How often should you change your running shoes?
Do you go by mileage or how many hours you have ran on them?
I usually go by feel and mileage. If I've been training for a marathon and have a lot of miles on them, I will start to see if I am getting any excess aches and pains after a few months. Most shoes will start to break down after a couple hundred miles, but this can depend on your weight and type of surface you run on. Running on pavement will break down shoes faster than grass simply because there is more impact and stress on them. Listen to your body and if your joints start to hurt after a couple months, it may be time to upgrade to a new pair of shoes.
If you are trying the minimalist/barefoot running style, you don't have to worry about changing your shoes as regularly since there is much less material to break down over time. Simply replace your minimalist shoes whenever you wear holes in them and you have a hard time keeping them tied to your feet!
Everything tribook said is good. I can tell you from my personal experience, that even one cycle of training for marathon or half marathon can break down a pair of shoes. I always wear Nike Free Runs and, as tribook pointed out, they tend to last longer since they are designed to be minimalist. Even still, it can be a good idea to change them every 4-6 months if you are running over 30 miles per week.
Excellent information guys. I really appreciate you taking the time to give me such a detailed answer. I usually just run in the shoes until they are not comfortable anymore. Then they become lawn mowing shoes, and I go buy another pair. Any suggestions on which shoe company you like? I been pricing some Brooks shoes becomes a few guys I run with tell me they are fantastic. I have never had them before. Any thoughts on that?
On average every 300 to 400 miles or so. As tribook has stated it's more about feel and mileage. You can definitely "feel" when your running shoes are starting to break down. I usually try and start breaking in a new pair 3 to 4 weeks before I put an older pair out of commission. Depending on how many miles you are running every week shoes can last anywhere from just a couple of month to 6 months or longer if your mileage is low.
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