If you are going to RUN ALL DAY, you need the right shoes.

Runners love their shoes. Fast ones. Slow ones. Cross trainers. Pretty ones. Dirty ones. Ones we can’t “just throw away.” You name it, we’ve got a pair. If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram you have seen an assortment of different shoes from different brands. The truth is, there is logic behind why I have each pair and USE all of them. That’s the key part. They DO get used no matter how much wifey likes to think that they just sit there taking up space.

Next week is going to be shoe review week. I’ve got a review lined up for Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday and they are three different brands to top it off. In order to clarify why this is happening, I’d like you take a venture with me into my shoe closet… c’mon, it’ll be fun.

Comfort shoes.

Adidas ClimaCool (pic), Reebok RealFlex (pic),

These are my swagger comfort shoes or otherwise known as cross training shoes. I’ll use these to walk around in, or do a light workout, but rarely log any miles in them. These are shoes that I enjoy wearing, but are reserved for casual wear. You know? The bright shoes that I like to wear that scream “hey, I’m a fitness dude, check me out. I look fresh.” Or something like that. Are the cool kids still saying fresh?

Short Distance or Speedwork (0-5 miles).

Saucony Virrata (review), Saucony Kinvara 4 (pic),

These are the shoes that I’ll use for my speed work or short distances ranging from 0-5 miles. A lot of these are more “natural” shoes, so I’m hesitant to take them much further due to still working on adjusting my foot plant/gait. I enjoy running in these to work on strengthening different muscles in my legs/feet that might rely on the cushioning in my other stability shoes. Running in these (I think) have helped me get faster and be able to channel those low 8 min miles in the middle of a race when needed.

Short to Middle Distance (0-10 miles).

Mizuno Wave Sayonara (review set for next week, pic), Pearl Izumi N2 (review next week, pic), Brooks Pure Cadence (review next week, pic)

This is step above the last pair. I’ll keep these on shorter distances, but push them a bit further in distance. These are the shoes that you’ll see me running most of my lunch runs in, hence the variety on instagram. These I would also consider my “fast” shoes, but I enjoy testing these out on longer runs and working in more tempo runs. When I’m rocking these shoes you may find me doing a comfortable mile to warm up, then push it for 4-5 miles, then have a cool down mile… which works out perfectly for my 7 mile lunch runs.

Middle Distance Shoes (7-14 miles)

Mizuno Wave Inspire 8 (review), Saucony ProGrid Guide 6 (review),

These bad boys enjoy some distance. As you can see, the higher the distances, the more stability comes into play. I’ve had ITB issues before, so I tend to be very cautious with stability as my distances climb. I’m working on trying to correct it, which is why over the past year I have started to introduce the shoes above. This batch has also saved me in having to buy my long distance shoes more often. If you think about it, I can log most of my weekly miles in these or the ones above and save my long-distance shoes for Saturday or Race day, basically extending their life much longer. BONUS.

Long Distances (15+)

Asics Kayano 17 (pic), Asics Kayano 18 (pic), Mizuno Wave Cabraken 3 (review)

Strictly reserved for the weekends. These are the shoes that I’m running in on my long training runs and race day. If it’s a marathon, I’m running in my Asics, no doubt about it. Every single marathon I have run, I’ve been wearing Asics Kayano… crazy, right? My first pair was in 2006, the Kayano 12… one day I’ll have to compile all the marathon photos and you can see the evolution of the Kayano (now at 19, set to be 20 this year, I think). The last pair listed above are my trail running shoes that have taken me across a couple 50ks and a couple 50 mile races. I think that qualifies them for the “long distance” category.

* * * * * *

And there you have it… a method to the madness. I’ll admit that I have more than I need, but I use them all and they LAST. If you break it down, my race day shoes that should last 300+ miles are being strictly used for the longer distances extending their life. It also allows me to keep those shoes at home and keep my shorter distances shoes at work. Saves me having to lug running shoes with me every day to work.

I also have to say that a good chunk of these shoes have been sent to me for review. I love trying out new shoes. There is nothing like slipping on a brand new pair, in a fresh new color and logging some miles. To date, I have paid for every single one of my Asics Kayano shoes. That’s 7 years of racing and proof that I do NOT run in a shoe solely because it is being sent to me. It’s about finding out what works and how it can be incorporated into your training routine.

And I’m not gonna lie, YES, I color coordinate and will run in a shoe that compliments what I’m wearing. There I said it. But if you mention it in public, I’ll deny, deny, deny and probably call you crazy then high five a dude and grunt.

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Do you have a large running shoe collection?

Over or under 5 pairs?