As a runner or ASFA certified Running Coach, your running shoes or those of your clients are one of the most important pieces of gear you will have. It is the only thing between your feet and the pavement, your feet's protection on those long runs. Having the wrong shoe or wearing shoes that have too many miles on them can hinder your run, causing you aches, pains, and possibly injury as well.
How do you know when the lifespan of your shoe has expired? 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 shoe. If you have a pair of old running shoes with you, the sales associate will examine the tread wear patterns of your old shoes to help you determine if the shoe was a good fit or if another shoe might be better for your personal gait and form. The new lighter weight seamless fabrics being used in newer shoes to take weight off 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 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 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 worn-out shoes, 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. Wearing the right shoe and tracking the miles you put on them Having will protect your feet and help prevent injury.
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