Friday, December 11, 2015


I'm about to make a confession.

It is something for which I am not proud.

Despite being old enough to know better, I continually go down this path, which often leads to ruin.

When a relationship is over, it is time to let go. But not for me. I hang on, clinging to hope. I refuse to let go, because, you see, I know I have finally found it. I am in a wonderful place and I need to hang on, to cherish what I have.

But a cruel fate often awaits.

I am jilted. Sometimes bitterly hurt, and often scarred.

Do I need professional help?

Not really.

I just need to use common sense.

You see, I become too attached to my running shoes.

I find a pair that fits just right, that offers me a lightweight ride, with just the right amount of support, and I simply can't let go.

Now, I'm not going to endorse or criticize any shoe company or model, because I have run the gamut of many throughout my career, but too often I have ignored my own mantra, "It starts with the shoes."

More often than not, when you feel unusual aches or pains, look at your shoes. Check the wear pattern. Outside of your knee aching? You may be cutting into the midsole of your shoe on the outside of the heel. Shin splints? Perhaps your shoes aren't flexible enough.

Don't be cheap. At the first sign of excessive wear, divorce yourself from your shoes and get a new pair.

Research is essential. Base your shoe selection on your weight, your foot strike, and the type of surface on which you usually run.

My problem is that I wed myself to a certain shoe. You know the shoe companies. They love to take one's favorite shoe and "improve" upon it. Often, the "new and improved" model is a much different shoe from the one you love. Therefore, if you like and are happy with a certain shoe model, buy several pair. Stock up, and you'll be satisfied for a long time.

Finally, I'm a huge proponent of the local running store. Usually staffed by runners like you, these stores offer advice, "test drives," and liberal return policies. You may pay a little more than if you buy online, but it is well worth it. Also, look around at your local races. Chances are your local running store sponsors many of them.

So, never remain in a bad relationship, but if you've found "The one," that's where you should stay.
The relationship between your shoes and you is essential to your running longevity.

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