Want Your Shoes to Fit Properly? Then Lace Them Properly.
At Red Dot Running Company we see a lot of feet.
We also see a lot of people tying their shoes when they're trying on a new pair, and if you care about how your shoe fits, you may need to (re)learn how to tie your shoes.
No, we're not talking about the first rule of running, especially in races, which is "Double knot!"
We're talking about not tying your shoes like a kindergartner. Not yanking the laces tight so the top of the lacing web is tight and the middle and bottom are ... however they came from the factory when you bought the shoes.
Your running shoes should hold your foot in place firmly but not too tightly, keeping your foot from sliding around inside (risking the development of blisters, and other possible injuries). You should find a pair of shoes that gives you space in front of your longest toe(s) and that doesn't pinch at your feet's widest points, or that doesn't cramp your toes from the outside. If you run a lot of hills, you probably want to leave a little extra room in front. And if you normally wear socks that are either very thin or very thick, you should be sure to bring a pair of those along when you're trying on new shoes.
Bottom line: research published last year showed that around two-thirds of people are wearing the wrong shoe size, mostly too small. Don't let that be you!
But back to lacing: in addition to not tying your shoes like a kindergartner, lacing can help you fit your shoes better. Remember that every model of running shoes in every size is sold to thousands of people, all of whom have different-shaped feet, even if they're "the same size". You can use lacing to make your shoes fit your feet better.
And you can (and probably should) adjust your lacing from day to day. If I'm going out for a run at the end of a "work from home" day during which I sat at my desk for 8-10 hours, I will probably loosen my laces from bottom to top, to account for the swelling my feet will almost certainly have done while I was busy not going out with a colleague for a coffee, not going out with friends for lunch, not walking across the office a dozen times to ask a question or attend a meeting or whatever. I may even stop 50-100 metres into a run (usually at the first traffic light, but sometimes sooner) to adjust my laces because my shoes feel too tight. If your feet don't feel fantastic in your shoes, you're probably doing something wrong. Lacing may be a part of it, or it may be a solution.