If you’re a runner who logs in lot of kms, your running shoes will not last very long. But there are a few helpful ways of taking care of our running shoes to make them last for a bit longer. Especially when running on the trail, our shoes get a lot more damage from the rocks, dirt and mud. That’s why cleaning our shoes after a run will expand their lifespan.
Wipe your Shoes
The idea of simply tossing your running shoes in the washing machine sounds a lot easier, but skipping the washing and spin cycle will save a lot of damage to your shoes. The best way to clean your running shoes is to wipe them using a damp cloth and a small amount of gentle soap or laundry detergent to clean the upper part of the shoe. For cleaning the soles and grip, just use an old toothbrush to scrub the dirt.
Air Out your Shoes
After cleaning and scrubbing your shoes, make sure you give them enough time to air dry. Putting them in a dryer, or near a heater or dehumidifier, can shrink the shoes or shift the shape. Instead, remove the insoles and stuff your shoes with newspaper or paper towels to absorb the moisture. To leave them outside in a dry place or in the sun is ideal. Make sure you replace the paper every few hours until the shoes are completely dry, which usually might take a whole day.
Remove the Mud
When your soles are full of mud or clay, make sure you clean them as soon as you’re done with your run. When mud builds up, it can affect the traction of the shoe and the outer sole. Also, the longer the mud stays on your shoes the harder it is to get rid of. To remove the mud, clap your shoes together so the mud and dirt comes out. Also remove the insole to make sure there isn’t any dirt or rocks stuck under it. Then you can clean with the mild soap and old toothbrush.
Look After your Insoles
Your insoles need to be washed as well, those you can wash in the washing machine, but not dry in the dryer, they can be damaged by the heat. Just air dry your insoles.
Get Rid of the Stink
If your shoes are very stinky, wrap them in a plastic bag and put them in the freezer for up to 48 hours to get rid of any bacteria. Another option is to put in a bamboo charcoal shoe deodorizer after each run, they absorb the moisture and take the smell away. The easiest way if you have access to it, is to recharge your shoes in direct sunlight.
The best way to save your running shoes and also avoid some injuries is to use two different pairs of running shoes. Alternating between two type of shoes is also helpful in avoiding injuries by using different forms of shoes, as our feet muscles will train a bit differently. As well, using our running shoes to cross-train at the gym will wear them out even more. To use a different type of shoes for the gym is also important to save the cushioning and soles from the heavy weights.
Train Hard, Eat Right, Feel Great!