The Lifespan of a Running Shoe
As a runner, you running shoes are one of the most important pieces of gear you will have. It is the only thing between your feet and the pavement that will protect you as you run. Having the wrong shoe or wearing shoes that have too many miles on them can hinder your run, causing you aches and pains and possibly injury as well.
How do you know when the lifespan of your shoe is up? That depends on many attributes and is unique to each type of shoe and runner. The basic guidelines for replacing running shoes are 300-500 miles. Keeping track of your mileage in a journal or using an online app can help you stay aware of the mileage you have put on your shoes. Some shoes are designed for high mileage. Others are designed for racing and low mileage training runs.
When you go to a running store to be fitted for a shoe, the sales associate will be able to tell you if the shoe you are interested in is a high or low mileage show. If you have a pair of old running shoes with you, the sales associate will also be able to examine the tread wear patterns of your old shoes to help you determine if the shoe you were in was a good fit or if another shoe might be better for your personal gait and form. The new lighter weight seamless fabrics that are being used in the newer shoes to take weight out of the shoe are not designed to hold up as long as the older traditional fabrics with classic stitching. Those are things to keep in mind when selecting a new shoe.
How can you tell when a shoe has too many miles on it? A lot of distance runners experience this problem. Running a 50 miles a week will put 200 miles on a shoe each month! The shoe can still look brand new on the outside, but the tread on the bottom is gone and the insoles on the inside have met their full lifespan. When a shoe has too many miles on it, you will start to feel little aches and pains in your feet and knees. Shin splints are also common as the insoles of your shoes are no longer absorbing the shock of the pavement below you. Replacing the shoe can fix the problem quickly. If you continue to run on shoes that should be replaced, you are exposing yourself to risk of injury. Those little aches and pains can turn into something more serious in the end if the problem is not addressed. Many runners have two pairs of shoes to trade off so the insoles will last a little longer.
Running shoes protect your feet from the constant pounding of running on the pavement. Having the right shoe and not wearing them with too many miles on them can help protect your feet and help prevent injury.
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