Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Jessica's Journey...January 18th "when should you replace your shoes?"

Yesterday I ran in my "old" pair of shoes for the last time.  The shoes look fine and I even got a comment at the gym that my shoes look new.  My feet, knees and hips are telling me otherwise.

So when ARE we supposed to change our shoes that we exercise in?

From all the research that I have found this seems to be the result:

  • If you feel pain, it may be time.  (this is the best indication for me but I often wait to long)  The knees seem to feel this the most and you may start to be sore in those areas if the cushioning in your shoe has broken down.  I feel this also in my hips and in my feet.  In fact, yesterday I ran in my old shoes and all day my feet were really hurting me and my knees.
  • About 300 to 400 miles of exercising seem to be the average amount of time for replacement.  If you are running outside or on rough surfaces it could actually be earlier than this.  A great way to figure out the mileage is just to keep track at each workout.  You could also keep track for about a month and just use that month as your general rule if your workouts are consistent each month.  Just multiply the months to figure out when you get to that 300-400 mile mark.  I have read that your size, body type, how you exercise and the activities that you do also play a big part in this.  Your tread may still look great but that doesn't mean the inside of your shoe is still doing what it was designed to do.

I really hope that those who start out exercising take a moment to look at the shoes they are wearing.  Running in shoes that are the wrong pronation or a shoe that no longer provides the support that it was designed to do can really bring pain to your joints.  While I had physical therapy this was a big comment that was given to me.  My physical therapist put in additional support in the shoes that I wore everyday, told me to not wear flip-flops until I was better and consider purchasing new shoes that provided the support that I needed.

At the moment I have 3 or 4 pairs of tennis shoes that I have accumulated for the past 2 years.  They are great shoes and I still wear them but just can't go running or have an intense workout with them anymore.  When I run in them I am sore.  Since I have only worn these shoes in the gym they actually look new.  What can I do with these shoes?  It seems like such a waste to have all these shoes sitting in my closet when they could be used for something else.

Here is a website that lets you know what you can do with your used shoes.  Before you throw your next pair away consider giving them to one of these places.  I believe the Running Room in Rochester, MN also takes them.  Here is the link for you!

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