My Shoe History


Before you start reading, I’m going to ask for a comment – at the end, please tell me about your current running/sports shoe(s), and what you like/dislike about them. Alternately, what’s your favourite shoe? Thanks!

My Shoe History

Until I started writing this post, I couldn’t even remember what shoes I was wearing when I started running back in 2009. I had to dig up old photos and search through Facebook to jog my memory (see what I did there?). The best I could come up with was a picture from 2010, and I’m wearing what appear to be Asics. With no disrespect to the brand, I recall them being a bit chunky and cumbersome.


*Mileage: maybe 300km over the course of several years*

Nike LunarGlide+

Nike LunarGlide

I bought my first pair of Nikes at Kintec, a local footwear and orthotics store. My interest in running had started to take hold, and I thought it was time to make a commitment. I had bought a Nike+ sensor that synced with my iPod Nano, and until this time it had been attached to my mystery Asics via a Velcro-enabled sensor pocket (yes, I’m sure that’s what it said on the box).

At Kintec, they did a gait analysis on their in-house treadmill. It was noted that I had some pronation, and they suggested a shoe to remedy that. The recommended pair was on sale, and I took the plunge.

This early (first?) edition LunarGlide were lauded for their use of ‘Lunarlite foam’ – apparently something the astronauts use. But at the time, I had little awareness of (or, frankly, interest in) the construction of my shoes. All I knew was that there was a little Nike+ iPod sensor-shaped cutout in the sole of this amazing shoe, so I could continue tracking my runs!

I will take this opportunity to admit that the ability to track my runs via Nike+ was a huge motivation in my continuing to exercise.

I believe I bought these shoes sometime in 2010, and I have photographic evidence of them from my BMO Half in 2012. They served me well. I still have these shoes, and use them for my lunchtime runs.

*Mileage: Possibly well over 700km*

Nike LunarGlide+ 4 

Nike LunarGlide 4

When my training really miles started to increase – and when I decided that a full marathon was in the cards – it was time to get some new shoes. I purchased them on Boxing Day 2012.

Figuring it was best to stick with what I knew, I leaned on the experts at Forerunners and upgraded to the newest version of the Nike LunarGlide.

I loved these shoes instantly. First of all, the colours – black and neon green! How could you go wrong?

Secondly, they’ve got great reflectively qualities – particularly the ‘swoosh’, but also everything under the mesh is kind of shiny.

Finally, they are water resistant. The shiny bit under the mesh – apparently a ‘shield’ – has actually kept my toes dry on many occasions.

Yes – they have Lunarlon and Flywire technology, too. But I will leave these technical aspects to the experts (honestly, until I started writing this post, I had never ever heard of Lunarlon…) – I like this review.

These shoes carried me through training in 2013 and 2014…including my first marathon. And they matched my wardrobe (i.e. my neon green/yellow jacket) perfectly. They’re pretty worn out, with cracks in the sole – but they still make it into rotation from time to time.

*Mileage: Eek – might even have exceeded 1000km*

Nike Air Pegasus+ 30


Boxing Day 2013. I wanted to take advantage of the sales. They were out of size 9 1/2 but I convinced myself that a 9 was fine. I also convinced myself that I was fine with the colour – that panels of blue, red and pink ‘Gym Red, Armory Navy, Atomic Red’ suited me.  They didn’t. They went back to the store (mostly because they really didn’t fit well, but the colour might well have been a factor…)

…and I replaced them with a larger size of the same model, but this time in ‘Armory Blue’. These shoes carried me through a couple of races, but ultimately I decided the fit just wasn’t right. They were just too snug, and the toe box (is that the right phrase?) to narrow. They were subsequently ‘retired’.

Nike Pegasus 30

This disappointed me, because the Pegasus has been around for about 30 years and is reported to be an incredibly reliable shoe. Not so in my case, unfortunately.

*Mileage: Probably not more than 100km*

Mizuno Wave Rider 17 

Minuzo Wave Rider 17

The Mizuno guy came to Forerunners one day, allowing us to try out a pair in a long training run.  After completing about 20km and feeling invincible, I bought a pair. The shoes were lightweight and comfortable. They could do no wrong. And I loved the colours: ‘Barbados Cherry/Silver/Green Flash’.

Once I finished Honolulu, however, I realized that the Wave lacked the support I needed. The outside edge of my foot started to hurt, and I ended up going to physio. After recovery, I tried the shoes on again and the pain returned (it was like someone had slipped a little dull blade into the side of the sole), I gave up. These shoes were retired.

*Mileage: Maybe around 250km*

Nike Linarglide+ 6

My current shoes will get a full review in a future post. Let’s see how they perform in my next few races…

How has your shoe history been? Do you stick to favourites or switch things up? What’s your number one shoe?


  1. Julie

    Thanks for sharing this, Brad! I’m not as dedicated a runner as you, but I’m currently interested in this topic as I’m in the process of deciding on my next pair. I wore Brook’s chunky, heavy Ariels (I think the men’s version is called the Beast) for the longest time, until I realized that I actually didn’t pronate and could do fine with a lighter, neutral shoe. I went with the Nike Pegasus and I loved them. They are now properly worn out and I’m hesitating between going with another pair of Pegasus or upgrading to the Vomero.

    • Thanks for the comment, Julie! I’m glad you enjoyed the Nike Pegasus – they seem like a good shoe for the right shape of foot. I hadn’t heard of the Vomero before, but I Googled them and they look like a good option. Let me know what you end up going with!

  2. Hi! This was a timely topic because SportChek was having a Buy One Get One 50% off deal!
    I have always liked Asics because the toe box has both room and support for my size 13 feet. The other benefit of Asics is that they give my high arch good support.

    I bought a pair of Asics Gel Kayano 21’s and for the 50% off pair I got the Asics GT 3000. On the GT 3000’s I realized a saving of $80.00.

    I had a good workout with the Asics Gel Kayano 21’s today. I used them in my run training at the gym. Then I went for a walk/run of 7.8 km after the gym. It was the first time that I have run off the treadmill.

    My run distances were as follows:

    0.1 km
    0.4 km
    0.5 km
    0.4 km
    0.9 km
    0.9 km

    for a total of 3.4 km run out of a total distance of 7.8 walk/run.

    I noticed that the arch support on the Kayano’s is still good. The increase in gel in the 21’s has rendered the support somewhat ‘softer’. The support is still noticeably there in the arch, but it feels gentler.
    I like them. I still have to try out the GT 3000’s but I expect I will like them too because I already have a pair of GT 2195’s and 2 pairs of GT 2000’s. I also have 3 pairs of Asics trail runners that perform well for me.

    I did look at both Nike’s and New Balance yesterday. However I went with the Asics because I know they work for my feet. Quite often there are no size 13’s, especially in the higher end models. This is my third pair of Kayano’s.

    I called first to make sure that there were size 13’s available in the models I wanted. I live about 45 minutes west of Kanata. Unfortunately there weren’t any Asics Kensai’s in my size. I have been trying to get them on a BOGO (buy one, get one 50% off) for a few years.

    I talked to Josh at SportChek. He suggested that if the Asics were good for me to stick with them:
    If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

    It was a good day today. I finally ventured off the treadmill. Running in the real world has taken my training up a notch. My new goal is to run at least 1 km during the running portions. In the gym sessions I will stick to the program but on the real runs I will push a little.
    My immediate goal is to get to 1 km, then to 5 km and after that 10km. There is a local 15 km run at the end of August that I have had in my mind since 2013. I blew out my left thigh in ’13 pushing myself too far, too soon for that run. It has cost me two years of running.

    I may not run in it this year. I may just train well until spring ’16. There is a local running club that I will join.

    Good topic Bradley, thanks.

  3. Julie

    I ended up sticking with the Pegasus, as the fit in the Vomero wasn’t quite right. Like Mike says, if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. 🙂

    Happy km’s!

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