When to Replace Running Shoes
I hear so many different responses, but from a physician's perspective, how often should I replace my running shoes?
Dr. Kathleen Weber:
One of the most common causes of injury to runners is wearing their shoes too long. By the time you notice major wear and tear on the bottom of your shoes it is already too late, the integrity of the shoes midsole, cushioning, and stability has already been compromised. This can lead to a major break down in your muscles and joints.
I recommend that runners replace their shoes every 300 to 400 miles, which is about every five months if you go three miles a day, five days a week. If you've lost track of how long you've had your sneakers, I recommend replacing them or compare them with a new pair and look for signs of deterioration throughout the shoes bottom, midsole, and insert.
Another key sign that your running shoes need to be replaced is muscle aches, cramps, and joint pain that occurs during training runs that are usually simple for you. If running 6 miles is a walk in the park for you and you start to notice injuries such as shin splints, chronic calf cramping, or knee pain, this may likely be the case. Try replacing your shoes and see if these pains decrease, if they don't, you may have a more severe injury and a visit to your local orthopaedic physician may be needed.
Always remember that every runner is different and no two are built alike. A small runner who trains on a treadmill may get more miles out of their shoes than a large runner who trains on pavement or uneven trails. Listen to your body and don't overdue it.
This information is not intended as a substitute for the professional advice of your physician, nor to be a complete description of every aspect of a condition, nor a complete list of possible side effects of any medication. Decisions concerning your treatment should be based on your own health care provider's evaluation of your personal health history and current condition. Consult your physician before following any of the suggestions on this Web site. All articles on this Web site represent the personal opinions of the individual authors and should not be construed as official policy of Midwest Orthopaedics at Rush.