Ready, Set, Jog
Back on Track
Get Comfortable Shoes
If you're going to take up jogging you need comfortable,
"In a mile of jogging, a 150-pound person puts more than
300,000 pounds of stress on each foot," says orthopaedic surgeon Glenn
Pfeffer, MD, assistant clinical professor at the University of California, San
Francisco, Medical School. "A race car is only as good as its tires. If
you're a jogger, get appropriate shoes."
The most important thing is to find shoes that fit your feet
well, he says. That's more important than the label or model.
"In any industry you find a lot of marketing. If they could
sell you a jogging shoe for Monday and a basketball shoe for Tuesday and a
cross-trainer for Wednesday, they'd like that," he says. "For most
people who are jogging as a recreational activity, many shoe styles can work,
but good shoe fit is critical."
If possible, go to a shoe store where a trained professional is
available to fit you, advises Robert B. Anderson, MD. "If you just pull
shoes off the shelf yourself, you may not realize they're too short until
problems develop." Anderson, an orthopaedic surgeon, is the chairman of the
American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society's public education committee.
To find the best shoes:
- Remember that your foot size varies throughout the day. Try on new shoes
after you've exercised or at the end of the day.
- Take the same socks you'll use for jogging. They should fit well, be made
without seams, and have a fair amount of cotton. If you use extra-thick socks
while running, select shoes with enough room.
- Fit the shoe to your longest toe, which is often your second toe. You
should have at least 1/4 inch of space beyond your longest toe.
- The shoe should grip your heel firmly.
- While the shoe is on your foot, you should be able to wiggle all your
- Shoes should be comfortable when you first try them on. Don't buy shoes and
plan to "break them in" by wearing them.