I mentioned in my post about my dream motorcycling holiday that I need to get myself fitter and stonger over the next year if I am to enjoy it as much as I want to. One way I am doing that is by running – well, jogging – again. I used to run quite a lot, I’ve completed a good number of 10k road races; but once I realised it had become a chore I put my running shoes away for a while and changed to other things. I know running works for me – it’s a great way to get outdoors and it soon ups my fitness level.
Over the last few weeks I’ve been getting back into it. I’m not at any great distance yet – this we’ve I’ve managed two 2.65 mile runs (and I was quite proud of myself for those!) – but this is me starting again having not run regularly for a long time, and not at all for months.
This has all been helped thanks to being sent a pair of trainers to review by SportsShoes.com. In fact I was allowed to choose. Which took a while. There are so many to choose from! So I started with the wet foot test…
To find out what type of runner you are you just need to do the simple wet test, and for this all you need is a bowl of water, a dark piece of paper (a brown or manila envelope is ideal) and your feet. Just dip the sole of your foot into the water, shake off any excess, then press your foot onto the paper/envelope as if you were walking over it. Match the imprint left behind to the symbols to find out what type of runner you are.
It was a bit of an odd thing to do (and it doesn’t replace proper gait analysis, which I have had done before) but according to my footprint I’m a mild to moderate overpronator which means my arch collapses through the gait cycle and my foot rolls inwards. Apparently this is completely normal (phew!) – 60-80% of runners overpronate. I therefore need a running shoe offering support features inside the shoe. Thankfully the trainers on SportsShoes.com are all categorised into the different types so I could simply select this type of shoe and it narrowed my selection to those which would be most appropriate for me.
After considering various brands and styles and colours I decided on a pair of black runners – the Brooks Lady Adrenaline GTS 13 running shoes – I’ve not got any black trainers and I quite like the idea of being a bit understated on my feet for a change.
The bit that makes these trainers good for the overpronator is the PDRB – a triple-density post on the medial side of the shoe for extra support and allow for progressive pronation control and to create a smoother transition through the stride. They also have excellent cushioning via the BIOMOGO midsole, reducing shock and providing a smooth take off and landing, which is ideal for running on concrete and tarmac which is less than forgiving. They’re flexible too, thanks to Omega Flex Grooves, and grippy thanks to the Omni Grooves in the forefoot. Basically these shoes offer support, cushioning, grip and spring.
One really nice touch on these trainers I’ve not come across before is the extra little bit for your laces to go through on the tongue. You can see it on the right of the photo below (problem with black trainers is it’s difficult to show all the detail nicely!) – it acts to stop the tongue from slipping round to the side while you run. It’s a really simple addition but it works a treat, these trainers stay put, the laces do their job, and they are as comfortable at the end of a run as at the beginning.
I chose my usual shoe size for these trainers and they fit a treat. When I first put them on I really noticed the support inside – they hold my feet snuggly and have a bit under the arch which stops my foot collapsing as I jog. I say I noticed it to start with as after wearing these trainers for a few miles I now don’t notice it in the same way. Rather I notice when I put on my other trainers on that they don’t have the same level of support, and I miss it – even though my old runners were designed for overpronation, they’re now old and could probably do with being shown the bin. That simple wet foot resulted in trainers that offer me a very smooth ride.
The mesh sections of these trainers are designed to help the shoe fit well on your feet as well as to keep your feet cool. So far I’ve only been jogging in very low temperatures (stupid weather), but I must say that I can really feel the air moving around and through the shoe, keeping my feet happy while jogging.
I’m very pleased with my choice. These trainers are comfortable, offer decent support and cushioning, and I think they look great. I might have only done relatively short distances in them so far but I hope to build that up over the next couple of months as I get fitter, and I have no doubt that these trainers will help me do that.