Mizuno Shoe Guy Answers Your Footwear Questions—March, 2012
by Bob "Wish" Wischnia on March 5, 2012
Do you have a shoe-related question? Or a running shoe question, specific to Mizuno for the Mizuno Shoe Guy? If you have a question you’d like him to answer, send it to Shoeguy@Mizunousa.com. He'll pick five questions a month to answer and if he picks your question, we'll send you a beautiful Mizuno tech T-shirt.
Plantar Fasciitis issues
Q: I am a forefoot striker who has very high arches and has bad case of plantar fasciitis. I loved my old Wave Creations and switched to another brand. I now regret switching as the new shoe caused the plantar problems. I do not have pronation issues and am considering going with the Wave Precision 12. Do you think it would be a good shoe for me? Priscilla Johnson, Oakland, California
A: The Wave Precision might be a good shoe for you, but I would strongly recommend going back to the Wave Creation 13 and trying on the Wave Rider 15. Since you had success with an older Creation, my first inclination is to suggest you go with that due to its support and cushioning. The Wave Rider is somewhat similar to the Creation and my thinking is either of those two shoes would be a better option than the Precision which might not have enough cushioning or arch support for someone who suffers from plantar fasciitis.
Using Nirvana as long-run solution
Q: I have worn Mizunos for several years. Before I started wearing Mizunos, I was having a hard time getting up to marathon distances and Mizuno made that possible. For the last few years, I have worn the Wave Inspire and have liked it for most of my runs. But when I run farther than 15 miles, I have some soreness and was wondering whether you think the Wave Nirvana 8 would be a better option than the Inspire for long runs. Do you see any reason why a more supportive shoe such as the Nirvana would be an issue for me? Samantha Sanders, La Crosse, Wisconsin
A: No, I don’t see any reason that wearing a more supportive shoe on long runs would present any problems whatsoever for you. In fact, it might just be what the doctor ordered. The added support and cushioning that the Nirvana offers will come in handy on those long runs. Both the Nirvana and Inspire are supportive shoes, but the Nirvana 8 simply offers more cushioning and better support than the Inspire. It’s also a little bit heavier, but that added protection could be very helpful to you to reduce some of the pounding your body takes on long runs and hopefully, reduce your post-run soreness. Additionally, I don’t think you’ll need any adaptation to the Nirvana since it is so similar to the Inspire.
Are two shoes better than one?
Q: I am a new runner who has been enjoying all my runs in the Wave Rider 15. It’s a great shoe with just the right amount of cushioning and support. It’s the only shoe I own, but all my running friends seem to use two or three different models. They say having more than one pair will extend the durability of the shoes and that I need at least another pair. Is this really necessary? Don Rose, Omaha, Nebraska
A: Necessary? No, it isn’t. Is it helpful having more than one pair of shoes? In some ways, yes. But for a beginner who is just enjoying his runs, one pair of shoes works out just fine. Veteran runners often do have more than one pair of shoes. Generally, they’ll have one pair for daily training and then another pair—usually lighter--for faster workouts. Some runners also have a third, even lighter pair for road racing. Some runners feel that rotating between one or more pairs of shoes helps with injury prevention (because you don’t become biomechanically dependent on one style or model). Other runners believe that rotating shoes results in a longer life for the shoes (by giving each pair a “rest” day), but this does not extend the life of a shoe in any appreciable way.
Storing Inspire 6s
Q: The Wave Inspire 6 is my absolute favorite shoe of all time. I love this shoe so much that when it first came out, I immediately bought five more pairs. Now, I’m down to my last pair and I’m wondering if storing the shoe for so long damages it. Does the shoe deteriorate if it hasn’t been used? Joe Schmidt, Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
A: No, the shoe should not break down in a year or two of storage. That is, provided the shoe was properly stored in its box in a closet and not outside or in an unheated garage. Running shoes are made of foam, mesh and rubber and those materials don’t break down in storage. Your unused Wave Inspire 6 should perform just as well as if it were brand new. BTW: The Inspire 8 is just as good—if not better—than your beloved Inspire 6s.
Mizuno overpronation shoe suggestions
Q: Until recently, I have worn the Saucony Hurricane but I am disappointed with it. So many of my friends have told me great things about Mizuno and I am anxious to try a pair. I am a high mileage runner who weighs 150 pounds and overpronates. Any suggestions? Ali Cumbalon, Mississauga, Ontario
A: Ali, Mizuno has several exceptional overpronation (support) shoes that work great for high-mileage runners. I would recommend trying on three shoes: The Wave Nirvana 8, Wave Alchemy 11 and Wave Inspire 8. Of the three, the Alchemy is the most supportive and has a very well-cushioned forefoot. The Nirvana 8 has the best blend of cushioning and support—and it is the most durable. The Inspire 8 is the lightest of the three, but it is moderately supportive and not as supportive as the other two. I would suggest trying on all three shoes and going with the one which fits and feels the best.