Running Shoes & Trainers

When do you need to change your running shoes or trainers?  Sometimes its obvious – they look bad, or start to break down – but good quality running shoes and trainers are built to stand a lot of abuse, so even though they still look good, it’s possible that they may in fact need replacing.


There are several clear signs that your running shoes should be changed.  These include:


  • If the midsole is collapsing.
  • If the shoes are leaning inwards or outwards noticeably.
  • If there is wear and tear on the sole of the shoe.
  • If you notice a lack of cushioning.

However, even these signs may not be visible if you are a light weight runner with an even wear pattern on your shoes.


A simpler method is to keep track of your miles, and replace your shoes after around 500 miles.  For a recreational runner who runs around ten miles a week, that would mean a new pair of running shoes every year – even if you buy expensive shoes, costing, say, £100, that still works out to less than £2 per week, far less than you would pay for gym membership.


When shopping for new running shoes or trainers, be sure to go to a specialist sporting goods store – or even better, a running shop – to be sure to get the right shoes.


There are hundreds of different models of running shoes on the market, some offering more cushioning, some more stability, some for pronators, others for supinators – if all this makes no sense to you, then seeking advice is the only way to be sure you get the right shoes.


A specialist will look at your build, the way you run (usually on a treadmill) your weight and size, and also, if you bring them, your old running shoes – the wear pattern on your old shoes will tell them much about how you run, so be sure take them with you when you go shopping.


The best time of day to shop for shoes is the afternoon – your feet swell during the day, so if you shop in the morning you might get shoes that are too small.  You’ll also want to take your regular running socks with you so that the shoes are sized using the socks you normally wear – sock thickness can vary greatly.


Finally, it’s best to actually run in the shoes before you buy them.  Again, good sports and running shops will have a treadmill and will expect you to take advantage of it to be sure that the shoes you choose work for you.


Replacing your shoes regularly and always choosing good quality shoes is one of the best ways to make sure that your running is not only enjoyable, but also injury free.