I will be the first person to admit, I am not 100% loyal to a shoe brand. Sure, back in the day I was loyal to my Keds – but since I’ve started running I’ve switched from Asics, to Mizunos, to Brooks, back to Mizunos, to Saucony and back to Brooks.
For a LONG time I ran in my Mizunos, but then they started screwing around with their shoe design and it started screwing around with my feet. And my toes. And my pedicures. And it kinda hurt, so we had to break up.
I tried Brooks next, because I had heard A LOT of great things, but I’m fairly certain that the style I was wearing (Brooks Ghost) GREATLY contributed to the tendonitis that flared up during my marathon training. Now, I don’t necessarily blame Brooks, it just didn’t support me in a way that the Mizunos had.
While I was dealing with my tendonitis I switched to Saucony (Guides). They were PERFECT for what I needed. They gave me support, but they also helped me transition to a smaller drop (12mm to 8mm) allowing me to change my gait ever so slightly. Once I changed to the Saucony Guide it was like a light switched on and I actually started running faster and with more confidence (of course, this may also be due to the fact that I had finished marathon training!).
After half marathon season ended in March, I knew I wanted to run less and switch to a lighter shoe, especially for the hot and humid summer, so I pulled the trigger and bought a pair of Saucony Kinvaras.
I really do love this shoe. They are lightweight. They don’t get dirty. The let you feel the ground when you run. And I get MAJOR compliments on them. If you want a super affordable pair of minimalist shoes – definitely check these out. I almost always see them on sale.
But then, due to a really awesome discount and coupon, I randomly decided to try out the Brook Pure Connect and I cannot stop wearing them.
They are comfy. The are snug. They are somewhat rounded at the bottom which gives them a COMPLETELY different feel, especially when running.
I LOVE THESE SHOES. LOVE.
The big difference between the Brooks Connect and the Saucony Kinvaras is the fit. The Kinvaras are slightly wider in the heel and while I don’t feel like I’m going to fall out of the shoe, it doesn’t give me as much support – even when I wear my orthotics.
The Brooks on the other hand – they are tight, REALLY tight, but still airy (they don’t bother my bunion — at all, which is HUGE). Their snugness actually bothered me during the first run, but I let them stretch out a little bit and they are perfect. The Brooks hug my feet and my arch. They are also a smidge lighter than the Kinvaras. And they just work… for me.
Now, I may switch back to Saucony when I go to run long distances again. I think after 5-6 miles my feet, ankles, and calves NEED more support – and I’m not going to attempt to do anything crazy. I know the consequences. But for now – these are definitely the shoes for me!
I guess the moral of this shoe story is: Don’t settle on a brand even if you love it. Different styles, fit different feet. Brands also change, and while you can HOPE they change with you — sometimes they don’t and it’s OK to move on. Hey, maybe someday they will woo you back!
And they all lived happily ever after…
Do you have a favorite brand or are you a shoe switcher like me?I was not paid to say anything about any of these shoes. I just felt like sharing because sometimes other people’s opinions get me to try out new things and I appreciate it. If anyone wants to pay me or send me free shoes — I wouldn’t say no. Just sayin’.