My Perfect Pair of Running Shoes

Have you found your perfect running shoe?

The one that makes you question all other running shoe purchases?

The shoe that makes the thought of buying any other brand laughable?

I have.

In middle school/high school/college when I was running track and running for crew practice, I would have told you Nike’s were my only option.  I loved my hot pink and black Nike Shox in middle school.  Why I wore those for running, I couldn’t tell you.  I had another pair of Nikes, the name of which I can’t recall, I do however, remember choosing them specifically for their bright orange coloring (I was obsessed with UVA back then) so my mom could see me at track meets.

Even when I started running seriously, my first instinct was to go for Nikes.  I went to our local running store to get fitted and to make sure I picked a good shoe for my feet.  Lo and behold, the salesperson brought out a pair of Nike LunarGlides.


They did the job for the lower-mileage I was taking on at the time.  I think I did a 10-mile run in them a few times.  They weren’t bad shoes, they just weren’t the right shoe for me.

Asics were next on my list.  I had read up on shoes with more support and stability.  I thought that would be the right choice for me and knowing that I had had previous shin splints in my Nikes.  Obviously, the colors of the Asics Gel-Noosa Tri 8 weren’t hard to argue against.  I liked that these were meant for triathlons because I planned to take these to the trails and knew they needed to be versatile.

Asics Gel-Noosa Tri 8

Asics Gel-Noosa Tri 8

The Asics are good shoes.  I love the colors and the support is definitely there.  For the trails and mud, these are great shoes to have.  For the roads?  Not so much.  These things make me feel weighed down when I’m on the road.  I still wear them when I’m going to the local state park and know I’ll be running on the hiking trails.  I am interested in trying out a new trail shoe by Brooks, the PureGrit 2.


Brooks PureGrit 2

While training for my half, I decided that I wanted a lighter shoe, especially since the course for the race was mostly asphalt.  I was also interested in the minimalist running concept.  I started reading everything I could, reviews, articles, magazines, etc.  I kept coming up with the Pure Project collection from Brooks.  They were supposedly an easy transition to minimalist running shoes.  I tried on the PureCadence 2, PureConnect 2, and the PureFlow 2.

I really liked the lightweight feel of the PureConnect.  I have very skinny feet and these shoes are very slim.  (If you ever are interested in these shoes, get the next 1/2 size up.)  I also prefer my shoes to be tied pretty snug; with this style, I don’t have to tie them tight at all to create that feeling thanks to the bands that run across the middle.  The shoe also features a split-toe groove that allows the foot to experience more natural movement.

I chose the black/pink/green Pure Connect 2’s.  Wearing them for the first time felt a little weird; the arches are semi-high and felt funny compared to what I had previously been wearing.  After a mile or so, I couldn’t even tell they were there.  Silly me, I decided to wear these for the first time on a 10-mile run.  Because they help engage a more natural movement, they worked muscles that were previously not used, or as intensely used.  They also gave my feet quite a workout; the split toe groove makes you separate and use your toes.  While being just a tad bit sore the next day, I was overall feeling good.  These things hardly need breaking in.

Brooks PureConnect2

Brooks PureConnect2


I have absolutely fallen in love with these shoes.  Just this past weekend I ordered my 2nd pair, this time in the new Summer 2013 color… I will definitely be sticking to this style for my road-running shoes.  I have had no knee, ankle, or shin splint pain at all since wearing them.  When running, I can hardly tell I have them on.


Newest addition to my collection – Brooks Pure Connect 2 – Summer 2013 color

If you are looking for a good minimalist shoe to try out, but don’t want to go all the way, definitely take a look at the PureProject Collection from Brooks.  Even Trae, who isn’t a runner, loves his Brooks PureFlows


His – Brooks PureFlow 2 Hers – Brooks PureConnect 2

I’m hoping to try out an even more minimalist shoe in the future, perhaps some Vibram FiveFingers?  or some Merrell Gloves?

Have you found your perfect pair?  If so, what kind?

Suggestions for other minimalist brands/styles? 

Has anyone tried the Vibrams or any of the Merrell Gloves? Tell me what you think!

*This is not a sponsored post.  The opinions found in this post are solely mine.*
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3 thoughts on “My Perfect Pair of Running Shoes

  1. I love the Saucony Kinvaras! I’ve also got a pair of Vibram Five Fingers which I wear for gym work and shorter distances – and during summer I wear them instead of flip flops – I find them so comfortable!

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