The heat was on and the pressure was definitely building up as the date approached. Tryouts for the national intake for the track team were in a month. It was something that was in my sights since I was nine years old and there was nothing that could stop me from trying out. I was determined, hungry and passionate to join the Australian team and even represent my country one day in the world of track running. I would show up for training without fail 5 times a week, each at 4 hours or more, it was becoming a solid part of my life but it was well worth it.
I think an introduction of myself is appropriate now. My name is John and Iâ€™m a 21 year old male that is currently doing a bachelor in Science. Iâ€™m highly dedicated to running and hope to someday win a gold medal for Australia in the Olympics. Iâ€™ve been fit and healthy, always keeping active and having a clean, balanced diet since a very young age. I was always told about the importance of taking care of yourself and the long term benefits you were likely to achieve by eating right and getting some (or a lot of) cardio in your lifestyle. It began with a simple interest in running sports such as footy and I always favoured physical education classes all the way throughout primary school to university.
I started to develop a love towards running, and realised that I wasnâ€™t half bad at running long distances by the time I started high school. My coach always told me he saw something in me It was often difficult and challenging to balance my workload, especially complete assignments on time while I was trying to show up to practice. Iâ€™m part of the track and field team at my university, and luckily enough for me I have learnt to manage the range of responsibilities that were waiting to be fulfilled without having to compromise my grades or running practice. Now, obviously the most valuable item for me to maximise my running potential are my running shoes (apart from my trusty water bottle, towel, shorts and lucky tank top!)
I had always struggled to find a great fitting pair of running shoes, and as you can imagine, I use my running shoes for hours on end each day. Not only did I practice on the track, but my coach also encourages me to try other surfaces such as asphalt and grass to change things up a little and increase my versatility. This means they wear out, get dirty and most importantly just do not last a long time and meet my demanding needs when it comes to running. And to be honest, Iâ€™m sick of having to look around for excess amounts of running shoes that take away from my valuable time to study and practice for the national intake.
As a (more than) regular runner, I also find that my feet tend to get quite sore and uncomfortable during practice due to excessive swelling. This is usually the biggest obstacle for me during times I need to rely on the comfort of my running shoes in order to perform at my peak and constantly push my limits. It was not that long ago when I rocked up to practice and began my warm up activities with my team mates. I started to feel some tingling, followed by some numbness is my right foot and travelling up my calf. It was a strange and highly uncomfortable feeling, and made me lose my footing almost instantly resulting in me crashing down to the floor. The numb and tingling feeling was starting to become a much more common occurrence and quickly became a major issue for me. My coach pulled me up on it after practice one day and suggested that I change up the style and composition of my running shoes.
I was confused and asked him what he meant. He simply told me that my shoes were not suitable to my feet, and that they did not support or compliment the way and style in which I ran. I have a small confession to make. Up to that day, I actually had no idea that everyone had a different running style, it all just felt like put one foot in front of the other as fast as humanly possible until you see the grand finish line. I know what you may be thinking, but truly, I had no idea at all. This piece of information genuinely sparked my interest, and upon my arrival at home, I began to search on the Internet for more information about it (after my protein fuelled dinner, of course!) There were many factors involved in finding the perfect fitting running shoe, and was especially important to recognise which was most suited to you if you were a heavy duty user.
I had spent about 2 hours on the Internet that night researching how to select the best shoe, and decided to ask about it to some of my team members during practice tomorrow. One of guys told me that he usually ends up buying a pair of running shoes that were half a size bigger than what they would normally wear. Baffled, I asked why and he responded with â€œbecause it prevents your shoe from making your feet uncomfortable and cramped when you have been running for a long timeâ€. Made sense. I usually got that tingling and then numbing sensation during intense practice and it made it so hard for me to keep going and actually complete the training activity, letting my coach and most importantly, myself down. I decided to go out and look for some new running shoes after practice, giving me a sense of urgency knowing the injustice I had made myself (and my feet) go through unnecessarily.
I may have even jeopardised my chances of intake at the nationals without knowing, maybe all of my training would not have paid off if it wasnâ€™t for this simple discovery that my running shoes were just not right for me. After looking around for well over 3 hours, across 2 different shopping centres, I had no luck finding anything that felt completely comfortable. I gave my good friend a call to tell him about my issue, and he told me about an online store that had a huge variety of running shoes for almost any kind of usage. This sparked my attention and once again I took on someone elseâ€™s advice hoping this would be my ticket to finding the best fitting running shoes for my needs.
He said they were called Joggers World and that I should visit their website to see their range. I instantly took his advice and found myself on a website that was extremely informative and helpful when it came to selecting your ideal running shoe. They also outlined what the shoe type was and who it would be most suitable for. This is something that many shoe stores usually neglected to tell me about, instead always telling me that if it felt comfortable when I walked, they would be fine. With the extensive range of running shoes at Joggers World, the descriptions were very thorough and even talked about the new technology embedded in the running shoes, along with the width of them and how much cushioning they had. It was exactly what I was in search for, especially after my coach had told me about the different things to look out for in a running shoe.
Personally, I have always been heavily into the Nike running shoe range and have been loyal to the brand since I first became serious about my running. Joggers World offered a large amount of premium quality running shoes at great prices, meaning I could even buy two without having to go over my usual budget. Through their easy and hassle free payment system, I was able to place my order through on the same day. However, I must admit that I was a bit anxious about the arrival time of my order, especially given the time constraint knowing there was less than a month and I needed to practice more than ever. I had to make do with my current running shoes in the meantime, and I could really not fathom how I was coping with this discomfort for all this time. My order had actually arrived promptly and was packaged securely.
I tried them on after following all the tips and advice my coach and team members had told me, like buying a pair of running shoes that were half a size bigger than my usual size. I really could tell the difference straight away, my feet felt comfortable even though I had a few blisters from all my intense training sessions. I wore them a day after to put them to the test, and I assure you that I have not been this satisfied with my running shoes for some time now. All my hesitations about buying a pair of running shoes online had suddenly vanished, and I still recommend them to my other team members and friends. The quality running shoes I purchased from Joggers World took my training to the next level, hopefully Iâ€™ll get accepted at nationals intake as a result of all my hard work.