postheadericon Running Shoes for Speedwork Training

The best way to run a faster marathon is to incorporate some speedwork in training at least once a week. This is usually characterised by a proper warm-up followed by a series of intense sprints and recovery jogs in alternating fashion. It can be done on the track or a flat stretch of road to encourage a good rhythm. Hills can force runners to slow down and should be avoided when doing speedwork.

Racing Flats vs. Traditional Trainers

Most running shoes can be used for these sessions but a pair of lightweight racing flats from RS4U is the preferred option. Traditional trainers are simply too bulky to be effective, with stiff soles due to their thickness. Speedwork requires a bit more shoe flexibility for a better toe off. Racing flats have thin soles which allow them to bend more naturally with each stride. They also weigh next to nothing which allows the runner to feel light and fast. A related study found that every 100g increase in shoe weight translated to a 1% increase in oxygen consumption, hence a corresponding drop in performance.

Track Spikes as an Alternative

Spiked shoes can also be used for speedwork sessions on the track. They literally have small metal spikes protruding from the forefoot area to help maximize each push forward. Like racing flats, they tend to have minimal cushioning and upper construction. The issue with spiked shoes is that they can take a while to get used to as they present a different feel while running. They are also very specialised for track work unlike racing flats which can be used for running short road races or even for doing regular errands.

A Few Reminders

The feet require a certain break in period before it can get comfortable in most running shoes. This is especially true for racing flats for people who are not used to their thin soles. A gradual transition is recommended to let the body adapt to the new sensations and avoid injuries. Start out by running short distances at low intensity in the shoes then increase the volume every week as the feet get used them.

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