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When it comes to running, the right shoe is all about you

By Arianne Brown

For the Deseret News

Published: Tuesday, Oct. 9 2012 3:27 p.m. MDT

I, like many parents, have spent most of the last few weeks getting back into the groove of school. Not only do I have children who attend school, but my husband and I both teach. He teaches high school, and I run my own preschool from our home. In preparation for the school year beginning, I carefully organized my books into the units that I use each of them for.

As I was gathering books for my “Marvelous Me” unit, I came across "The Foot Book" by Dr. Seuss, which is one of my very favorite books. Before placing it in its designated basket, I decided to read it to my youngest daughter. I was once again reminded how very wise and still very relevant Dr. Seuss is.

In "The Foot Book," Dr. Seuss so eloquently describes the “many, many feet we meet.”

I don't know about other runners, but I get asked all the time, “what is the best running shoe?” Many seem to think that there is that one “magic shoe” that will make all their aches and pains go away and make them run fast for miles and miles. When I tell them that there isn't one, they are puzzled and often disappointed with my answer. The truth is, Dr. Seuss is right. There are so many different sizes and shapes of feet, and the shoe that your best friend runs in may or may not be the right one for you — even if they swear by it.

There are so many different shoes and so many companies that make so many good shoes. There are even individuals who have decided to forgo shoes altogether and run in what God gave them. To each his own.

When choosing what footwear is best for me, I follow two simple rules:

1. If it ain't broke, don't fix it.

I have been known to wear shoes until they have holes in them because they fit perfectly, and I felt great running in them. Also, if you find a shoe that you like, stick with it. Even though companies may change/upgrade their models from year to year, they are generally a pretty close replica to the years prior. Don't go changin' things around if you don't need to.

2. One size doesn't fit all.

Don't let anyone talk you into buying a shoe. You only have two feet. Protect them. When choosing footwear, I always say, “the ones who do the walking should be the ones who do the talking.” When you're at the shoe store, ask them if you can jog on the sidewalk for a few minutes. This will not only give you a chance to test out the shoes, but more importantly, it will give you a few minutes away from that all-too-often pushy salesman. The key is to pay attention to your feet.

So, whether you have “wet foot, dry foot, high foot, low foot, slow feet, quick feet, well feet, sick feet, up feet, down feet … even clown feet, small feet, big feet or perhaps pig feet, his feet, her feet or fuzzy fur feet" … treat them with love and treat them with care by giving them only the best footwear.

Arianne Brown is a graduate from Southern Utah University, mother to five young children and an avid runner. Email: ariannebrown1@gmail.com

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