The triathlon training blog of Phil Barnes

I hate my shoes

Pictured above are a pair of my running shoes: Asics Gel 1110. I own two pairs of these shoes. I don't like them. ...and I never have.

I've owned Asics shoes for the last 3 years. And until now, I have had no problem with them. As I understand it, Asics, does not make the exact same shoe 2 years in a row... they change things up a little. For example, my first pair of Asics were Gel 1090 (2003). In 2004, this model was replaced with Gel 1100. In 2005, this model was replaced with Gel 1110. See the trend: Current model = 1000 + 10x[Current Year - 1994].

I buy shoes once a year. This year, I thought I'd get ahead of the game, and buy 2 pairs. Instead, of trying them out on the treadmill, where, if they didn't fit properly, I could have returned them and replaced them free of charge... I, in my infinite, stupidity: wore them outside, through the mud, in the rain - voiding any chance of refund.

On Saturday, I resurrected my old 1100s for a 10K run. Dammit- I was faster, and I wasn't in pain when I returned.

My last resort is the following email I sent to Asics via their website:

Hi there,

I'm an amateur triathlete, and have run with Asics for the last 3 year: Gel 1090's, 1100's and now 1110's.

The 1090's were perfect for my running style, the 1100's even better -- but the 1110's are killing me!!! (Calf pain and discomfort across the width of my feet). Half the time, they feel like lead weights.

I bought 2 pairs of 1110's figuring they'd be perfect, and I've worn them both now for at least 130km each, but I just can't get used to them. My running splits are markedly slower than last year, and my training pace is definitely affected.

Was there a fundamental change in design that I wasn't aware of?

What would you recommend I switch to? Last year I demoed GT-2100's and found them to bother my shins and knees.

Any chance of a discount on my next pair of shoes - I feel like a fool for buying 2 pairs of shoes that I loathe to wear.

Thanks in advance!

Yes, I have learned my lesson.

PS: This post is not meant to disparage the Asics brand. I am fully aware that shoe fit is unique - these shoes may be vehicles of the gods for some runners... unfortunately, not me!