Best Running Shoes – 5 Buying Tips


If you’re looking to buy running shoes online or at a store near you, there are some important things to consider to make sure you get the best pair for your needs and for your running gait.
Things like your weight, your stride…whether you over-pronate or under-pronate … those things all come into play when buying running shoes.

Below are 5 running shoe buying tips that really help make a good decision.
People ask me questions like this ALL the time…

“Should I buy running shoes a half size bigger?”

“Should I go up a size when I buy shoes for running?”

“Do running shoes run big or small?”

“Is it ok to buy cheap running shoes?”

“What about running shoes for over-pronation?”

And the list goes on.

When it comes to running shoes, there is no “one size fits all” (yes, pun intended).

Take a quick read through these 5 buying tips from Dr Peter Windross – they will really help when it comes time to find the best pair for YOU.

Five Pointers To Help You Choose Your Running Shoes – Best Running Shoe Selection Is About Comfort

It probably doesn’t make too much difference which shoes you have. All our feet are a bit different and we vary in the size and shapes of our bodies. We all run with a different gait, on different terrains and have differing skill levels.

ONE: Wear what feels comfortable for you. If you can run without pain, then you need to pay no more attention. If something hurts, then try to think of why this might be. Shoes may be the answer, but there are a lot of other things that can cause discomfort.

TWO: If you are fat, with a heavy heel strike you will probably be better off with some well cushioned heels – but learn a better foot-strike too. This takes a couple of weeks and will set you up for a lifetime of weight loss and pain free running.

THREE: Over-pronation and under-pronation are often talked about, along with arch supports. Most people’s feet require only decent technique and will run long happy miles in nice cheap running shoes.

FOUR: The fastest shoes are the ones with the least padding – they are good enough for the professional world record holders and will probably suffice for the rest of us mortals too. The best long distance runners in the world run in shoes with minimal padding. Since modern cushioned running shoes hit the markets some thirty years ago the rate of foot and running injuries has barely changed. So injury prevention might not just be about the shoes.

That having said – expensive running shoes are lovely and comfortable and buying a new pair of these can be fantastic motivation. But be careful your technique doesn’t take a backward step and you aren’t spending unnecessary money.

If you really are stuck with choosing from the hundreds of models and brands out there: try a pair of ‘neutral’ running shoes from the middle of the price-range, last year’s model (just as good and 30% cheaper) from a decent company. I like ASICS and Inov-8 as they aren’t very fashionable, so you know you aren’t inadvertently getting a shoe designed to look good rather than do a decent job. Though over the last couple of years Nike and Adidas are making some better shoes for us runners. Don’t worry too much about the shoes. Buy what feels comfy. Try them on if you can in the shop. If you order from the internet, leave the tags on and move about in your house. It will give you a pretty good idea of what it feels like to run in them. Unless they feel really nice, change them.

I was seduced by the barefoot craze and have a pair of minimalist bits of rubber (Vibram fivefingers, the KSO version) – they aren’t the panacea they claim, but are worth a look if you’re feeling all brave and experimental.

FIVE: The last thing I’ll say on shoes is that if you get the fabulous opportunity to run off-road then a pair of trail shoes is a worthwhile investment. They are surprisingly cheap (not much padding – but as I’ve said that’s fine), all the brands are much of a muchness and they last and last and last. They have chunkier soles for gripping in the rain and the mud and are equally at home on the tarmac or pavement. If you can only afford one pair of shoes get these. It will tempt you off-road and running is 5x more fun out there – and also 5x better for you).
Note I’m not specifying a minimalist trail shoe or a cushioned one supposed to stabilise you. Get what feels good for you. I personally love the feel of the stripped down fell running inov8 x-talon 212 with its out-of-this-world-grip and low profile, so you feel as if your feet have suddenly evolved 50,000 years.

That’s just personal preference. It’s all about personal preference. Run in what feels nice. Your body is pretty good at giving you clues about pain and injuries. Racers in the elite section at ultras wear every variety going. Some even wear Hoka’s which have your feet several inches up in the air away from the trail.

Dr Windross works as a GP with a special interest in weight management. ‘The Waist Management System’ out now on Amazon and on Kindle.

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So…What About CHEAP Running Shoes? Are They Ok?

As with most things in life, price does not ALWAYS dictate the quality of a product.

This is true when it comes to running shoes, as well.

Yes, you can get a decent pair of running shoes for around $40 or so…. just be sure to read the reviews – and don’t expect a really inexpensive pair of running shoes to last a long time.

Here are some really good, and affordable, cheap running shoes we found on Amazon: