If you want to prevent injuries, you should get new running shoes after 400-500 miles. This is generally because of the shock absorption, which lowers over time. But it doesn’t mean that the shoe is damaged. The shoes might still look perfect. So, you’ll soon find yourself with many pairs of old running shoes!
At some point, you will have to ask yourself “what to do with old running shoes?” Should I toss them away, or are there any ideas to make better use of them?
What to Do with Old Running Shoes? – 9 Solutions to Try
Instead of tossing your old sneakers into the trash and sending them off to sit in a landfill for years, try one of the following options and give your old shoes new life.
Use Old running Shoes for Walking Around
While the impact forces when walking are much lower than impact forces when running, it’s not a bad idea to turn your old running shoes into walking shoes. However, consider the following factors before turning your old running shoes into walking shoes.
- If your walking style is very balanced and you rarely ever experience injuries, you can then use old sneakers for walking around.
- If all you’re doing is walking a few miles (the distance is much less than what you’re running), you can then use old sneakers for walking around.
- If they begin wearing out so much that they change your walking style or you start experiencing signs of injuries (such as shin pain), then stop putting them on.
Other Activities Can You Wear Old Sneakers for
- You can turn the old ones into lawn mowing/garden work shoes.
- You can wear them during yoga sessions.
- You can turn them into biking shoes or gym shoes.
- You can use them in winter and snow days, or when it’s muddy, too slippery for your typical running shoes, and attach a few very short screws in the soles to provide traction.
Recycle your Old Shoes
Eco-friendly runners can go over to any local drop-off locations and send their sneakers to a national or local recycling program. Nike’s Reuse-A-Shoe is most likely one of the very most well-known recycling organizations. The company gathers shoes and uses them to produce a material known as Nike Grind, which is then used to make various athletic surfaces.
While many programs accept old sneakers to donate or resell to those in need, others will take footwear with acceptable shoe materials condition and create new clothing items or new athletic shoes.
Host a Shoe Drive Fundraiser
When you host a sneaker drive fundraiser, you will bring up lots of money for your charitable cause. The shoes collected are usually sent abroad. They are shipped to countries in Africa And South America where there is too much need for inexpensive quality footwear. The received sneakers offer many careers for micro-business owners who resell them and make money for themselves and support their families. It’s an excellent method to help thousands of people become self-independent and escape from the poverty trap to a successful path.
You can find enthusiastic people who would love to participate in a shoe drive fundraiser in different running stores, farmers’ markets, and public schools.
There are many activities and events you can set to invite people in your community to participate. It Includes setting up fun and epic mud run race, Eco-friendly costume contest, paint run, hosting a community meal, setting up a Walkathon or 5K marathon (You can add a twist to your 5K marathon or walkathon by incorporating some fun obstacles), host an obstacle course or mud run.
Benefits of Hosting a Running Shoe Drive Fundraiser
There are some great advantages of hosting a sneaker drive fundraiser, including:
- Running shoe drive fundraisers provide an excellent method to maximize needed funds.
- It is suitable for your supporters and participants because it’s for free. There is nothing to sell and nothing to buy.
- It is excellent for the entire world since unwanted footwear is recycled and reused rather than tossed in the trash.
- It offers a source of quality shoes in countries with a great need.
- It helps poor people begin and develop micro-enterprises and make a profit.
Sell your Used Running Shoes to Secondhand Stores
You might find you’ve outgrown a pair of running shoes, or they went out of style. Instead of throwing them out, you may want to offer them to a second-hand store. There are a lot of stores (whether online or offline) to sell used shoes.
There are a lot of creative methods to repurpose your old, used running sneakers. Some use them as plant potters, fill the shoes with soil to grow some herbs. Others use them as part of a costume for a party. Others nail them to a tree, fill them with seeds, and use them as a bird feeder.
Donate Your Shoes to Someone in Need
There are a lot of people all over the world who are moving around without proper footwear. Donating your soles can help reduce this issue by providing shoes to the less fortunate people. Based on their stock levels and their condition, your local charity shops might accept them.
Some organizations deal with suppliers to deliver gently used (NOT worn out) running shoes to the sellers, who can then offer these to locals for affordable prices, providing protective shoes to more impoverished populations. For example, one World Running is a nonprofit organization that collects gently-used and Not worn-out running shoes then distributes them to runners in the weak areas in the U.S as well as in Africa.
Other organizations accept and collect used running sneakers such as Share Your Soles, Shoe4Africa, and Give Your Sole.
Revamp or Repair Them
Just because running footwear is quite torn doesn’t mean you should leave it useless. Rather than tossing them away, Think about repairing your running shoes. Many simple and easy repair kits are available on the market that can help you fix worn soles, broken heels, or even widen the size.
Keep The Laces & Insoles
If you decide to get rid of your shoes and send them to a landfill, Remove the laces and insoles and keep them. You can use them with another pair of running shoes or make them into keychains or bib holders. You can also save the insoles (if they are removable and in good condition) as a standby for your new running shoes.
If The Midsole is damaged, Throw Them Into Trash
One of the moments you need to throw running shoes out and never use them again is to have a damaged midsole. The damage here means that the little air bubbles in the foam are ruptured, and they drop off their balance. Also, the damage may be asymmetrical since the material wasn’t 100% uniform to start with (they may look the same, but they most likely aren’t). Finally, it means that you subject your knees and joints to potential asymmetrical loads during every step you take on damaged shoes, which might lead to injuries.