How do you know when your running shoes need to be replaced? I hear that a lot, and it's a great question!
Unfortunately, there is no perfect formula that will provide a succinct answer for that question. Each of us have a host of factors that effect the life of our running shoes. Some runners say they replace their running shoes when their knees, or back get painful. That is a bad idea!
Wearing a running shoe beyond it's "recommended lifetime", might save you some money at the sports store, but you might spend ten times more dollars when you see a orthopedic doctor about an injury caused when you ignore the signs to replace your shoes.
In general, I can tell you that better quality running shoes will provide about 300 to 500 miles of wear, while still providing good support and protection. The miles that I mentioned are not limited to training or racing... it includes ALL miles, walking, jogging, racing, and non-running casual wear. Remember, running shoes are for running, they are not court shoes, for basketball or tennis.
Sometimes shoes have very subtle indicators for replacement. Running shoes may still look good, with mild sole wear, when they have reached their limit, and you didn't realize it... Leaving you vulnerable for injury!
At Inside Out Sports, we invite runners to come in and compare a new pair of running shoes, to the shoes they are currently using with their running program. Putting the new shoe on one foot, and your current shoe on the other foot. You'll feel some amazing differences of each. Your feet, legs, hips, and back will tell you which shoe will enhance your performance, and protect your musculoskeletal system. Our skilled staff can also help you to select the optimal running shoe for your running, when we analyze your running gate.
In next weeks Running Tips we will discuss a few additional ways to know when it is time to replace your running shoes.