Five Secrets about Buying Running Shoes

Five Secrets about Buying Running Shoes

Working in a running store, I get to learn a lot about running, in general, new products and of course shoes.  When I began working at the running store, I knew of the show I liked but not much else.  Like anyone, I went through the whole process of getting my foot remeasured; my gait analyzed, and my (now) coworker brought out some shoes that worked well for me.  To my shock, my feet were wide and had grown.

There are plenty of fascinating facts about shoes that you might not know.  Working in a running store, they are now common knowledge for me, but I thought I would share.

Five Secrets about Buying Running Shoes

Your Feet Change and can Grow:
When they are measured, many people are shocked to find their feet have grown. Your arches can collapse as you age and therefore your feet can get longer or wider.  Woman your feet change after pregnancy.  No one cares about your foot size but just get what is most comfortable.

Running Shoes are not Meant for Lateral Motion
This includes side to side motion, tennis, etc.  Running shoes aren’t reinforced on the sides and using them for lateral movement can break them down much faster.  They are comfortable to do so, but your shoes will wear out faster.

Putting your Shoes in the Dryer Ruins Them
Some technology such as gel can break down when heated.  Eventually, a shoe will get dirty, don’t wash and dry it.  Spray it with a hose if you must.

Socks are Normally the Cause of Blisters
Most people believe the shoe causes the blister, but it’s usually a sock that has cotton in it.  An exception is if the shoe is too small and thus rubbing but the majority of the time the sock is causing the blister.

Shoes Don’t Have a Break in Period
A running shoe shouldn’t have a break in period unless it’s too small.  Do you see a trend here?  Most people buy their running shoes too small and have to “break them in” or they have to stretch.  If you purchase the correct size, they won’t do that.  You should be able to wiggle your toes before a run, during a run, and after a run.

Other related articles:
There is No Perfect Running Shoe
Why Running Shoe Reviews are (Mostly) Worthless
There is No Perfect Running Shoe

Questions for you:
What is something interesting you’ve learned about running shoes?
What is one running shoe you’ve tried, but realized it wasn’t for you?

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Author: Hollie

Posts are written and maintained by Hollie. I'm just runner who is blogging her way through internet life. If you see me in the real world, you might be dreaming. If you have any questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to email me at fueledbyLOLZ@gmail.com

32 thoughts on “Five Secrets about Buying Running Shoes”

  1. Thanks for sharing this. I’ve been running for so long and still thought we needed a break in period. Makes sense though because I used to love wearing shoes a size too small (liked the super snug feeling).

  2. This is a great resource! My feet totally grew after college and I learned the hard way. Once I found a shoe I liked I stocked up and bought enough to last 2 years. I went from training for 5ks to training for a half and got injured. Turned out my feet had grown a whole size and that messed up the alignment just enough to cause an injury. Now I go buy a new pair from my local running store at least once a year to have them measure me and recommend a shoe based on any other changes 🙂

  3. These are great reminders! Since I usually wear Mizunos I don’t hesitate to switch to my new pair right away but if I’m changing models I do wear them on shorter runs first just in case!

  4. Great post! I love these kind of easy reads that give advice. I know nothing about trainers and actually mine have started to hurt a little so maybe my feet have grown?! Thanks for sharing x

  5. That’s interesting! I didn’t know about the lateral movements, but then I don’t use my running shoes for that haha! I remember I was super surprised when I learned that your shoes have to be a half-size bigger to allow for your feet movement as you run. How many shoes do you normally rotate?

  6. This is such good info! I did not know about my feet changing and growing over time and, learned that lesson the hard way!! I also love that you wrote there is no break in period!! They either fit or they don’t!! Don’t suffer in too small shoes people!

  7. It’s funny how working at a running store can change what we think is common knowledge. People talk about how their shoes give them blisters all the time, or that they need to break in their shoes and I cringe and try to say nicely, “actually, you don’t need to break them in anymore with the way the technology has evolved.” When I started working at CCR, I threw out every single pair of socks in my closet and replaced them with the ones from the store. I never realized how much of a difference it made.

  8. For a few years I ran in the asics nimbus, and then heard the kayano was more supportive so I switched, and now I’m in the pegasus and running better than I ever have. I had no idea gait determined the kind of shoe you need and I used to buy “support” shoes thinking they would be best for me.

  9. I am so glad I went to a running specialty store to get fitted for shoes. I was wearing neutral shoes when I first started running and ended up injured. I learned I needed stability shoes with a lot of cushion.

    I find I need a “break-in” period – but its not so much about breaking in the shoes as it is making sure that the laces are just right , etc.

  10. Amen to all of these. My feet have grown an entire size since I started running. I also agree you should not have to break in a shoe. When I find a shoe model I like, I expect to get a great run in them right out of the box. Chris even raced in a brand new pair of Ghosts this weekend!

  11. Yes to upping size. I am a 10 in street shoes and held on to a 10.5 in running shoes for so long. Finally about 6 months ago I was like lets just try an 11. Life changing. Huge feet but whatever, game changer.

  12. I don’t know why I never realized that you’re feet can still grow. I just assumed when we’re done growing height-wise, our feet are done too. These are all really interesting. I can’t believe how long I used to only run in cotton socks. Never again now!

  13. Great tips Hollie, one I would add is that shoe models can change drastically from year to year. I used to wear the Brooks PureFlow’s but there is a huge difference between the 2’s, and the 5’s, I’ve noticed the same came be said about Asics, Mizuno and other brands. Don’t assume that because you wear a certain model the new releases will fit the same. I had to change back to Asics after years in Brooks! 🙂

  14. I interestingly think my feet have gotten smaller since I was younger! Either that or I just always bought my shoes too big… I didn’t know about the socks causing blisters instead of the shoes though! I hate spending money on socks so mine are all old and worn out… this might motivate me to get some new ones. Thanks for a great post!

  15. I knew about the break in period, but not that socks were the culprit with blisters. Great information so thank you for this.

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