Home » Review, Running Talk » Secret Santa and Saucony Kinvaras!

Secret Santa and Saucony Kinvaras!

Hey friends! I hope you’re all having a great weekend! I meant to post this last night,  but I was out till the early hours of the morning with some friends and didn’t really have the energy when I got back, so I’m posting it now instead! Weekend recap to come soon!


The postman has been very kind to me recently. Our house is clearly his favourite, because I can’t imagine any other houses in our neighbourhood have a monkey answering the door…



Last week, he dropped off a present from my Secret Santa!



The lovely Laura organised a UK bloggers Secret Santa, and mine was Becky!  She sent me so many awesome Christmassy goodies!

Cute tissues (so useful for me right now haha!), a funny coaster (caption=so true), teas, a gingerbread man tree decoration and a sparkling cinnamon Yankee candle


I love it all!! The gingerbread man tree decoration has pride of place on my Christmas tree:


And some real ones will be joining it soon! Smile


And I’ve been making my room smell nice by burning the mini Sparkling Cinnamon candle. I could eat that smell!



Thank you so much Becky!! Open-mouthed smile


The other package was a delivery from Zalando!



Amy from Zalando contacted me and kindly offered me the chance to review some products from their site. So I jumped at the offer! Especially after I saw their range of running shoes Winking smile I ended up ordering these:




Saucony Kinvaras! Anyone heard of these? They’ve gotten a fair amount of rave reviews this year, so I thought I’d try them out for myself! I’m also looking into more minimalist running, so these are the perfect choice for a good ‘transition’ shoe.



“The Saucony Kinvara is a brand new lightweight neutral running shoe with a low profile design that allows your foot to run uninhibited. The reduced height difference between heel and forefoot stimulates a mid-to-forefoot strike, yet the shoe still feels well cushioned and stable.”


I tried them out for the first time on Thursday, when I almost drowned/got blown into a ditch by running through a storm…a good test of the shoes I’d say! And they held up surprisingly well! My racing flats (fire shoes!) are Saucony Grid A4’s, and they are the least waterproof shoes EVER! They let in water through the bottom and tops because there are lots of holes for air ventilation or something. So I expected similar results from these shoes, but not at all! They held up amazingly well, even running through the mud! I was very impressed!


Awkward leg shot…


Other thoughts on the Kinvaras:

  • They are very light. They are 7.7oz, which is feather-like compared to my usual training shoe (Brooks Adrenaline) which is almost 13oz! Makes a HUGE difference, and I feel so much faster in them!
  • I don’t heel-strike. I want to do a full post on this in the future (I got grief about my bad form from my coach!), but basically I heel-strike badly in my Brooks Adrenalines but noticed that I didn’t in my lightweight racing flats, which is part of the reason I decided to move towards a more minimalist shoe. With only a 4mm heel-drop, I land mid-foot in the Kinvaras.
  • Despite being more ‘minimalist’ they definitely still have a cushioned, springy feel, which I love! More so than my Brooks for sure, but that is probably because I’ve been wearing them for 9 months…! Smile with tongue out
  • I love the look of them! Sorry, but I am pretty superficial when it comes to shoes, and I think these look pretty darn good!
  • They fit great for my feet. I have fairly narrow feet, and my Brooks are a bit ‘roomy’ for me. These are much more snug, and I love that! It feels like I’m running in a cushioned sock!


So basically, they are great shoes all-round, and I love them!


I really questioned my sanity after stepping outside the house dressed like that when there were patches of ice on the ground. I almost froze to death.


I also ordered these Asics Ayami Armwarmers:612550_0262_ayami_medium

They are knitted, so they are SO cosy and warm, and they were also great for storing things in! I stuffed tissues and my phone in them, and they didn’t bother me or shift at all! I hate running in long sleeved shirts (weird quirk), so these are perfect for me, and will definitely be a staple in my winter running wardrobe Smile



I do really recommend Zalando in general. I had never heard of them before, but they have a great range of both running shoes and clothes, and the good prices and free delivery aren’t half bad either Winking smile


*And please note, that although this was a product review and I was sent these products to review for free, I have given my completely honest opinion, and have no qualms about giving negative reviews. I obviously didn’t here, simply because from this experience I have no negative opinions of either Zalando or the products reviewed.*


Are you loyal to one particular running shoe, or brand? I have Brooks, Asics and Saucony shoes, so I’m not exactly loyal to one haha! But I am loving my Saucony shoes at the mo!


Have you opened any Christmas presents yet? The Secret Santa present was my first one, but I’m opening another Secret Santa present that I’m doing with some friends on Friday…exciting!!


Are you a heel-striker, or a forefoot/midfoot striker? I was a serious heel-striker, but I’m saying goodbye to that habit!


Hope you’re all having a great weekend! <3

35 Responses to Secret Santa and Saucony Kinvaras!

  1. I am loyal to Asics for running shoes! They were the first pair I bought, served me well and now it is just a case of ‘if it ain’t broke don’t fix it’ :)! You have such long legs- jealous!
    Khushboo recently posted..Indigo Deli-cious

  2. Yay, so glad you liked everything!
    Becky recently posted..Richmond day out

  3. What amazing packages! I would’ve been stoked too :D
    I’m not a huge runner, so I’ve actually never heard of those shoes before, but they sound really comfy and great. Not to mention the color is rockin!
    Oh and your monkey outfit….AMAZING!
    Alexandra recently posted..Footie PJ’s, Puffins, and a Review

  4. Haha, I just love your moneky costume! :)
    All the things you got look great! I’m loving the gingerbread man decoration :)

    Great review!
    Shannon from Healthiful Balance recently posted..teapigs Review

  5. *raises hand* Heel striker here, guilty as charged. Interesting about barefoot shoes helping with that – my heels are killing me (severe bruising it seems, not plantar whatsit as originally diagnosed). I wish I could afford some of those shoes to see if it helps! I must admit to wishing Zalando would send me free running gear!

    The Gingerbread Man is adorable – what a great Secret Santa.

    ~Jessica~ recently posted..Secret Santa Saturday

    • My heels were often sore after running too! To be fair, it’s because I wasn’t very light-footed (I stamped a bit when I ran) so that was partly to blame. I actually tried to run again in my Brooks, and I couldn’t NOT heel-strike in them, no matter how hard I tried, which I found interesting! I also hated the way they felt after running in my Kinvaras! So yeah, I’m a convert! :P

      And we are twins, because I rocked the tempo shorts + long compression socks that you showed in your post in my run as well! I am definitely trying that circuit workout by the way- it looks great! :)

  6. I’m on my second pair of Kinvaras! I love how light they are, and they definitely improved my form (no more heel striking). Mine are bright blue with bright pink laces – so that’s another reason I love them.
    Lauren recently posted..World Run Day

  7. New shoes …. and fo FREE. I’d call that a successful day!
    Katelyn @ Chef Katelyn recently posted..Greek Men + Prose-spiration.

  8. how fun! love the secret santa! Love the new shoe too, hope they cure those shin splits. Are you feeling better?
    lindsay recently posted..Scenes & Senses of Christchurch

  9. Yey for Secret Santa! What lovely gifts :-) I have to say I’m pretty loyal to my asics I just wish they were cheaper! How good is Zalando though? I was very impressed, love the arm warmers!

  10. Love your secret santa gifts! I love your trainers. I have some Zalando products coming and cannot wait!
    Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes recently posted..A Mega Festive Smoothie and giveaway winners

  11. Love the monkey PJ’s! I loved my Saucony Kinvara’s at first but I got extensor tendonitis. My ortho doc said no minimalist running shoes for me. They felt great though, so I don’t want to blame the injury solely on the shoes. Hope they work well for you!!! I am training for my first marathon so I am trying to find the perfect shoe.
    Jessica recently posted..Holy Hummus Batman!

  12. What does the coaster say? Sorry, I may be blind lol!
    I have brooks adrenaline (which I LOVE) but I have such a narrow foot too and they are roomy! I’ve been looking into minimalist shoes, so this was a great review. I think I heel strike, I’m not completely sure.

    • Haha it says “save the earth, it’s our only form of chocolate”! So true, so true! :P

      And I’ve heard that Brooks are bringing out ‘narrow fit’ versions of the Adrenalines and the other shoes, so us narrow-footed people can be happy! :D

  13. I could totally use those arm warmers! Its FREEEEEZING where I live! I would probably end up wearing them everywhere…even when I’m not running LOL!
    Kaila @healthyhelperblog recently posted..The Payoff

  14. I’m so jealous of your Saucony’s! I’ve been lusting over there shoes forever.
    I usually wear asics or nikes for running, then I have 3 other pairs of nikes that I rotate through on cross-training and strength-training days. So, Nike is definitely my go-to shoe brand. I’m definitely looking to change it up though. (Saucony’s and Inov8′s are on my Christmas list!)
    I haven’t “opened” any presents yet, but I helped my mom pick out a lot of my gifts so I know what they are! haha.
    Emily recently posted..It’s Simple.

  15. I have Kinvara 2′s and I LOVE THEM! I got them to do winter runs and outdoor runs because my feet are too sensitive to go the long haul in vibrams (which are now treadmill/track shoes), and I’ve actually been increasing my mileage substantially just so I can run more in them. LOVE them. LOVELOVELOVE.
    Chelsea @ The Nut Butter Runner recently posted..When I’m sad, I make fudge.

  16. Awesome packages! :D When I switched from my New Balances to my current Zoot shoes, I felt so much faster and lighter too ’cause the shoes were so freaking light! And I think I’m a midfoot striker? More or less.
    Lyn @ FueledBySalad recently posted..Lazy Sunday Pancakes.

  17. I land midfoot. I’ve always been pretty good about that. Whenever I do the “90 steps, 60 seconds” test I’m always right on the mark! I’m conflicted about minimalist shoes. I wear orthotics, and that doesn’t exactly go hand in hand with the whole minimalist thing. I need to talk to someone who knows there stuff and get all my questions answered before I convert!
    Tara recently posted..The Injured Runner–Emotion (part 2)

  18. That gingerbread ornament is so adorable! I’m doing a secret santa thing with my friends too on Friday. 14 days until Christmas!
    Katie @ Nutrition in a peanut shell recently posted..10 Things

  19. [...] Secret Santa and Saucony Kinvaras! by Emma @ Sweet Tooth Runner [...]

  20. Aaaaaw,that gingerbread man is sooooo cute! :)
    I did a Secret Santa exchange with my friends already and I got a wonderfully plushy teddybear! ♥
    Kat @ a dash of fairydust recently posted..Secret Santa wishlist & an award.

  21. gotta say again how much i smile every time i see the pic of u in the bear suit!! :)

    dang girl, the postman was GOOD to u!! way too much fun and secret santa stuff always gets me excited.

    okay, i am way loyal to my shoes…been in the same style nike’s since about 2004. the structure triax. i do like playing with the minimalist ones a bit if it’s for short runs, but i pronate and don’t wanna risk it too much. :P
    Cait the Arty Runnerchick recently posted..Running Goes Greek – Are You Brave Enough to Pledge?

  22. I generally stick with Asics for racing flats. I find that I don’t heel strike either in minimalist shoes. I used to be the worse heel striker! That’s great your working on changing your running style it will take a few months but your feet will thank you later on :)
    Isabelle recently posted..Something Sweet Sunday

  23. I am a loyal brooks runner! I need some new ones actually so I’m totally going to check out zalando! Thanks for the review!

  24. I’ve never heard of those shoes!! I may have to try them out. Personally I like running in Pumas. I know a lot of people don’t think of them as a running shoe, but I really like the fact that they are so light because I prefer minimalist running. Lovin’ my Vibram 5-fingers!

    I love your blog! I just started a new blog today and I would love it if you would check it out!


  25. Love the gingerbread man! I opened my secret santa too, but that is the only one I have opened.
    Maria @ runningcupcake recently posted..Jam – tastic!

  26. Love your shoes! I’m in need of some new ones! :-)
    Kasey@Powercakes recently posted..Mini Dessert PowerCake

  27. I’ve never heard of those shoes either but they certainly look awesome. I’m accidentally loyal to Asics because they are consistently the cheapest, but they hold up well and are pretty good shoes. I have horrible heels so I have heel inserts in all my shoes. I’ve never found a shoe where I didn’t need them.
    StoriesAndSweetPotatoes recently posted..Spinach Pancakes Two Ways

  28. The gingerbread man is cute, but i agree he is definitely missing some edible friends!

    I wear Nikes… I used to wear brooks, but I’ve had nikes for 3 pairs in a row… and i’m not injured. So i figure “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” :)
    Josie recently posted..Mérida turns out pretty well….

  29. [...] amazing pain-free run in my new shoes! It was an early morning one, so I am still sleepy [...]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

CommentLuv badge