I knew that I desperately needed to get new sneakers this summer (my feet were feeling it), but I kept putting it off because I wasn't sure what to look for; they all felt comfortable in the store, yet when I started jogging outdoors it was a different story. But I followed the tips below, invested in some nice new sneaks and my feet are thanking me. Did you know that if you weigh 150 pounds and walk one mile, you've exerted 63.5 tons of force on each foot, according to a study from the American Podiatric Medical Association. So it's important to get shoes that support your feet, and to toss that old pair out when they've reached their limit. The average life span for fitness shoes is only the equivalent of 200 to 400 miles. If you're unsure how yours are holding up, look at the sole of your sneaker to see how worn down it is - if you can't see the ridges anymore, it's probably time for a new pair. But shopping for sneakers can be confusing. Here are some tips.
- It helps to shop at an athletic shoe store (avoid the chains if you can), where the salespeople know how to measure and fit your feet and advise about shoe features. The store I went to even had a treadmill where they watched how I ran and suggested shoes to support my running habits.
- For feet with a low or flat arch, choose rigid shoes that control motion and resist bending.
- Normal feet, with a medium arch, do well in slightly curved shoes designed for stability.
- High-arched feet need curved shoes that twist and bend easily.
- You can walk in running shoes, but never run in walking shoes (they're too rigid). To make running shoes last longer, only wear them when running (use a separate pair for walking).