Saturday, August 10, 2013

A Girl and Her Shoes

Say hello to my little friends!
Someone got some new shoes and immediately took them out for a test run. 

Okay, so nothing could be more cliche than a girl obsessing over her shoes. Except when it comes to her running shoes. For runners, the right pair of shoes can make all the difference. If you are considering taking on a running program, I highly recommend that you pay a visit to your local running store and have them analyze your stride and fit you with the best shoe for you. Finding the right shoe can make your run easier and more importantly, can help prevent injury. So here goes, another blog post about a girl and her shoes.
I ordered my new friends online. This is something I would normally never recommend. I think testing out the actual pair of shoes that you plan on logging several hundred miles in is very important. But, I came across these Sauconies (is that the plural for Saucony??) on one of those flash sale sites and I figured I should go for it since they were the exact same style as my current running shoes and running shoes are expensive!  At least, I thought they were the exact same style. Turns out pro grid and power grid are not the exact same thing. Oops!  

See that big green rectangle-ish type thing on the old pair?  Well, that big green rectangle-ish type thing is very important. It serves as a stabilizer for those who tend to over pronate when they run. Several years ago, I suffered an extremely painful knee "injury" and it was determined that I had very weak muscles surrounding my right knee, which was causing me to over pronate and in turn, was causing serious irritation to the nerves around my knee. Ever since then I've been wearing stabilizing shoes when I run. 

The thing about stabilizing shoes is that they really aren't that fun to run in (sorry shoe makers, but I gotta call it like it is). They are just SO much heavier than other, typical running shoes. Also, they are ALWAYS less cute than typical running shoes. It's true. Whenever I'm at Luke's Locker and they are showing me the new stabilizer shoes, I can't help but look jealously over that those cute, bright,  lightweight non-stabilizing shoes on the wall. 

Back to my new friends. So far, I've given them two test runs. One on the treadmill and one on an interval run in the neighborhood. I can't lie, I love the light, springy feel of these shoes!  And so far, no knee pain. I may be jinxing myself, but I have a strong suspicion that through two years of strengthening and stretching my legs at The Bar Method, I may have corrected my pronating issue. I've mentioned it before, but some of the moves we do at The Bar Method focus directly on strengthening those often ignored muscles around and above your knee. Combine that with the consistent stretching of my leg muscles, and I'm hoping my pronating issues are no more. Yes, I'm using one hand to type this and the other to knock on wood!  To be on the safe side, I will be paying Luke's Locker a visit very soon for a stride analysis. If I still have pronating issues, I will go back to the ol cluncker shoes and these new friends will be relegated to gym only use. In the meantime, I am so enjoying these bright light shoes!!  Hey, you can't blame a girl. Cute shoe love is in our DNA!

Disclaimer - yes, I have read a recent published study that claims over and under pronating does not actually cause injury. I am no scientist. I write only about my personal experience with injury and I will continue to listen to my body and trust that my body will let me know what it needs. I encourage you to do the same. 

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