THE Shoe

For a girl who usually refuses to buy pink running shoes or pink anything, the new ALL ridiculously pink running shoes will somehow have to work.  In fact, when trying them out at the running store, I tried to make other shoes work and kept coming back to these.  Blue is my favorite color so the blue and green color palette typically attracts my eyes, but I don’t mind bright colors, so bright pink is an exception.  Well, welcome to my running shoe rack Miss Saucony Mirage 3.  Hopefully, the others won’t pick on you and you will brighten my days.

Every time I get fitted for a pair of running shoes it brings back memories of my daddy taking me to get fitted for shoes when I was a little girl.  We would always hit the local Swag store in Louisville.  My very first pair of running shoes were Asics and if they weren’t stolen at a track meet, then I’d still have them on my rack.  As you may know, shoes are like tires on a car…the treads only go so many miles before you start feeling a change and the need for replacements.   Since each time we want the best, we don’t always go back for the same ones due to new updates or new improvements.  The minimalist seems to be the hot shoe type lately and I have truly enjoyed running in lighter shoes with minimal support despite my flat feet.  Nevertheless, each time I go back for either the same shoe or a shoe I’ve been wanting, I end up with an entirely different breed. 

I would highly recommend people to get fitted for running shoes. Even if you know the shoe you want.  I have been a big fan of local running stores since my younger days and continue to shop that way.  You get more personable, one-on-one service.  They analyze your gait, walk, run and find a shoe that fits your feet in efforts to minimize any instability that can further lead to acute or chronic injuries.  For the first time, I decided to choose the shoe myself since online shoe companies now provide a way to evaluate your own gait and biomechanics in order to match their shoe to you.  If you don’t know much about body mechanics, then even that can be overwhelming.  After reading reviews and discovering the new Mizuno Wave Inspire 9, I decided this was the shoe for me despite the greater change heel to toe depth than my current Brooks Pure Cadence.  I was thinking maybe I need that extra cushion for longer runs.  Here’s where you can try fitting yourself from My Precision Fit via Mizuno’s website: My Precision Fit

Needless to say, I walked out with a completely different shoe.  It’s kind of like looking at wedding dresses in catalogs and when you go in to try it on, it doesn’t look right on you.  Or, if there’s a car you really like in ads but quickly becomes disappointing once you test drive it.  You discover blind spots or it doesn’t feel right when you’re sitting in the driver’s seat.  Finding THE shoe is much like finding THE dress or maybe it’s like finding THE car.  It’s gotta look good on us, bring out our personalities, or simply meet our expectations.  It’s a pretty long investment and commitment so it has to be just right.  After doing all this research on the Mizuno Wave Inspire, I thought I’d just try them on, run a few hundred feet and viola – it’s a quick process.  In addition, I talked my husband into coming since it was gonna be a quick trip and we could run some errands while out.  Well, as usual, it turned into a 2-hour decision escapade (no surprise to my husband)!  I’m a VERY indecisive person and prefer my husband on hand when making big decisions.  I will typically make it down to two choices then it becomes crazy…my mind starts racing, I’m sweating, and ahhh.  Sometimes I walk out with two pairs and try them out on a treadmill, but since I was ordering them, I had to make my decision on the spot!  I seriously have to rely on my husband to help me make that final choice!  

We had a running clinic yesterday morning and took the chance to test out my shoes.  The mistake I made was running over 6.5 miles in them without gradually working in my miles.  I certainly know better.  However, I was planning on running 3-4 but my body felt like going longer.  I thought they were comparable to the Brooks Pure Cadence I had previously.  They are, but they weren’t broken in…so, I’m a little sore in the calves.  Both shoes are very light and have a 4 mm drop from the heel to toe.  I have very narrow feet so most of the time that is part of my dilemma, hence why I couldn’t just go with the new Pure Cadence (not enough room to tighten the shoe laces). When hunting for your running shoes…keep these tips in mind:

Tips from Tiff:
1.     Bring your old running shoes if you have them.  It helps to compare and the running experts can look at your tread marks to determine what kind of stability you need.
2.     Do some research.  Check out the 2013 Shoe Guide from Runner’s World: 2013 Spring Shoe Guide
Or even the running shoes guru: Shoe Review
3.     Bring your favorite running socks to try on with the shoes! I forgot mine last time and it makes a difference when you have YOUR socks!
4.     Most stores will have you try them out…run in them outside before purchasing.
5.     Ask about their return policy.  Most places will let you return them even if you run in them for a week or so, however, make sure you run in them on a treadmill and not outside if you’re unsure about a pair of shoes.
6.     Replace your shoes after every 300-400 miles or if you simply feel different in your legs or joints.  If you own a minimalist shoe…they wear out sooner than that.  Sometimes our legs can become achy after running a long time in old shoes.  However, sometimes you can have an injury and when you know your body, you can usually tell the difference.
7.     After buying your new shoes, gradually work in the miles.  For instance, don’t do a long run in a new pair of shoes.  You are working different muscles and sometimes you can even overstretch or simply injure your muscles if you run long in them (repetition and force especially on the same joints or body parts, can do some damage – I’ve learned this about the upper body in my research project at school). 
8.     Get fitted EVERY time!  In fact, physical therapists that specialize in running or endurance can actually be a great resource if you have one.
9.     Most importantly…have FUN in your new shoes!

Quote of the day: “Running has given me the courage to start, the determination to keep trying, and the childlike spirit to have fun along the way. Run often and run long, but never outrun your joy of running.”  ~ Julie Isphording

Bible verse of the day:  “Did you know in a race, that all the runners run, but only one gets the prize?  Run in such a way as to get the prize.  Everyone who competes in the games goes into strict training.  They do it to get a crown that will not last; but we do it to get a crown that will last forever.  Therefore, I do not run like a man running aimlessly…” ~ 1 Corinthians 9:24-26


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