How to Pick out the Right Pair of Running Shoes

When preparing for a race, it’s important to don the right equipment — and that includes wearing the right pair of shoes. Finding running shoes that are both comfortable and affordable can prove to be a challenge, but since you will be spending lots of time in them, it’s important to find a pair that you like and fits well.

Here are three simple tips to keep in mind when shopping for your brand new pair of running shoes.

1. Lightweight with good support.

Since everyone’s feet naturally have a different shape, this can mean something different for everyone. A pair that works for your friend may not be the right pair for you. To accommodate this, shoe manufacturers design different models so all runners can find a pair that properly fits their foot shape. Depending on the arch of your foot, you may need a more or less cushioned shoe. Those with a higher arch should find a pair with more midsole padding for added comfort, while those with flatter feet do not need as much.

2. Fit properly from heel to toe.

Your running shoes should fit properly from your heel to toe. Don’t assume your size — sizes are not universal across all brands or even within the same manufacturer. They should be snug on the heel, but not too tight to allow for some comfortable movement. Carl Brandt, a running-speciality store owner, shares, “your heel should fit snug, but not tight. Laced up (but not tied), you should be able to slide your feet out.”

At the front, there should be 1/4 to 1/2 inch of wiggle room. Many runners purchase shoes half a size larger than their regular street shoes to allow for extra room and to prevent bruising.

Related article: How to choose running and walking shoes

3. Look for comfort first.

The most important thing is that your shoes fit comfortably. While some may tend to go for the trendiest or nicest looking shoe, you want to ensure the shoe fits properly first. So lastly, don’t make the common mistake of buying for looks.