After the experiment with Newton shoes, I’m left wondering about just what went wrong… I think the jury’s still out about ‘blaming’ the shoes as such, there are too many variables involved.
It could have been due to simple overuse. The week of the original injury, I was peaking my run miles and my overall training hours, but to have tibialis pain, and the same pain bilaterally seems more equipment related to me. The thing is, I was doing most of my mileage in an older pair of Asics 2160, which my son had previously been using for gym class, and I had then put 700km on them. So, they were possibly worn out (though I expect to put 1000km+ on a pair of running shoes). I had been running pace runs in Newton Motion and was really happy with how they felt, but looking at the soles, there is wear on the outer edge midfoot, and the outer lug is worn, probably unbalancing the shoe, and that’s after only 325km.
That’s the thing with lightweight shoes though, you blow through them at a fair rate, and given that you generally need to transition to them, you can’t save them only for racing in – you have to train in them to.
Trying the Newtons 100% after the race caused additional injury problems, but again, I’d be reluctant to blame the shoes – I had just run an ironman marathon and was pre-injured. Not an ideal time to be transitioning to radical new shoes.
I’ve been running in Asics 2xxx shoes for decades. If it wasn’t just overuse / worn out shoes, what else contributed to the injuries? Was it the low drop, going from 12mm to 3mm? The Motions have a medial post, the denser bit of midsole to help prevent excessive rolling inwards of a pronating ankle, so I don’t think that was the issue. What’s most likely in my book just now is torsional stability.
Some folks have talked about the ‘Taco Test’, where you simply fold a prospective shoe in half to see where it bends, ball of the foot or mid-foot. Some shoes have a solid bit of plastic mid-foot to prevent this, some don’t. Those without feel more ‘natural’, like the Newtons. It’s woth noting that my previous race shoes, Asics Sky Speed, have the torsional rigidity but no medial post, and I raced all last season with no issues in them.
However, I tried the Newon Sir Isaac S, which should have been a perfect training shoe for me. Wide toebox, 4.5mm drop, medial post and torsional rigidity. Should I have persevered with them? Fact is, I’ve had the Asics GT-2000 for a week and have managed a consistent run week. Am I content to stick with these forever as my everyday trainers? Should I keep trying to find a lower drop, less ‘built’ shoe to wean myself off them? Is it worth loosing another race season over?