Running shoes are the most important piece of gear that a runner has. A good pair of shoes can keep you running injury free and make your running more pleasant.
The general rule is to replace your running shoes every 400 or so miles. But, there are some tips to help you take care of those shoes and maybe make them last a little longer.
Make sure you are using your shoes only for running. This is a rule that I live by religiously. I know that your running shoes may be the most comfortable pair of shoes that you have – but you need to resist the temptation to wear them everywhere. This is just adding extra wear to your cushioning and the soles.
Here’s what I do. I keep my shoes that I’ve reached the maximum mileage in and wear them for casual wear. There usually still look alright and they’re not quite ready to throw away. So, they are still comfortable to wear out and about.
Keep 2 pair of running shoes and alternate days. Another important rule for me. This allows one pair to completely dry inside (and outside if a rainy day previously) before wearing them again. This will also keep them from breaking down too soon.
Make sure you are untying before removing. Growing up in my parents’ retail clothing store – this is just something that I do with all my shoes. Don’t just kick them off without untying them. It’s not good for the back of your shoes where you put pressure to pry them off or the laces. Take the time to remove your shoes properly.
Don’t put your shoes onto a heater to dry. If you get caught in the rain, don’t stick them on a heater to dry out. Drying out is the key word here – it will dry out your inner shoes and break them down. Just let them naturally air dry. If they are super wet – it’s alright to take out the insole for faster drying. (Remember our 2 shoe tip – this is where it helps to have another pair of shoes, so the wet pair can dry completely.)
Never put your running shoes in a washing machine. I won’t go into too much detail here – I think it goes without saying how bad that can be for your shoes. If you get into mud, etc, give your shoes time to dry and them brush off the dirt. You never want to submerge your shoes in water.
A good pair of running shoes is not cheap – nor should they be. They are keeping your out on the roads and from being injured. So, make sure you get properly fit – and then take care of them. You’ll be so glad that you did!