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Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Pain, and The Running Shoes

 Old broken, cush-less sneakers are the evil of villains of the workout. They lure you in to their chamber of torture through; "a healthy lifestyle" promotion. The old sneakers sneer with content as you resolve to exercise more. They feign interest in your progress until that first pain of chin splits surges through your leg. Old workout shoes are the number one cause of fitness related injuries in women.

Most of my workouts are done either: at home with Tracy Anderson (or my own tramp creation); or at the gym on a treadmill. My shoes rarely get a taste of dirt and because of their diet they are able to maintain an air of youthfulness. My runners may look brand shinning new- when in reality they have exceeded their recommended millage and are beginning to cause serious pain.

Most gear is made for a recreational user; this fact is the reason that some people can have the same shoes for a decade without need to replace and others seems in constant state of gear replenishment. The average Running shoe is designed to last 300-400 miles (depending on intensity). If your average run was 6 miles- then your shoe should be good for a maximum of 100 runs. But the structure of your shoe changes depending on the exercises. An hour of aerobics is considered to have the wear and tear of 10 miles, because of the constant change in intensity and direction. This means that for aerobics freaks like myself shoes should be replaced every other month.

 For cardio machine addicts 30 minutes on the treadmill has the wear of 5 miles; because the tread on most treadmills is a little loose which cause your foot to land harder than it would on the ground. This again reduces the life of your shoes-though the stationary bike and the elliptical have nearly a net-zero impact on your runners.

If you need, think you need, or doubt you need new runners here are few tests and considerations to appropriately guess the utility age of you shoe.

1. Millage- How long have you had your shoes, and how often do you work out? If you work out 5 times a week for about an hour you will need to replace your shoes at minimum of every  4 months.

2. Pain- If you ever feel pain in your chins/joints. Trash you shoes. The first place our bodies feel pain as result of poor sole cushioning is in our chins, and then moves on to other joints. To prevent further injuries take a few days of training and return with new shoes or supportive insoles.

3. Soles no more-  I would hope that this would be an intuitive sign that you need new runners; but I know from experience that i have held on to certain runners way past their best buy date because I liked them, regardless of the fact that their soles were bare.

4. The twist test- If you were to hold you shoe in both hands and give it a good old fashioned twist it should feel firm; not flimsy.

If you shoes fail the twist test, give you pain, or have a naked sole. Its time to replace. You will be amazed by the difference.

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