Wednesday, May 19, 2010

So Many Shoes, So Little Time

Good running shoes are an essential element of a runner’s gear. There are folks who prefer to run barefoot but I’m not one of them (no offense). When I got serious about running a few years ago and realized my cute sneakers weren’t running shoes, I knew I had to do something about it. From reading running magazines and websites, I learned running shoes come in three major categories:

Neutral: for runners who don’t pronate and have high or normal arches

Stability: for runners who overpronate and have low to normal arches

Motion Control: for runners who overpronate and have low arches

Then I went to my local running store to find out which shoes would be good for me. I took my shoes off and walked while one of the sales clerks watched and was told I needed a stability shoe. After I found out the type of shoes I needed, I started searching and trying on every stability shoe I could find. I settled on Brooks Adrenaline GTS.

Recently I walked into a Road Runner Sports store looking to check out some tights, shorts and skirts I had seen online. Shopping for running shoes was not on my agenda. A sales associate asked me if I wanted to have a Shoe Dog analysis done. I said, “Why not?” This involved walking across a pad connected to a computer, standing on the same pad and running barefoot on a treadmill to capture video of my stride. The analysis confirmed I need stability shoes. I have medium arches. I am right foot dominant, placing more force and weight on my right side. I was told my Brooks were a good shoe for me, which is good because I like them (I’m on my third pair). He also suggested a few others I could try. So when I’m in the market to buy new shoes, I’ll check those out.

In the past I purchased sneakers based on looks. What would match my outfit? What were most of the kids wearing at school? I didn’t buy them based on what I planned to do in them. Now I know better. If you’re looking for shoes, whether high tech or eyeballing it, your local running store is a good place to discover the proper shoe for you.

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