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Does anyone run in both neutral AND stability shoes, or have a kind of gait that doesn't really depend on one type or the other? I've been running for a little over a year now, and when I was originally evaluated for shoes, I was told I was overpronating slightly on my right foot but not at all on my left, that my arches were high, and that I needed neutral running shoes. I bought Nike Zoom Vomero 6 and Asics Gel Excel. I also had insoles custom made from Road Runner Sports. Up through December, after 12 months of running, I had no issues, except for my left knee that was hurting even before I started running (doctor gave me the all clear to run though). I was only running 2 - 4 miles at a time, and only about 2 - 3 days/week for most of the year, and spread out between two pairs of shoes, so I don't have a lot of mileage on each shoe or the insoles (the insoles are good for 2 pairs of shoes or 900 miles according to the company). Well, come January I started to increase my mileage (I'm losing weight and trying to get my mileage up to help me keep the weight off and to train for my first half). I'm increasing it by about half a mile to a mile every 1-2 weeks. I've started to notice on my longer runs that my right ankle will start hurting (mildly for the most part) after the run or the next day. I tried running without the custom insoles (put the original shoes' insoles back in) and the ankle pain stopped but my left foot's arch started to hurt a little bit during runs. I bought a new pair of the Gel Excel and didn't really see any difference on shorter runs. I went to another running store and had my gait reevaluated and they said I was overpronating in neutral shoes and needed stability shoes. I didn't really feel any difference between the stability and the neutrals, but all I did were test runs in the store anyway. I ended up buying some Saucony Progrid (I think..not sure if that's what they were called) and haven't tried them on any runs yet, but as I said, I didn't feel any difference at the store between running a stability shoe or a neutral. Since I only want to run the Saucony shoes on the treadmill for now (so I can return them if they don't work), I chose to wear my new Excel shoes on my long run yesterday for the first time, and with the custom insoles I was previously using, and my feet felt just fine afterwards. I ran my longest run yet, 8.18 miles, on pavement (as usual) and I felt fine. Perhaps my issues were just from the two older shoes. I don't know. but now I'm not sure if there was even any point in my having bought the Saucony stability shoes. I suppose I will still give them a try on some shorter treadmill runs, but I'm kind of confused. I know typically people with higher arches use neutral shoes, and mine have done fine for me except for those few long runs I had in the older shoes, but despite my high arches, that one store (who has one of the best reputations in the Atlanta area) told me I was overpronating and needed stability. And then the other store a year ago told me I was not overpronating except slightly on my right foot. Is it possible that I could maybe run in either? Or what do you think?
Yes. That's the short answer.
I run in whatever feels good, and that has ranged from Asics Gel-Nimbus to Saucony Kinvara 2 to Mizuno Wave Precision and Wave Rider, Saucony Mirage 2, Asics Gel DS Trainer and Asics Gel Kayano, among others. Some of these are neutral, some stability, some lightweight trainers, varying degrees of cushioning and support, etc. There are some things missing in your tale: miles per week, total miles on your old shoes, whether that 1/2 to 1 mile increase was per week or per run (sounds like per run since you're up to 8 miles). Your aches could easily be attributed to older shoes combined with mileage increase. (Particularly if the mileage increase was per run meaning about 3 miles per week more. That's a lot on a base of about 10 miles per week.)
As for the shoes, they have been getting away from "categorizing" them as neutral, stability, etc. Instead they talk about what degree of stability features shoes have and the type of runner they would work for - makes it a good bit more confusing (Saucony uses neutral, guidance, stability for instance). "Progrid" is a type of midsole construction that Saucony uses and covers many models of their shoes, such as the Progrid Guide. Though, in looking at their website, they don't mention it so much in the actual shoe name anymore. Based on your description, I would lean toward shoes with fewer stability features. But if it feels good, wear it. If you're a mild over-pronator, you should do OK in a shoe with mild to moderate stability features, or in a "neutral" shoe. Which is how I end up in such a variety of shoes.
I didn't realize I didn't specify...my mileage increase I'm referring to just my long runs. I do a long run once per week usually and increase my distance half mile to a mile at a time. I'm going to give these shoes a try this week and if they don't work for me then I'll return them next weekend, but if they do fine, I'll keep them. Thanks!
I tried quite a lot of shoes before I reached a (surprising) solution. I ended up visiting a podiatrist. I was lucky because she is also a runner and new quite a lot about running shoes. The solution she proposed to me was to wear insoles specially designed for my feet (I am a heavy overpronator) and use only neutral shoes. Her other good advice was to wear whatever feels comfortable and not to worry too much about cushioning. Since then, most of my shoe problems have disapeared.
5k: 20:12 (December 31st 2012)
10k : 44:30 (November 6th 2011, March 18th 2012)
Half Marathon: 1:35:27 (February 3rd 2013)
I like half marathons! Seven completed so far and trying to get back on optimal shape to improve my PB. Once I complete my 10h half I will start thinking about full marathons.
I run in whatever comfortable shoes I can find on the bargain table. Usually I limit it to Mizuno and Asics though. I don't really care about what "type" of shoes they are; just as long as they are comfortable. That got me through 4 marathons last year and 14 in the last 4 years.