What type of shoe?

I'm a bit p****d off at the minute. I can't get out running. This is my problem, and I have had a whinge about this on various other threads, I have Plantar Fasciitis. I saw a Podiatrist on Monday who confirmed this and said I may also have Plantar C..somit-or-other Burstits, which is essentially a very deep blister on my heel.

I accept that we all get injured and I'm just going to have to ride it out until I'm better.

What is really getting to me is that I bought a new pair of shoes and the podiatrist has confirmed, looking at the time between getting the shoes and the occurrence of the injury, that it might well be the new shoes that have started the injury. Now the reason I'm so cheesed off is that the shop that sold me the shoes said that I was over-pronating and the Podiatrist said that was a load of c*** and that I have perfectly neutral feet.

I have 2 questions....

1. Should I go back to the shop and complain? If they are offering this foot diagnosis service it should be accurate.

2. What type of shoes do I buy next. There seems to be conflicting info even on this site. One page said cushioned shoes and another said stability.

I'm not only p****d off but also angry and confused!!!!!




  • Sorry to hear about your less than inspiring experience with new shoes. I started running in neutral shoes, and sure enough after a few months my knees were so knackered I couldn't bend them properly. So I did what you have done and went to a specialist shop who looked at my running and recommended a pair of stability shoes - and I've been thoroughly happy with them with no knee trouble at all. As to what you should do, well, I would complain to the shop, absolutely! And I would have thought that being a neutral runner you'd need cushioning rather than stability, but then again, what do I know?
  • Definately go back to the shop and 'discuss' this with them. If they do not offer to replace the shoes with something that would suit you better, I would name and shame them on this site!

    Shoe selection is very confusing, but I would say that if you are a nuetral runner with a normal foot - go for a stability shoe. If you have a high-arch, go for a cushioned shoe.

    What shoe did the shop sell you?
  • The shoes were Brooks GTS.
  • The Brooks GTS is a 'Performance Shoe' for mild pronators or nuetral feet. A performance shoe is designed to be a second shoe quick, efficient runners for fast training exercise, and not really a standard everday high mileage shoe.

    What application did you tell the shop assistant that you needed the shoes for?
  • Just regular running. I'm not a mega competitive runner I've only done 2 10ks this year and was training for the GNR when I bought the shoes.
  • In my opinion for this type of running (which is more than I do these days) you should be looking at cushioned (if high-arch) or stability shoes. Sounds to me like the Brooks GTS were okay from a build point of view, but perhaps not enough support and cushioning for distances over 3 miles?
    Have a look at www.drpribut.com!
  • Joanne, if you up for a radical change of direction that will mean fewer injuries have a look at www.gordonpirie.com there's a free book called 'Running Fast and Injury Free' that you can download. Since reading it I've transformed my running and have had no injuries (and I'm running quite a bit quicker).

    You may find that your current shoes are quite suitable.
  • Andrew,

    Would it be possible to post a precis of what the book says - especially about shoes?
  • I've read that aswell and I'm trying at the moment. There was a thread on the general forum entitled 'Gordon Pirie Book' that's worth reading.

    The basics are :- Do not land on your heals as this slows you down and causes injuries. Instead train yourself to land on the balls of your feet by taking shorter strides and increasing your stride rate. The best sort of shoes for doing this are racing flats because most training shoes have a heal that is too padded and interferes with landing on your forefoot.

    I would strongly recommend reading the book that Andrew mentioned, it is free and is only a few pages long.
  • Thanks, found it, had a quick look, very confused. Seems to contradict everything you are normally told!

    Interesting that he mentions several bare foot runners - most famously (to me) being Zola Budd - but then I weigh about 80 kilos and I am guessing she weighs about half that so maybe what works for her is not ideal for me ? Also did these runners land on the balls of their feet? And do societies where people do not traditionally wear shoes - I am assuming parts of Africa etc hope I am not sterotyping - run on the balls of their feet?

    THanks to those that have brought this up anyway - has anyone actually followed the advice - if so what happened?
  • Up until a few years ago a lot of black (is this the PC term these days) runners used to do the Comrades Ultra Marathon in South Africa barefoot - 56 miles on tarmac!
  • I've been following it for about 8 weeks, not long I'll admit but my average pace for a 8 mile tempo run has gone from 7:45 min/miles to 7:00. I'm running about 30 miles a week and haven't had any injuries since I changed over. I do all my training in racing flats and I'm a mild overpronator. It certainly seems to be working so far and I'm convinced that basic racing flats are better than any motion control or stability shoes.

    I beginning to think that all the advice given by manufacturers, magazines and this website is complete rot !

    The thing that convinced me is just trying to run barefoot forces you to run on the forefoot because its just too painful to run on your heels - proof that you shouldn't be doing it.
  • Andrew I cannot agree enough. Shoe companies have been trying to solve peoples running gaits with differing types of shoes, at, I might add, great expense, rather than training/coaching/informing people to run properly. This may be something to do with "Buy our shoes" "best protection available" etc. With a dodgy knee I was a bit dubious about doing most of my running in lightweights but I have had no problems so far.

    I did feel he went on a bit in the book about how fantastic he was and how no-one these days could do what he did. Sour grapes?
  • Andrew,

    I must say, your message the other day about Gordon Piries book really did contradict everything I have ever read and been told about running,...and rather took the wind out of my sails.
    My first instinct was to tell you that you were talking utter drivel, to be closely followed by doing a rather unique impression of an ostrich.
    However, I am not one to rush to judgement and decided that I should first have a look at the book in question, and THEN tell you that you were talking utter drivel. Not only would I then be able to pride myself in the fact that I was right and you were wrong, but my arse wouldn't be sticking out in mid-air, with my head in the sand.
    I must say that I am glad that I did decide to read the book - it makes so much sense, and it seems that it would work even for a heavyweight plodder like me (this is what surprised me most, as I thought that it would be aimed at elite athletes).

    I am going to give it a go - the timing couldn't be more perfect either, as I am due for a new pair of shoes.

  • Hello!
    I have read the book about Gordon Piries and I was thinking to try a very light shoe as stated in the book, Can anybody recommend a light shoe and as well something that will protect my feet from the mud and the rain as I ran on grass most of the time?.

    Thanks a lot

  • Elsa, I would recommend a pair of Walsh trainers as being ideal for this although the tread pattern is very heavily studded.
  • You people are heading for injury problems. No question. Unless you are really light (under 10st for men) training in racing flats is a recipe for disaster.

    Do you really think that manufactuerers would spend millions developing training shoes if they didn't work?

    Do high mileage runners like Paula Radcliffe train in flats? No.

    How many world records have been broken since Gorden Pirie was running?

    We have gas and electricity now. Technology has come a long way. use it and trust it.
  • So, why is it people who run barefoot suffer fewer injuries that those that wear shoes ?

    Do you think that 30 years of shoe technology is any match for millions of years of evolution ?

    Personally, I'm happier wearing minimal shoes that interfere as little as possible with my running rather than those clunky orthopaedic boots that are pushed by the popular maufacturers.

    I had plenty of injuries before switching to racing flats, I've had none since despite increasing my mileage and running faster.
  • Millions of years of evolution has given us the sort of anti-social louts that infest our streets so I rest my case on that one.

    I wasn't advocating running in orthopaedic boots I was merely trying to point out that people need to get shoes to suit their weight and gait.

    No disrespect Andrew but a recent post of yours mentioned you were running again after a couple of months off. I hope the lay-off wasn't caused by an injury brought about by doing excessive miles in racing flats.

    If you are very light and have a neutral gait you can probably get away withh training in flats but everyone else should seek a shoe that's right for them.

    If training in racing fllats is a good idea how come nobody I know or run with is doing it? How come top runners don't do it?
  • The couple of months off was due to lazyness. Since starting training again I've switched to the 'Pirie' method because it echoed suspicions that I had held for a while. Prior to that I was running in orthopaedic boots (Asics Nimbus) like everyone else.

    I'm not advocating that everyone adopt it, I'm just pointing out that I now do all my training in racing flats and since then I haven't had any injuries. It is still less than 3 months I'll admit, but I feel it is definately working (for me at least).

    I am well over 11 stone, I overpronate and I'm not a particularly fast runner - so don't believe everything you read in magazines, websites or what you're told by running shoe salespeople.

    Hopefully we'll be able to continue this argument in another few months after a longer time to evaluate it.

    Please don't follow my example, but bear in mind that there are alternative views to the established running 'industry'.
  • I won't be following Andrew's example or his calendar. On 3/9/2002 he mentioned on a thread that he'd just returned to running after a couple of months off. Now he tells us that the 3/9/2002 to the 19/10/2002 is less than three months. Yes it is . . . a lot less. he also tells us his lay-off was due to laziness. Old Chinese proverb say never trust the advice of lazy men with dodgy calendars. No hard feelings Andrew but I think you've been had over by this Pirie fella. trrust the technology and the medical men and you won't go far wrong
  • All I say is :-

    I'm convinced enough to give it a go and so far I've had no problems whatsoever.

    Other people can take it or leave it BUT I would strongly recommend reading the book as it costs nothing and isn't very long.

    No hard feelings editor, but sometimes minority ideas turn out to be better than established misconceptions and it is my opinion that this may be one of those cases.
  • Great. You didn't answer any of the points I raised in my last posting so we'll just leave it at that .
  • Sorry, you're quite right - I returned to running at the end of August and its now the third week in October thats only 8 weeks and not 3 months. But I did say less than 3 months. What other points did you want addressing ?

    I really don't have an Axe to grind on this, do you ?

  • Blimey guys, you're both entitled to your own opinions.

    For what its worth, I've been trying the old fool Pirie's method for (let me check my calendar :-)) 4 weeks and I haven't had any problems either. I've been using Asics Tiger Paw racing shoes.
  • Just the one I made earlier about why this fantastic new approach to running (invented by a guy who was running before most of us were born) hasn't been embraced by elite runners or even good club runners. If it worked don't you think we'd all be training in flats?

    I don't have an axe to grind I just don't want to see people getting injured because of 'cranky stuff' with no scientific basis.
  • And there's other stuff to consider like what surfaces you run on, how fast you run and how many miles you do.

    Experienced runners can make their own miinds up. But I get the impression that a lot of beginners use this site and they'd be better following sound scientific and medical advice rather than going out running in glorified plimsols
  • Alright fellas put the handbags away and answer my original question.

    What shoes should I get next?

    I have neutral feet but I'm suffering from PF problems at the minute.

    I've read this Pirie thing and it all sound a bit radical for me. I just want to enjoy running 3-4 days a week not break any land speed records.

  • What did I miss this weekend. I have read the Pirie book and I believe that the point he is making is that if we have a 'fault' with our running gait i.e. pronation, then rather than try to protect from injury by wearing shoes made for this purpose, we should correct our running style. I think Ed is correct to say that high mileages in racers is likely to cause injury but you make the point that elites do not use racers for training, but you must conceed that they are highly unlikely to wear a pair of Brooks Beast either. I tend now to run in fairly lightweight trainers for most of my running DS lytes and Miz. Maverick and I am suffering no problems. I did suffer ankle and thigh problems whilst running in GT2050. By the way I run on roads/pavement and run 40-50 miles per week, weigh 10st 8lb and run 2:56 for FLM 2002.
  • Joanne, In your position I'd go with what the Podiatrist says and stick to shoes designed for neutral feet as you have said. I've recently moved from using Nikes to the Mizuno shoes & going by comments on this forum, Mizuno seem to attract a high proportion of good reviews. For you it sounds like the Mizuno Wave Rider might do the job.

    Fwiw i think Coopsy and Andrew have a strong point to make on the issue of looking at ones gait rather than simply compensating with more and more expensive shoes (as of course the manufacturers would like us to). Time to be both a little more cynical and a little more open-minded Mr "Editor", I think!
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