July 3, 2008

Flip Flops = Runners Enemy #1

I think for most of us its common knowledge ... though flip-flops make our fee feel fancy free in the summer, wearing them can have some bad consequences. Last year during training I was especially careful with my feet, always wearing shoes with support and staying out of anything with a heel. As the Marathon approached I became even more cautious ... to the point where I would be wearing sneakers even if I was "dressing up" for something. As a runner, your feet are pretty valuable to you. And you can tell by how ugly they get during training that they truly suffer a lot of the brunt force of your workouts.

Not that this is the first study of this kind, but Womens Health has a recent article siting research that found flip-flops to be the source of sore feet, ankles & legs. Turns out, when you wear them you take shorter, almost 'drag-like' steps. This throws off your ankle-to-stride length ratio.

After a long run my feet would always be sore and swolen, so I would throw on a pair of flip-flops to let my feet relax. Its not a biggie to throw them on ... we all do it! But, if you are going to be on your feet or walking for any period of time - think twice about protecting those wonderful feet of yours :)


Runner Girl said...

Wow I love your blog! How much do you love running in Chicago?

I am starting a blog to track my progress training for the Chicago Marathon (my first) and to help fundraise for the Ronald McDonald House (my sorority's official philanthropy).

I was hoping you could check it out and possibly add me to your blog roll or maybe give me a little shoutout on your blog?

Thanks so much for your support!

Jess said...

I pretty much wear flip flops year round, and despite what I've heard in terms of how they'll eventually cripple me, I have never had foot issues in my life.

Kristin said...

I rarely wear flip-flops because they hurt between my toes and I do feel like I have to work to walk in them. And in general I have become very protective of my feet since blisters and injuries can interfere with running! When I walk to work I wear running shoes even though my "work" shoes may be quite comfortable. I feel rather ridiculous but just can't chance a blister!

lifestudent said...

Kristin - they hurt between my toes too! I actually envy those like Jess who can wear em all the time. I couldnt even if I wanted to :)