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How to Choose the Right Pair of Running Shoes

Nike Zoom Vomero+ 8 Shield

Over the last week or so, my trusty pair of Asics started to feel less supportive, especially on the balls of my feet. These shoes have served me well for running and cross training for many months, but there comes a time when a pair of shoes must be retired. I bought my Asics from New York Running Company on the Upper East Side and paid a visit to the same store to choose a new pair of running shoes. I was especially excited about this shopping trip, knowing that I would be buying the pair of shoes I’d be wearing when I crossed my first half marathon finish line.

How to Choose a Pair of Running ShoesOn more than one occasion, I’ve seen people try and crowdsource suggestions for running shoes on Facebook and Twitter. While this might be an acceptable selection method for cross training shoes, it’s a terrible way to choose running shoes. The reason I went back to New York Running Company was to have my stride analyzed and to be fitted by an expert. If you buy a pair of shoes that’s not right for your feet and start to run long distances in them, you could easily cause an overuse injury. This would be like pounding your feet against an unsupportive surface for miles and miles. It’s also important to know which size to buy, as your toes need lots of wiggle room. Unless you want to lose your toenails. I typically wear a 7.5 or 8 in boots, but I wear a 9 in running shoes.

I walked in to New York Running Company on Sunday with the idea that I might end up buying the same pair of Asics in a different color, but I knew that I should get analyzed first. A sales associate first asked me to take off my shoes and looked at my arches and turnout. He quickly identified that I supinate, especially in my left foot. This means that my foot rolls outward when I run, sometimes landing turned out. Thank you, ballet. After checking out my used Asics, he chose three pairs of shoes for me to test on the treadmill–another pair of Asics, a pair of Brooks, and a pair of Nikes. Many running stores have the ability to record your feet running on the treadmill, so they can play back the video and analyze your stride. It’s best to do a side-by-side analysis of a few pairs. The Nikes were, of course, the prettiest, but I waited for the sales associate to deliver a verdict on which pair best corrected my supination. Ultimately, the Nikes did win out. Ladies and gentlemen, meet my purple and green Nike Zoom Vomero+ 8 Shields. They offer Dynamic Stability, Responsive Cushioning, Lightweight Support, and are reflective and weather-proof. Roll over the picture above to see the reflective leopard print. I took a yoga class on Sunday but couldn’t help trying out my new kicks after class. I PR’d a 5k during my first run in these shoes, so they must be pretty great. Here’s to many more training miles in them.

How to Choose a Pair of Running Shoes

New York Running Company also gives Team in Training runners a 10% discount. Love that!

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  • Reply Katie D

    Hey I love reading your blog, Evann! Just wanted to mention that pronating is actually not landing with your feet turned out (which I do as well…also thank you ballet :) ) but is actually your foot and often your arch rolling inward. Supinating is rolling outward, and the turnout is just an external rotation of the foot. But the external rotation is very commonly paired with a pronating foot pattern as well, so it wouldn’t be surprising to have both patterns together. Hope that helps!! Keep up the awesome posts!

    February 26, 2014 at 10:17 am
    • Reply Evann Clingan

      Thank you for the clarification, Katie! I’m sure the employee knew this, and I wasn’t fully understanding the terminology. This is exactly why I went to an expert haha. I’ll make a wording adjustment in my post. Also, thank you for reading!

      February 26, 2014 at 10:44 am
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