Exercise! - Running Shoes Question

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Shannon in ATL
01-05-2009, 03:24 PM
I got new running shoes from a running store on Friday and when I used them for the first time on Sunday my big toes got tingly, like they were asleep. I put this question in the '1000 in 2009' thread and RunnerKim suggested that there might not be enough room in my toe box and that the shoes should be sized up a size for swelling during running. These are pretty much my actual size, though my feet are a little smaller since I lost weight so they may be .5 size big. She said I would be able to tell if my toenails turned black and I'm a little freaked out. Do I need to call the running store?

Any other suggestions on causes? I did have them laced really tightly (picture the corset scene from "Gone With The Wind" - I kind of look like that when I lace my shoes...)

When I stopped running and started walking the tingling stopped. Also, it didn't start until I had completed the first running mile.

01-05-2009, 03:30 PM
I would agree that there isn't enough room in the front of the shoe. And in regards to the fit, running shoes are typically a half size to a whole size bigger than your actual shoe size. Instead of waiting for a black toe nail (ew), why not take them back to the running store in exchange for a bigger size? They are usually really great about just making sure you are in the right shoe and make exchanges pretty easy.

Shannon in ATL
01-05-2009, 03:32 PM
That was my thought, I just wanted to check and make sure that it made sense to try to take them back. I didn't want to be that crazy person trying to return used shoes. :) Thanks!

01-05-2009, 03:48 PM
My running shoes are a whole size bigger than my normal shoes as your feet tend to swell and you definitely want more room. I'm surprised the running store didn't fit you right. The person that fit me said there should be a thumb width between the front of the show and your big toe.

01-05-2009, 04:05 PM
They should take them back ZERO problems. You went to a real running store and real running stores take care of you.

Before you go in go run. As close to before going in as possible and run and or walk for a long workout for you. This will get your feet up to your maximum size, have them size you from that.

Also, have them show you the appropriate tightness. Running shoes should NOT be tight, especially through the forefoot. If you are tightening them because of heel slippage, there are other lacing patterns that can keep the heel snug without constricting the forefoot. You may have the numbness as much from that as from size. The shoes shouldnt be sliding around on your feet either.

How big you have to "size up" varies a lot. Some stores automatically size you up a full size, some a 1/2 size, some even more. The best thing to do is go in with your feet already big and then you can truesize (err on the side of a little bigger if you are between sizes). I actually only size up a tiny bit because my feet just dont swell.

Shannon in ATL
01-05-2009, 04:31 PM
The guy at the store actually rejected a couple of pairs as being too short when I tried them on - a Mizuno and a Brooks. He seemed pleased with the toes on the Asics I ended up with - I seem to remember that he put his thumb on top of the shoe between the end of my toe and the end of the shoe on each one I tried on. My middle toe is longer than my big toe, would that make a difference?

I'm going to bring them with me tomorrow and go for a run after work - I'll try not lacing them up as tight this time. I didn't lace them tightly because they were slipping, but because I have this weird quirk of always lacing my shoes really tightly. I typically have to loosen laces several times a day on pretty much every laceup I wear... If the toes still go to slip after tomorrow's run I'll drive straight to the running store - they are open until 8 and pretty close to the track where I've been running.

01-05-2009, 05:40 PM
Enjoy your run, hope it's better. Since the guy at the store helped you, you have even more leverage if you return them due to poor fit. It's important not to run with any footwear that causes numbness or tingling. Ignoring that can lead to foot problems, including morton's neuroma, which is painful nerve swelling (I have it and it sucks). My running shoes are a full size larger than my other shoes.

01-05-2009, 06:25 PM
In my experience it helps if shoes are 1/2 size bigger. My previous pair were my exact shoe size and I'm missing both big toe nails b/c they turned black and fell of now I'm awaiting the new one to come completely. As far as tingling, I used to get that in my right foot b/c for some reason I tie that lace tighter, I've stopped doing that and don't have any issues. You shouldn't have any trouble returning them though if it doesn't work out.

01-05-2009, 10:58 PM
In regular shoes I wear an 8 (used to be 8 1/2 before losing weight :dizzy:), and my Brooks are a 9 1/2.

I get numb toes in left foot once in a while, not all the time, so I would believe that how tight you lace can make a difference.

BTW, they showed me a way to lace to make the heel slip less, but it didn't seem to make any difference to me. Thank goodness I found a pair with a narrow heel.

Shannon in ATL
01-08-2009, 12:21 AM
I ran again in my new shoes yesterday with the laces loosened and this time only the right foot went to sleep, so I went back to the store. Found out that my right foot is a half size larger than my left... So, my left shoe is a half size big, the right is the exact right size. We laced the right shoe up differently, started it one loop up and left it a little loose. We also changed the lacing pattern at the top to keep the heel from wiggling with the looser laces. I'm going to try that out for a couple of runs and if it still goes to sleep I'm supposed to go back and maybe try 8s instead of 7.5. They are worried that the 8 will be way too big for my left foot. I have this fear that I'll have to buy two pairs of shoes to get one set that fits... :(

But, on the upside, my legs haven't hurt either time after running with the new shoes and they hurt like heck for three days after just one run with my old ones. :)

Seattle Podiatrist
04-29-2009, 09:33 PM
Any good shoe store would take them back. Don't worry about the size - just the fit. Shoe sizes vary from brand to brand, and even model to model within brands. Also, shoes are still hand-sewn, so you can even see size variance between shoes of the same model.