(not a) Running Shoe Review

After 4 months of running, I’ve finally pulled the trigger and brought some new trainers. This isn’t a shoe review, as frankly at this stage I don’t have a clue what I’m talking about when it comes to specialist running trainers. However it is the tale of how I came to be wearing my new ASICS kicks.

The reason that I’m excited enough about these Gel Contend 6’s to write a blog post is that buying a new pair of trainers is a milestone in my running journey, and also my return to a healthy lifestyle.

I resisted the temptation to buy new trainers back in September as I wasn’t sure if running would be a long-term thing for me- I was starting Couch to 5K  after a knee issue that had stopped me doing any impact exercise for years. I was concerned the issue would flare up again, and I’d be back to square one. Therefore it didn’t seem worth spending money on trainers until I knew my body could take running consistently without breaking down.

In that spirit so far I’ve just run in shoes I already own. I’ve experimented with my VivoBarefoots and then settled on my old gym worn New Balance 790s after a bout of Extensor Tendonitis whilst using the zero drop trainers.

Now I’ve reached the point where I know my body can take the rigours of running regularly, I thought it was time to invest in my first pair of proper running shoes!

My natural tendency would be to rush out and buy the latest shiny Nike offering, or desperate to look like a ‘real’ runner, invest in a trainer from a more niche brand like Hoka or On Running. What’s more, in my state of heightened enthusiasm I would probably buy a shoe suitable for running a marathon rather than one based on the level I am currently at, which is running round the block!

But, instead I took a deep breath, sat down and did some actual research. Were it not for lockdown, I would certainly have paid a visit to my local independent running store for advice and purchase, but sadly they are not open at the moment, so the internet had to suffice this time round.

Realistically at this stage, for all my blogging and social media hype, I am an absolute beginner and so my trainers should reflect that. I wanted to avoid being the all the gear, no idea guy and settle on a pair that will get the job done.

The ASICS Gel Contend seemed to fit that bill. A brand with a proper running pedigree, a very reasonable price tag, and plenty of good reviews; not least in Runners World, who awarded them Best Value Shoe 2020 calling them ‘A perfect all-rounder for new or lower mileage runners who don’t want to break the bank.’

I will christen them with their first run tomorrow, but for now I’m delighted that I’ve got to the point where I can confidently say I’m a runner who needs a pair of running shoes!

What were your first ‘proper’ pair of running shoes? Do you still wear that brand now?

Published by Graham


4 thoughts on “(not a) Running Shoe Review

  1. Nice! I love a good new running shoe! I started with Saucony, then went to Asics, I tried a pair of Brooks Ghost, but then I ended with Hoka Bondi’s as I ran so much I developed so many feet problems and they have ridiculous cushion on the heel. I did like my Asics though when I had them. I hope you have a great run in your new shoes tomorrow!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I know I have a deep dependance on being able to go to a shoe store and get fitted. In cases like this (and since I’ve had my fair share of different shoes) I have a decent idea of what I need. Too bad they don’t have a hotline or something. Either way, glad you figured something out during this pandemic. Happy running.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! I’ve enjoyed them the couple of times I’ve been out in them so far.

      I’ll definitely go to my local store next time I need a new pair, sadly it was a case of needs must during this latest lockdown.

      Liked by 1 person

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