If you’ve read the My Kit page, you’ll know my current preferred shoe of choice is the Asics Gel Kayano 20. I was recommended these shoes after having a video gait analysis at Tri UK in Yeovil. Watching the analysis I could clearly see they corrected my overpronation, so I bit the bullet and picked them up for £140.
Yes, I know I could have gotten them cheaper online. However, the Tri UK staff were excellent, helpful and friendly I knew I had been sold the right shoes. So I didn’t mind paying a few extra pounds for them.
They were probably the best investment I ever made running wise. They were so comfortable and supportive, I knew I had found a winning pair of shoes.
But a couple of weeks ago one of the shoes developed a hole in the toebox.
Concerned, I checked how long I had been running in these for – and it turned out I’d done 420 miles in them! Typically, a pair of running shoes is quoted at having a useful life of 500 miles. For some people, they last a lot longer, but this depends on your running style, technique and size.
As quite a hefty person (Though still much less hefty than I used to be) I don’t expect them to last much beyond the 500 mile mark. When previous shoes have reached this range I’ve started getting muscle niggles, so I know I need to change at the 500 mile threshold, no questions asked. Especially when you look at the soles and you can see they are pretty well worn away.
I’d also noticed that the padding/liner at the heel had seen better days, but this is something I’ve experienced in every pair of trainers I’ve ever owned, for any purpose, ever.
If it had been more than a year since my last gait analysis, I would have gone back to Tri UK to get re-analysed. After all, you would expect after a years running your technique to have improved, the shoes to have some degree affected your pronation, and therefore your gait may change, meaning you might need different shoes. As it had only been a few months I decided to get straight online and buy another pair of the same shoe.
I would only ever buy online (I.E. without being professionally analysed/fitted) if I knew the shoe was exactly the same and I could get it in the same size. The Gel Kayano 19 is marginally different to the Gel Kayano 20 for example – so even in the same product range you can find differences. This approach isn’t for everyone, but I like to think a properly fitted pair of shoes can prevent injury (And you know they won’t cause you to blister!) and so far this has proven to be the case.
There are a few colour options for the Gel Kayano 20s and I was initially looking at them in Red, but I came across the “Lite Show” variant and loved them. It helped that ordering direct from asics.co.uk was the cheapest way to buy them (I got them for £99 though they are now £140!), with free delivery!
They fit the same as the old ones and the look of these shows how much I have changed as a runner. I used to be all about the plain black trainers so no-one could see me. Now I want to whole world to see me run!
I’ve retired the black and gold pair and will use them for off road, very rainy or mud running.
I took the new rides out for a tough hill repeat session tonight. My feet felt like they were in heaven! The somehow felt lighter and faster! They almost certainly are neither but they felt bloody good – here’s to the next 500 miles!