Couch to 5K
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Still struggling to buy running shoes - how difficult should it be?!?!

I tried my local Up and Running recently (here's the result and wasn't too impressed. Today I went to Go Outdoors and walked out empty handed and disappointed as well.

The shop assistant seemed really disinterested - at first he assumed I had picked out a pair (just by looking at them on the shelf?!) and only wanted to buy them, but no I was being difficult and actually wanted some advice. So he picked up a shoe and just recommended it. (there might have been more to it, but it looked pretty random!) He seemed to have it in my head that cus I said I've only been running for a couple of month (not even that tbh) that I wasn't prepared to spend more than £50 which seemed a little odd. So I asked him if I could try on this shoe and a couple of others. He had some issues finding stuff in my size (could only find the mens of the one he recommended in my size - they actually had a really small selection). He also brought me half a size down, which I didn't try on cus I understood running shoes were supposed to be on the big size and people often have to go up a size?

Anyway I ended up trying on a pair of womens shoes, in my size, and they felt fine, but I had nothing to compare them to as that's all they had. I then had to ask him if I could have a go running in them so he reluctantly set up the treadmill for me. It felt a bit weird, but I think its just that I'd never been on a treadmill before, but I wasn't sure. And he wasn't being helpful either. I actually wanted him to do gait analysis, but every time I asked him something it was like pulling teeth, even though he was free when I found him, he was also half serving other people at the same time and I just got to the point where I couldn't be bothered anymore.

So I tried a pair, they felt ok, but from everything I've read you're supposed to try a few and pick the best ones - that seems to be a luxury evading me and my freakish size 7 feet.

I dont understand why its so difficult to buy a pair of running shoes - am I missing something here?! Are other people having similar issues?

I'm possibly in a mood, sorry, but I'm getting so fed up trying to buy running shoes. I was running in my old shape ups, where part of the heel on each of them has come off. I was getting sore knees from it, which sparked the initial "I really need some proper running shoes" thing, then the knees stopped hurting and my hip started hurting. I recently bought some new shape ups, which are the XF ones that apparently you can jog in (I got them for the price, rather than that aspect) but I've been running on those lately, and I'm not hurting anymore. So based on that and the fact it seems to difficult (for me anyway!) to buy running shoes I'm tempted to give up for now, I don't know!

There also Alton Sports locally that someone on here recommended so I might go try them this week, if I can summon up the motivation and see if I have any better luck there.

Sorry for the rant!

8 Replies

Sounds awful! I'd be ranting too. I bought mine at Sweatshop and found them really helpful...if you have one near you it would be worth a try.


I think you just got a bad assistant, maybe you could call the shop and speak to the manager about your experience and get some personal service. I would recommend moti who are in Reading and other places but this might be too far for u.


Thanks guys :) I've looked up sweatshop and there is one in southampton so might go try them this week. Lots of people on here seem to get their shoes there.


Yes go to sweatshop, I went Saturday, they were really helpful and I came back with new shoes :)

THEY HAVE 20% OFF SHOES AND CLOTHING UNTIL TOMORROW, even more reason to pay a visit :)


Sounds like a really bad shop assistant with an attitude problem, I'd be p**sed off too after that.


I bought mine at Sweatshop too. When I did my first Parkrun I got a voucher for 20% off (not sure exactly). They were really helpful. Did a gait analysis then showed me a range which would do and left me to try them. Also said if I wasn't happy I could bring them back. There was another women in at the same time as me with different gait to me and the girl was explaining how the shoes we were trying were suitable for each of us.


Thanks for the comments, youve made me feel a lot better about it!

The OH had enough of the whole thing so even though we'd just come back from southampton, we went to sweatshop! I had a very friendly helpful and knowledgeable shop assistant and I walked out with a new shiney pair of running shoes, how chuffed am I?! They had shoes in my size and a decent selection and everything! :) I also accidentally bought some shorts too. Well cus of the 20% off the shorts and shoes were cheaper than the shoes would've otherwise been. Plus I'm pretty sure he took the 20% off the shorts twice, lol, bonus!

Went for a run when we got back in my new running gear - I felt much more like a runner now, lol. Plus I was definitely going quicker, and OH struggled to keep up, so we're 'blaming' my new shoes! :)

So glad I've finally got some shoes, thanks for all your support! :)


Undid all the work by going out for a big meal after but oh well!!


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