It's really no secret that running shoes are getting more advanced. But as of yet, these do still have rather distinct lifespans and it's always best to pay attention to the shape they're in. After all, logging road or trail time in worn-out running shoes is one of the easiest ways to end up with an injury. But we get it, buying new kicks isn't always easy on the wallet – particularly when you prefer high-end brands. However, you will absolutely feel the difference in performance between high and low-quality footwear. You really do want to ensure you've got a decent pair of running shoes to absorb impact and provide support. Use these pointers to figure out if your footwear is ready for retirement or if they have a little more to give!
The Standard Recommendation
Generally, most coaches and shoe manufacturers will advise you to replace your running shoes roughly every 500-800km (approximately every 6 months if you're running ±30km per week). However, if you're using minimalist running shoes, these would typically be quite a bit less durable. You're probably looking at a range that's more between 320-640km. However, when it comes to the question of replacing your running shoes there's no straightforward, one-size-fits-all answer. Here are a few key elements you should be keeping an eye on as a way to gauge.
Your usual running surface can often also increase the wear and tear on your shoes. For example, running on asphalt several times a week may cause more wear and tear than running on softer grass. It's important to check areas where usage is more visible on a running shoe, this is usually the heel or toe.
Also, be conscious of the internal foams and materials that may also be compressed and worn down over time on the inside of the shoe. These may degrade faster depending on how snug the fit.
Lastly, take note of any bald spots that may form on the outsole where rubber has worn off. A little scuffing is completely fine but it's really important to ensure enough tread remains to provide traction while you run. At the same time, keep a note on whether your shoes are straight and even. Being lopsided is a sure-fire sign that the midsole has been compromised.
Now, these signs may all seem obvious, but they bear mentioning as many runners still ignore them. Guard against injury and increase your performance by replacing shoes when you notice any of these red flags. If you're in doubt, then it's probably a good idea to plan a new pair for the near future as a precaution. You can also ask an expert by contacting one of our stores and discussing your footwear with one of our friendly, knowledgeable team members. Bring your current shoes in for an assessment and even make use of our waterproofing service to prolong their lifespan.