Is it just me or does the first week of September always make you feel like it’s time to end the summer fun and start getting back to work? Routines become the norm again and scheduling workouts into your day is a breeze (or at least a lot easier than it was during the summer months of fun). I have a post on the way with some fun yet challenging 30 minute workouts you can do at lunch, after work, or while the kids are at school, but let’s talk first about preparing for that, mainly shoe selection. A reader emailed asking for suggestions on shoes so this fits in perfectly with the back to school shopping of September. 

If you are planning on picking things up with your workouts through the fall I want you to think about when was the last time you updated your footwear. If you can’t remember then you absolutely must be in need of a new pair. You are safe if it was within the last year but if your shoes were purchased more than a year ago it is time to invest in new sneaks. They may look fine from the outside but if you could open up the sole and see what’s left of your support, you’d be shocked. 

Here’s the thing with shoes, they don’t have to cost you a lot of money so buying a new pair each year should be doable. If you already know what shoe your foot absolutely loves then you have it easy. Go online, find them on sale, and stock up. Buying more than one pair at a time is a good idea, because shoe companies love to change the model of the shoe each year which means one year the shoe you love fits great, and the next year it doesn’t fit at all. 

Which brings me to the next point. If you have to go out and buy a new model, or if it’s been ages since you bought your last pair of shoes, consider going to a specific athletic shoe store that is not a giant athletic wear chain. Most independently-run athletic stores have staff that have worked there for years. They know the product because they are paid well to know the product. They’ll have you try on many pairs, different brands, until you find one that is just right, so make sure you give yourself at least an hour to make your decision. Also please consider buying your shoe from the store that helped you to support local business, if you’re able to. 

As for the brand of shoe, it doesn’t matter, they are all good. Each brand has a range of prices, and like cars the more you spend the more you get. Someone who is an elite athlete may spend more on a shoe than someone who uses an elliptical 3 days a week because they need more out of the shoe. Usually shoes that are more expensive are lighter in weight but that also means they are less durable. I’m a fan of the mid-price point shoes, which is around $100-$120. One thing to consider is each brand will fit you a little differently so try on a few different ones. There are many brands that just don’t work for my foot shape and as much as I love them I simply can’t wear them 

If you’re not picky on colour you may be able to save a little bit and if you’re not fussy about having the latest shoe trend, you can usually find older models for a lot less. Also, make sure you tell the sales associate what you’ll be using the shoe for as this will make a difference in what shoe they suggest for you. And make a note somewhere in a calendar as to when these shoes were purchased so you know exactly when you need to purchase another pair. If you hit the gym a couple times a week, the shoes should last a year. If you are a little harder on your shoes, you’re training for a marathon, or you use them every day then you may have to replace them in 6 months. 

Take a moment this week to think about what is supporting your feet and if they need to be replaced and then make an appointment with yourself to take care of your feet. Your feet support your entire body so they’re worth the investment. When we think about what we spend on our clothes (I can’t be the only one who spends over $100 on workout pants) then investing in a good pair of shoes should be a given. 

Happy September!