How do you shoe?
September 18, 2017 7:08 AM   Subscribe

How often do you (or should you) replace sneakers for cross training?

I know how to judge shoe replacement based on running mileage, but I’m not doing a ton of running these days. But what are the recommendations concerning sneaker replacement for things like walking (both indoors and out), elliptical, general gym stuff, HIIT, bike without spin shoes, etc?

While they certainly get wear, they don’t get as much pounding as with running, or wear in the same kinds of places. But I’m easily walking 50+ miles a week. How do you judge shoe replacement for active but non-running use? Do you go by mileage? Or time/months?
posted by raztaj to Health & Fitness (3 answers total)
I would focus largely on HIIT and lifting as the other activities are generally low-impact on shoes and your body (i.e., minimal shock absorption or transfer) - what you're looking for is whether or not your foot and body can consistently achieve optimal positioning. Time is largely irrelevant - my first lifting shoes lasted 7 years and even then were only replaced by better technology. My bike shoes are in year 11 or so?

For a true lifting shoe with a hard sole, this means - the sole is not "giving" in any one place that will compromise weight transfer. The body is tight and doesn't allow for a lot of lateral movement. For a hybrid, cross-trainer (like a crossfit shoe) with a firm but spongier heel, the same rules apply but I'd be a lot more stringent about replacing spots that are softer because at its best the sponginess isn't ideal for achieving good lift position.
posted by notorious medium at 7:52 AM on September 18, 2017 [1 favorite]

When my legs or knees start to hurt when working out in them. I've also taken to writing the date I buy them on the inside of the tongue in sharpie - helps me keep track. I alternate shoes to give them time to dry out between gym trips.
posted by leslies at 7:53 AM on September 18, 2017

I use time as a metric, modified by activity level and pain when walking. If my plantar fasciitis flares up, time for new shoes. I keep two pairs of shoes and throw out the oldest pair when I get a new pair.

Walking 50 miles a week is quite a bit, I would expect your shoes to wear out in six months or so of daily wear.

If you are still not sure if it is time to replace your shoes altogether, buy a second pair of shoes and rotate them in. When you are alternating two pairs of shoes, one older and one newer, it will be clear by feel when it is time to discard the old.
posted by crazycanuck at 9:26 AM on September 18, 2017

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