Life is like music; it must be composed by ear, feeling, and instinct, not by rule.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

There is no shoe worth $100

I don't care who designed it.  I don't care what it looks like.  I don't care what new cutting age features it might incorporate.  I don't care where it's manufactured.  I don't care how aesthetically pleasing it may be.  All I know is no shoe is worth $100, or anything near that price.  It only took me 6+ years to figure that out, all the while I continued to pay stupid amounts of money to various shoe companies.  I'll admit, they all are incredible marketing machines and they prey on our innate weakness to acquire the coolest looking thing on the planet, regardless of usability or performance.

I now run in a $29.99 pair of Puma H-Streets (one of the original minimalist running shoes that are basically designed identical to how shoes were designed in the late 60's/early 70's when runners were much healthier and much less injured but that's a topic for another day) and I have about 750 miles on them.  Yes, you heard me right.  $29.99 AND 750 miles.  Hmmm, let's see . . . that's less than $0.04 per mile and with the aid of some cheap shoe gu, they are still going strong and I'll definitely pass the 1,000 mile mark at which point, I'll have paid less than $0.03 per mile, and they'll likely still be going strong.  This is the dirty little secret that no shoe company wants you to know.  The fact is you don't need their expensive shoes but the vast majority of you will fail to see the light and your pocketbook will suffer as a result.

Forget the discussion about zero drop, minimalism, no heel differential, less cushioning, etc., and just think about the exorbitant prices you pay for running shoes.  You have to be kidding me.  We were born and designed to run barefoot and somehow we've been sold premier land in the swamps of Florida and we think we discovered the deal of a lifetime.  Now, I'll admit, generally the $29.99 was on sale but I never pay more than $50 for the H-Street's as they are commonly available for between $40 - $49.99.  Now, the Puma H-Street is not the only option but I'm using it as an example since it's my running shoe of choice.  If you think about this minimalist movement, all that's really happened is the shoe companies have made us victims again as they are charging the same high prices for "less" shoe.  That's right folks . . . less shoe and we pay the same or more.  Of course, that's a great business approach but you need an idiot consumer and there's plenty of those and I was a card carrying member for years until I finally discovered the light.  There's nothing pretty about my shoes except they feel great, allow me to run pretty natural and I still can bang out sub 6:00 min. miles, and do all of it injury free.  So, in other words they do the job and they do the job cheaply.

I beg of you . . . Free your mind and quit buying into the hype . . . it's all crap.  The major shoe companies have done nothing else than repackage crap, remove the smell of crap, and find more idiot consumers to take advantage of . . . quit it!!!



  1. Does this price restriction include work shoes?

  2. Funny you ask Chris. Yes and No. No, I pay a lot more for dress shoes but yes it comes out to about the same, and in fact, they are cheaper than my running shoes b/c they last significantly longer :).

    Case in point, I paid $335.00 for my dress shoes 10 years ago + $40.00 to have a cobbler zero drop them ($375.00 total) and I still wear them today (I'm wearing them right now in fact). So that's $37.50 per year vs. $29.99 for my current H-Streets which may last 1 year while my dress shoes will continue for at least another 5 yrs. (15 yrs. total).

    Actually a bargain in the long run.


  3. Dollars per year or dollars per mile...that's a good measure of value! People too often are seduced by advertising.

  4. Interesting point of view. I guess I've spent way too much on running shoes.

    btw: Do you have the same size in Nike and Puma shoes? I think about ordering a pair of H-Streets and I am not sure about the sizing. And how much space do you leave between the tip of your foot and the tip of the shoe?


  5. Hi BG,

    Let me be clear that I am not promoting or marketing the Puma H-Street but just using it as an example. Another example is the Nike Zoom Streak XC which is currently on sale for $38.88 (this was my running shoe of choice prior to the switch to the H-Streets).

    As with all shoes, the sizing is tricky. For me, the Nike XC has a narrower toe box so I order 1/2 size up but I order true to size for the Puma H-Street because the upper is so light and flexible that it expands and does not interfere with my feet, toe splay or stride.

    Last point is the mileage. Companies, for obvious reasons in wanting to sell more shoes, tell us that shoes can only last 300 or so miles. For fancy constructed shoes this is true only because the wear patterns become nuts as certain elements of the sole wear down and interfere with all the fancy technology pieces in the shoe. However, take a simple sole like the Luna sandal by Barefoot Ted and as you run in it, it molds to your specific foot and that's because there's nothing but a piece of rubber under your foot and it gets better with more mileage.

    The H-Street and other shoes like it, have the same effect and which point you can literally in these shoes until they self destruct which usually results in the upper separating from the sole (but you can even use super glue to get another 100 mile or so) but my point is every running shoe should allow for at least 1,000 miles.


Twitter Updates

    follow me on Twitter

    My Blog List

    My Blog List