I won't lie. I LOVE getting new shoes. Ever since I discovered the idea of going to a running store and having my arches analyzed, my stride studied and my old shoes examined, I look forward to needing a new pair. All of this followed by the Goldilocks feeling of finding that perfect fit. Eminent satisfaction.
So last night, I went to 1st Place Sports, my local running store of choice. Over the past year, since I began to pick up mileage and become more fit, my stride has changed a little, and my overall fitness has changed a lot. I've become less of a heel striker, and find myself landing more on my midfoot and forefoot. They brought out the 2010 model of my old sneakers, the Adidas Supernova, a pair of Asics, Brooks and Sauconys.
Getting fitted last night was one of the instances where you are aware how far you have progressed. I remember going to get shoes last year in jeans and a t-shirt, having no clue what I was doing or what I needed. It didn't occur to me that I might want to actually run in the shoes I was buying before purchasing or that one pair might feel markedly different from the other one. This year I was prepared. I wore running clothes, took in my old sneakers and brought socks. I was ready.
Having a better idea of what I do and don't like and a well-worn pair of shoes to show off my stride made a big difference. The Asics were far too soft for me; the gel cushioning, while comfortable, did not appeal as I like my shoes strapped quite firmly on my foot. The Brooks felt like they didn't have enough give for my stride, and felt like the sole on the inner part of the shoe were too tough. I liked the Adidas, as they felt as good as my old pair did, but not perfect. The Sauconys....now those felt like a little bit of heaven. I tried out all four pairs on the treadmill, and took the Sauconys outside for a run around the building. I was in love. I took home the Saucony ProGrid Ride 3.