For Shelley Noland, a runner who’s logged 14 marathons to date, is fully convinced of the fact that minimalist running shoes are the fix she’s been looking for in her running. You see, 34 year old Noland consistently puts in 50 – 60 miles a week in her running routine and by all sense of the term, she is an avid marathoner with 14 current marathons under her belt.
But Noland hit a wall in her running, a plateau if you will, as she started to experience constant knee related problems. The problems with her knees continued unresolved until one day she decided to try out the new minimalist running shoes she’s been hearing so much about. Over the next 2 months, Noland re-learned her technique in running. Because minimalist running shoes are so thin and light, it requires any runner to slowly adopt the new style.
The switch, however, has been a game changer to Noland. ”Before, I was a heel-striker,” she said. “That’s why I was getting injured so much. It corrected my form. And it gave me a new appreciation for running, too. At the time I was in such a lull with running. It gave me new inspiration, something fun to try. It was a good little experiment for me.”
Why are minimalist running shoes having this impact?
For people like Noland, the minimalist shoes are forcing her to run more naturally on the cushioned balls of her feet. Contrary to the traditional thick soles of running shoes that are heavily reinforced and padded, and that are known for causing runners to strike on the heal of their feet. And because of the new, natural form of running, Noland says that she’s been 100% injury free – knee problems are gone. And that she is now running faster, and has a new enthusiasm about running.
So have you tried out the new minimalist style running shoes yet?
If so, have you found the shoes to be benefiting you in your running style?