Are you an athlete looking for the best cross country running shoes? I know the feeling. Finding a good pair of running shoes is not an easy job. You cannot imply the theory ‘the more expensive, the better one’ while buying cross-country runner’s shoes. There are specific features that the best shoes possess.
On the cross-country courses, the running sessions are highly competitive. A runner has to compete with a lot of other persons. He needs the best running gear for performing best. And the importance of good shoes for this purpose needs not to be explained.
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Best cross-country running shoes
So we’re here to talk about best cross-country running shoes. How are they like? Let’s check out the qualities of them!
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The first thing you need to look for in a cross-country running shoe is its flexibility. You have to run on long trails which might be uneven as well as rough. To survive on those trails without getting hurt and getting blisters, you have to wear a shoe that is robust and also very flexible. To check the flexibility of a running shoe, you have to do the following things.
- Wear the shoes. Then try to bend or push the toes against the floor.
- If the sole of the shoe also bends with your toe’s movement, this shoe is the one. If not, you should start looking for another pair!
- Also, check out if the lower to the middle portion of the shoes stay straight or not. It should be rigid on this portion. If not, unfortunately, this one is not the best shoe!
The flexibility of the shoes is essential. If your shoes are not flexible, you might get hurt while running on the rough terrains. The risk of getting injured is also high with them. So, keep searching for shoes that are flexible.
If the shoes are not flexible enough, you might get a twisted ankle now and then. Regular ankle sprains can slow down your running potential to a great extent. Thus, you need to choose your shoes very carefully. While searching for robust and solid shoes, don’t buy a pair that doesn’t have any flexibility.
Pants, shirts, shoes; whatever we buy, we check their fit necessarily. The same goes for running shoes too, but a little differently. The difference here is that you cannot buy a shoe for cross-country running that fits your feet accurately. You have to buy one that leaves space of at least a thumbnail from the tip of the shoe to your fingertips.
- It is better to try shoes after running as the feet swell after running. Therefore, if you try shoes on after running, you might get shoes of more accurate fit.
- Running and exercising makes your feet swell. So, if you buy a pair of shoes that fit your legs properly, they might feel uncomfortable while running.
- If you are buying running shoes for the first time and don’t know how much your feet are going to get swelling, you can buy shoes half size upper than your regular size. This is the general technique of running shoes. They fit half size smaller feet accurately.
- Also, look for wider shoes because your legs not only swell up lengthwise but also widthwise. Don’t buy the shoes that are too narrow in the middle.
Either buy shoes that leave a little space inside or buy shoes after your running sessions. Then you’ll face no difficulties while using those shoes.
To sum up the whole thing, I’m telling you to leave some room. That’s the thing.
Comfort is one of the features we seek in every outfit. For cross-country runners, the comfort of their shoes should get high priority.
- The runners have to run for varying from 5 to 12 kilometers at a stretch. If the shoes are not comfortable enough, long trails will be miserable to run.
- Also, choose the shoes that give you proper ankle support.
- The shoes that have mesh upper side give your feet breathability. You might consider buying them.
- You don’t need a lot of cushioning for cross-country running. A thick layer of cushioning can make the shoes heavy, and therefore, your running sessions tiresome. So, choose the shoes that have the correct amount of cushioning and at the same time weigh light.
To check if the shoes are comfy enough or not, wear them in the shop and walk or run wearing them. If they feel good enough, buy them. Otherwise, try another pair!
You might wonder how come ‘function’ took place among the qualities of best running shoes. Let me get this clear to you. This is to remind everyone that we have to value function over brand or price or fashion.
- Don’t go for branded shoes that only look cool. If they feel good on the feet and give you enough arch support, then they can be viable candidates. Otherwise, they are not.
- Try on every shoe that seems to be the best. Buy whichever gives you the best functioning. Don’t check its brand and price. Running is all that people will observe in cross-country running; not the coolness of the shoes or the look of them.
- Wear the shoes and try running on the aisle of the store. If they feel good while running, they are good to go!
So, pretty much that’s it. I hope you understand what matters; function or fashion! Cross-country running seasons last for 3 to 4 months. If you think you need a lot of pairs of shoes for this, you’re wrong. If you can find one excellent pair, you can be at peace of not having to buy another pair in this season! And I’m not lying about it.
Thus, carefully check the functioning of the shoes. Don’t buy running shoes in a hurry. Take a lot of time to check every little detail.
Read more about How To Choose The Best Mountain Bike Shoes 2018 here.
Cross-country runners start with two types of shoes: trainers and racers. You don’t need to have spiked shoes from the very beginning of running. You can have them later. Spiked shoes help you to get a good grip while running on uneven trails and muddy roads.
Spikes cause strain on heels, calves, and tendons more. Hence, you should avoid them till you become a developed and strong runner.
- If you are more into spiked shoes, try to have the ones with interchangeable spikes. That way you can have your shoes functioning if the spikes get damaged because you can always buy new spikes.
- Spikes provide the right fit and traction. They help you more on competitive cross-country running.
- You should wear spiked shoes only in the competitions. You should avoid them during regular running sessions.
- If you want spiked shoes for regular running, I suggest you have the shoes with short spikes.
Shoes with spikes are lighter than those without spikes. A beginner should take time to turn to spiked shoes. They can cause straining that the legs cannot bear.
Things you need to consider:
- An expert sales associate will ask you your injury history, gait type to suggest you the best pair of shoes.
- If you don’t know your gait type, ask the sales associates for gait analysis. They might have specialized equipment for examining it.
- After you determine the level of pronation, you can get the right type of shoes.
- If you overpronate or underpronate while running, you should get lightweight support shoes or stability shoes.
- If you are neither of these, you can get the neutral shoes. They will do fine for you.
To analyze your gait yourself, check the condition of your previous shoes. If the cushions and the sole are compressed on the extreme inside of your feet, you’re an under-pronator. For the opposite situation, you’re an over-pronator. If you don’t know the gait type of yours, you might buy yourself the wrong type of shoes. For getting the best shoes, knowing your gait type is necessary.
So, any pair of shoes that possess the qualities I’ve mentioned is the best cross-country running shoe! I’m saying that with all my confidence because I know you don’t need anything else. Best shoes will be flexible, will leave room for your swelled feet, will be comfortable, and will be good functioning.
Now you can have the shoes that can serve you best for a whole running season. Trainers or racers, whichever type you choose, only look for the things I’ve described here. And trust me, these are more than enough. The shoes you choose will help you attain your goal.
So, choose them wisely. And don’t forget the fact that the expensive ones are not always the best. Some shoes won’t cost you a lot but will perform better than others.