Friday, July 12, 2013

Choosing Running shoes...


I need some new running shoes and sort of know what I like but also like to check things out.... and this seems to take an age! Whilst I like going into specialised shops invariably if you go in on the "off chance" they rarely have more then a couple of pairs of shoes in my size I want to try on.....

I used to always wear Asics Gel Cumulus - this was in the days when I wore orthotics - so cushioning was the order of the day because the orthotics gave me the stability. However, when I was studying for my Sports Massage qualification a few years ago I decided that actually the orthotics were unnecessary if I actually tackled the cause - which pretty much was relating to a weak core. By strengthening myself functionally I managed to completely get rid of the orthotics and actually felt my running felt an awful lot smoother as a result..... so now I go for cushioning as I seem to be a neutral runner (if anything I slightly supernate but that is what you are supposed to do I believe when you first make contact with ground??)

Anyway - this lead me to trying out different types of shoes over the last few years;
The Asics Cumulus basically were ok but felt heavy
Mizuno Wave rider I liked but then they changed the model so significantly I rapidly disliked them!
K-Swiss KONA - I loved - but my calf muscles don't and I get a hot spot on the side of my right ankle bone (no idea why), these are good for shorter runs but not longer then an hour.

Whilst we were travelling we both needed to but new trainers and happened upon the New Balance 890v2 - these have been brilliant!... so why not just buy some more?

Well two reasons;
(1) I've got one annoying blood blister (which is hard skin with the blister underneath).. and I'm not sure it is because of the shoes or because I was wearing flip-flops a lot of the time!!

(2) I have been keeping an eye on line and my size seems to have been stocked out... although I could have ordered directly from New Balance..... hence the research into alternatives.

So this morning I spent hours - literally HOURS... doing some more research!! My short list became (in no particular order);

Asics - DS Trainer
New Balance - 890v3
Saucony Ride 5
Brooks Ghost

I've noticed that manufacturer's are keen to establish some basics; type of shoe (cushioning, stability, minimilist), offset (from heel to forefoot) and weight

I've liked the New Balance for several reasons; the weight of them, the cushioning and I guess my default (as I hadn't realised) the offsett (8mm)

So having done the research I hit some on line stores and got myself a bargin on the Saucony Ride 5 (well they are last years model, this years look similar but who was I do refuse a 50% discount).... and then surprise surprise but my favourite on line store (Wiggle), literally before my very eyes, put up some New Balance 890v3 (although they are stating they are expecting them in at the end of the month - I just hope they get them in because I had by this stage found them in two other places - but I'm a loyal Wiggle customer, so order them there I did!!)

Both pairs of shoes are cushioned, neutral shoes with an 8mm drop. The Ride 5s are heavier then the 890s (although if I had spent more money and got the Ride 6s they would have been about the same)

These seems like a whole lot of effort for a couple of pairs of trainers .... but the good news is whilst doing my research I managed to clip the relevant pages into Evernote so I should never have to spend that time again!!!

New Balance 890v3

Saucony Progrid Ride 5 (I ordered the red pair)

Will let you know what these shoes feel like once they arrive! I'm hoping at least with the 890s that I've found a shoe and brand I can stick with for a while - once you know what works it makes it a lot easier - until the manufacturer changes something of course!!

Incidentally - I also want a pair of Nike Free's but they are not a necessity I just like they way they look!!!! I like the 5's and at some point wouldn't mind giving them a go but I think I've spent enough money now on running shoes!!!

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