Miss Bigfoot's Shoe Shopping Experience

The other weekend I went to the Asics store in London as my current 1150s were sadly nearing their end and I wanted to have my gait analysed again.

I was suffering from some soreness in my calves & shins and as I’m upping the mileage training for the Reading ½ I wanted to make sure I was kitted out in the right shoes. So off I went, and I was given 1160 to try, and I asked for a size 9 like previous times.

You can imagine my mortification when the assistant (who was very cool and helpful) told me that actually a 9 is too small?! My toes were right on the end, no extra room at all. I might be a 9 in normal shoes, but with running trainers I definitely needed to go up a size. When I asked her (in a whispered tone) “do you do size 10 for women, or how about 9 ½??” I wanted to die.

(Note: As most shoe shops seem to think that all women are gifted with small, narrow feet I’ve gone through my whole adult life wearing shoes which are perhaps too snug, so I am used to that now; therefore wearing shoes which fit ‘correctly’ is a strange sensation!)

They had the GT 2160 in a size 9 ½ which seemed to suit my running style perfectly on the analysis, but I was advised that for the mileage I’d be doing they were still borderline too small around my toes. I was definitely women’s 10, and as luck would have it they did have the Kayano 18s in a size 10. I could almost hear my feet let out a sigh of relief, and my bank balance yelp in pain. They felt good – not quite as good as the 2160 but they were still good enough to offer me the support I needed. I bought them and I’ve done nearly 50 miles in them and honestly they feel great (so far). Reduced soreness after long runs, no irritation of my corns on my right foot due to poor fit.

So now I am worried that in the future when I need to buy more trainers, the choice I make will be dependent on the sizing available. I was lucky this time that the size 10 model is working for me. This was Asics flagship store and they barely had size 10s in stock. I go online and size 9 is a rarity – let alone 10!

My question is – are there any other female runners out there with the problem of large feet, and if so how have they found buying new running trainers? Perhaps in future I might need to look at other brands – I know sizing can vary between brands.

I’m hoping that I am not the only one affected by this problem so am reaching out to my fellow female runners! I know this will be highly amusing for some but please no micky taking! image


  • I didn't realise that asics did any of their shoes in a size bigger than the womens 9 which is USA womens 11 which sounds even bigger.........i wear these in the 1160's........I could not swap to the 2160s as i do not oevr pronate significantly enough and have problems in those.....

    i do sometimes were the mens in 1160's but go down a half size to 8 1/2......In the real world I am between a 7 and an 8 in shoes so you need to go bigger.......

    are yopu sure that the bigger ones you were offerred were ladies and not just the mens as i have always only seeen them advertised to 9
  • Unless you've got really narrow feet why not try mens shoes - I need a 7 in running shoes and often get mens shoes. Sometimes they're a bit wider in the heel than the same model in womens size 7 but there's so much variability between the different styles and makes that I often end up not knowing what is ladies/mens anyway.
  • Hi Seren Nos - yes they are definitely women's.
    It is very limited models that they do them in. I suspect because the Kayano 18s are the newest model not long released, they had a larger range of sizing available than some of the older models.
    My boyfriend is a men's size 10 and we compared the sizing information in the tongue of the shoe and it is different, plus the colors are quite feminine image

    Hi Sunluwa - actually I did try on men's image I tried the 1160 and the 2160 in a men's 9.5 and I didn't like them for the reason you mentioned, they were too wide around my heel and did not feel supportive at all, even though for a woman I do have quite wide feet. Maybe next time I might try a size down and see how I get on.
  • I wear mens shoes, I like the room in the toe box

    Usually wear a 9 1/2 or 10 dependant on model and I cant say I give two hoots  image
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