Maree’s 26.2 Journey is my Blog about training for the Chicago Marathon in October. I am an Eastbay intern, and this will be my first marathon.

Slipping into a new pair of running shoes feels amazing, especially when they fit your feet and your stride. This week I got to buy a new pair of shoes to break in before the marathon in October. Many people recommend getting a new pair of shoes about a month and a half before the race, because by this time your old shoes are starting to wear out and the runs are getting longer and longer. Of course, I faced the huge dilemma of whether to stick with the Mizuno Wave Creation 11 or try out a different shoe.

I did a lot of research on shoes similar to the Wave Creation 11, and decided to give the Mizuno Wave Rider 13 a try. This shoe is very similar to the Wave Creation 11, but it weighs in at 8.6 oz, as opposed to 10.4 oz. The Wave Rider 13 is built with the same cushioning and stability features for neutral runners as the Wave Creation 11, including Infinity Wave technology that provides cushioning and increases gait rebound.

See the Infinity Wave Technology in my video below.

However, whereas the Wave Creation 11 has an open space at the base of the shoe for the high-tech Infinity Wave technology, the Wave Rider 13 Infinity Wave system is built into a solid rubber base. This difference means that the Wave Rider 13 has a less bouncy feeling to it, but it is also lighter than the Wave Creation 11, which has a wider toe area and a wider base around the sole. One thing that I really appreciate about Mizuno shoes in general is that they employ Gender Engineering when designing their shoes, so the women’s shoes are specifically made to fit and maximize women’s gait cycle.

Both models have the same cushioning aspects, and when I tried on the two shoes both felt great. When I slipped on the Wave Creation 11, it felt perfect on my foot, just as my old shoes do. I was really surprised to see that the toe on my old shoes has flipped up a lot from when I bought the shoes new, and the sole of my old shoes is really worn down. The new Wave Creation 11 shoes felt much more springy and had much better traction that my worn-down shoes. The Wave Rider 13 felt good as well, and both were bouncy and comfortable to run in. The Wave Rider 13 seemed a bit narrower in the toe box, though definitely still roomy enough to accommodate my foot, and the lighter weight was noticeable when I tried running in that shoe.

In the end, I decided on buying a new pair of Wave Creation 11 shoes. I really like the Wave Rider 13, but I don’t want to risk changing my stride right before the marathon. I am definitely considering buying the Wave Rider 13 after my marathon, though. For now, I’m just wearing the new Wave Creation 11 to work, and I’ll start running my shorter distances in that shoe to make the transition.

This weekend a 16-mile run is scheduled. It’s a good thing I bought new shoes, because these longer distances are wearing out my old ones fast!