How Long Should Running Shoes Last?

Once running becomes part of your routine, and you are doing it regularly, there is nothing more important than a good pair of running shoes. 

We always recommend getting your gait analysed and you try on the shoes you are going to purchase, most stores will let you use the treadmill to test them out. The right shoes can help correct an under or over-pronation, which in turn will help prevent injuries from regular running. 

For the newer runners, the price of a decent pair of running shoes can be a shock – head over to our guide How to Buy Running Shoes for more information and help. 

As it can be quite the financial outlay, it is completely fair to ask ‘how long will my running shoes last?’

The typical distance is between 300-500 miles (or 482 – 804 KM) – and this varies depending on who you speak to and how much you train. 

Rather than stick to an arbitrary number – it’s best to keep an eye out for these tell-tale signs that mean your shoes need replacing: 

  • The outer sole is wearing through.
  • The sole’s tread is so worn that the sole is practically smooth – this can also be dangerous in wet/icy weather. Your trainers have good grips for a reason! 
  • The toe-box or upper shoe has holes or is worn away – if your toes are poking through your shoes, get some new ones! 
  • Possible creasing in the midsole – this normally happens in areas of higher impact like the balls of your feet. 
  • You start getting pains in your feet during runs – this is the first sign for many people and it should be addressed before you get an injury. 
  • Blisters start appearing on your heels – if your trainers begin to rub, and cause blisters it could be a sign that they have stretched too much and need replacing. 

How to make your shoes last longer 

  • Keep them dry – make sure you dry your shoes off if you’ve been out in the rain or through snow/ice/trails. Scrunch up some newspaper in there to help absorb the moisture. Loosen the laces, don’t leave them near the radiator (as they’ll just smell) and remove the insoles. This will help them dry completely. 
  • Get a proper shoe cleaner and clean them often – there are trainer cleaners out there but an old toothbrush, hot water and a bit of washing detergent will work just as well. If you can, remove the insole and wash in warm water with a splash of washing detergent. 
  • Use the right lace pattern – there are so many different ways to tie your running shoes, that it takes some research to make sure you’re doing it right. You may need different lace patterns on your feet but make sure you test them out and find the right one for you. 
  • Undo your laces – undo your laces properly. Fully loosen them, slide your feet out carefully, not by using the other foot to keep the shoe in place. When putting them back on, use a shoe horn if necessary and lace them properly. 
  • Have more than one pair – if you can, have more than one pair of trainers. Mix up which ones you wear for shorter or longer runs and try not to wear the same pair twice in a row. This will help your shoes stay as fresh as possible. 

It’s easy to think that you’ll look after your shoes but it’s often easier to kick your shoes off, stick them on a radiator or in the washing machine, but this will ensure you run through shoes faster than you should! They’ll last a lot longer with a bit of care and attention. 

If you want to get some training plans, look for more fitness advice and guides for running, head over to the main blog page. 

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