Seeking asylum in the hills & transcendence on the trails

Cheap running shoes?

I’ve been putting in the miles of late in preparation for a few races – averaging between 100 – 150K per week. Body is holding up well – trouble is, I’m going through running shoes fairly quickly, particularly the lightweight shoes that I love to run in. These racing flats are used on the early morning training runs as well as the long weekend slogs.

So, I finally thought it would be wise to also introduce a more ‘traditional’ running shoe into my week. If I could find a reasonably lightweight neutral shoe it might also be better for some of the more straightforward trails (with the more aggressive /grippy sole).

Now, the manufacturers are constantly revising and ‘improving’ their offerings. New soles, new materials, new colourways. BUT, the models that came out 2 or 3 years ago were ‘cutting edge’ so surely they can’t all-of-a-sudden be useless? Can they?

I did a fair bit of research online and found a few options of interest. But before I go on I’d be interested to get a view from you on your last purchase:

So, back to the online trawl. I’m a fairly neutral runner so I searched for the latest (non-racing flat) shoes. For most of those that review well, they are models that have been around for years – Brooks, with their Glycerin, Asics and their Cumulus and Nike’s Pegasus to name but a few. I’m not exactly one for change just for the sake of change so thought I’d see what ‘defunct’ bargains I could find. I finally went for a pair of Brooks Ghost 2.

These neutral shoes were introduced 2009 (I think). Maybe a little more cushioned that what I’m used to but light enough at approx. 300g. The cost? £25 delivered! They arrived on Thursday when I got home, so were ready for my Friday run to a 7am spin class. From the off they were really comfortable, fitted well and gave some unexpected bounce. Reached the gym in 5K and was already looking forward to the run home. So much so, that after spin and a session in the pool I extended the run home to 10K. Shoes felt quick and gave me enough confidence that I took them for quick-paced 42K the following day. Again, no real complaints other than a slightly numb toe on one side but no rubbing or blistering due to the roomy toe section. Not bad for a sub-£30 shoe virtually straight out of the box.

So, in summary, don’t always believe the hype from the shoe companies – they’ve made good shoes for years and the feature changes aren’t always for the better. Shop around and you might be able to pick up some training bargains for marathon and beyond.

5 responses

  1. I’m neutral too and love New Balance, specifically the 759


    March 7, 2011 at 2:01 pm

  2. Is that your choice of shoe for both training and racing? 😉

    March 8, 2011 at 9:55 pm

  3. Nice review.

    The shoes must be really that good to fit well on your running – coming straight from the box.

    Great blog you have.

    I’d get the now-cheap Pegasus +25 Bowerman Series if I could find one again. It’s my most reliable shoes so far.

    March 8, 2011 at 10:19 pm

    • It’s just a new blog, so have lots to learn! Plenty more to come.

      Yeah, finding these older shoes in the right size is always the challenge.

      How long have you been running / blogging?


      March 9, 2011 at 10:06 am

      • 3 years running.

        2 years blogging.

        March 10, 2011 at 8:48 am

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