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Old 07-03-2014, 04:15 AM   #1
Mauricio Solis
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Shoes for newbie....previous Plantar fasciitis issue

Hello all,
So I'm jumping in the CF so I can get in shape, be healthier and get my a@# kicked while at it...so bring it on!! Now, been doing some reading and I'm a little confused. So the flatter the shoes the better for most of the WODs...correct or sort off? yet Nanos have a 4mm drop and Inov-8 you can get 6mm, 3mm, 0mm...so what is the best way to select the type of shoes I will need? And before you all start yelling at me, I know the shoe wont matter much for beginners, however it could help....took me hours to convince my wife I need some new shoes for CF so dont burst my bubble now! So how do you determine how much drop you need in a shoe regardless of the brand? I developed plantar fasciitis 2yrs ago and changed to Brooks Adrenaline and ASR for running 5K's and over and I have no issues anymore (over 1 yr doing good); however not sure if for the usual CF runs, I will need that much support so any suggestions will be appreciate it.
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Old 07-03-2014, 12:16 PM   #2
Reuben Bakker
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Re: Shoes for newbie....previous Plantar fasciitis issue

Hey Mauricio - welcome!

I've been doing crosffit for almost a year now, here's what I have found:

1). Traditional running shoes, with lots of cushion and support, SUCK for crossfit. The main problem isn't really the high heel, it's that the foam is way too soft to provide stability when lifting weights, squatting, etc.

2). If you have limited ankle mobility (most people do), you will actually benefit from some drop in the shoe when squatting. Weightlifting shoes have a big, firm heel built in that helps you have a stable platform and maintain proper form when squatting. What I (and many others) do, rather than having a dedicated lifting shoe, is to place a 5lb plate under your heel when you need to until you can work up the ankle mobility and strength to have proper form without it.

3). Your shoes have to be tough. Rope climbs, burpees, mountain climbers, bear crawls, and all sorts of other ground based craziness we get into will tear up your shoes. I think the Reebok Crossfit shoes seem to hold up the best.

Hopefully that helped shed a little light on choosing some shoes. I'll just say - don't put it off. I waited about a month before I got out of regular running shoes - I tried some skele-toes for a while, then finally settled on some Merrell Road Glove 2 shoes. 0 drop, 4mm of cushion. I would have picked up some Nano's but they are expensive. I also took a run clinic that completely transformed how I run (no more heel striking). I'll never go back to shoes with a bunch of cushion built in again. My feet and ankles are much stronger than they used to be.
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Old 07-03-2014, 08:04 PM   #3
Andrew G Parker
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Re: Shoes for newbie....previous Plantar fasciitis issue

I have plantar fasciitis, and have and still do selectively use orthodics. What I have found with CrossFit is that the running and other WOD work is really not of a length of time that it will cause your feet problems. CrossFit will in fact probably help you out. All of the feet problems I used to have are mostly eliminated, except for long stands or walks on flat surfaces. Then my feet give me fits, but I've not had problems with knees or hips since doing CrossFit.

That being said, the problem comes in varying degrees. I use Nanos for the WODS and lifting shoes for weights. They do add stability. Most people my age (50) have some limits in mobility, particularly the ankles. I am not plagued with that and and can fully squat with feet flat. As stated, something under the heels can help, if needed. Our box has several strips of the platform rubber that many use.

BTW, I never use orthodics during workouts. Those are only for long hikes and when I know I will be on my feet a lot. Standing or walking on a hard surface is a killer. Running (using the term loosely in my case) isn't too bad. If you haven't, I'd recommend you pay a visit to a good physical therapist. They can give you some stretching and mobility exercises you can do at home that will help quite a bit in of themselves.

Last edited by Andrew G Parker : 07-03-2014 at 08:07 PM. Reason: addition
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Old 07-29-2014, 11:57 AM   #4
Jeremy Wilmoth
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Re: Shoes for newbie....previous Plantar fasciitis issue

3 yrs ago I tore my PF in my right foot it bothered me for a long time. When I started CF it was tender but over the course of 2-3 months all the stretching and mobility work has helped tremendously! I finally broke down and bought some Nano 3's and even on the mile runs they don't bother me and they definitely helped my stability issues! Beginner or not I think good shoes will help you develop better habits due to the stability
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Old 07-29-2014, 02:54 PM   #5
Joe Spinelli
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Re: Shoes for newbie....previous Plantar fasciitis issue

You didn't say what your current fitness level is, but you said you wanted to "get in shape", so I will assume you are not currently doing anything fitness wise.

I started CF about 2 years ago, and before that my feet hurt ALL THE TIME. I tried $600 custom orthotics, all but gave up wearing golf shoes and dress shoes, and basically sat around. One foot doc wanted to fuse bones together in my foot, but admitted that it probably wouldn't do much good.

I decided to start crossfit despite the early pain and things got better FAST. The muscles in my feet got stronger and they no longer hurt. I was able to run for the first time in years, and as long as I kept it under a mile, no pain. I was wearing Nike Free's because they were the only shoes that didn't hurt my feet. HOWEVER - that are not right for me. I learned this recently when I visited a running store. The clerk literally threw away my nikes and said "these won't work for your feet." With the correct shoes for me, I can run up to 5 miles with no pain. Shoes really make a lot of difference.

So here is my advice. I have continued to get faster and stronger without purchasing weight lifting shoes. I wear shoes that make my feet feel good regardless of what exercises the WOD calls for. For box jumps, jump rope, burpees, I wear my Asics, and when I lift, I go barefoot. Simple as that.

Remember, if you get injured or have pain, you're not likely to stay committed long term. Staying healthy and getting better is the goal. I'm 42 and can't believe it took this long to figure out I CAN run without pain, if I'm wearing the right shoes.

Good luck!
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Old 07-30-2014, 07:32 AM   #6
Dave Hancock
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Re: Shoes for newbie....previous Plantar fasciitis issue

Regarding plantar fasciitis, I used to get it bad any time I ran. I ran with a heel strike and cushioned shoes. I switched to a midfoot strike and less cushioned shoes. I eased into the duration to allow my foot and leg muscles to strengthen. I have not had any running related foot or leg pains since switching, around 5-6 years now.
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Old 07-30-2014, 08:37 AM   #7
Phil Washlow
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Re: Shoes for newbie....previous Plantar fasciitis issue

Arch support, orthotics, raised heels, etc. are all tools that should be used with the goal of never having to use them in the future. Check out the rebuilding the feet series by Kelly Starrett and Brian Mackenzie, here is the first video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ha6ZxfG6Tz8 (not sure it's wfs, may swear a time or two). That being said, I love my nanos.
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Old 08-01-2014, 04:24 AM   #8
Carlos Mendoza
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Re: Shoes for newbie....previous Plantar fasciitis issue

I used to have PF problems from playing so much soccer on concrete flooring and not mobilizing. When I started crossfit a year ago I was hesitant to just jump in and where nanos since we run on concrete due to dreading the pain from my previous experience, but I just threw on the nano 2's when I purchased my first pair and never had a problem with PF pains. I would say because of all the mobility work we do it doesnt bother me anymore.
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Old 08-02-2014, 09:03 AM   #9
Andy Kramer
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Re: Shoes for newbie....previous Plantar fasciitis issue

I had plantar also.

Reebok CrossFit Nano 2.0's were my first CF shoes. Did miracles for my WOD work and lifting. I have since upgraded to 3.0's, they have a wider toe box, and feel a little bulkier. I'm looking forward to the 4.0s.

For running, I just got a pair of Brooks.
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Old 09-17-2014, 08:57 PM   #10
Jon Hanover
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Re: Shoes for newbie....previous Plantar fasciitis issue

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe Spinelli View Post
You didn't say what your current fitness level is, but you said you wanted to "get in shape", so I will assume you are not currently doing anything fitness wise.

I started CF about 2 years ago, and before that my feet hurt ALL THE TIME. I tried $600 custom orthotics, all but gave up wearing golf shoes and dress shoes, and basically sat around. One foot doc wanted to fuse bones together in my foot, but admitted that it probably wouldn't do much good.

I decided to start crossfit despite the early pain and things got better FAST. The muscles in my feet got stronger and they no longer hurt. I was able to run for the first time in years, and as long as I kept it under a mile, no pain. I was wearing Nike Free's because they were the only shoes that didn't hurt my feet. HOWEVER - that are not right for me. I learned this recently when I visited a running store. The clerk literally threw away my nikes and said "these won't work for your feet." With the correct shoes for me, I can run up to 5 miles with no pain. Shoes really make a lot of difference.

So here is my advice. I have continued to get faster and stronger without purchasing weight lifting shoes. I wear shoes that make my feet feel good regardless of what exercises the WOD calls for. For box jumps, jump rope, burpees, I wear my Asics, and when I lift, I go barefoot. Simple as that.

Remember, if you get injured or have pain, you're not likely to stay committed long term. Staying healthy and getting better is the goal. I'm 42 and can't believe it took this long to figure out I CAN run without pain, if I'm wearing the right shoes.

Good luck!
Similar story to you.

The strength increase in my feet from working out barefoot helped me immensely and I no longer have PF. Amazing what some kettlebell, squat, deadlift training will do. Obviously for squats you need great ankle mobility, but there are tons of videos online that help with any sort of mobility issue you have. FOR FREE.
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