Almost 2 months ago I mentioned that I was experiencing a lot of pain in the balls of my feet when I ran for any length of time. Some of you mentioned that you had gone through the same kind of thing when increasing your mileage and that it eventually went away, so I decided to wait it out. Last week I decided that I was done waiting it out and that the problem was with my Mizuno shoes. A quick check of my training log revealed that they had soaked up little more than 200 miles and I really didn’t want to replace them yet, which is what led me to try Dr. Scholl’s Gel Sport Insoles.
What attracted me to these insoles was their claim to provide “Outrageous comfort for active feet.” I don’t think I’ve ever experienced a level of comfort for my feet that I’d describe as outrageous. I’d estimate that I’ve only ever experienced a ‘preposterous’ level of comfort, which as you probably know falls above ‘ludicrous’ comfort but below ‘outrageous’ comfort on the ‘ridiculously-overstated-comfort-scale.’ Needless to say I was ‘outrageously’ excited for my feet to feel a new level of comfy, one that I haven’t felt since my wife got rid of my sheepskin slippers.
I put the new Dr. Scholl’s inserts into my Mizunos on Friday night and went to sleep anticipating my long run on Saturday morning. I dreamt of comfortable things; goose down comforters and overstuffed chairs, while pillow-top mattresses danced in my head. When I awoke on Saturday I downed two cups of coffee so that the ‘outrageous comfort’ wouldn’t induce me back to sleep. I was beyond excited. I sat on the edge of the bed to put my shoes on. I loosened the laces, closed my eyes, held my breath, and braced myself for the comfortslaught that was about to wash over me. I slipped my feet into my newly insoled shoes and I waited. And waited. I cautiously opened one eye and glanced at the mirror to make sure I was in fact wearing the shoes. Something was amiss, my feet were not ‘outrageously comfortable.’
Convinced that I was doing something wrong I took the shoes off and double checked that I had installed the insoles correctly. Then it dawned on me. These were Sport Gels, so perhaps they weren’t going to exude comfort until I started running. I ran 10 miles on Saturday morning and while I am happy to report that I did not experience the level of pain that I have had in the past, I most certainly did not experience anything that I would describe as ‘outrageous comfort.’
While I am thankful to Dr. Scholl for providing me with a solution that should be able to see me through the end of my racing season (Dec. 15) I am disappointed that he felt the need to overzealously market his insoles. I will be writing a letter to Dr. Scholl and suggesting that they consider downgrading their description of this product to ‘admirable comfort’ for active feet.