Every year there are lots of marathons and lots of runners participating, some for the first time. Training for a marathon is not easy. You have to be well prepared, and that includes finding the right footwear. So, what should you look for in choosing footwear? Well, it’s a multi-step process. Here are some things to consider when buying marathon shoes.
The first thing you should consider is what kind of runner you are. Consider whether you are a heavy pronator, a neutral runner, or an under-pronator. If you’re unsure of your foot type, you can either have your foot measured by a professional or you can do a simple test yourself called the “wet test”. For more information on measuring feet visit our blog post HERE.
The other thing to consider with your foot is your strike pattern, otherwise known as your gait You need to determine whether you are forefoot heavy, heel heavy or mid-foot heavy. The wet test is a great foot test, but it does not explain your strike pattern. That is where professionals, such as ourselves, can fully determine the combination of foot shape and gait roll you have and recommend the best choice for you.
For example, even though you have a high arch on paper, you may have a loose arch, which causes you to over-pronate. In this case, your best shoe option would be a stability rather than a neutral shoe which is normally recommended for a high arch. Your strike pattern can also influence your need for a shoe with greater cushion or less cushion, particularly in the heel. Again it all depends on your foot type.
Marathon Shoe Suggestions:
Depending upon your foot type and strike pattern, you may need either a neutral or more support-styled shoe. Because these shoes fit very different, we have broken down our recommendations for both neutral and stability runners. It is important to pick the right shoe by feel and not by price or color.
Asics Gel Nimbus
As a neutral shoe, the Asics Gel Nimbus 12 provides runners more support at the front of the outsole, which gives a forefoot to mid-heavy striker more shoe under the ball of the foot for takeoff.
Nike Air Zoom Vomero
The Vomero series includes zoom units in foot and heel to give you more support and provide a smooth transition from heel to toe
Asics Gel Kayano
The Kayano series is Asics' top-of-the-line support series. The Solyte midsole and DuraSponge rubber outsole provide superior durability and cushioning with less weight. An Impact Guidance System enhances the foots natural gait from heel strike to toe-off.
Saucony Grid Hurricane
The Saucony Progrid Hurricane running shoes combine great comfort with good support for moderate to maximum over-pronation. The ride is well-cushioned and the heel-to-toe transition is is smooth, especially with the inclusion of memory foam.