Is a racing flat an everyday running shoe?

edited September 2012 in Running Shoes - General
I just read your new review of the Saucony Grid racing flat. They sound great. So...can a racing flat be used as an every day shoe? I'm not sure what the difference would be between racing flats and a regular shoe? Thanks so much!


  • edited September 2012
    Yes, absolutely. The traditional way of thinking is that flats are for high-level runners for speedwork and racing. Even when I started running seriously about 5 years ago I would never have been recommended a flat if I went into a shoe store. Now, flats may actually be a bit more protective than some of the minimal shoes coming out.

    I think that unless you are a big time overstrider with a massive heel strike, a flat would work fine as an everyday trainer, and your form will adapt to them with time. You could even start in with a more cushioned shoe like the Sacuony Kinvara and mix in a flat like the A5 for a few workouts per week and see which meets your needs best.

    As always, it is wise to be gradual in transition if you do give a flat a try, particularly if you are in a more traditional shoe right now. Short mileage a few times a week at first, then build from there.
  • Thanks so much for the input.  I've been trying to transition slowly to a 0 drop shoe but have had calf pain the past two runs.  I can't help but wonder if I'd be better off in a 4 drop shoe like the A5.  Thanks again.
  • Zero drop can be tough in transition, took me a long time before I kicked the calf soreness. Now that I'm zero drop all day it's no problem any more.

    4mm drop seems like a small amount, but it was always enough to prevent the calf issues.
  • I totally agree. I've had my A4's for over a year now and actually just bought a new pair after I found them online for a good price (Saucony website $62 plus a 20% off coupon). They are pretty much my go-to road running shoes. I still have some calf soreness when doing a longer run in my VFFs, but have no problem at all with the A4's. I would have bought a pair of A5's, but just happened to get lucky with the A4's today.

  • I have been using a racing flat - Asics Hyperspeed - as my main running shoe for quite a long time. Now I'm also running regularly with more minimal shoes but Hyperspeeds that carried me successfully through the transition period still often land on my feet if I plan a long run on a road. Major drawback - for just staring cold and wet season - ventilated sole that pick humidity from the ground very quickly.
  • How much life are you getting out of the flats?
  • People always ask of "life of the flats".

    It really depends on the person. A highly efficient runner can rack up high mileage with the shoes while most others will burn thru them very quickly.

    I've had shoes that lasted me upto now, 1.5yrs and counting (Mizuno Ronins). Did all my key long runs, races with them. No problem. Still look like they are in great condition.

    On the other hand, my other friends goes thru a pair of NB v870 in 2-3 months. I mean like no rubber on them. Zilch. Nada.

  • Yep, wear rate is totally individual and based on you mechanics, largely how much you scuff the ground on contact. Some people can put virtually no wear on a shoe, where the same shoe on another person can die with minimal mileage (e.g., Saucony Kinvaras - some people destroy the lateral forefoot really quickly)
  • I use Brooks T7s and Mizuno Musha 4's on a regular basis.I think flats can be a great every run shoe if you aren't too big of a heel striker like Runblogger said. I have a mild heel strike and my flats feel great that way. I have experimented with different foot strikes in both of my flats and they feel awesome with a mild heel strike to a mid foot strike. They don't feel very good when i am landing on my forefoot, though, but that might just be the type of flat.
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