Fitness: Benefits of Running and Picking the Right Pair of Shoes at The Westfield Running Company

Tuesday, February 07, 2017

The past offers no opportunities, only lessons. 
The future offers no lessons, only opportunities. 
The present offers realization, briefly. - Conversations with my hubby, 2017

Do you run?

Most people I talked to started running because of health reasons. That annual visit to the doctor usually triggers an individual to put on his running shoes.

The thought of running more than half a mile was foreign to me. 7 years ago, while most of the mothers in my town had already completed back-to-back triathlons, at 46 years old I found myself wanting to run a 5K race. To condition my mind into actually doing the race, in 2010, I signed-up for the Beauty and the Beach 5 Mile Run for Women. I never ran before and having a running buddy was crucial to the success of my new obsession. I told my friend about the 5-mile run and since we were both competitive, we ended registering for 2 races: 1) 5K Run for Mom and the 5 Mile Run in Long Branch. 

We trained 5 days a week. It was a social event for us, a time to talk about our families, our joys, our dreams and our challenges. We started training in July. 

On the first week, we trained at the football field. We started with 1 lap and each day we added another. However, we both got bored so we figured out a different route around our town. 

By October we ran our first 5K race, and by November we were running 5 miles.

On the day of the race, we both finished 5 miles at 50:22! 

We never ran again after that.

7 years later, I found myself running again.

Last July, my husband started running – outdoors.  His mind works systematically, so running became a project. He read different studies and articles. He set goals and target dates.

We work on our computers a lot. To set aside time to be outdoors was a very important factor.

My husband runs at least 3 times a week – even in the winter. His determination inspired me to revisit my enthusiasm for running. 

The past week, I finally got the stamina to run up to 3 miles. It looks like I’d be running a lot more miles so it was important that I have the proper gear, and running shoes are probably the most important tool in running. The last time I bought a pair of running shoes was over 5 years ago.

Last weekend, instead of the usual guess work and trial and error, we ventured on something new. We went to see the professionals the Westfield Running Company.

Picking the right pair of shoes is a like a science.

1) The representative asked us to walk. We had to roll up our pants so that she could observe our ankles.

2) She measured our feet to get an accurate sizing. For running shoes, she advised us to wear a size higher.  One of the reps emphasized that in doing so, we're not injuring our toes - and yes, we do want to keep our toes healthy.

3) We ran on the treadmill while the camera recorded our movements.

4) The camera showed that my left foot was off-balance and needed more support. 

5) I must have tried about 8 pairs of shoes ranging from Asics, New Balance and Hoka One. With every pair, the camera captured different results.

6) The choices were down to Asic and New Balance. Both provided the support I needed. New Balance worked for me because it was lighter, and as someone who prefers flip-flops, I needed my toes to be free.  The rep suggested that I wear the shoes in the next 25 days because if the shoes didn't provide the support that I needed, I could exchange it for a new one. 

So I rushed home and ran 3 miles.

Special thank you to the 2 reps at the Westfield Running Company. We'll see you again after 500 miles.

What about you, do you like to run?

Do you want to join me on October 29 at the 2017 Beauty and the Beach 5-Mile Run/Walk ?

Photo design courtesy of Canva.

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