Ask the Coach: HR Monitors; When to Retire Shoes - Page 3WHEN TO RETIRE?
How do I tell when my trail shoes are worn out?
—Robert Bartholomew, Aberdeen, MD
Says Todd Lewis, product director for Montrail, “When to retire shoes is a hard question, and the answer becomes a personal decision.” Since runners vary in weight, stride and preferred terrain, most companies suggest a range between 300 and 500 miles for replacing shoes.
While long-time runners intuitively know when their running shoes need to be replaced, for the rest of us, it’s like those extra five pounds that sneak up on you—shoe wear is such a gradual process it can go unnoticed.
So what’s a runner to do? Simply, monitor shoe wear and tear. If the outsole tread is gone, and the midsole is showing through the bottom, it’s time for new kicks. Even if there is no obvious wear, Lewis suggests, “The [invisible] midsoles often can break down faster for some folks. When you experience that feeling of ‘deadness,’ it is time to retire them.”
Washing your shoes might make them look new again, but it’s unnecessary, and might just quicken their pace to the dumpster. So looking for wear and midsole compression are your best bets.