So, a while ago I bought and RAVED ABOUT Mizuno Wave Rider 17s.
I loved them. I PR’d in them. They were my jam. They made my feet happy!
And then I started marathon training.
Not only was I running more, A LOT more, I was running more in higher temps. You don’t have to be a genius to realize that in Florida, in the middle of the summer, that shit gets HOT and it tends to destroy things.
This did not make my shoes happy.
Or my feet.
And, especially, my knees.
My shoes seemed to start wearing early (with less than under 150 miles). I thought, “eh, I’m sure this is normal.”
I kept running. I kept increasing my mileage.
A few weeks ago I reached a weird breaking point and I started wondering why the runs after my 20-miler felt hard. At first, I chalked it up to training just feeling tough because I was adding more mileage and feeling tired. Except, I actually took a cut week, so that didn’t make sense. Then my knees started hurting. And my feet — oh my poor feet were KILLING me. I would just wake up in the middle of the night with them aching.
Then I remembered to check out the outer soles of my shoes.
A-ha! Parts of my heel and toe were missing – and there was a lot of mid-section wear as well.
I was sad.
Then I calculated my mileage (I started wearing my shoes at the end of May — I had JUST hit the 2-month mark and maybe 250, if that). W.T.F???
Maybe I’m spoiled, but I’ve never burned through shoes THAT fast before. I felt like I had been cheated, especially because I really LIKED the shoes. The kicker — I didn’t even RACE in those shoes.
So, I did what every person would do when they are angry at a brand for reducing the quality of their product… I found another one.
Meet my new shoes — Saucony Ride 7s.
I did a lot of research on these things. I needed shoes that could carry me through the next 100+ miles of training and 26.2 miles on October 12th (OMG, THE MARATHON IS IN 6 WEEKS).
My verdict, so far, is that they run a little shorter than the Wave Riders – so I have to half-size up. BUT, I don’t feel like an old lady after I run. In fact I had one of my best long runs in MONTHS last weekend.
They are the weirdest shoes in the best way possible – if that makes any sense. They are cushy, but not too cushy. They are light (around 8.5-9oz), but feel substantial. The outer sole is solid and from all of the 90878291 reviews I read – really hold up. I wear custom orthotics, so I can’t talk about the inner sole – but the one time I ran in them without my inserts, they were comfy and didn’t bother my ankle.
I’m hopeful. Which is a good thing since I just ordered another pair that will (if all goes well) be my Chicago Marathon Shoes, next month.
Imagine these shoes with a TON of names written on them. Can’t wait!
TL;DR version… the running shoe love story saga continues because companies keep changing designs and quality. Or they just like to piss me off and keep things interesting (verdict is still out).
Will I switch back to Mizunos when I’m running half marathons?? Will I try Brooks again? Will Saucony become MY SHOE? Only time will tell.
Shoe love/hate… Which brand has disappointed you the most?? Which brand did you not expect to love/wear?
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