Why? Because improperly fitted shoes mean more than blisters. Pinched toes can lead to corns on your feet. Plantar fasciitis, Swelled tendons on the bottom of the foot, a condition known as Plantar Fasciitis, and metatarsalgia, or inflammation of the ball of the foot, happen from overstressing the feet and they both hurt like mad. Overstressed feet can often be a result of thin soles. Even shin splints can be lessened by proper footwear. The list of injury due to running in poor shoes is lengthy and universally painful, and that is just the beginning of your problems if you aren’t careful.
Just making sure you have the right size shoe isn’t enough.
If you have improper arch support it will affect your running form and increase your odds of knee or ankle injury. Where you run also affects what shoe you need. The two major types of shoes for runners are trail running shoes and pavement running shoes. Choosing the wrong one for your exercise program can cause problems, too. No matter where you’re running, you’ll want shoe that will cushion your heel to lessen impact, but you also want a flexible sole to allow maximum flex for your foot, and allow maximum traction in various conditions.
But try doing clean and jerks, squats or deadlifts in running shoes and you’re going to hurt yourself. The soles are just too soft, which makes your stance less stable and lessens the amount of force you can generate as you lift. The design of running shoes also means they don’t have as much lateral ankle support, which will increase your chance of ankle injury and really screw up your form, which could lead to back injuries, too. Weight lifting shoes need a sole that is thicker towards the back of the foot. That keeps the balance of the foot towards the toes, lessening the strain on your body. The soles have different treads, too, to give the best traction on a gym floor.
Most people settle for a good quality cross-training shoe, and that’s a reasonable choice provided that you aren’t a marathon runner or a competitive power-lifter. A pair of cross-training shoes cushions enough for running three miles or less at a stretch, and they have a solid enough sole and support that you can generate enough force for strength training without hurting yourself. The biggest problem with cross-trainers is that they’re just not as good for either exercise as the specified shoes.
No matter which type of exercise you prefer, it’s incredibly important that you pick the correct shoes, and that those shoes fit properly, and are chosen to take care of any additional issues you might have. It takes more than just grabbing the shoes and leaving.