Running coach and senior editor of Competitor magazine Mario Fraioli answers a question about how frequently an athlete should switch out his running shoes.
Q. Hi Mario,
I’m going to start training for a spring marathon this winter. How often should I replace my running shoes?
Unfortunately, there’s no universal answer to this question, given that many factors figure into the lifespan of a shoe: the construction of the shoe, your physical makeup, the way in which you strike the surfaces you’re running on, and even the climate you live in.
That said, most running shoes will last between 300 and 500 miles, which is, admittedly, quite a range. Minimalist shoes and racing flats, since they have less material underfoot and are generally less durable, will typically last 200 to 400 miles.
So how do you know if your shoes need replacing? Look for the obvious signs of wear and tear, and listen to your body.
Begin by considering the outsole, the rubber part of the shoe that comes...