Runners often just cannot resist running, even in less than perfect conditions. While the workout may be exhilarating and refreshing, mud and rain can take a toll on your running shoes. In order to keep running shoes in ideal condition, there are some measures you can and should take. For example, every athlete needs to know how to dry running shoes without damaging them.
How To Wash and Dry Running Shoes
First, although I will admit to doing so without disastrous results, do not use a washing machine to clean your running shoes. This is stressful on the materials, so it is best to hand wash them with products that were designed specifically for shoes. A soft brush will work to remove stubborn mud and dirt that inevitably build up without damaging the shoes. Many people choose to use a toothbrush. Make sure to thoroughly rinse the shoes when done scrubbing. If the wet shoes sit with the detergent still absorbed into them, it could potentially prevent the shoes from springing back to their original shape.
After washing or running in wet conditions, certain drying methods and techniques can ensure the longevity of your running shoes. Never under any circumstance dry them in a clothes dryer with any amount of heat. The heat settings tend to be far too hot, and the tumbling has both the potential to distort the shape and to damage the tub of the dryer. Along the same lines, do not put the shoes too close to any heat source in an effort to accelerate the time it will take for them to dry. It is much better for the shoes to allow them to dry at a slower pace. The best method is to place them outside in the sun, assuming the rain has passed. This also helps the smell to dissipate. If the temperature outside is exceptionally warm, bring the wet running shoes back inside after they are about 75% dry. This will prevent them from becoming over-dried and crispy feeling. Stuffing paper in your running shoes while they dry can help preserve their form.
Running Shoe Care Products
While these are beneficial measurements to take after running in the rain, there are products that are ideal for use before such an event. One popular product is the 10 Seconds Shoe Care Recovery Kit. This product protects, disinfects, and deodorizes your running shoes as quickly as possible. The kit includes the disinfectant and deodorizer as well as a cleanser that is specifically made for shoes, but it also includes a water repellant that can prevent the damage that comes from running in the rain. Not only will it repel the water. It will repel the snow, dirt, and ice making it great for running in any weather.
If your running shoes were not prepped before the run or the light rain turned into an all-out downpour, Stuffitts Shoe Savers are an innovative product that can prevent damage and bring your shoes back to life more quickly than waiting for them to dry naturally. Stuffitts Shoe Savers are inserts that you put in after running to absorb odor and wetness that found its way inside the shoe. As they are made from all natural cedar, you do not have to worry about any hazardous chemicals that may wear away at the lining.