Which Matters Most – Running Shoe Type or Running Form?

Running shoes have developed towards having more cushioning than ever. Shoes have become increasingly cushioned, aimed to ease the impact on runners legs. Maximalism is in, minimalism is out.

There is, however, shoe cushioning paradox in here. Studies show that running injuries have not decreased even though the shoes have become more technical!

Study: Running in highly cushioned shoes increases leg stiffness and amplifies impact loading

Approximately half a billion people are actively engaged in running. Half of them suffer from various types of strain injuries.

Could it be that the shoes have become too sturdy, and too cushioned? Cushioned shoe starts to weaken the natural flexibility of the leg?

Proper running form prevents injuries

The most crucial thing to focus on is proper running form, no matter what kind of shoes you were. Proper running mechanics are the way to prevent injury, not shoes.

Many runners too often rely just on the “right pair” of shoes to handle their injuries. You should first address poor running mechanics. If you rely only on shoe type to fix your damages, you might make things worse.

Do minimalist shoes help to prevent injuries?

Minimalist or barefoot shoes have gained attention during the last decade. But it’s not as simple as ditching your cushioned shoes and switching to minimalist shoes. Minimalist running is not the cure to injuries. Buying a pair of minimalist shoes is not going to make you a better runner automatically.

Minimalist footwear is not one-size-fits-all “hack” to running with better form. They don’t magically turn you into a forefoot striker, and they don’t reduce impact forces and prevent injury just by themselves.

But what helps, is to land with your foot closer to your center of mass. An easy way to get your feet land directly under you is to improve your cadence. Minimalist shoes help improve cadence. Without the raised heel and shock absorption of traditional shoes, it’s easier to feel yourself overstride.

Minimalist shoes allow you to feel your mechanics better. So they make the changes to your form that eventually enable you to run more efficiently and with fewer injuries.

There are several reasons to like minimalist running:

  • natural feeling to the ground
  • strengthens your lower legs
  • improves balance.

But if you’ve been running in cushioned shoes for a long time, you usually carry over the running style you’ve been using before. This is a recipe for potential problems.

A lot of people who have tried minimal running went into it too fast. Making a radical change in form or footwear requires a slow transition. Failure to do this can get you injured.

In cushioned shoes, it’s typical to overstride with heel-strike. Your heel hits the ground ahead of your center of mass.

When you change your cushioned shoes to minimalist, you should land on your forefoot rather than on your heel. If you continue landing ahead of your center of gravity, you add unnecessary stress to the body, and create a new set of impact-related injuries.

It is vital that we change our running form to prevent these types of stress injuries.

Posture and cadence

Two critical aspects are foot posture and cadence.

You need to land on the forefoot. And you need to land under your center of gravity.

This is easier to achieve when you increase your cadence to about 180 steps per minute.

So barefoot or minimalist running is not as simple as ditching your shoes. Running form needs to adapt to the changes. When you are starting out, your calves get easily tired. There is a danger that you start heel-striking again, which gives you additional impact and strain. You need to give your foot, ankle and calf muscles time to develop, if you are going minimalist.

So for the average runner, choosing regular running shoes might be the best option. Don’t fall into the trap that specific shoes can cure all your injuries. Remember that maximum cushioning doesn’t mean that you are injury-free.

You have to take care of your running form too.

Do good life and fitness go hand-in-hand?

If you’re fit, are you bound to have a good life? Well, in terms of being healthy and not being prone to illnesses you are.

Good life and fitness are synonymous for many of us. But unfortunately, not all people will come to that same conclusion.

A good life and a good health – that’s what we want, but how do you know if you have it? When you visit your doc, do you ask him that question? Or do you just ask for more medicines?

So how will you find out if you have a good life and fitness altogether?

What good life means to you

First, you have to think what good life means to you.

For some, it may mean having all the extravagances in life or having lots of capital. Others may think of it as living a healthy life.

If the latter is your definition of a good life (regardless if you have lots of money or not), then by my standards you chose the better one. If this is your view of life, then you might be physically fit as well.

If you spend a healthy lifestyle, you will have the chance to earn more money because you have more energy to do and learn new things, and you seldom get sick. You can work for long hours if you like (if you just remember to listen to your body and exercise enough), and you can buy all the necessities that you need.

Whereas, if you’re not healthy, you are low on energy, you will get sick more easily, and some of your expenses will be for medical costs. So it is like taking a pill when you should instead gear towards healthy habits in your life

Living a good and healthy life means that you eat healthily and that you do some fitness exercises. Fitness and outdoor activities help you stay physically fit and also mentally in good shape.

Motivation is the key

Health clubs or fitness gyms are good places to start if you need assistance to keep yourself on track and motivated.

You can do your exercises at home. It is quite handy because you can do it at any time that best suits to your daily routines.

Evaluate your lifestyle

The next action is to look at your lifestyle. Are you currently doing any fitness activities? Do you have any bad habits that you want to get rid of? Do you feel like you get sick more often than others?

Ask yourself all the critical questions to determine your health’s state at present. You can find motivational factors for a healthy lifestyle from there.

If you do not have a healthy life now, then it’s high time to change those unhealthy habits. You don’t need to make a big change at once, but rather with small steps so that you don’t get frustrated.

How to change?

How will you go about the process? It’s easy to say that you can start at any time. So just start. But it is not that easy, even if you are determined to work for a good and fit life.

Start replacing your unhealthy habits with healthier ones slowly. Nobody can change overnight. Little by little, you will have some changes taking place, and you will thank yourself for it. Aim for a small change that you can see, that keeps you motivated to continue.

If you have difficulty in changing your eating habits, you can seek the help of a dietician, an expert in nutrition and the regulation of diet. A sample of healthy menus to support your daily eating can help a lot.

Fitness exercises that are easy to start:

  • walking,
  • running,
  • doing push ups, step ups, lunges.

By doing them regularly, you can burn a lot of unwanted fats and gain more energy in your life. These are great cardiovascular exercises as well.

Outdoors Activities – Spend A Quality Time With Your Family

Spending time outdoors – one of the best activities loved by millions all over the world. It can also help an individual to spend quality time with their family members.

With the help of this, they can also pass their free time in a great way and get the best benefits. There are a lot of outdoors activities in which you can take part to have fun and enjoyment. Most of the people prefer to choose these outdoors activities when they are stressed. They should always enjoy all these activities to get out from stress and live a happy life.

There are various types of outdoor activities in which you can take part with ease. If you don’t know about these activities then here is a list of these activities that you need to check out.

1. Hiking

You can easily go hiking with your friends or family members to spend some quality time. You can choose this activity to enhance your outdoors experience. It can also help you to take a lot of health benefits.

You can enjoy this activity in any weather condition which is also one of the main reasons for its popularity. It is important to buy the essential gears and clothing to go on hiking with your family or friends.

You can take the hikes wherever you want whether it is a local state park or any garden or park.

Hiking is versatile. You can start with short hikes on natural local paths, and continue to longer overnight hikes with a tent.

2. Geocaching

Geocaching is an outdoor recreational activity using GPS-enabled devices. Participants navigate to a specific GPS coordinate location to hide and seek geocache (container).

Geocaching combines hiking and orienteering as if it were a game.

Geocache is a typically small waterproof container. Some have only a log to sign once you find it. The finder signs with their code name in order to proof that the cache is found.

Others will contain also a small items, ‘prizes’, such as toys or gadgets. The protocol is to leave one item per item you take. So you should keep a small bag of trinkets with you.

The container must be placed back to the same spot for others to find it.

There are many geocaches hidden around you, whether you’re in the city or the country,

Geocaching is easy to get started. You need to download the app to get hints for caches.

You need to have a GPS-device, or GPS-enabled mobile phone to navigate to the cache, and a Geocaching.com Membership.

3. Fishing

Well, fishing is called a good sport, and most of the people are enjoying it. You can also consider this activity in your free time which is really interesting and full of fun. It also offers the best opportunities for the whole family for reconnecting.

You can easily spend quality time with your family by sitting in the boat and waiting for the fish. During this, you can easily ask your family members that how was their way and lots of other things. Always start fishing with the good equipment and gears.

4. Hunting

Hunting is one of the most popular activities that can help a person to enjoy their spare time. You can easily start hunting with the appropriate weapons or equipment. You can do fun on hunting and can also learn a lot of skills.

Having the right equipment is one of the essential aspects, and you shouldn’t ignore it. While going hunting, you need to know about the fact that what are the right weapons and how to use them.

This activity also allows you to pass your free time with your family and friends to get enjoyment.

Additionally, many other activities can help you to spend some quality time with your loving ones.

To wrap it up

The outdoors activities are the best option to consider for those who want to do fun with their friends or siblings. All these activities are the best way to enjoy the free time and also to learn some new skills.