How to prepare your shoes for Race Day active feet

How to prepare your shoes to race!

You’re only a few weeks out from your next big race. You’re preparing your body with careful and considered training. You’re fuelling and prepping with the best possible sustenance. You’re stretching and easing out those aches and pains to ensure no niggles hold you back on the day. You’re giving yourself the best possible chance for great outcomes come race day – But you’ve forgotten one essential component. What’s carrying you across that finish line? Your shoes!

It may sound obvious, but many runners make the mistake of not testing, wearing in or selecting the right shoes for the physical challenge to come.   

Get more out of your shoes


New shoes will need to be fitted 4-6 weeks before the event so that you have time to break them in. It can be a good idea to introduce a second shoe and alternate between pairs. Shoe rotation has many benefits – as illustrated here.

Get the right type of shoes for YOU!

Your footwear is what will make or break your race day, and your race prep. It is crucial you are wearing shoes fitted specifically for you! Your feet are as unique as your fingerprint. What works for one runner won’t necessarily be right for you. 

The key to finding the best fit for you, is understanding your individual biomechanics. Each runner will have different requirements depending on level of fitness and the distance they are running.

The podiatric trained team at Active Feet can analyse your gait, running/walking speed and analyse the cushioning and support you need to suit your biomechanical function. We can prescribe the right shoes for you.

Reduce your risk of injury

 Some runners are genetically blessed with efficient biomechanics and can run comfortably for long distances in lightweight shoes with little cushioning. Some will require more motion control or support. Others have been buying the same shoe for decades!

As a rule, you should aim to be training in a well fitted, cushioned shoe to support and absorb the repetitive force of training. Introduce your lightweight race shoes closer to race day (4-6 weeks out), for shorter distances to get your body accustomed to the change in support, weight and cushioning. 

We encourage the 80/20 rule when training for an event to ensure you are not relying on the one pair. This rule requires two pairs of shoes; one worn 80% of the time and the other 20%. This rule ensures you are not wearing out your shoes and potentially causing injury by wearing shoes that are no longer supportive and responsive enough.

It is important to wear your event day shoes 20% of the time to condition your body to the lighter weight. And for the more obvious reason, that if you don’t wear your shoes before an event you open yourself up to the risk of blisters and pain.

Employing the 80/20 rule gives you the best chances of performing at your best.