Two weeks ago a few coworkers and I started running on our lunch break. Our runs range from 2 -3 miles and if I’m brave I tack on any extra mileage when we are done. One member of our group said they couldn’t run more than a mile and has since done three. Another member said they wanted to stop when we hit two miles and now want us to increase our mileage. We are even talking about doing a 5K together as a team. It makes happy, proud and excited at just the thought.
So during our last run one of the group members asked me for my best piece of running advice. I am far from an excellent runner but April 30th will mark my 5 year anniversary of running so I consider myself a somewhat experienced runner. A told him as a new runner I would suggest getting a good pair of running shoes. There are a ton of gadgets, clothing options and nutrition supplements that I have spent lots of money on. Some of which I would also recommend but I was asked for my BEST piece of running advice.
So how do you get the perfect pair of running shoes? You have to go to a running speciality store and have them fit you and preform gait training. It might seem intimidating at first but trust me a good shoe will increase comfort, prevent injury and could be the difference between quitting and becoming a runner. Look in your area for a running specialty store like Fleet Feet or Heart & Sole Sports. Just ask someone working there to fit you for a shoe. They will ask to see you run on treadmill or the sidewalk out front to see if you are a normal, over or under pronator. That is just a fancy way of determining where you distribute your weight (inside v. outside). The attendant should give you a few options ranging in price. Try them all on, walk in them and buy the pair you think is the most comfortable.
Okay so you have the perfect shoe…now what?!
Here are my commandments for running shoes.
1. Buy your shoe a 1/2 to a full size larger. It will give your feet the room to wear those fancy padded runner sock and allow your feet to expand comfortably.
2. Do NOT wear your running shoes casually. Dont wear them to run errands or just around the house. A good pair of running shoes wont need much breaking in… save your shoe mileage. I keep an extra pair of crosstrain or old running shoes in the back of my car if I need to run errands after running at the gym.
3. Do NOT workout or cross train in your running shoes. If you are not running in them put them back on the shoe rack. I’ll say it again save your mileage.
4. Know when to say goodbye. The average running shoe has about 350 miles in them. The best way to know if your shoes have reached their max is to keep track of your mileage. I use dailymile to log my miles but there are numerous options out there. Once you get around 275 – 300 go get a new pair and start rotating them. If you are nearing that same mileage and your shins or knees start hurting that is also a sign that you need to replace your shoes. If my shoes are on sale I sometimes but two pairs so I already have replacement.
I use Saucony ProGrid Triump 7 but I think they now have version 8. I have been using these shoes since my very first half. I have tried a few other brands but I keep coming back to my running store recommendation of the ProGrid Triump. So go out there get your perfect running shoe and hit the streets, treadmill or trails.
While you are at go here and enter for a chance to win a $25 gift card to get your running playlist started!!