Subscribe Subscribe | Subscribe Comments RSS
running biking athletics training swimming exercise

When to Replace Running Shoes?

Running shoes are critical to help athletes perform better, recover, and make sure our feet, shins, and legs are better taken care of.

Technology has helped greatly advance running shoes, as they are lighter, breathe better, provide different widths, and are made of better materials.  There is no perfect shoe for each person, so it’s going to come down to trying on different shoes and seeing what fits best.

However, many runners tend to keep their shoes around too long, and that is when things can get extremely sketchy for athletes.  As many runners spend at least $100 per pair of running shoes, there also is a financial incentive to keep using shoes that might be past their ideal lifetime.

Quick Tip: Running shoes should be replaced somewhere from 300-500 miles – and if you have foot, ankle, knee problems, you may be forced to replace your shoes at an earlier time.

Here is some great reading material about the ideal time to retire your shoes:

Competitor – How Often Should I Replace my Running Shoes? – When Should I Replace my Running Shoes?
Runner’s World – Running Shoe FAQ
New York Times – When to Retire a Running Shoe

More after the jump!

If you really want to know, running coach Mario Fraioli offers this tidbit of advice:

Remember, don’t go solely by how the outsole looks to determine whether or not a shoe needs to be replaced. If you do most of your running on a treadmill, a smooth road, or a groomed trail, the outsole of the shoe can look fine for a long time, but the internal damage is still taking place. Note in your training log when you start running in a new pair of shoes, and keep track of how many miles you run on them. Over the course of a 12- to 16-week training cycle, you can expect to go through between two and four pairs of shoes. When you start approaching the end of the shoes’ life, it’s a good idea to start breaking in a fresh pair as you phase out the broken-down model. Your body will thank you for it.

You’ll learn as you go along when the ideal time to replace running shoes for you finally arrives. Please remember that the shoes don’t need to go into the trash – you can use them as shoes to run errands or do housework in; donate them (depending on condition); and use shoes with some life as a backup pair.

Leave a comment

Name: (Required)

eMail: (Required)