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Shoes only 2 won’t do

In preparing for this fall’s marathon I have experimented with more different pairs of shoes than with my marathons past. One big reason for that is my favorite marathon shoes do not exist anymore. Adidas discontinued the Cairos several years ago and I couldn’t be more disappointed. They were the perfect shoe for my foot strike and relatively flat feet. They were light and provided  just the right amount of motion control.

My first 3 marathons were run in the Cairos (my fastest 3) and my comfort level has not been the same since. My next 2 marathon were run in the Adidas Supernova Control and the Asics Gel Foundation. The Supernovas didn’t provide enough support and the Foundations were too clunky.

This year I have used the Brooks Beast, Brooks Addiction and Asics Gel 1150. With the marathon less than 2 months away, I have settled in on 1150’s for my marathon shoe. The ride is very similar to the Cairos and I feel they given me the best chance for a successful sunday. Of course the final verdict will come somewhere around mile 24.

Now the shoes listed above are best for heavier runners who over pronate, so these are not reviews for the majority of runners. The key is reading up on different types of shoes and go to a store that handles only running shoes. Many big sport stores do not have the staff with the knowledge to assist you properly. Specialty shoes often will let you run out the door and really get a feel for the shoes before you make the purchase. The staff will also be able to watch you run and make suggests according to your gate and foot strike.

Now it is also important to run alternate different brands of shoes if you run everyday. This will allow the shoes to recover between runs. The foam has an extra day to expand to original form. Another benefit is that you get a different ride with different shoes. A pickup truck rides different than a sports car. Each has a dissimilar bounce to them. Your back, butt and legs all ride different in pickup compared to the sports car. Running shoes can give you a different ride as well. So pair A may work the outer leg more than pair B and pair B may relax the calves more than pair A. Mixing it up can give some of your little muscle fibers a break when alternating days.

So when you buy new running shoes, don’t toss the old ones right away. You may want to go back and forth between the new and the old for a while to keep your legs and feet fresh.

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