At least that’s what my husband call is. I had been an avid Brooks runner since I started running in 2010. I ran in the Adrenalines for a VERY long time but I had constant shin splints. Later, I found out this was because the shoe store put my in stability shoes with inserts and I was OVER compensating. Before you ask, yes I got refitted and different stores kept saying the same shoe. The last one did however, remove the inserts. I mean they had the fancy huge computer video algorithm thing!
When we moved to Florida I got refitted because I felt like it was time. The company down here took a look at my form did some video analysis and put me in a neutral shoe. The actually switched me to the Saucony Ride. Thus the beginning of my shoe crisis.
I ran well in the Saucony’s but it never FELT right. I started doing a lot of research on shoe builds, drop, weight, etc. I decided that the Brooks ghost was a similar model with a little larger drop. So I switched shoes.
I ran in these for a whole training cycle and even a marathon. They felt better than the Rides but they were heavy and I didn’t feel like I was getting what I really needed out of them. Doing more research into the Brooks line I found the Launch
I was really enjoying the feel of the launch but I wasn’t a huge fan of the toe box. The shoe was light and comfortable so I stuck with it and just dealt with the occasional blisters. I ran on these for about a year and was enjoying them. Then came the allure of the race expo!
At the Disney race expo in 2017, I was bummed because my race got cancelled (the half marathon) and the hubs was running the marathon so we had to go pickup his packet. That’s when I discovered the 361 Spires.
These had a wide toe box and the same dimensions as my Launch. I made the switch at the expo. For a while everything was great! I ran a few PRs in these shoes and I thought everything was great! My blisters were gone and my running was going well. I was having some shin pain but I chalked that up to mileage.
Enter in the new training!
When I signed on with a coach to start duathlon training I really upped my miles per week and my speed training. The more miles I put in the stiffer these shoes felt and the worse my shin splints got. Only this time there were on the inside of my shin (yes…I’ve checked for stress fractures). I headed back to the shoe store and talked with them about the pain and got another fitting.
Low and behold, they recommended the Saucony Rides. However, this time they also recommended an alternative in the Brooks Levitate. These shoes had the familiarity of the ride with the comfort and familiarity of my Brooks.
I switched back to my Launch’s for last week and my race and it was a much better experience. I’m taking this week off (docs orders) to do some stretching and ice my shin splints. Then I’m allowed to start running again as long as I wear compression and ice after every run. I’m going to slowly start working the levitate into my rotation. They also recommended a recovery shoe for longer miles in the Brooks Glycerin, which I had as well.
If this sounds long and frustrating it totally was/is. Which means this year I’ll be learning how to use a recovery shoe and a speed/racing shoe in my training. Lesson learned, not to be swayed by fancy new shoes, the latest articles, or an ad that pops up!