It’s time again for the City to Surf!
There’s less than 4 weeks to go, and if you haven’t got your footwear sorted it’s not too late, but you’d better hurry!
There’s no definitive end point to the life of a shoe, it’s a slow decline. Determining when to let them go can be tricky.
First, consider the number of Kms run, manufacturers suggest around the 800km mark. This would be less if it’s a lighter shoe or racing flat – around 600kms. That could be around 6 months for frequent runners or 9-12 months for less frequent runners.
As well as this, listen to your body to help determine shoe life. Usually the shoe feels less responsive or like your feet have to work harder. If you are taking longer to recover or feeling little niggles/injuries creep in, then consider your shoe life. As time progresses the shoe becomes less protective and injury risk can go up.
The key is the midsole of the shoe which is made up of dense foam. This will compress when running and take 24-36 hours to spring back and recover. If you are running on consecutive days you are not allowing sufficient time for the midsole to ‘spring back’, therefore decreasing shoe life quicker. No doubt alternating between multiple shoes will decrease this problem and extend shoe life.
A common two pairs of shoes strategy might be a heavier mileage shoe for longer runs, and a lighter flatter shoe for speed work and tempo running. All of the better runners I see in the clinic have multiple shoes on rotation, this helps with injury reduction and also performance. I personally have four shoes on the go!
Of course if you are injured get help. If you need shoes replaced consider a specialty Running Store like Running Science Rozelle where they really understand running.
Happy running! See you at the City to Surf!
Phillip de Mestre
Sports Podiatrist and Runner