I went for my first post-baby run yesterday. It hurt….a lot. In fact, I was surprised at how little I enjoyed it. To cheer myself up, I decided to reward myself with new running shoes. When looking at this post the other day, I realized that I’ve had the same sneakers since my marathon in 2010. That’s a looooonnngg life for one pair of kicks.
What I’ve heard time and time again is that runners should change out their running shoes every six months or between 300-500 miles. It’s like changing the oil on your car, whatever you hit first. These guidelines drum up a few questions: Seems like a lot of sneakers, is it really necessary to replace them that often? And why, oh why, as a fairly avid runner, would I have the same pair for nearly two years now?
Well, it’s like this….listen to your body.
When sneakers start to break down, you start to break down. Shock absorption fades and the structure of the shoe doesn’t provide the support you need leaving you with achy knees, soreness, shin splints, foot pain, and other discomforts. Often times, the shoe itself will start to show that it’s wearing down on the sole. If it’s looking worn (like a car tire starts to look bald) then it’s time to get a new pair.
A great test to determine if you need new shoes or not is to go try on a new pair. If the new pair offers significantly more cushion and support than your current kicks, it’s time to trade them in.
So, why have I had my running shoes for nearly two years? Honestly, a combo of procrastination and being cheap. My running schedule significantly changed last year (with the bump and all) resulting in a much, much fewer miles and I often thought, “Oh…I’ll look for a new pair soon but I’m just not running that much right now.” And I’m cheap. I’d consider buying a new pair but then talk myself out of spending the dough.
But, after yesterday’s run, I know I need a new pair. Also, mine are visibly falling apart. And while most running shoes cost between $90-$130, I really shouldn’t be too upset about spending a little cash. I mean, seriously, I got two years out of the last $100 I dropped on a pair of sneakers….I’m embarrassed now that I’ve had them so long.
So, what pair to get? I usually love Adidas or New Balance running shoes. They seem to provide my feet the most support. But, I’m also looking at Saucony and Asics. There are so many options…. almost too many! I think I’ve narrowed it down…I’m looking for a lightweight, breathable shoe with a little extra support for a high arch. Now I just need to go try on a few pair and pick a winner!