Magic Shoes – With Sincere Apologies to Forrest Gump

I bought new running shoes. I had to. Running shoes are supposed to be replaced every 400 miles or so. I don’t run much, of course, but after two years of ownership, my last pair had seen a good 2000 miles. It was time, due to both condition and aroma. Sauconys don’t smell the best to start with, so after two years and that many miles, I’m frankly a little grateful that severe allergies have killed most of my sense of smell.

I almost didn’t buy them. I asked to see the latest model of what I was wearing, and sticker shock nearly took me out. I’m a cheapskate. I have shopped at thrift stores for more than ten years (if you were to ever see me in person, you’d be painfully aware of it), so the idea of paying full retail for anything is repugnant. Add to that the price increase. This model has gone up about 30% in the last two years, which seems pretty darned steep. ***

I looked the pricey kicks up and down and wondered if I could gracefully back out of the store and put up with what I had for a few more years. But my legs offered their two cents in the form of a well-timed muscle twinge. I don’t know if it’s my old, beat up shoes or my illness that flares up from time to time, but the last few weeks I’ve been unable to sleep due to leg pain. It might actually be worth coughing up the national debt of a small nation to be able to rest well, right? Cognitive dissonance says yes, friends.

I tried on the shoes to make sure I actually liked them. Saucony has surprised me before. Their Grid Omni III was just heaven. The four was unwearable. I tried the current model. It was okay, but if I’m going to plunk down a chunk of the money I’ve been saving for my camera, I am going to be sure I’m buying the right thing. Thirty minutes and eight pairs later, I walked out with the very first pair of shoes I tried on. Of. Course.

They are ugly. Where most brands are moving to a wider toe box (that’s the part of the shoe where the toes go, for those of you who don’t speak the lingo), these are strangely pointy,  but the sole itself is wide. I look like I’m wearing orthopedic elf shoes.

But they do the trick, and that’s what counts. I beat my old time by about two minutes this morning, though that may have had less to do with the shoes than with the bone-chilling temperature. More importantly, my legs hurt less, and that’s worth every penny.


*** Heather’s soapbox Let me just jump in and say that I might could have saved $10 online, but I didn’t. The shop I visited is locally owned. The folks who work there are so knowledgeable that they analyze a customer’s gait before recommending shoes. When my husband first shopped there many years ago, they told him he was actually wearing the wrong kind of shoe for his particular body mechanics. And they were right. You can’t get that kind of advice online. And if I visit a local shop and take more than five minutes of their time getting (good) advice, I sure as heck owe it to them to shop there.

An aquarium shop I used to work for recently went out of business after about 40 years because customers would come in and get lots of great advice on keeping their fish, and then they’d go right down the road to the big box pet supply place to buy what they needed. Or go on the world wide web and buy stuff in bulk. Now there’s no one in town to offer 40 years of experience.

17 thoughts on “Magic Shoes – With Sincere Apologies to Forrest Gump

  1. I know I severely need to go to a good shoe store that actually does what this store did for you.. analyze everything to find you the perfect pair.. but I cannot put that kind of money down for shoe’s.. so I keep buying the cheapest pairs I can find and go from there.. Good job on beating your time .. 🙂

  2. I looked them up. They are ugly. But they also look incredibly comfortable.

    Good for you for shopping locally. I hardly ever shop online (except for ebooks and certain online only things that just aren’t available in my area), and it makes me smile that you do the same.

  3. We have a running store just like that where I live. I trust whatever they say, and pay whatever they ask to keep them in business. It’s part of what makes my small town so special! I passed on the Saucony this year and went with the Brooks. Cost less, Great reputation, and I LOVE that they accept returns ANY time… if you wear them and have problems, take them back. I hate buying an expensive pair of shoes, only to find out they don’t work.

  4. Yay for new running shoes! I actually did the same thing a few months ago. The boyfriend and I went to the local store and they were so helpful. It’s such a shame about the pet store, supporting local business is worth the extra money spent. It’s a big trend to buy local in my town, so go you and your soapbox!! 🙂

  5. I don’t know nothing about running shoes. 🙂 I don’t only shop at locally owned stores. But if I go there for advice I make my purchase there even if it costs a few dollars more. It is worth it to me.

  6. I,too, love locally owned stores. I do not, however, love running. Unless, of course, a large rabid animal is chasing me. Speaking of which, I was really hoping for a pic of the shoes. Or an original sketch of them. OR a shot of the puppies snuggled up beside them!

  7. Hooray for new running shoes! I, too, try to buy local. I am funny – I will research online and then go local to purchase it (instead of the other way around). With running shoes, it is so important to have people who know what the fit needs to be to help. Sorry your new pair was so expensive, but I hope they pay for themselves in the long run!

  8. Running shoes – ugh!! They are so hard to find, and so hard to buy. But I had a very magical experience lately, and it was this: I needed new running shoes BAD(ly), but I loved the ones I already had, and also I don’t have that many dollars. Well, I was in TJ Maxx of all places one day, and I turned the corner, aaaaaand there were my shoes! And they were thirty dollars!! Oh my gosh I couldn’t even remember why I was there in the first place, and I literally skipped my way on up to the cash register so I could legally take them home with me. Yayyyyy 🙂

    Hope your legs feel better, Heather! That’s the worst.

A penny for your thoughts! And by penny, I mean a warm-fuzzy in your heart.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s