Running Shoes

A Real Pain in the…Foot!

I love to run. I don’t consider myself an elite runner, but I have completed 2 Half Marathons. One being Disney’s 19.3 Lumiere’s Two Course Challenge this past November during Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon Weekend.

That was such a huge accomplishment for myself. That weekend was full of magic, with a lot of sleeping, and running mixed in. But that was also the weekend my feet and I had a falling out.

I ran the challenge in Brooks Adrenaline GTS 15 model running shoes (as shown below). I have been a “Brooks Girl” for a few years. I absolutely loved the Brooks Adrenaline GTS 14’s model that I bought and wore out two pairs! adrenaline-gts-15-womens-running-shoe-black-p67440-14658_image

When the 15’s came out I rushed to my local Fit2Run and had to buy this newer model. They felt slightly different on my feet, but what new shoes don’t feel slightly off? Or so that’s what the sales person told me.

I ended up buying the shoes, and my training began! Fast forward to about 3 weeks before half marathon weekend, I notice some problems going on. My feet have calluses and some small blisters and the shoe just wasn’t fitting properly. So I did what I always do when I need help figuring out something running related. I turned to my amazing RunDisney Facebook Group.

My running community suggested moleskin since it was really too late for me to find and train in new shoes this close to race day. This helped “band-aid” the problem for the rest of my weeks of training, but still something felt really off and I couldn’t pinpoint it.

Here I am the morning of the 10k doctoring my feet in moleskin and praying the foot pain away. I finished strong! My feet were sore and I couldn’t wait to get the shoes and moleskin off as soon as I made it back to the resort. My feet took a beating but they’d make it for the 1/2 marathon I had hours later…or so I thought.

Around mile 7 I had to stop and sit down on the dew covered grass to quickly yank off my socks and shoes to tear off the blister band-aides that I had put on my little toes for protection from these shoes pinching the snot out of my toes. I honestly had to make a decision at that time. Was the pain from the band-aide going to be worst that the pain without the band aide for 6 more miles?

At mile 11 of the half marathon, my feet and I were hating each other. When I say hate, I mean they were screaming for me to stop this torture. I find it funny now a sign one of the spectators was holding before I reached mile 11 said “Blisters are Braille for Awesome”.

Blister sign

I of course kept on running with the support of my amazing husband by my side. I also had my amazing family and best friend who kept texting words of encouragement. (They basically told me to get my booty over that finish line!) I proudly crossed the finish-line completing Lumiere’s two course challenge. And boy, that was a pain in the foot!

mandy afterwards

Upon painfully making it back to the resort and taking off my shoes I find that the shoes had caused a killer pinch callus on my little toes that it felt almost bruised. I had blisters on my big toes as well from the snug toe box of the GTS 15’s.

I didn’t understand how these shoes that I thought I loved could have caused this damage. I went to my running community to find out that there was a lot of hate for the Brooks Gts 15 models. In fact, the same experiences of callus and blisters were being reported. Brooks had changed this model of shoe, but I was blinded by wanting to love them that I ignored ALL the signs in my training runs.

This leads to my shoe reviews. In my next series of posts, I will leave my review of the pros and con’s of the shoes I tried out. I went out in search for the perfect shoe for me. Granted, what is the perfect shoe for me, may be the worst shoe for you. Please do not ignore the warning signs like I did!

I hope my blog posts will help a runner who has oddly weird feet like myself find their perfect shoe! I have high arches, wide feet, and I overpronate.

Below is a photo of the bling I earned at the Disney’s 2016 Wine and Dine Half Marathon Weekend. “I Did It”

Mandy Bling



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