Trainer Mileage

The Fetch Kit Bag allows you to keep track of the mileage on every piece of kit that you use. It's perhaps most useful for trainers, but it's also regularly used by Fetchies to keep an eye on bike tyres, bras and other bits and bobs.

All of these bits of kit take the strain whenever you head out of the front door - and inevitably, they all reach a point when they stop being suitably effective. In terms of trainers, the oft-quoted figure is 500 miles, although I think this may be less about science and more to do with The Proclaimers. I know plenty of people who replace them more regularly, and on the flip side, it took some persuading to convince my dad that 1200 miles was probably a good point to put his old running daps on gardening duty.

The perception of well-used differs from one person to the next - but if you at least keep track, you might notice that some niggles and aches correspond to a certain mileage. Fetcheveryone makes it easy for you to do that, by allowing you to click the bits of kit you've used for each run or ride; to set default options; and even to set a reminder at a mileage of your choice that it's time to go shopping.

With thousands of Fetchies using the Kit Bag, and thousands of pairs of shoes recorded, it becomes possible to see what the big picture is. Asics have a quarter of the market; and 90% of Fetchies use shoes from the top ten manufacturers. There was little variation in lifespan, with the average pensionable distance for running shoes at 449.6 miles, or about six months of use. Quite wonderfully though, the most common point is just as the bespectacled Scottish oracles predicted. I'm still not sure whether this is a self-fulfilling prophecy though.

I've always felt like I'm pretty lucky when it comes to choice of running shoes. Most years, I run between 700 and 950 miles a year, and barring one horrific pair that were designed to encourage forefoot landing (which felt like running with ham sandwiches in my shoes), and a couple of manufacturers that are a bit too snug, I've been able to run comfortably in just about anything. On the other hand, KatieB has worn Asics Cumulus and nothing else for her entire running career.

Am I lucky? Or is this commonplace? Do you feel panic when your favourite shoes get the seasonal makeover, in case the fit has changed? Or are you the chap I see on Saturday mornings in a pair of wicking brogues? And how do you know when it's time to move on? In short, how do you choose your footwear for running? Leave a comment below.

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  • Over the years I have worn shoes from a number of manufacturers and have established that the Saucony Jazz works for me. On a couple of occasions when I felt I needed something more sporty and have bought another manufacturer's shoe I've ended up with PF.
    Once the Jazz has more than 320 miles in them they loose their bounce quite quickly and by 350 they need changing.
    I was bereft to learn that Saucony have discontinued the Jazz. I've laid in 5 pairs but face the prospect of having to try and select between the recommended replacements Swerve and Ride.
    Just looked at what I have tried: Adidas (1 type), Asics (2 types), Brooks (3), Mizuno (4), Nike (1),Reebok (1) and Saucony (6).
  • I get distracted by new colours well before my trainers/kit in general needs replacing
  • I once pushed a pair over 600 miles, followed by 4 weeks non-running due to injury. So I try to keep to the 500 mile rule for running (although those trainers get a second life for everyday wear purposes).

    I've worn Brooks Adrenaline since I first got fitted for shoes. I did a big session, going through lots of shoes and had that Harry Potter wand moment when I put them on. They were just right.

    Two years ago I decided to try from scratch again (I'd had a hip replacement in the meantime). After gait analysis and measurements, the assistant had me down to six possibles. I put them all on in turn with my eyes shut (no peeking) and only opened my eyes once stood up and moving around - even then I determinedly didn't look down. I got it down to two possibles - both Brooks and one of them was the Adrenalines.

    I've got three spare pairs stacked up in the cupboard from when I have seen them on offer.
  • I buy anything neutral without too much padding (which just encourages me to smash my feet in to the ground).

    I find the shoes I run faster in I get fewer miles in - I'll get as much as 600 from general runners, but 300 tops from shoes for tempo runs.

    Usually wear Adidas, but do like Puma Faas, sadly they seem to be made of old crisps and literally disintegrate (toes poking out, sole delaminating, insole coming out) by 300 miles.
  • Interesting to see how many runners go for the 500 mile retirement age. I do wonder if that's something created by the running shoe manufacturers to boost their sales... a bit like light bulbs deliberately not being made to last too long since that would kill the market for replacements.

    As a heavier runner too (somewhere between 13 and 14 stone) I still expect to get a thousand plus miles out of my shoes. However, I do land softly (no heel striking thank you) and make very little noise, especially with more minimalist shoes that encourage careful landing with each step.

    Usually they only get retired when they are literally falling apart. That means when the hole that develops near the little toe joint gets wider than an inch across, but sometimes they still have many months left in them even then. I've spent 5 to get a sole glued back on a pair of fell running shoes, which got another few months out of them.

    For the record, I have well over a dozen pairs of running shoes (from spikes to trail, racing flats and road shoes to hill shoes), so they do get swapped around lots. As for choosing my shoes, I mostly go for Inov8's (roclites, trailrocs, raceultras, etc.) plus Walshes for extra grip for stepp hill races. Ten years of running means I just get what I know should fit me when it's about half-price. This means I may hoard (currently there are two unopened boxes) but I know that these will all get used over the years.
  • I always have several pairs that tend to get retired about the 400 mile mark, depending on whether I really like them or not. It is infuriating that manufacturers: a) don't have consistent sizing, either with each other or the rest of the shoe market. For normal shoes, I am an 8.5 UK size. for running shoes, it is anything from 9 - 10.5. b)keep changing their models so you get a pair you really love and then, next year, not only is it a different colour but feels different, too. c) can't make the uppers as durable as the soles. Inov8 seem to be particularly bad on this. I've used lots of different makes, but the only one that has been consistently satisfactory for me is Brooks. They do not always win the coveted 'favourite shoes' award, but they are never uncomfortable.
  • I'm currently in Asics - and have been for the past couple of years - but this is mainly influenced by whatever is current in the Outlet store near me! I also quite like Nike, but again for the same reason. I'm usually hitting around 50 a pair, and those are normally about 30 off the 'list' price. I've only ever consciously gone for the same style/model twice in the last 10 years, and one of those time the second pair had a manufacturing defect (extra rib of glue along the sole - uncomfortable to run on!). They were replaced but didn't have the same style available.

    I suspect there's a large amount of unnecessary waffle/pseudo-science/snake oil in the training shoe industry, since for the majority of people with 'normal' gait and average fitness/weight most of the work is done by your own feet, ankles, legs etc..
  • Should have said - 500 miles is my magic figure too!
  • I was fitted by Run and Become as an overweight marathon hopeful and ended up with Saucony Grid Hurricanes, which Ive run in ever since. Very little injury and almost at 500 marathons cant be bad.Im religious about retiring the shoes at 500 miles, I get niggles if I dont
  • I tend to have a lot of pairs on the go - somewhere between 10 and 20 pairs at any one time - but they cover a lot of variables, eg., varying drop, minimal/cush, trail/road, waterproof, spiked, coils for snow, snowshoes, etc. In any one season some are temporarily retired so that there is less kit to search through when assigning a pair to a particular run. If too many people use the retired list for temporary retirement then fetchies stats will be distorted to look look people throw out shoes with low mileage.
  • I've have 4 pairs of Karrimor Tempo at 40. Cheap but not good value. Their uppers disintegrate somewhere between 500 and 700 miles. In the first year of running I went for gait analysis and bought a pair of Brooks Vapour 10 at 90. Probably the best shoes I've had and they are now at 1303 miles. They still look good. With continuing achilles problems after about 18 months running, I got fitted with orthotics and that has resolved the achilles pain as long as I keep stretching the calves and don't let them turn to concrete. More recently my ASICs GT2000 at 65 have just over 1000 miles and my Brooks Glycerin 11 at 63 are into 780 miles. Both pairs have a lightweight woven upper and both wore through at my left big toe but haven't got worse. The wear pattern on all my shoes is even and I have yet to notice any tendency to injury or tiredness from the higher mileage shoes. As a result, my current approach is to buy good shoes at discount and run them 'til they fall apart.
  • I have had various brands of shoes and never like to pay more than 35 ish per pair. I have had a lot of Nike and been pleased with most of them but have them because there is an out let near to us where you can get them cheap.

    I have had Lidle and Aldi shoes and although they don't get to the 500 miles two pairs would do and at 12.99 I wouldn't sniff at that. The Lidle was like wearing slippers - but you never know when they will be in and if they would be the same again. I had Sketchers GoRun4 and these were nice but had a design fault: a hole at the back to help you pull your shoe on, but this collected little stones that found their way into the shoes, which felt like Half -end Duckers!
    Pumma Fass I only did 71 miles in them and had to use them as walking shoes - they were just uncomfortable when running, as were the Soloman Hornet CX shoes. Best cross country were the Invo8 and I use these for races or if I need spikes Puma Haraka xcv2. For trail running I have Nike wild trail and I love these as they are good on mixed terrain - trail/road. My most loved shoes were KSwiss Tubes and these took me to 1030 miles - it was only because on the one shoe the layer was peeling off the heel that I retired them - they went out with a blast: Colour Blast!
    I had another pair of KSwiss (BladeMaxTm Glide) and I use them occasionally, as the design of the sole picks up small stones and you end up with a quarry in the tread and all you hear is the clicking and clacking sound as you run - most annoying - I have only done 156 miles in them, I have to steal myself to put them on. I use New Balance 630v2 for the Park Runs as these are very light and little support or cushioning, so I wouldn't use them for my longer runs.
    I think the manufacturers should look at peoples comments when designing shoes - pet hates: shoe laces too small, that elastic across the top of the foot, tongues too small. What are your pet hates?
  • For a good number of years now I have been in Nike foot wear I generally start thinking about changing after 500 miles but I normally get around 750 miles if they do not show too much wear. In recent years I have had 2 pairs one pair for any run over 10 miles and another pair for under 10 miles both Nike but different models.
  • Been in Vivo Barefoot 'The one' for 700+ miles now. No padding to break, so waiting for either the soles, the uppers, or my 'oooh shiny new pair' resolve to break.
  • I am feeling those niggles right now so have just been checking here and seeing that at over 600 miles I'm pretty much due a replacement. Fortunately, new versions of my last pair are still on sale via Amazon at cheaper than the running shops so I can get them again (this year at least!)
  • As a 16stone ex rugby player with dodgy ankles, bad back & a rebuilt knee I was getting joint aches for days after running until I stumbled across an article about maximalist running shoes. I invested in a pair of Hoka Infinite to train for my 1st marathon and they were a revelation. I had much less joint pain which allowed me to run further and more often. I retired them after the marathon on about 350miles as they were completely battered (literally finished the race and put them straight in the bin). But, Im maximalist all the way now Tecnica Supreme Max for winter/trails and Hoka Arahi for the road. Theyre a bit on the expensive side and hard find in size 11, but both shoes have hundreds of miles on them are lasting well.
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