned me onto them this past Summer. After wearing a hole in a pair of socks I purchased and contacting Drymax, they sent me 16 pairs of every style. My favs are the ultras(orange) and hot weather(blue) socks. I like the new look of your blog!

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  6. Crap, I wanted to win. LOL!! I will be the first one here for your next post if you are giving away three pair of tennis shoes. ;>)

    It's cool that you are staying focused and excited! Having been out of it and now back in it I know important that is!

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  7. What time are you working Saturday? Jo Lynn and I will be there at 6:45 or so in the morning...

    Nice socks.

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  8. olga: They are making a sock for you?! You so spoiled:) Those photos from the Grand Canyon makes me want to go back at the same time I'm inspired to go somewhere new.

    mike: Victoria and I were just talking about you on Facebook. Something about her having her cast off so she can drink more and not have balance issues and me wondering if you'll have enough beer. I mean you are the one running and all.

    jo lynn: Free stuff is awesome, especially if they WORK like they're supposed. I'm quite psyched about these socks. Hey so I'll finally get to meet you at SF24. Hello fellow 6:45AM volunteer! So early, well at least we are not running.

    larry: Hey man, nice trip to the Grand Canyon. I've never tried the Injinji's but I'm impressed with the Drymax. Good to know that you've tried both and opted for these socks instead. Thanks for the compliment. I need a new direction with the blog. I like how the white background make the photos more vivid.

    j~mom: Hey lady, I've got a pair for you, no worries. In fact I have some of the hot weather blue socks larry was talking about. Lightweight and thin. Good for Arizona, Larry is in Texas.

    victoria: 6:45! But now that I know you two will be there too maybe I do my fashionably late roll at 7AM. I keeed. I'm excited to help and watch these runners go round and round. Sometime during the day I will sneak off to Sports Basement for some shopping.

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  9. Pppfffftt "not fast enough" my butt ;-)

    I keep hearing about these DriMax socks . . . I guess I need to get me a pair LOL

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  10. Don't be too late Rick. ;-)
    I'm picking Victoria up at BART in Oakland at 6:20 so we too, may be (un)fashionably late. Should be a fun day, right?

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  11. Very cool. Happy feet are fast feet! I'm still loving my Drymax, too.

    Now we all need to figure out a way to get free Montrail samples.

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  12. ... or Vasque. Either one is fine with me.

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  13. marcelina: if you have problems with blisters and such I would definitely try out a pair, especially now that you are hooked on marathons.

    jo lynn: I'll do my best not to be late. I've seen Wendell's face on race morning, best not to keep him waiting:)

    donald: Yes how do we do that without having to run faster to be sponsored? While I'm pondering the question I'm gonna look for extra work to fuel my running habit:)

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  14. Love Drymax. Gillian (Zombies) recommended them to me because I cannot stop getting blisters on my big toes. So far so good. I use the trail socks. I find the other ones too thin and the trail socks are heaven to just pad around the house in too.

    Sounds like you'll be at One Day. See you there if you'll still be around in the late afternoon.

    Miki

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  15. Well now I have to try these socks!

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  16. miki: the Zombies like them huh, they know all the good stuff. Just ordered a couple of items on the store today. Hard to pass up the 15% coupon. Finally pulled the trigger on a couple of items I was on the fence about. See you Saturday, I'll be there.

    jennie: they're great, I think you'll like them. It'll come in handy for your training for IM Neeece!

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  17. What is it with white socks, so impractical!

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  18. Those look like nice socks. I will have to try a pair. Currently my favorite running socks are made by Thorlos, but I always seem to have a hard time finding them (at least in my size, as I have big feet!). Thanks for the positive product review, Rick!

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  19. so where does one find these magical socks? rei? sports basement? i have to keep pace with your technological advancements oh wise sage.

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  20. Just ordered a bunch of them from ZR last night, myself - I'm trying one of each low style for now.

    See you Saturday...and Sunday! :-)

    Sarah (PCTR)

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  21. I'm trying again! : )

    Okay, I figured out your new comments format doesn't like my mac! (shhh....don't tell anyone I'm at work).

    Glad the socks are working for you! I've only heard good things about Drymax...good to know it's not just marketing hype.

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  22. $25 for a pair of socks?!

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  23. Kelly Ridgway6:48 PM

    Wow, Rick, your feet sure look great in those socks!!

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