part 1 …the feet.
If you have decided to start a couch to 5k programme as part of your New Year’s resolutions, congratulations! It’s a great way to introduce yourself to running in a gentle and structured way. But we need to have a chat. Rather than bombard you with everything at once, let’s break it down over a number of posts.
First, let’s talk feet, starting with shoes.
You might get away for the first couple of weeks with your old trainers that you have dragged out of the cupboard under the stairs, but very soon you will realise that it is worth investing in a pair of dedicated running shoes. There is no short answer to the “best running shoe” question except to say, the one that suits you best. Going to a store that can assess your body type, running style and gait is the best way to assess which shoe is best for you. If they have video analysis you should be able to see how different shoes perform when you run in them; there is often quite a difference.
If you are running with a group, ask around for some pointers to local sources. Personal recommendation is always a great place to start and smaller retailers often provide a very high quality service that major chains can’t necessarily match. Be ready to invest some time in your decision – you’ll be wearing your purchase for a while and in some conditions you might not have anticipated.
While we are talking feet, let’s not forget socks.
Socks are an often over looked topic but are crucial to keeping your feet comfortable. There is golden rule in all running clothing: COTTON IS NOT YOUR FRIEND. This rule applies here too. Cotton socks will get damp and chill your feet more efficiently than anything else. Cold feet are thoroughly unpleasant and are to be prevented at all costs. Wool or synthetic socks are going to be your friends. They will cushion your foot in the shoe whilest at the same time, wicking perspiration and any other water present away from your skin. But whatever happens avoid cotton!
There are plenty of sock choices too – again, what suits you best is down to you, your experience and your preferences. Trial and error with narrow your search down!
Next up – Sports Bras.