Runners fuss over their shoes more so than any other equipment they use. Perhaps because the shoes are at the core of the essence of running. Other than bare footers, its not so possible to go out on a nice leisurely 6 miler without them.
I never bought running shoes until I started running. I used to always buy tennis shoes for casual gym like shoes. This bias was probably born during my studying years as I used to "live" on tennis courts. I bought my first running shoes when I started running, which makes sense. But first pair was bought on looks and value. I couldn't figure out why there were running shoes costing over $100. Little did I know. Not only do I use Kayano's, I tend to buy a few pairs a year, making it the largest portion of my running budget.
Fast forward to today. I bought Cumulus 10 for my son. Yes, he is only training to run a 5K. Yes it was the most expensive shoes Alex has ever owned. Yes, the wife unit will freak out tonight when she sees these $80 shoes. But he is going to look cool when he steps outside Saturday morning to run 2 miles. The farthest he has ever run. I hope the running bug bites him. Running is such a joy in many levels.