With the Lagos City Marathon just over, a lot of people have picked up more interest in running as a competitive sport, especially long distance running. Investing in the right pair of shoes can be a crucial part of building up your running routine. The wrong pair can hurt muscles, cause blisters and slow down an otherwise healthy competitor, and the right pair can add endurance and comfort to any long run.
Here are a few things to consider when buying your next pair of running shoes.
1. If You're Running, Buy Running Shoes
The emphasis on this point is because you could end up with the wrong kind of trainers and later complain about foot pain and/or other injuries. When running, you need to wear running shoes and not cross-trainers, walking shoes, basketball sneakers or tennis shoes. All sneakers are not created equal. According to Active.com, shoes made specifically for running are designed to handle the shock of 2.5 times your body weight. This kind of support protects your body from the stress inflicted in each stride, as running lends a repeated impact that differs from other activities.
2. Consider The Activities You'll Be Doing
Whether you're going to be running, walking, or playing tennis, from an injury prevention perspective it's important to pick a shoe that's specific to the activity. Plus, many people don't think about one of the most important basics: the sole. A quality supportive shoe usually has a sole that is somewhat difficult to bend and has a slight heel to it. And, if you're wearing everyday sneakers to go for a run, your sole will get damaged much faster.
3. Look out for the best quality you can afford
You can pay a lot less, but the less expensive shoes are sometimes less durable, supportive and protective. That is, you get what you pay for. You want all the comfort, cushioning and safety features that will protect your feet and help you enjoy your running. Make sure that your footwear can handle the demands of the outdoors such as climate change and unpaved sidewalks.
4. Search for the perfect fit
One of the most important things to consider is whether this is a fashionable or functional purpose. Shoes should feel comfortable initially and not need to be broken in. An uncomfortable fit can lead to shin splints or aching heels. Knowing certain characteristics of your feet like having a high arch or having flat fleet will help you narrow down the selection process.
5. Consider Comfort First
At the end of the day, comfort should always come first. Find a shoe that feels natural, almost like an extension of the foot. Make sure the shoes you choose are comfortable enough that you could run out of the store in them. The best shoe is the shoe that is specifically tailored to your foot, support- and cushioning-wise.
So all things considered, getting the right shoes for your type of fitness activity should be well informed to ensure the best outcome while caring for your feet.