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How to Extend the Life of Your Running and Athletic Shoes

Runners ResourcesWhitney Carlson1 Comment

We know that you work hard for your money and we want to help you get the most "bang for your buck" as you can when it comes to anything from groceries, to workouts, to workout wear essentials. We all love athletic shoes, especially some of the beautiful new shoes touted just for running and for triathlons, but WOW! are they expensive! Here are our top tips for extending the life of your running and athletic shoes:

Wear your shoes ONLY for their specified purpose. 

If you are racking up some miles running, save your running shoes for only running. Keeping them on to run errands and play at the park with your kids will cause them to break down faster. If you are headed to the gym for weights and cardio, stick with a cross-trainer shoe or take two pairs of athletic shoes with you - ones for lifting and ones for running. Hold on to your "worn out" running and athletic shoes for running errands and other activities that don't require the same amount of support and structure.

Allow your shoes to fully dry before wearing them again.

Don't throw your wet shoes in your gym bag and forget about them (and please, don't leave them to cook in your hot car). Take your shoes out when you get home and let them air dry. Take out the insoles in your shoes to dry separately and stuff newspaper or dry paper towels in your shoes to absorb moisture.

Track when you bought the shoes and your mileage in the shoes.

Let's face it, running in a pair of shoes for over a year isn't a smart option for your spinal health! The shoes break down with weight and sweat overtime and can't support your feet and your body in the way they were made as they age. Keeping track of the date of purchase of your shoes and the mileage that you put in while wearing the shoes will be your best bet in ensuring your feet and bones are well supported. NOTE: The rate at which shoes break down over time vary - keeping track of manufacturers and mileage is important so you can rate which are best for you. Typically, you can get about 200-400 miles out of your running shoes, but this will vary depending on you, your running patterns, running/weather conditions, your sweat patterns and how well you take care of your shoes.

Alternate 2-3 pair of shoes.

You probably have more than 1 pair of athletic shoes in your closet, right? Take advantage of those shoes and extend the life of them! Wear a different pair each time you run or workout, in a rotation to allow the shoes to fully dry and rest.

Don't wash your shoes in your washing machine or dry them in your dryer.

Your shoes will take a major beating in the washing machine - don't do it! If you decided to go all "Singing in the Rain" during your run and jump in puddles, or if you get stuck trail running in the middle of a rain storm, hose your shoes off and gently brush off the dirt or mud with a brush. Allow them to air dry, with the insoles removed. You can also stuff the shoes with paper towels or newspaper to assist with drying, but don't put them in the dryer! The glue on the shoes will break down in your dryer and your shoe will break down much faster!

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