I opened this post up with a cheesy headline. Because I'm crabby about it.
I'm looking for the right shoe for me. For running. For training. And it's been a rough couple of weeks.(I'm lucky that I already found my soul mate - it's the sole mate that's difficult).
For the longest time, I ran in Asics. They were very loyal and dedicated shoes. Especially the 2160s. I loved them with all my heart. But then last fall, someone mentioned Newtons to me, and after looking on their website for the first time, I was hooked. I cheated on my Asics and was drinking the Newton kool-aid.
Reading Born To Run by Christopher McDougall really changed how I thought about running. He talks about how all injury can be avoided if you run with a midfoot strike (it's more complicated than that with tribal Mexicans, drinking, drugs: good read!) And all Newton talks about it how their shoe helps you run with a midfoot strike. A shoe to help me avoid injury? Sounded golden.
I got my first pair of Newtons at the end of February. I started out slow, sharing my milage with my old trusty Asics GT2160s. It took me a while to get the hang of it, and I felt awkward in the new running form. But then, one chilly morning, I had the AH-HA moment, and me and my new soles never looked back...
Until about three weeks later when my milage started going up and I got these MASSIVE blisters. If you read my blog, you've heard about these blisters too many times. They are horrid. Blisters within blisters, blisters that won't drain, blisters that bring pain.
For about a week, I had the mentality of "These cool shoes that help me run correctly are worth having and I'll deal with them tearing up my feet."
This morning I came to a breaking point. I had a terrible 2 mile run (supposed to get in 4) and my feet hurt the whole time, for each of the 3,400 steps I took.
I realized I had to divorce my shoes.
I went to the running store at lunch, and I explained what was going on. They were going to accept a store exchange, which I was so grateful for. And then he had me step on the treadmill and recorded my runningin my blister-giving Newtons.
Have you ever thought that you were doing something, and doing it well, and then there's hard core evidence showing you're not? I clearly was still heel striking slightly on the outside, rolling to the toes to the inside. Hence the blisters on the inside balls of the feet.
I felt like crying in the store (but didn't; thank god I've got the whole "don't cry even though I really want to" down). It was an emotional moment to realize that a) I still had bad running form and b) the Newtons weren't the right shoe for me and I had to start over and find a new running shoe in the middle of training.
I tried on other shoes, but didn't love any of them. I still WANT to love my Newtons, but can't. It's a sad love-hate relationship (yes, I have a relationship with shoes). It was pretty interesting though how with different shoes, I pronated more or less, hit the heel more or less. The body is pretty smart.
After the store worker helped me for over an hour, I felt overwhelmed and asked him if I could think on it. I couldn't choose new shoes right away, and need to sleep on it.
After some help from dailymile friends (thanks guys!) I know what I'm going to do. I'm going to exchange the Newtons and try on some other shoes tomorrow, choosing the one I LOVE. I need to be focusing on running distances and marathon training, not form right now. I'm not ready for Newtons.
Giving up the cool-looking brightly colored shoe will be hard; but I'm in it for the long haul and need a sole mate that will take me the 26.2 distance. (Started out with cheesy, ending with corny).
What shoes do you LOVE and swear by?