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How long should I expect trail running shoes to last?

I bought the women's Salomon Supercross shoes in October, they were my first 'real' trail running shoes. I'm not a super crusher out there doing ultras. I do short runs (3-5 mile) runs a couple times a week and they've become my preferred easy hiking shoes. They've been on a week long Zion trip and a 3-week Chile trip (where I wore them about half the time). 

They're absolutely destroyed.  The fabric on where the 'body' of the shoe meets the toe box has separated, the liner in the heel looks worse than a toddler's beloved blanket - just absolutely shredded, I replaced the insoles with ones from SuperFeet like 6 weeks ago because of lower back pain which I assumed was from being upright in them for so long.

I feel like they should have held up better, I don't think I've been that hard on them. I expected them to last about a year but we're at the half way mark and they're falling apart. But I'm not sure if I have unrealistic expectations. Historically I feel like my regular sneakers/running shoes have lasted 18-24 months. 

I'm not looking them to return them or get a refund or anything, I respect REI way too much to abuse their return policy with 6mo old shredded running shoes. 

I just want to know what I should expect from the next pair I buy. 

4 Replies

@CStone Thanks for reaching out!

Typically, running shoes (trail and road) should be expected to last between 300-500 miles, depending on many variables. We encourage you to check out the Expert Advice article on When to Replace Your Running Shoes. It has a lot of really good information about what to expect out of your shoes.

In addition to the information in that article, we recommend speaking with a footwear expert about proper fit. Sometimes, but not always, a running shoe can break down faster due to fit issues. If you'd like to set up a free virtual outfitting appointment to talk through shoe fit and features, you can set one up with our virtual outfitting tool

Hopefully this helps, thanks!

At REI, we believe time outside is fundamental to a life well lived.

I agree with not expecting more than 500 miles.  I've actually tracked this, but also pay attention to aches and pains.  I can feel it in my knees when shoes are going bad.  If the tread is good and they're pretty clean, I've extended a bit with insoles, but generally the shoe will be getting a bit stretched out by then so they get recycled for yard work.

One thing I can recommend is having a few pairs handy.  This gives the shoes time to "fluff" back up and dry out between runs.  I usually have three pairs going and rotate them.  Sometimes an older pair is good for a 3-5 mile run or one pair is ok for trail, but terrible for a road run and then I can keep another newer pair going longer by using them for my long distance runs (>10 miles) and then these become my shorter run shoe.

I wish shoes weren't so expensive, but your joints and bones need to last a long time, so it's worth it to switch them out more often.

@taskmaster wrote:


I wish shoes weren't so expensive, but your joints and bones need to last a long time, so it's worth it to switch them out more often.

Keep in mind too that the cushioning material in running shoes and boots hardens with time. I also have several shoes/boots that I rotate based on the specific hike and current conditions. Some of this footwear lasts several years. When I replace it with a new but identical model, the increased cushioning compared to what it replaces is quite evident.


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@Wanderer good point!  The feel of the cushion in a new pair of boots can't be beat!!!  Your whole body says Ahhhh!!!