As I prepare to run the the AJC Peachtree Road Race (10K) on July 4th, with my friends from Mizuno Running, is it essential that I have the right shoes on my feet. The right shoes should disappear into your feet so much that you don’t even notice them when racing, but the wrong shoes – well, they can ruin an entire race for you with blisters, blackened toenails, and all other sorts of terrible issues. It is essential that you find a shoe that is a perfect fit for you; however, once you find that perfect shoe you do not have to stop there. A year or two ago I used to run every single run – long, short, speed, easy, all in the exact same pair of Mizunos, which I loved to death. However, I have really enjoyed broadening my horizons and adding more shoes to my collection. (I mean you can never have too many running shoes right?) While it is possible to run every single run in the same pair of shoes, it is even more amazing to have the right shoe for each and every type of workout you do.
Finding the right shoe is important because it can really take your workouts and races up a notch. While everyone’s perfect shoe lineup may be a bit different depending on their running style, mileage, and their specific needs here is my shoe lineup:
Wave Hitogami 2 –
The lightest of all my shoes, it almost feels like you are not wearing any more than a sock. Add to that the fact that this shoe has a low heel drop and a flatter surface and you are left with one fast shoe. This shoe is my cross training essential. The flat surface makes it perfect for lifting and it transitions well from the weight room to the treadmill. Keep this baby in your gym bag.
Wave Sayonara 2 –
Light enough to be super speedy, with enough cushion to pound the pavement day after day. The Wave Sayonara 2 is my speed work shoe. I do all my speedy runs in this including my interval workouts and my 5K and 10K races. This is the shoe I will be running the AJC Peachtree Road Race in – fast, light, and with ample cushioning.
Wave Rider 18 –
This shoe is my bread and butter. I do all my long runs in the Wave Rider 18, and any other non-speed work runs. It has more cushioning that the Wave Sayonara 2 and Wave Hitogami 2 so I feel comfortable and confident running mile after mile in this baby. Because of the extra cushioning it is a little bit heavier (not bad at all at just 7.8 oz.) which is why adding in a lighter speed work shoe can be an awesome addition to this Wave Rider 18. When people can only afford one pair of shoes at a time the Wave Rider 18 is the one I suggest because it will make it through your long runs beautifully, but can also handle any other workout you throw at it.
Wave Creation 16 –
The Wave Creation 16 is the most cushioned of all the shoes in this lineup, and therefore the heaviest. However, when I wore this baby I wasn’t concerned about it’s heft – I was an injury prone marathon runner and I didn’t mind a few extra ounces of shoe weight because of all the cushioning that came along with it. If you are running long and start to notice more and more injuries maybe it is time to step it up a notch, this shoe is for my fellow injury prone runners out there, or anyone who likes maximum cushioning.Wave Kazan –
Imagine taking your favorite pair of Wave Riders and morphing them into the perfect pair of trail shoes, that is exactly what the Wave Kazan does. The Wave Kazan provides the same comfort and support as the Wave Rider 18, but with a flatter sole so no trail debris gets trapped in them and a studded pattern on the bottom for optimal traction and grip.
Wave Inspire 11 –
I am a neutral runner so all the shoes listed above fall into that category; however, if you need more support or stability I highly suggest checking out the Wave Inspire 11 as it may be the perfect shoe for you. What is your perfect shoe?
Do you run in just one pair of shoes, or do you have multiples?
*Disclosure the AJC PeachTree Road Race entry and all my Mizuno shoes were given to me as part of my ambassadorship with the company. However, my love for Mizuno is ridiculous and true. They could drop me tomorrow and I would still never run in another brand of shoes. As always these are my real, honest opinions.