Okay.. so I am not Cinderella** but a pair of shoes did change my life!
Today, I am talking about the importance of finding the “right shoe for you”. By that I mean a shoe that is going to keep you comfortable and support your foot just right while you run.
I have gone through quite a few pairs of running shoes over the years and while you might be thinking that what you are running/ walking in now will do…trust me, it can be so much better!
I have a confession.. Up until this past year I had never been fitted for a running shoe. I felt that the knowledge I had was enough to choose the shoe that was right for me at my local Kohl’s. Don’t get me wrong, Kohls sells some awesome shoes, however, they were not the correct shoe for my feet.
I made many transitions between a minimal shoe to a neutral shoe, I even wound up running a half marathon in a trail shoe without realizing it!
Even though I knew the basics on sizing up so they fit properly, I was not choosing a shoe that offered the amount of support and structure I needed.
My first tip on finding a running shoe that fits is to visit a professional. Majority of running shoe stores will have someone on staff who will help you find a shoe that fits your needs. It is a really easy process and not as intimidating as you might think. The professionals are there to help!
The shoe that I personally wound up with is the Brooks Adrenaline GTS 15.. These shoes, let me tell you, are amazing! I knew going into this fitting that I have a tendency to pronate my feet but I was unaware of how awful my old shoes had been at supporting me. In previous races I have had a number of issues with my hips acting up and causing me issues for the last few miles, which lead me to want to quit on many occasions.
Thankfully, I was able to get these shoes before my last half marathon and I noticed a huge improvement. Not only did my feet feel comfortable even till the very end of the race, I had no hip pain throughout the entire race. That is saying something considering the fact that at the Tinkerbell Half Marathon I was in pain from mile 9 until the end.
Now that is not my way of telling you to run out and buy yourself a pair of Brooks.. As easy as it would be to hear a review from someone regarding a shoe and then going and picking it up, that is not exactly how it works.
On many occasions you will hear new runners asking more seasoned runners about what kind of shoe they wear. This is absolutely fine and I highly encourage you to find out what peopled impression of the shoe is and how it works for them.Here’s the problem.. you’re feet are not the same! While their shoe might be perfect for them, you might need something totally different.
Now, here is a few things to consider when you are going in for your shoe fitting.
*Don’t buy for looks. I know, I know.. you want the prettiest or most manly shoe on the wall but that might not be the shoe that works best for you. When you are trying shoes on try to ignore the color and judge the shoe based on how it feels. One thing to keep in mind is to ask the store if they offer the shoe in any other colors. In some cases you might be able to order your perfect shoe in another color.
*Try shoes on at the right time. By right time I mean don’t try a shoe on at 9:00 a.m. and then expect it to fit the same at 5:00 pm. Typically, your feet are done swelling for the day at around 4:00 p.m. Anytime after that is a good time to go try on shoes to get an accurate fit.
*Size matters. What I mean is that you shouldn’t assume that your normal shoe size is the shoe size you will wind up in running shoe wise. Typically you will size 1/2 a size to a full size to accommodate for the swelling that will take place when you run. Rule of thumb is just that, you want at least a nails length between the tip of your toe and the top of the shoe. If you do go in to get fitted, make sure they measure your feet to get an accurate idea of what size you should be wearing.
*Be honest. Remember, you are going to be spending a lot of time with these shoes. It is important that you are honest with yourself and the person doing the fitting regarding how the shoe feels. If something doesn’t feel right in the store, trust me, it is not going to feel right at home. Feedback is the most important aspect of most fittings because it helps the person helping you find out what is going to work best for your feet.
On a side note… If you are looking for a recovery shoe, I cannot recommend Oofos enough. I am not getting paid to sing my praises, that is just my honest opinion. Oofos are great because they offer the comfort of sandal but have a great support system that runs through the shoe so you aren’t walking around flat footed.
So there you have it, my feelings on getting fitted and a few tips and tricks regarding the fitting experience!
Have you ever been fitted? How was your experience?
**Cinderella can eat her heart out, I got a guy better than Prince Charming!