Friday, July 12, 2013

It's the Shoes! - Take 2

Oh man did I learn a hard lesson this week.

Confession: the time for new running shoes has come and gone. My current pair started to show signs that they were going the way of Roberto Duran a little bit after crossing the 200 mile mark. I am now closing in on 300 miles and have been trying to ignore those signs. Well, on Thursday the signs screamed back. "Ignore no more!".

Back when I switched to my current shoes, I was still figuring out what it felt like when your shoes gave out. Now, even though I didn't quite notice back then, I know exactly when my first pair let me know it was over. During the 5K for Diabetes, I was in a lot of pain. My feet, knees and hips were hurting more than usual. Also, my right leg was going numb. I thought it had to do with the wacky race I was having but shortly after that I switched to the Brooks Beasts (The Beasties as I like to call them) and forgot about it.

Fast forward to about a month and a half ago, and was starting to feel the same things as during that race. I knew immediately what was going on. The Beasties were dying. Every step felt like stepping on concrete with no cushioning and the day after running I would have terrible back pain. Money doesn't grow on trees so I tried to put off getting another pair as much as I could. I started to run a little light-footed to avoid going hard on the shoes (it felt as stupid as it sounds). I even started to alternate the Beasties with my trusted New Balance Women's Trail Running Shoes (The Girlies?) which I use for walking and other non-running activities. Actually, that run I did over the old Air Force base? The Girlies. Also, I used The Girlies for speed work. You know you REALLY have to get new shoes when you go to a padded track and you still feel like your feet are falling hard on the floor. That's why I used the NB's.

The Girlies

And so I lightly treaded and alternated for as much as I could. Then Thursday happened. I was supposed to do a 5 mile tempo run. Well, it ended up being 3 miles(barely) of pain. The first mile was fine as it was a warm-up and I was running slow. Then I picked up the pace and halfway through the second mile I was hurting. Feet, ankles, knees, hips... and that numbness in my right foot, which by the way stems from back issues I had from before I started running. After mile 2, the pain -which I had felt on previous runs but not this much- was all I could think about and I started to get concerned that I was gonna hurt myself long term so I ran/walked to finish three miles and stopped. Lesson learned.

Even now writing this, my calves hurt and I have a stinging discomfort in my hips and knees. I really took it too far. Need to better plan long term for these moments. It also confirms something I've been thinking for a while: I'm insane. For several reasons, not only just stretching the use of the shoes way beyond reason. For example, right now all I'm thinking about is about what can I wear so I can run while my new shoes arrive. I think I have the first running shoes I ever bought somewhere. I bought them at an outlet and chose them because in the display, it said "running" on the bottom. I know they were not fitted and they are definitely not motion control but I hardly used them so their cushioning should be OK right? And then there's the Girlies. I guess I can push them a bit more...

 I also only stopped running when I felt my long term running schedule might be compromised by injury. I know there's a positive there but still, it kind of makes me feel like I'm crossing the running "dark side". He he he...

So, I'm getting new shoes (duh!). I'll be sure to talk about that next post.


  1. It is a beautiful thing when the light bulb finally goes on. I remember when I got my first real running shoes. I couldn't believe the difference it has made. Those flat tires are no joke. :) Are those New balances really girls? Funny. :)

    1. Yeah, my mom gave them to me not knowing they were women's shoes. But they are so comfy I wear them all the time! LOl

  2. Aww yes! I have high arches and overpronate pretty moderately so I go through shoes fast! Too fast. Once the arch support is broken down I can't wear them any more, but I always try to get as much out of them as I can. I am even considering buying insoles to get some more mileage out of my shoes.