New running shoes are one of the highlights of this sport. I love trying new styles and coming home with (or coming home to) a box full of shiny, new shoes, all fresh and ready for the road.
On the downside, running shoes can be pricey, and that can make us loathe to buy new or replace them as frequently as we should. My belief is spending the money on keeping yourself in good running shoes can help save you from injury or PT bills down the road, so I do try to stay on top of it.
But how do you know when it’s time?
When You’re Pushing 400 Miles
Most of us track our miles on our Garmins, Apple watches, or running apps. Our quest for data makes it easy to calculate overall miles, and these are what we should watch as we run. At the 300 mile mark in any pair of shoes, it’s time to start paying attention. Gels and cushioning begin to compress. Treads wear thin, Rubber loses its bounce. Uppers may start to fray. All of these things lead to a compromised running experience Every shoe is different, and every runner puts different wear on shoes. Sometimes, you can get to 500 or so miles, but 400 is the sweet spot especially for those who run regularly.
When They Hit Their 6 Month Birthday
Don’t keep track of your miles or don’t run all that often? Then make a note of the six-month mark from when you started wearing your shoes. While it may not look like your shoes are showing their age, be aware that passing time can lead to the breakdown of the materials that make up your shoes. It can be hard to say goodbye when your miles are on the lower side, but switch your six month old shoes to the pair you use for the gym or to walk the dogs and upgrade to something new.
When You Start To Feel Soreness
Any time you start to experience soreness or aches during or after a run, one of the big questions you should ask is “how old are my shoes?” When running shoes lose their integrity, due to use or age, they step serving the purpose of protecting your body while you run. If you are at 400 miles or past six months, get thee to your local running store to level up to your new running shoes. (and if that doesn’t do the trick quickly, get thee to your doctor for an exam).
When They Look Like This
Friends, I am so embarrassed to admit this, but this is an actual photo of the shoes I just retired.
In my defense, they were one of the only pairs of shoes that felt “right’ on my bionic ankle, and I wasn’t experiencing any (new) aches, pains, or discomfort from them. I suffered with feelings of “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”, and was nervous that changing anything would cause issues with my recovering leg. Of course, my new running shoes ended up being just fine with no issues, and I sent these off to Valhalla without a second thought.
When Your Favorite Shoe Goes On Sale (or Releases New Colors)
New running shoes are a critical part of the sport, but they can also just be fun. So when you see YOUR shoe marked down, or even in a cool new color way, go for it! It never hurts to have a backup pair to add to your rotation, or to save for a later. Running (and its accessories) should be fun, and if you want a new pair just for the heck of it, go for it!
When is the right time for you to get new running shoes?
Join the Runner’s Roundup!
Link up each week to post your favorite running tips, experiences, race and training recaps, workouts, gear, and coaching ideas. Join your hosts Coach Debbie Runs, Confessions of a Mother Runner, Laura Norris Running, Mile by Mile, and Runs with Pugs each week for the Runners’ Roundup linkup! Your link must be running related. Unrelated links will be removed. You must link back to your hosts — it’s common courtesy and a lot more fun! Spread the link-up love by visiting at least two other #running bloggers! Leave a comment and find new blogs to read! Use hashtags #running and #RunnersRoundup to stay in touch and promote your content!