Finding the right shoes for a marathon
You can get very attached to your running shoes, but with a marathon on the horizon it might mean that it’s time for a new pair. When you’re choosing a new pair of shoes, your pronation level is the most important aspect to think about, but you shouldn’t forget the fit of the shoe, your speed, weight, running style and preparation. Read the below article to ensure you’re ready for the race with the right running gear.
WHAT IS PRONATION?
Pronation is the way the foot rolls inward when you walk and run. It is part of the natural movement that helps the lower leg deal with shock. Some people pronate more (overpronation) or less (underpronation) than others.
Though this is not bad in itself, it does affect the way you run and, in combination with an unsuitable shoe, it may increase the likelihood of injury. This makes your pronation pattern an important factor in choosing the right running shoes.
To learn more about pronation and finding the right shoes for your pronation level, read our pronation article.
HOW FAST DO YOU WANT TO RUN?
Some marathon runners are just looking to complete the course – others are targeting a time. Depending on your goals, you’ll need a different shoe.
Elite runners who are looking to attack the course could go for the men’s DS-TRAINER or women’s DS-TRAINER. If you’re prioritising comfort over speed, the men’s GEL-NIMBUS or women’s GEL-NIMBUS might be more to your liking. However, only an experienced runner with an efficient style should run a whole marathon in a racing shoe – it can really take its toll on you if you’re not prepared.
HOW MUCH DO YOU WEIGH?
If you’re a heavier runner, you might need to go for extra cushioning. It’ll reduce thestress on your lower legs and make your landings more comfortable. Check out our iconic GEL-KAYANO, our number 1 running shoe METARUN or innovative DYNAFLYTE.
Training history plays a big part here though. Heavier runners used to running in lightweight shoes can do just fine, because their bodies have adapted to the style and become used to it.
If you’re a lighter runner, you can afford to go with less cushioning and get lighter shoes. The DS-TRAINER could be just right if you’re used to running in a lightweight, racing shoe.
HOW WIDE IS YOUR FOOT?
If your shoe is too narrow for you, you’ll be uncomfortable from the moment you start running. ASICS have wider shoes that mean your foot is more comfortable and it doesn’t rub against the side of the shoe.
The GT-2000 comes in wide and extra-wide, so you’re free to choose the width that fits you best.
HOW HAVE YOU PREPARED FOR THE RACE?
If you’ve done all of your training in cushioned shoes, you should run your marathon in cushioned shoes – don’t be tempted by racers at the last moment, because your feet won’t be prepared for the change.
If you decide to run in a lighter shoe, you should start using it early in your training and get in at least one 100k+ run. That’ll tell you whether your body can handle the extra pressure.
Remember you should never run in new shoes on the day of your race. To break in your new pair, alternate between your new and old shoes during training.
WHAT WILL THE WEATHER BE LIKE?
Your body generates a lot of heat over 26.2 miles and that means your feet as well. You might want a pair of running shoes with breathable mesh in the upper so your feet don’t get sweaty and uncomfortable, causing blisters and making it difficult to run.