Whether you're in the middle of training for an ultra-marathon, or you're just starting out on your running endeavor, it's important to be in a shoe that fits well. At first glance, a running specialty store may seem intimidating to someone who is just starting their running endeavor. But in order to avoid some aches and pains that sometimes accompany running, it’s important to be fitted in a shoe that will aide you in your training needs.
At Nashville Running Company, our fitting process is simple and tailored to you. A staff member will first try to find out if you’ve had any previous injuries, or if you’ve had good success with a stability or neutral shoe. It’s also helpful if you bring in your current running shoes so that the staff can look at your wear pattern on the soles. Keeping these answers and results in mind, you'll be taken through a series of steps in which you’re arch strength is tested. This is to gage the level of pronation (the movement of your arches falling inward when stepping). Most people will typically pronate, but aches and pains can sometimes accompany a runner or walker who over-pronates (the arch collapsing inward past a healthy point). On the opposite end of the spectrum, some people with extremely high arches can supinate (arches rolling outward).
After you have been analyzed, a stability or neutral shoe will be recommended. When you look for shoes on your own, it can be hard to differentiate between the two types. A neutral shoe will be designed for runners who have normal pronation, while a stability shoe is designed to aide runners that over-pronate. A stability shoe will have a thicker midsole to stop the inward rolling motion. This will improve over-all alignment so that too much pressure isn’t put on the inner part of your legs.
There are plenty of tell-tale signs when it’s time to replace your running shoes. Personally, my knees are the first to alert me when it’s time to switch into my next pair. Other times, people will feel it in their shins or feet. This is simply from the breakdown of cushioning in the shoe. Instead of the shoe absorbing the shock of striking the ground, your body instead starts to compensate. Typically, a shoe will last between 400 and 500 miles. That will usually be between 6 months and a year, depending on how vigorously you’re training and if you’re just wearing one pair of shoes during that time. The more cushioning a shoe has to begin with, usually they will last longer. If your training falls between the 400 mile mark, then it’s okay to wear the same shoes for your race. However, if your race is high mileage, you may need to purchase another pair between the time you sign up and race day.
Our staff is trained on fitness programs, injury prevention, as well as over-all health and nutrition. Asking questions is the best way to prevent injuries and have success with your running. We would love to help you throughout your training process!