My Running Life: If The Shoe Fits

My Running Life: If The Shoe Fits

Whether you’re starting a new training routine or you’re getting into running for the first time, there are a few wardrobe staples you’ll need. Regardless of whether you’re spending only 30 minutes or several hours in your gear at a time, you’ll want to make sure that everything fits properly, both for your safety and comfort.

Your shoes are going to be THE most important piece of running gear you own. Because of this, make sure you spend plenty of time trying on different styles and sizes to make sure you get that perfect fit. I strongly, strongly recommend heading down to a reputable running store and letting their experts help you find a good fit. (Ask any runners in your town where they get their shoes and they’ll probably recommend a store or two.)

When it comes to shoes, it might help to bring in your current pair of sneakers so the staff can analyze the areas of your shoes that get the most wear. Do you under or over pronate? Are you a mean heel striker? The wear on your shoes can help them see where you’re likely to need the most support. Some running stores might even have the ability to analyze your gait using a treadmill to see what shoe type might fit best for you.

 


Amy's new and old running shoes


A good running store should also be able to recommend shoe brands based on your type of foot. For example, I have a high arch so I love my Brooks. People with flatter feet probably won’t find my ideal fit as comfortable, however. Ask a sales person, if you don't know what arch type you have.


After you decide on a brand, try on a few different sizes. Lots of experts recommend trying on shoes a half size to a full size larger than your usual shoe size. For example, I typically wear a 6.5 shoe size, but for my sneakers I go for a 7.5 in Brooks. The reason behind this is to make sure that I have plenty of room left in my toe box so my toenails don’t hit against the front of my shoes when running (which can be pretty common if you’re running hills). Hitting the front of your sneakers can cause you to get bruised toenails or make them fall off completely, so make sure you leave enough room at the front of your shoes for growth (I’ve had experts recommend the width of a thumb).

Once you decide on a brand and a shoe size, take them for a spin. Seriously. Run a lap around the exterior of the store and see how the shoes feel. Walking around the store will only give you so much insight, so ask the store if you can take them for a test run. Most stores should be very obliging, but you should probably check first so they don’t think you’re taking the gear and splitting.

Even after all this prep work, when you bring your shoes home and take them for a few runs, you might realize that they just aren’t working for you or are very uncomfortable. Ask the store about their return policy. Some stores will allow you some leeway when it comes to returning used shoes, as long as there aren’t visible signs of wear or damage. You should be able to tell in the first 20 miles or so whether they’ll work, and this shouldn’t cause too much wear on the shoes.

 

Hit the ground running, and make sure the shoe fits.

 

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Amy is our marathon running contributor who will be sharing her tips, tricks and insights on running and getting ready for a marathon. Keep reading her column for more great running advice.

Amy is our marathon running contributor who will be sharing her tips, tricks and insights on running and getting ready for a marathon. Keep reading her column for more great running advice. - See more at: http://www.fitandfabliving.com/index.php/everyday-exercises/7033-see-spot-run-tips-on-running-with-your-dog.html#sthash.zN4LuR5R.dpuf

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