I recently had to unwillingly buy new running shoes (first world problems?).
Here’s the backstory….
When I first switched to Hoka’s I ran in the Stinson model and loved them. So naturally, after about a month I bought a second pair and stuck them in my closet to be worn when the first pair were done. In the midst of marathon training for the Marine Corps Marathon, I acquired another pair during a sale. Since they were a different color, I started running in them with plans to use them for the marathon. Then there was that whole ‘my shoe broke’ crisis right before the race.
Luckily, we were able to glue to heel back on and the shoe held up for the race. Afterward, Hoka One One replaced the shoes, but with the newer model since they weren’t making that version anymore. So I started running in those last November, which was fine.
Due to lots of time on trails this spring, and not a lot of use of my road shoes, I didn’t need to replace them until recently. After two weeks of unexplained calf and Achilles pain I realized my shoes were probably worn out, and broke out the pair I had stashed in the closet.
They didn’t feel quite right, but I figured I just needed to break them in a bit. When they continued to feel funky, I put my old insoles in them, which seemed to help. But after about 40 miles I realized something was just off. They were giving me hot spots on the balls of my feet, and pinching my toes. I knew I needed to find some new shoes, with the Hokie Half looming in 2 weeks. So I hit up the nearby running specialty shop. (side note – after some research I found that the issue with these shoes was likely due to factory and/or material changes as the company grew)
The version of the Stinsons I love don’t exist anymore, so I tried on a few different Hoka models. I didn’t really want to range out of that brand since I’ve been happy with them for the past couple of years (fyi – I don’t have any sort of partnership with them, I just like their shoes). I ended up settling on the Bondi 4’s.
I wasn’t crazy about the color scheme, but I had to set that aside when they felt so good on my feet. I’m really happy with them so far. I guess I’ve found a new favorite shoe. The color has kind of grown on me, too, although I do miss my pink and purple ones! At least my trail shoes are still purple 🙂 The Hokie Half is this Sunday, and although my longest run in these shoes has only been six miles, I think they’ll be fine on race day!
Have you ever had a shoe not work for you anymore? I don’t know why these shoes, which were the same size and model as a previous pair that I loved, didn’t work for me. Must have been some kind of variation in this individual pair of shoes.
Do you ever get hung up on the color/appearance of running shoes?