Running Shoes and Injuries

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Captainblood
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Running Shoes and Injuries

Post by Captainblood » Fri Feb 06, 2015 12:54 pm

When I began running I went to a running store and was put in the Asics GT 2000s (a moderate stability shoe). It is my primary running shoe, but I also rotate in Brooks Ghosts for faster days, Brooks Adrenalines for days when my legs are shot, and Asics Noosas just for variety.

I never questioned these shoes because I was injury free. However, about a month ago I woke up with a pain in my inner hip area. I have stretched, gotten massage treatment, done a lot of hip strengthening exercises, and cross-trained. The pain has migrated around my leg and is getting less and less every day. I attribute the problem to weak and tight hip muscles.

I am thin and tall with high arches. I consider myself a normal pronator. I love the Ghost 6 and I now wear it for about half of my runs. I am worried that a stability shoe is controlling my pronation and forcing other parts of my body to absorb the shock. I don't blame the shoe for my injury, but my reason for not switching was that I had been injury free (it wasn't broke so I didn't fix it).

As I strengthen my hips and legs should I be fully transitioning to a neutral shoe?

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Re: Running Shoes and Injuries

Post by Racerdb » Sat Feb 07, 2015 9:56 am

Captainblood wrote: I am thin and tall with high arches.
Don't know about your other questions but do you wear orthotics for your high arches? I'm a neutral mostly Pegasus/Wave Rider wearer. 100% of the time I change out the little inserts that come with the shoes with something with more arch support. For years it was Lynco's L400's but recently changed to Superfeet inserts.

Maybe that might help...

Dave

Captainblood
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Re: Running Shoes and Injuries

Post by Captainblood » Sat Feb 07, 2015 11:37 am

I bought orthotics and wore them for a bit when I was having some lower leg issues. The issues went away and I stopped wearing them. I wasn't sure what they were doing. Again, I was injury free so I tried to keep doing the same thing. Have orthotics helped you?

dilluh
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Re: Running Shoes and Injuries

Post by dilluh » Sat Feb 07, 2015 6:16 pm

I started wearing only neutral running shoes about 8 years ago and will never look back. Before that I was constantly getting little niggling injuries to my feet and knees in particular. Since switching I have not experienced anything like that again. I now firmly believe that unless you have major structural issues with your feet or gait, that any motion control or “guidance” or medial posting does nothing for you at best and can be harmful at worst.

I used to care more about the heel-toe drop ratio but now I do not believe even that matters so much as I have had success with the NB 1400 series which is an 11 mm drop shoe. I think finding something that fits well and gives you the right response/cushion for the application (easy runs, tempos, track, racing, etc) is the best approach - not being adherent to saying, "I won't run in a shoe unless it has less than X amount of heel-toe drop." I have a lot of highly cushioned shoes and a lot of fairly firm shoes, but they are all neutral and generally fall in the 4-8 mm drop range.

I have also changed my daily wear shoes for work and around the house to being more neutral and generally "flat" type sneakers or street shoes. I think this also makes a big difference. Many years ago I wore Birkenstocks or put Birkenstocks inserts into other shoes and was often dealing with sore feet and several bouts of plantar fasciitis. The use of simple, flexible, flat shoes has helped strengthen my feet, I believe.

Captainblood
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Re: Running Shoes and Injuries

Post by Captainblood » Sun Feb 08, 2015 10:08 am

I have been slowly transitioning to neutral shoes. I like to split my runs between at least 2 different shoes and so far the Ghost is the only neutral shoe I have found. I was psychologically attached to a control shoe, but I am ready to make the break. Any recommendations for neutral shoes (especially for those of you that like the Ghost) would be appreciated. Of course I will try them on first.

It's interesting that I was investigating a lot of different issues with my running and I think I have finally found the solution to most or all of them. For example, when I would look at race photos everyone else looked normal and I always seemed discombobulated. I would be knock kneed or my non plant leg would be flared out to the side. I learned that my hip muscles were so weak that my plant leg knee was caving in which would force my swinging leg out wide to compensate.

You can find out if you have this type of weakness by doing single leg squats. If your knee caves in then you might think about some strengthening exercises.

I am one month into strengthening my legs and hips (10 air squats used to be hard) and already feeling a major difference. I feel like I am more stable in my core. Late in runs I run taller which gives me more oxygen than I know what to do with. In the future I hope to be less of a shuffler and to run with more power and drive. This will be a long process, but the early results are encouraging.

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Re: Running Shoes and Injuries

Post by dilluh » Sun Feb 08, 2015 10:42 am

Captain,

If you like the Ghost (and Brooks in general), I would give the Launch a try for something no-frills neutral. This shoe has a cult following. So much so that they kept it in production despite the desire to stop a few years back. I have not tried this shoe as many Brooks models just don't feel right on my feet, but I have friends (slow and fast) who swear by this shoe and will curse the day Brooks discontinues it.

Other options that I have tried and liked: NB 980 and NB 890. Both of these are neutral and fairly simple yet they still fall solidly in the "trainer" category rather than hybrid trainer/racer shoe. The 980 will be firmer but more material under your feet while the 890 is a bit softer with more ground-feel.

Finally, I probably can't say enough about what Skechers is doing right now with their GoRun and GoMeb line of shoes. They are the epitome of simple, neutral running shoe. The GoRunRide model is very soft and a easy/recovery day delight. I use the GoRun for anything from easy running to some tempo runs and the GoMeb (Speed) I've done track work, long workouts, my most recent marathon and 5k races in. The GoMeb Speed is significantly more firm than the other two. Not sure what it is, but putting on any of the Skechers line makes you wonder why any other shoe company puts more crap on their outsoles and uppers than absolutely necessary - all of this without making it feel like your just out running in socks. They absolutely still feel solid under-foot.

Right now I rotate around with Skechers, New Balance and Saucony. I haven't seen much from the competitors that both fits my feet well and shows similar attention to simplicity with function.

Captainblood
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Re: Running Shoes and Injuries

Post by Captainblood » Sun Feb 08, 2015 11:29 am

I love the Go Meb 2s and use them for racing 5ks. I tried some of the other Skechers shoes and they felt different than most running shoes. I think it was the rocker. The salesperson also warned me that durability was an issue with some of the Skecher shoes. I loved the Go Meb 2s and bought them and have been thrilled. I want to try the others on again.

I will look into the Launch. I love Brooks shoes and they work great for me. I will also try the NB shoes you mentioned. I am retiring my Adrenalines after 600 miles (a lot more mileage than I usually get out of shoes) and have many pairs of GT 2000s that are getting ready to be donated.

I am torn between wearing my orthotics. On the one hand they might help, but on the other hand it seems like I am just turning a shoe into more of a support/control shoe. Any thoughts on orthotics?

Looking forward to the next chapter as I build and re-build my running body.

dilluh
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Re: Running Shoes and Injuries

Post by dilluh » Mon Feb 09, 2015 1:16 pm

The "rocker" thing has dissipated in each iteration since the GoRun2. I thought the same thing when I first laced up a pair of the version 2, but within 2 miles of that first run I completely forgot about it and never noticed it again. The rocker is severely diminished in version 3 and now they've done away with it completely in version 4. Longevity/durability is an issue with the GoRun model (on the other hand, the GoRun Ride is very long lasting) which is why I only buy them on clearance from Amazon. I can typically get around 300 miles on a pair. For $40-45 per pair, I'd say that's pretty good.

I thought of another option for simple, neutral trainers: Saucony Kinvara. Many people love this shoe. I can understand the appeal but the shape of the last is wrong for my foot, unfortunately.

Captainblood
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Re: Running Shoes and Injuries

Post by Captainblood » Wed Feb 11, 2015 10:34 am

Experimented yesterday with orthotic inserts and support/guidance shoe. I could actually feel my foot being held in place and all of the shock absorption being done by my knee. Result: sore knee and hip post run. Conclusion: I need to be in a neutral shoe to allow my feet to pronate and absorb the shock.

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Re: Running Shoes and Injuries

Post by dkggpeters » Wed Feb 11, 2015 12:54 pm

Is anyone else having problems with newer models of shoes in where the tongue and ankle collar is thicker and for be it forces the shoe to run up against my ankle bone on my right foot. I have to fold up a paper towel and wedge in there so the shoe does not rub against the bone. I have no problems with my left foot. I am noticing this on 3 new models I just purchased (Saucony Kinvara 5, Mizuno Sayonara 2, and Brooks Pure Flow 3). I have run a lot of miles in the earlier versions of the Kinvara and Sayonara with no issues.

I hope this is not a trend with new models on having a thicker tongue.

dilluh
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Re: Running Shoes and Injuries

Post by dilluh » Wed Feb 11, 2015 1:41 pm

I believe the trends of the late 80s and 90s in running shoe design are still having an impact on what shoes get made, how many of them get made and how they are marketed. When I first started running 13 years ago, there were a lot of shoes in the guidance/pronation control category that were increasingly beefed up with “technology” to help you “cure” your pronation problem. The guy at the very first running specialty store I went to looked at my feet and immediately said I was an “over-pronator” and slapped on a pair of moderate pronation control Asics trainers and $120 later, I was out the door. The sad truth is that most running specialty stores still mostly operate in this way (there are some great ones out there but they are not the norm). Why? (1) Because it’s easy. (2) Because the profit margin on a pair of high technology shoes is far greater than that of a simple neutral trainer or trainer/racer hybrid. Also, people develop habits. If they started running with the Brooks Beast 5 years ago, they’re likely going to stick with it unless something happens. If they do get injured, often they’ll be told to try a different motion control shoe - not step back and think that maybe the shoe is the problem, not the person’s foot. I think I am a bit too harsh on the folks that work at running shoe stores. They don’t typically have degrees in sports medicine or physiology - ultimately they’re there to sell shoes that they stock.

At some point in the early 2000s there was a shift and some people began to question the idea of highly structured running shoes and their usefulness (or lack thereof). Like many things, the pendulum swung from one extreme to the other and the barefoot running/Vibram craze was born (The book “Born to Run” fueled this fire as well). Suddenly you had people who, throughout their entire lives were shod and typically shod in very restrictive footwear, began running barefoot or nearly barefoot. This “minimalist” fad has seemed to have faded into what I think is probably a happy medium: simple, relatively lightweight, neutral running shoes. Like I said before, unless you have some diagnosed structural issues with your feet or gait, I do not think you need anything more than these types of neutral trainers. The less “crap” they add on to the shoe, the more appeal that model has to me. A soft, flexible upper that hugs my foot with few overlays, a last shape that allows reasonable room for toes, a one-piece midsole and an outsole with a high amount of ground contact.

Yet, despite the simple neutral trainer resurgence, running specialty shoe stores still sell a TON of pronation control shoes. I think these are still their bread and butter as far as shoe sales go. And that’s fine - there are a lot of fitness runners/joggers who likely don’t run enough volume or run consistently enough for it to become an issue. Though maybe they would enjoy running more if they tried a less restrictive and less heavy shoe. =]

I don’t know much about orthodics other than what I stated before: wearing Birkenstocks insoles hurt my feet more than they helped and those things are not far from a full on orthodic.

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Re: Running Shoes and Injuries

Post by dilluh » Wed Feb 11, 2015 1:44 pm

dkggpeters wrote:Is anyone else having problems with newer models of shoes in where the tongue and ankle collar is thicker and for be it forces the shoe to run up against my ankle bone on my right foot. I have to fold up a paper towel and wedge in there so the shoe does not rub against the bone. I have no problems with my left foot. I am noticing this on 3 new models I just purchased (Saucony Kinvara 5, Mizuno Sayonara 2, and Brooks Pure Flow 3). I have run a lot of miles in the earlier versions of the Kinvara and Sayonara with no issues.

I hope this is not a trend with new models on having a thicker tongue.
I can't wear the Kinvara solely because of this issue (the ankle rubbing - although it's on both ankles for me). It's really unfortunate because otherwise I like the shoe. The A5/6 model is the only Saucony shoe I have now.

This is also my issue with most Brooks shoes: they're too "deep." Especially in the heel area.

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Re: Running Shoes and Injuries

Post by Captainblood » Wed Mar 11, 2015 3:59 pm

Ran in the Launch 2s for the first time today. Nice ride. Like they aren't there. Really like them so far.

Shifting into the Ghosts for normal distance runs and going to try the Launch 2s for intervals and tempos.

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