When should I replace my running shoes?

We here at Fleet Feet Baltimore replace our own shoes after about 325 miles. It's not unreasonable to expect a pair to last about 350-375 miles. If you average about 20-25 miles per week in your shoes, you would be postponing your purchase about a week to 10 days before reaching the 350-375 range. We don't feel it's worth chancing injury for such a small period of time! Bottom line is, listen to your body. If nothings changed with your running/walking routine, and all of a sudden, you feel pain in a running related area, it's time for new kicks!

Can I put my running shoes in the washing machine?

No way, Jose! Mom may have tossed our old canvas Converses in the washing machine but, today's running shoes are hi-tech devices. Machine washing will ruin the polymers that were used in the manufacture of them.  If you must clean them, use a commercial sneaker foam, and clean them according to the directions on the container.

Now that you've F.I.T. me in the correct shoe's, can I stop wearing my orthotics?

Orthotics are pieces of "external medication" that should never be omitted without the advice of your healthcare provider. At Fleet Feet, we took wearing your orthotics into consideration when we FIT you so, your shoes and orthotics compliment each other. If you've gotten orthotics since we FIT you, or had your prescription changed, come back to Fleet Feet so that we can re-fit you.  Be sure to bring your orthotics with you.

 Is sneaker size and regular shoe size the same?

No, it's not. The device we use to measure your foot size here at Fleet Feet is calibrated for athletic shoes. That calibration is a different scale than for regular shoes. It's like the fahrenheit  and celsius scales on a thermometer - two different numerical readings for the same temperature. On average, depending on the manufacturer, your running shoes should be a minimum of a half to full size larger than your regular street shoes. You want to be sure that you have a thumbs width between your longest toe and the front of the shoe.

 How do I care for my technical running apparel?

Washing is easy when it comes to technical apparel. Wash in cold water, gentle cycle using detergent free of fabric softener, and hang to dry. Never use bleach, even for socks! Technical fabrics are designed to to repel moisture and will be almost dry when you remove them from the machine.  For socks, you can toss them on low in the dryer but, do not throw in a "Bounce towel" as it will inhibit the wicking properties of the fabric. We have some great Sport Wash detergents that work really well in keeping hi tech apparel fresh smelling and clean looking.


Can I layer a piece of cotton apparel with my tech apparel?

We maintain that "cotton is rotten" 100% of the time. Cotton absorbs moisture like a blotter and it will cancel out the wicking characteristics of your tech apparel. It will hold the moisture and keep it close to your body. In the winter that means you'll lose heat and get cold fast.  Layer using another piece(s) of non cotton, technical apparel only.

Learn more about what to wear when running.

My Superfeet or orthotics squeak in my shoes. Is there anything I can do to quiet them down?

That's a common occurrence that's easy to fix. All you have to do is remove the insole or orthotic, and sprinkle a liberal amount of talcum powder into the shoe and replace the insert. If that doesn't do the trick, apply some petroleum jelly along the outside edge of the insert. Either of these remedies should work!
I’m a walker. Is it OK to wear a running shoe?

Yes. Running shoes offer a wider variety of cushioning and support features than can be found in most walking shoes. In fact, “walking shoes” are really running shoes with a heavier, non-mesh upper. Because of the characteristic of the upper on a walking shoe, they are heavier and not as breathable. While some walkers do well with a walking shoe, most walkers are successful with running shoes at distances ranging from a couple of miles to the marathon. 

I've heard about rotating shoes. Does it make sense?

If you run 20 miles per week or more, yes, rotating shoes makes sense. We recommend that if you rotate shoes, you rotate two different models of the same type. For example, if you wear a stability shoe, you should wear two different models of stability shoes. That strategy will stress the muscles and tendons in your feet differently which, is a good thing.

Furthermore, we all hate the day when the manufacturer changes our shoe. By choosing two different shoes, the likelihood of both your shoes changing the same month is rare. If, heaven forbid, your shoe changes in such a way that you no longer like it, you have your "other" shoe to fall back on until you find a replacement for the newer model you no longer like. If you rotated two shoes of the same type, you're at square one looking for a new shoe! YIKES!

Finally, when you rotate shoes, it extends the life of each shoe which means you'll get more wear for your money.

I was running in the rain and my shoes got drenched. How do I dry them?

That happens quite often and the solution is easy. When your shoes get wet, remove the insoles (or orthotics if you wear them) and loosen the laces. Pull the tongue of the shoe forward so that air can easily circulate throughout the shoe. Then, place the shoe in a dry place. Never apply artificial heat to your shoes to dry them such as from a blow dryers, base board heaters, radiators etc., as they will ruin your shoes. If they are extremely wet, you can insert some dry newspaper into them for several minutes and the paper will blot some of the moisture from your shoes. Remove the paper and then dry as stated originally. Congratulate yourself! Wet shoes are a badge of honor. You were out running when most wouldn't even venture outdoors! A second pair to rotate, will assure you that you have a dry pair ready for your next run.

My heel slips slightly in my shoe. Is there anything I can do to correct that?

The video below will show you how to tie a "heel lock" that will eliminate heel slipping.

For more information, stop by our store to talk with one of our friendly and knowledgable sales people or check out our website for more information!

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