Thursday, June 9, 2011

Running Shoes Tips and Tricks

The Steamboat Classic is one week away, your training is just about over and have you taken a look at your running shoes? When it comes to running shoes they are the most important piece of equipment you’ll need for this sport. Yes, even more important that your ipod, even though sometimes you feel you cannot survive with out your tunes.
So how do you know when you need new shoes?

The rule of thumb on shoe replacement is about 300-400 miles depending on your body, where you run and how much. You really want to replace your shoes before you start experiencing any pain because that can lead to injuries. New shoes equal injury prevention. I’m so bad at this one. In fact when I ran Indy in May I had 355 miles on my shoes, I was hoping they would hold up until after steamboat but I was stupid and wrong. I waited until I felt pain. Please learn from my BAD habits and don’t wait till you feel pain. My ankles were weak (sooo bad) my hamstrings tighter than tight but the worst pain of all was I have been having constant back pain. Deep down I knew it was from my worn out shoes but I told myself I needed to do more core and back strengthening. WRONG. So dead wrong. I’m lucky I didn’t hurt myself.

What do I look for in a running shoe?

I think this will vary per person, your size and what your looking for. The marathoner, the causual runner, the track star are all going to have different needs. Bottom line is you will want something that fits well and offers support.

Where do I go for running shoes?

I always tell people stay away from the big discount shoe stores. Nothing against them but if this is something you want to do seriously you’re simply not going to get the expertise and knowledge at a big box shoe store than what you will from a running specific store. Locally in Peoria I love Running Central. Last year when I took up the sport I broke down and went there. I was terrified because I thought I was going to “pay through the roof” for my shoes. Well I didn’t and what I got was a whole load of knowledge and information I didn’t know I needed. They know things that your probably don’t from your arches to your pronation. They watch you run and have you try out all sorts of different shoes until you find the one that is a perfect fit for you. In fact every time I’ve been to RC they always put me in multipl pairs of shoes with a different shoe on each foot. Plus they encourage you to take a run down the sidewalk to ensure you are wearing the right shoe for you. They keep track of all the shoes you’ve purchased and truly give you one on one service that I have yet to find anywhere else.

What about the cost?
I price check EVERYTHING! And the shoes I’ve gotten have been the exact same price at all the different shoe stores. The difference is the knowledge behind the store and the sport. I will also tell you I have gone with the cheap shoes before looking to save a buck and I always end up spending more. They don’t last and never feel as good so I will have to go back and get another new pair.

Other tips-

When buying shoes remember you do need them a size bigger. Because as you run your feet swell. If you don’t have that extra room it leads to injuries, discomfort and sometime even the dreaded purple toe nails!

Make sure YOU’RE comfortable in the shoe, after all it is YOU that is doing the running!

Don’t be swayed by fads! Just because “everyone is wearing it” doesn’t mean it is the right shoe for you!

And its okay to not want a shoe if you don’t like the colors. I say this because today I really liked two pairs of shoes. In fact it was a very hard decision between the two, the colors turned me off on one pair, so I went with the other. Hey, I’m a girl, I do like a little bit of style. But only let this one affect you if you are in the same situation. If you hate the color but it is indeed the right shoe and the better one for you then get it. But also just pick up some new tops to go with it, then you’ll love the colors!

Last I just wanted to thank Danielle and Running Central for all their help today I can’t wait to get out there for a run in my new Saucony’s!

Disclaimer-I am not a professional just someone who loves to run and has learned a few things along they way. I hope what I have learned helps and inspires you.

Happy Running-See you next weekend at the 38th Annual Steamboat Classic!


  1. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. I am a creature of habit. I default to the current version of whatever shoe I have been wearing. When I started running (6 years ago) I wore the ASICS Cumulus. I used that shoe for a couple generations, but then it seemed to have changed and didn't fit right. So I tried on different shoes of the same type and chose the Nike Vomvero. I have stayed with that model ever since and I am now running in the Vomero 6. I will probably stay with the Vomero unless they change it. Kind of lame and boring, I know, but you gotta stick with what works for you.

  3. How did you decide not to run in the Nike's any more? Seems like a big difference from those to the more cushioned Saucony.

  4. Your right they are a VERY different shoe. I first started with the lunarglides and I liked them but went to the free's because it was the new and improved design, stupid I know. They turned out to not work well with me. I had ligament replacement surgery a year and a half ago and while I liked the free's running in them I realized I need more cushion and more support. So when I went to replace them that's what I said I need more cushion and more support and that's how I got the Sauconys lol. But I'm still adapting to the different feel but so far so good.