When to Say Goodbye to Your Running Shoes

Running shoes don’t last forever — if you’re covering 30 miles a week, you’ll be lucky to get six months out of a pair. Most modern running shoes aren’t built to last much more than 500 miles — more if you don’t weigh a great deal, less if you’re heavier than average. And this is regardless of the price, although very expensive shoes will probably have sturdy uppers and inner fabric.

Shoes can be useless and show no signs of wear because the midsole gets destroyed from the constant pounding it been taking. It collapses, losing any cushioning, meaning that every strike is coming down unprotected. Hell counters will lose their stability around the same time and no longer hold your heel straight. Then, once the inners go, essential flexibility is lost, meaning uppers will tear or tear away from the sole, and the fabric inside will get worn as your feet start rubbing. This will quickly cause blisters, but if the shoes have no effective midsole, shins, calves, knees and ankles suffer terrible jolting meaning serious injury is never far away.

Once a shoe wears to this point it will throw you off your usual running stride. Not only will it no longer compensate any pronation problems you might have, it will also cause you to run in a way that is neither your best nor best for you.

Tip: Write down the dates you started using a pair shoes somewhere on them — pick a place where it won’t rub away. If you know how much mileage you were doing each week it will help you judge when to replace them.

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