Running and walking are known to be the most natural and purest forms of exercise that human beings use. Though there have been great innovations to aid individuals in taking up these forms of exercise comfortably, it requires extra efforts to know which shoes shows to buy. For instance, by choosing the wrong shoes for your walk or run, you might end up with blisters on your feet. Proper fitting shoes make all the difference whether you walk or run.
What is the best running shoe? Well, it’s not about which the best-rated running shoe, but also which one is the best one for you. The golden rule is that it is advisable to have some knowledge about your feet instead of depending on the advice you get from the sport-shoe stores staff. Before purchasing new footwear, Priceza wants you to keep in mind the following points to find the best running shoes:
1. Select a shoe that was made specifically for running
Do I really need a “running” shoe? Can I just wear any sneakers? We recommend that those who want to engage running as a form of exercise or sport will require special shoes that were designed specifically for running. Running engages your feet from heel to toe in a repetitive movement and also bouncing your whole body weight up and down. In this form of activity, you require the right shoes that have good grip and can allow your feet to breathe. Consequently, if you are running a long distance, these shoes need to be comfortable.
Here are some benefits of wearing a shoe made for running when you’re going on a run:
You really want to be particular when picking out a shoe when going out on an activity. Each time you walk, get a pair of walking and each time you run, get a pair of running. Walking shoes are stiffer while running shoes are more flexible and are built to handle the greater impact. Occasional running may not require one to have a specific type of shoes. One can either use tennis shoes, stilettos or even run barefoot.
- You will likely be able to avoid blisters. If you have had this before, then you know that it is pretty painful. By wearing a right shoe, you will avoid getting unnecessary injuries and scratches on your feet because it eliminates the tendency of creating friction between your feet and the shoes.
- It is more comfortable. Running shoes tends to be lighter and more flexible than most shoes. They are designed to hugs comfortable around your feet, so that you are able to move freely and does not suffer soreness and blisters.
2. You should know your foot type
In order to select the right pair of shoes, you should first know your foot’s particular quirks. Feet have different shapes and one way to know your foot’s shape is to do a “wet test”. To do this, wet your foot, step on a piece of brown paper and trace your footprint.
Individuals with low arches or flat feet, the footprint will show the entire sole with little to no curve on the inside. Hence the feet will tend toward overpronation or in other words, your feet roll inward. In most cases, overpronation causes extra wear on the outside heel and inside forefoot. As a result, the best suited for this type of feet is the one with a motion-control feature and maximum support.
On the other hand, under pronation is whereby your feet roll outward and the footprint in the “wet test” shows only a portion of your forefoot and heel with a narrow connection between the two. In a shoe, under pronation will cause wear on the outer edge of the heel and the little toe. A cushioned shoe with a soft midsole will be suitable for this type of feet.
If your foot has a neutral arch, your shoes will wear out uniformly hence you will need a shoe that has the right mix of support and cushioning. You can also notice when you look at the sole of your shoes, you will see an even wear and tear throughout, more than being focused on heels or other parts.
3. The size of the feet change
Steven Riken, the director of the foot and ankle service at the Rothman Institute advises that you measure your foot frequently because the foot size changes as we get older. Also, choose shoes that fit not by the shoe size because sizes vary between brands! It is important to really try on the shoe, and also take notes on the sizing of each brand that actually fits you best.
Studies show that feet swell and expand over the course of the day as you run or walk. Therefore, shoes should fit your feet when they are at their largest. Also, whenever you go to buy your shoes, go with your socks- the ones you wear while walking or running because you need to fit the shoes with the socks inside.
When fitting your shoes, ensure that there is about a thumb’s width or ½ inch between your big toe and the end of the shoe. Also, the shoe should fit relatively tight at the heel while the upper part of the shoe should be snug and secure and not too tight all round.
According to the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, running shoes should allow you to wiggle freely all your toes when the shoe is on. Also, it is important to understand the features of some models of running shoes that provide extra shock absorption such as the clear inserts filled with gel, Freon or air.
4. What is your preference between going minimal versus going more protected?
As we have seen above, cushioned shoes are recommended for individuals with under pronation issues while stability shoes are recommended for people with under pronation issues. This is an idea that was born in the 70’s that argued that running is a high-impact sport hence you needed a shoe that cushioned your impact.
Vibram is a good example of a minimal running shoes.
However, Christopher McDougall who authored the book “Born to Run” introduced a new current of thought called “minimalism.” He argues that a shoe should be as close to barefoot as possible (minimal) so the body will naturally get stronger and hence you will not be dependent on a shoe.
5. Weigh between price and quality
Even though premium materials and long design/ testing processes make a shoe expensive, the quality is also sensible. For instance, the cushioning material in the sole will make the shoe last longer while nice material on the upper part will make the shoe more comfortable. All these will add to the cost of the shoe as well as the quality.
You will need all these features because comfort is the very important component of a running shoe. Although expensive materials will not automatically make a shoe more comfortable, good-quality walking and running shoes are a little bit pricier. You want to invest in a running shoe. Most of the time, a more expensive shoe will be engineered with durability in mind. Therefore, a little extra investment will go a long way.
6. Know when to replace your shoes
Shoes that have been overused might not be supportive to your feet and might pose a risk on your feet when running. Clifford Jeng, a foot and ankle surgeon at Mercy medical center says that on average, running shoes should be replaced after about 350-400 miles of use. Also, make decisions on when to replace your shoes depending on how they look and feel.
Replace your shoes whenever the back of the sole is worn out or when the shoe is no longer comfortable. If you don’t replace your running shoes, it may cause possibly injuries due to the lack of grip on the sole.
Best Running Shoes for Woman
Now that you are aware of the different factors that goes into choosing a shoe, here are some of the best running shoes for woman right now!
Lightweight and breathable mesh on the upper portion. It has no sew synthetic overlays, constructed for stability. The Nike Zoom offers optimal shock absorption! It comes with the “Dynamic Support” with lower profile on the forefoot. It is extremely flexible.
2. Mizuno Wave Inspire 10
The shoe is super flexible. The material lets the shoe move with the foot. Whether if you are twisting, bending, or stretching, this Mizuno shoe will allow you to move anyway you want. The X-10 rubber sole is one of the most durable carbon rubber sole to enhance traction and also limit wear and tear especially on the heels.
This is a great neutral running shoe. If you’re not sure what type of feet you have, then the Nike Flex should be your best bet. It has a minimal, no-sew overlays, which means that it will not create irritation when wearing. The upper material is made up of lightweight and breathable mesh. The sole is strategically placed so that it does not wear and tear only at the heels.
Known for its lightweight and optimal cushioning support, the Nike Free 5.0 is also another great option for your running shoes. It is a neutral running shoe, constructed with mesh upper that will hug the shape of your foot. The waffle outsole was engineered for impact absorbance.
Once again, the Nike Free 5.0
is also available in men’s sizing. The inspiration behind the Free 5.0 is the feeling of running bear feet. It is designed to give natural movement to the feet when running by using ultra flexible mesh and lightweight materials. It is well cushioned for runners who runs regularly. The upper offers a seamless fit, so you are able to wear the shoes even without socks.
2. Nike Lunar Tempo
Lightweight neutral running / training shoes designed for a great cushion feel. The rubber was added to the sole from its previous model, giving it an extra push for durability. The sole is mostly made out of foam, which means that it is super light and very cushioned for strong impact. The upper is composed of woven fabric with venting holes, which makes this shoe extremely breathable, perfect for summer days! The material is also slightly reflective, great for those who loves to run outside after sunsets!
Asics is known for its GEL comfort. The shoe is great for those with slightly wider feet. The shoe also features a new “Guidance Line” design, which is a line that carves a flex channel through the center of the outsole. It helps the shoe to lay down even more naturally when running.
In this latest edition, the Mizuno Wave Inspire continues to be an extremely lightweight running shoes. It offers a great stability during running, especially for those who over-pronate. The upper is made of light and seamless mesh. It provides a superb fit all throughout the shoe. The clean and simple design contributes to the shoe’s lightness. The sole is an U4iC compound, which gives the shoe a quick response during running and light training.
The Mizuno Wave Rider 15 is a combination of all the best qualities of the previous models of the Wave Rider lineup. It is a balance of lightweight while offering a great stability for a comfortable running experience. Utilizing Wave Technology and SmoothRide, the shoe has a lower profile, with better support and performance. The heels are redesigned with shock-absorbent cushioning, resulting in a much softer contact with the ground. The mesh upper also provides extra ventilation to reduce moisture and heat.
Priceza hopes that you now have a better idea on what are the important considerations when buying a running shoe. Do not simply assume that the best running shoe is the most expensive one, or ones that look the best. A good running shoe should be the one that fits your feet the most. Therefore, it is especially useful to keep these things in mind, so that you are able to purchase a shoe that will best help you reach your goals!