In pain, demoralised and feeling sorry for myself

So not so long ago I wrote that I'd gained a black toenail and some lower leg pain which probably came from me running oddly to avoid said toe pain, and the advice was to get some new running shoes. Having felt the space around the offending toe I agreed that the space was zero, and having dug deep (into my pockets) I trotted along to the running shop to get some new ones. I was pointed in the direction of one or two pairs, one which I rejected on the base of cost, the second (Adidas) I tried in the shop. The guy who dealt with me did the toe test and decided rather than the size 6 I had been wearing I needed a 7.5. They did feel roomy and slipped a bit on the heel but he suggested I tighten them more. He said he could get me on a treadmill to see how they were and when I explained I'd never run on a treadmill, he had me run round the shop. So to summarise, shoes felt roomy but were rather hard under foot compared to my previous shoes. First shoes felt very comfortable except for toes that were very constricted (these ones had lots of gel - Asics). So I brought the Adidas shoes home and having not run for a week, set out with great gusto, full of energy and enthusiasm. At the end of the run I had to loosen the laces on my right foot as the top was in pain, I also had some pain to the left of my shin. I felt like I was running more flat footed or running in flippers. Now I actually bought the Adidas shoes from Sweatshop, which as I've read on here since has a 30 day return policy and free gait analysis (maybe that's what the treadmill thing was about) but as I didn't know about that at the time, when I got home and actually started running in the shoes I got rid of the receipt and the box (stupid I know, as what would I have done if they'd fallen to bits?) - so there will be no possibility of me returning them. I also take a little while to get my stride right when running and think that even if I had run on the treadmill, it wouldn't have been natural, particularly if I was thinking about what I was doing. So I ran again - same problems. I then bought some insoles for my shoes, thinking that although expensive they were less than another pair of shoes - great for my left foot, but which just give me new problems on my right foot under the arch (my left and right feet are a bit different in terms of how high the arch is and probably in other ways too). I have run for about 6 times in the new shoes, 3 with the insoles, and I keep getting these 'shin splinty' type pains, pains in my right foot and some niggles in my ankle too, I also have some problem in my right hand glutes which I find when trying to stretch out my leg. Last night, for the second time I slowed my pace right down and stopped at around 4.5 km when the niggles got a bit insistent. My husband, who runs with me and who is very supportive said he would buy me more shoes....but to be honest I'm afraid I'll mess up again and get the wrong ones. I'm now feeling very disillusioned as when I did the C25K weeks running I felt really good, since then, with the pain, I feel crap. Sorry for the essay, sorry for the whining.


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10 Replies

  • The Sweatshop guarantee doesn't say anything about having to keep the box does it? You could arm yourself with your credit card receipt and go throw yourself on their mercy. If you don't get any joy with that, have you considered getting some cushioned insoles for your new ones. I picked up some really cheap ones from the last Lidl sports clothing event and, even though I can't run at the moment, they've given my trainers a whole new lease of life just for walking about and going to the gym. They'll definitely be getting transferred over to my running shoes. If you do go back to Sweatshop, give the treadmill a go. I'd never run on one either when I had my shoes fitted, but it's absolutely fine. Good luck :)

  • I'm afraid I don't have any suggestions, but just wanted to let you know that I feel for you and all your trials and tribulations. All the best :)

  • I'd go back to the shop and explain that you would like to do the gait analysis (on the treadmill) and oossibly exchange the shoes you bought for others if the gait analysis shows what's wrong. Credit card statement would show the previous transaction details but hopefully the shop staff would remember you anyway

  • I can't add anything to the already great suggestions given, but do give them a try - worst comes to the worst, they will hopefully exchange the shoes for a better pair?

  • Thanks everyone. I'll give it a whirl when I go into town tomorow. The worst that can happen is they will say no, so worth a shot.

  • Feeling your pain ! I bought some new shoes towards the end of C25k which were not right for me and which put me on the injury couch for 4 weeks. I took them back to the shop I bought them from who wouldn't replace them as they said there wasn't anything wrong with the shoes (not sweatshop!) I have got some new ones from sweatshop now, but you can't run in shoes that just aren't right for you. It's definitely worth taking them back.

  • I bought shoes from Sweatshop the other week and the guy in the shop took my details and put them on his hand held computer-thingy. I also received an email from them the other day reminding me about the 30 day return policy and asking was everything OK (it was thankfully). If you gave them your details they will have a record of the transaction so even without your receipt you will be OK.

    There was a post on here last week (I think) about various lacing techniques for shoes (can't do the link now but) if you search lacing techniques might be of some use to you.

    Hope you get sorted OK.

  • It would be worth getting them rechecked just to make sure you have the right size etc

    You were unwise to get rid of the box and receipt though.

    The pains could be nothing to do with the shoes. It could be because you're new to running which loads of us here have experienced, myself included. It's usually knees, ankles and shins. All of which disappear as you get stronger. You get stronger as you progress through the programme and onto longer runs after Graduation

    Good luck with it.

  • Thanks everyone for the suggestions to go and revisit Sweatshop with my statement showing my purchase. I have indeed got a new pair of shoes, a size smaller. What was clear when the assistant looked at my feet in them was that the space to the left and the right was excessive, so yes my feet could also slip left to right, which accounts for my feeling of wearing flippers (or wearing the boxes!) rather than fitting shoes. The new shoes are both softer underfoot and feel like they're actually moving with my movement, rather than randomly shifting in a void so I have great hopes. I will try a short run this evening, but need to hold off longer runs until I'm sure I've recovered. Once again thanks all!

  • Great news and really good to know Sweatshop didn't try to wriggle out of their guarantee because you'd lost the box and receipt. Their reputation for excellent service continues :)

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