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Shoe Envy

Posted Mar 18 2013 1:54pm
I get a lot of questions from people who want to start running and want to know what shoes they should purchase. While I am no expert I thought I would share what I have learned over the years.

It may take awhile to find the perfect shoe so be patient. Try more than one pair if you can. I also recommend a place like Road Runner Sports who has a return policy on shoes. Yes an actual return policy on running shoes is brilliant. In addition go to a specialty running store where they can evaluate your running and give you tips on what the right shoe is to buy. I got lucky with my first pair of Nikes that they recommended to me years ago. I have just continued to buy the same brand over and over year after year. And yes I buy a lot of running shoes. I replace my shoes about every 6 to 8 months. Or when I start to get blisters on the sides of my feet.

But I admit I get shoe envy every time I show up at a race and see all these cool looking shoes. This week while in San Diego I went and bought a new pair and didn't listen to what my voice in my head was telling me "stick with the same brand Amanda...If it ain't broke don't fix it."

Instead I got caught up in the super sweet shiny purple and pink Asics that were staring at me. And looked oh so cute on my feet. They were much better than the ugly grey "old man-looking" Nikes that were on the wall next to them. But yet those were the same Nikes that I had been wearing for years and have done me well. I snatched up the Asics and couldn't wait to go test those babies out.

I laced them up and went down to San Diego Bay. I dreamed of running faster and longer and all the while looking like a TOTAL PRO too.

Two minutes into my run my foot felt different. I just kept running. Five minutes into my run my foot went numb. I just kept running. Ten minutes into my run I had really bad pain on the ball of my foot at the base of the toes. I stopped. I could no longer feel my toes and my foot hurt bad. After a long walk back and some expletive words mouthed, I boxed them right back up and took them back to the store.

I came home with the Nikes. And while they certainly don't look that cool, they are comfortable and that is way more important than foot pain.

What I have learned is that the Asics I picked were a minimalist shoe which meant it doesn't have much support on the bottom. And not knocking Asics at all, they just didn't work for me. I have really sensitive feet especially on the bottom. I don't even like to walk around barefoot, they are that sensitive. Seeing folks run barefoot or with those glove shoes just makes me cringe! However when I run with these Nikes I feel like I am running on pillows. Sounds corny but I need all the cushioning I can get.


So I dedicate this post to my "old man" looking Nike shoes. While they don't have a rainbow of colors on them, they do just what they are supposed to do-keep me comfortable and injury free!
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