Recently, FitLo was asked, What is the difference between a cross training shoe versus a running shoe? It’s important to wear the right shoe for your activity and the right fit to protect your joints. You may not notice today, but over time the shoes you wear can make a difference in your comfort, stamina and fitness. FitLo visited New Balance in Aspen Grove and spoke with a couple shoe experts to get the skinny. Thank you, Taylor and Wylie for talking with us!
Note: The information provided in this blog post is for the general population. If you are concerned about foot pain or injuries, please seek the advice of a specialist or physician.
Watch the interview video and read the top 5 tips below.
Cross Training Shoe VS Running Shoe? FITLO’S TOP 5 ATHLETIC SHOE TIPS
- Go to a store with shoe experts. This means people who will take time to talk with you, measure your feet and assist you by properly fitting you into the best shoe for your foot and your activity. Stores such as New Balance and Boulder Running Company are great options. Selecting a shoe online based on color and fashion, without trying them on is not the best choice, especially if the shoes end up not fitting well, but you wear them anyway. We all want to look good as we cross the finish line, but you need to be smart about supporting your body and joints. Our experts at New Balance shared an interesting fact: 72% of people don’t have the right shoe size for their foot. So before you trip over your own feet at the finish line, get measured.
- Running shoes are for forward movement. They have extra cushion for heal to toe impact. If you tend to mostly run and do forward moving activities, like running and movement on most cardio machines, with occasional side to side movement activities, a running shoe is likely the best option for you.
- Cross training shoes are for multi-directional movements. Activities such as Zumba, aerobic kickboxing, basketball and other activities that involve side to side (lateral movement) are best with a cross training shoe, especially if this makes up the majority of your activities. If you opt to get a cross training shoe, it’s best to stick to running less than 1 mile at a time. Avoid training for a race in a cross training shoe. Some people are able to run in a more minimally cushioned shoe, however, there is a technique to learn and transition period for switching to running in these kinds of shoes that should be taken seriously before taking off for an extended run. These shoes also break down a lot faster and should be replaced more often.
- Get more than one pair of shoes if you run A LOT. If you run 50 + miles per week, you may want to consider having more than one pair of running shoes. When running many miles the cushioning in the shoe condenses and it needs at least 24 hours to re-expand to keep the cushioning as ‘springy’ and soft as possible, especially after a long run.
- Replace shoes when they are worn out. You could have invested in a really swank pair of athletic shoes, but when it’s time to retire them – retire them! After time, shoes lose their “spring or response” as the cushioning condenses which causes more strain on the muscles, joints and bones of the legs. Replacing your running shoes after 300-500 miles is a good guideline. If you run 20 miles a week, a pair of shoes gives you about 6 months. However if you run 50 a week, it’s closer to 2.5 months.
I hope these tips give you some nuggets to consider and discuss with your preferred shoe expert so you can find your perfect shoe match. I’d love to see pics of you in your new athletic shoes. Please share! Seriously, this stuff is exciting to me. I’ll like it, heart it, retweet it– I’m all in! In other words, you’re a shoe-in on the FitLo site!