I'm just about to start training for a half marathon in a few months time and I'm looking for my first pair of proper running shoes.
I have high arches and land reasonably lightly on my forefoot - being a lanky type! I mildly under-pronate when I walk but given I pretty much run on the balls of my feet I don't think that's too relevant for running. I'm not planning to try and force any changes to my gait, striking technique, etc. I just want to run naturally and improve my endurance and speed through improved fitness.
I've tried the bulky shoes with big cushions in the midfoot and impact protection heels which is what the shops tell me I need to protect against injuries caused by my high arches. But I find them really unnatural and constraining and I think they assume that you're also a heavy heel striker which I'm definitely not.
I've also tried shoes like the Nike Flex that have some midfoot cushioning that stops my feet slipping around in the way they did when I tried shoes with no support. They also have flat flexible soles that feel much more natural and comfortable and I think I would be much happier running distance in them. I've only had a chance to jog for a couple of minutes on a treadmill on them but they felt good.
My question is: am I being naive to think I can run serious (road) distances on these types of shoes with my foot shape without getting injuries and should I accept the recommendation to run in a bulky shoe? Or is it sensible to go with what feels right?
I have really high arches. I'm currently running in Asics Gel Nimbus 12s, and before that it was Gel Nimbus 9s. I haven't had a foot injury in 4 years (well, except a broken foot, but I got that by trying to run through a door and missing )
If you run mostly on the balls of your feet, why would you need impact protection for your heels? I'm no running shoe expert, but that sounds a bit pointless...
I'd say go with the ones that feel the most supportive. Injuring the arches of your feet by running in shoes that aren't right is very, very painful!
I think I'm going to try the flex and see how it works out. If it starts to cause me difficulties then I'll relegate them to casual use and get something like the Nimbus for running in.
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