Going along with the theme of running shoes around here lately, I thought it would be great for us to all get a little more information about choosing a running shoe. Lucky for us, Sam from See Sam Run agreed to write a guest post while I am away, and she happens to work at a running store! Thanks, Sam for sharing this helpful information!
Hi everyone! I’m Sam and I blog over at See Sam Run. I write about things like my training, races, and other tidbits of my life. I’ve been reading Running out of Wine since I started running and I’m happy to be helping out Lisa while she’s away!
I’ve had almost two years of experience working in a couple of running stores, which totally plays into my slight shoe addiction. Seriously, who needs heels when you can have running shoes? Finds out, there are more to running shoes than you may think, and finding the best one for you is more than picking a box from a shelf because you like the color and brand!
5 Running Shoe Myths
Myth: Once I find “my shoe” I only need to wear that one!
Fact: Finding a shoe that works for you is the best feeling. Finding a couple pairs is even better. Running in different shoes is great for two reasons. One, it allows your feet to get used to running on different surfaces with different amounts of cushion and support. Two, it gives your shoes time to “decompress” after all of the pounding. I have a pair I wear for longer runs (Asics Gel Kayano), and a pair I wear for shorter runs (Brooks Pure Cadence). Two completely different shoes for my feet to love!
Myth: I need lots of support.
Fact: Not necessarily. While whether or not neutral vs. support shoes lead to, or diminish injury risk isn’t proven, the fact is we don’t all need support. A “support” shoe adds stability, which is great for someone who overpronates. In short, that’s when your foot and ankle roll inwards too much, making your stride less efficient. A stability shoe will help correct this motion, so you’re running on the middle of your foot instead of on the inside/medial edge of your foot. Too much stability, or stability when you don’t need it can alter your stride so you’re misaligned and are running inefficiently.
Myth: I wear a size xx shoe, I need that size running shoe.
Fact: Most people are in the wrong size running shoe. Typically, someone needs to go up ½ to a whole size from what their foot measures. Every time you take a step (which is a lot!) your foot slightly shifts forward due to your arch collapsing. You need space in the front of your shoe for this to happen without getting blisters, calluses, and WORSE – black toenails. A good rule of thumb is a thumb’s width of space between the tip of your longest toe and the end of the shoe.
Myth: My heel slips, this shoe is too big.
Fact: NOPE! The runner’s lace/heel-lock tie will be your new best friend. This tightens the heel closer to you so there is less slippage (however, some movement is okay – if there’s none you risk blisters). Typically this slippage happens because your heel is not as wide as your forefoot, which is super common in women. Imagine if there were different shoe lengths, widths, and heel sizes. That would make my job rough!
Myth: My shoes don’t look THAT worn, I can keep wearing them.
Fact: Shoes are made to last about 400 miles. Sometimes the tread still looks decent after that mileage, I know. However, there is also wear inside the shoes that can’t be seen. This doesn’t mean your shoes are totally “dead”, you’re just better off wearing them to the mall instead of running in them. Some shoes may last slightly less than 300 miles (Brooks PureFlow/Cadence, Saucony Kinvara, other lightweight shoes) while some may last more (Adidas Ultra Boost, Hoka One One models). Keep your shoes fresh, and your body will be happier when running!
These are only a few things about running shoes I get questions about all.the.time. Even if you only absorb one of these tips you’ll be doing yourself a favor. If you have any other questions about things you’ve heard about running shoes, feel free to ask them in the comments below or head to my blog to find how to contact me!
What are some crazy things you’ve heard about running shoes?
What’s your go-to pair of sneaks?