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Follow us on Pinterest and discover more ways to organize your running shoes

Sometimes our shoe collection gets out of control. This is especially true when you have specific shoes for specific activities, like wearing your running shoes only when you run. There have been a few times where we couldn’t find the pair we needed. Add in your spouse, maybe kids, or roommates and the shoe pile can grow on its own! We started thinking about ways to organize our shoes and want to share what we’ve discovered with you. We built a Pinterest board with many clever, sleek, and good-looking ideas! Read about four of our favorites below. Follow 3M Half Marathon on Pinterest and decide for yourself when you visit our “Organize Your Running Shoes” board.

Under the bed

Various plastic containers store pairs of shoes under a bed as an example of different ways to organize your running shoes. Click on the image's link to visit 3M Half Marathon's Pinterest page for more ideas.

Unless you already have drawers under your bed, chances are you have unused space. Put this location to work! We pinned several ideas for different ways to organize your running shoes under your bed. Keep your drawer on wheels so it’s easier to pull out and push back in. This is a great option if your shoes are strewn about all over the bedroom.

On the wall

5 pair of running shoes are tucked into a hand-built wooden rack that hangs from the wall. It's an example of different ways to organize your running shoes. Click on the image's link to visit 3M Half Marathon's Pinterest page for more ideas.

Use the vertical space of your walls in your garage, entrance area, or laundry room. Just like the drawer under your bed option, this is a great way to save space. It gets shoes off the ground and prevents them from becoming a tripping hazard. Building a rack or two in your garage is your best bet if your running shoes need to dry off and air out.

In your closet

Stacks of space-saving plastic containers are filled with shoes. It's an example of different ways to organize your running shoes. Click on the image's link to visit 3M Half Marathon's Pinterest page for more ideas.

Do you have a hill of shoes on your closet floor? One of our Pins provides 20 different shoe storage ideas for your closet. Organize your running shoes and get them off the ground. The hang-down design ensures that you can always find the left and right shoes when you need them. This tactic is ideal if you live in an apartment.

DIY rack

Two different DIY racks that provide examples of different ways to organize your running shoes. Click on the image's link to visit 3M Half Marathon's Pinterest page for more ideas.

This might be our favorite because there are so many different ways that the rack can be customized! Let your imagination run wild, unless you buy a rack that comes with instructions. You can build it to your desired height, move it to where you want, and customize its additional functionality. Use the top spot for plants, put key hooks on the side, or add a corkboard so you can pin photos. So many ideas! 

There are so many different ways to organize your running shoes. Our “Organize Your Running Shoes” Pinterest board has something for everyone. We know you’ll find something that fits your just as well as your running shoes! Is there a specific way you currently organize your running shoes? Let us know in the 3M Half Marathon Facebook Group or on Twitter.

You should only log running miles in your running shoes and here’s why

Picking the perfect running shoes can feel overwhelming. Once you find the ideal pair, it could be very tempting to wear them for walking as well. But are they suitable for walking? The short answer is no. It’s important to choose shoes that are made specifically for your primary activity. This means that you should wear your running shoes only when you’re out for a run. Their typical lifespan ranges between 300-500 miles. This advice applies to all runners, especially if you’re training for your first half marathon!

One of the things many people like about running is that it requires minimal equipment. Nevertheless, what you put on your feet is a critical piece of the puzzle. Whatever the cost, you want to extend their life for as long as possible. Here are some reasons why your running shoes should only be worn for running.

Prevent injury

Using running shoes for other activities, especially other sports, may result in an injury like shin splints. Choose the type of shoe that is specifically designed for the sport you are interested in. Keep running shoes just for running. This is true whether you are a beginner or you’re into marathon training. You want your pair to be accustomed to running only. Introducing other activities can make the shoe breakdown faster than desired. Pro tip: further prevent injury when you avoid these 5 training mistakes.

Less cushioning

Running shoes generally have less overall cushioning than walking shoes, especially in the heel. Even though running is a higher impact activity than walking, “your foot is on the ground longer when you walk so the cushion helps to offset that impact over time,” said Emily Splichal, MD, author of “Everyday Is Your Runway: A Shoe Lover’s Guide to Healthy Feet & Legs.” Less cushioning means it could wear out faster if used for more than just running.

Develop wear patterns

Your gait cycle and pronation type lead to the development of wear patterns on the bottom of your shoes. Because walking is biomechanically different from running, each activity will develop different wear patterns. For this reason, if you are wearing the same pair for both walking and running, this may result in multiple wear patterns that can aggravate gait problems. Pro tip: focusing on your stride, cadence, and body composition with these 7 tips can help with wear patterns too.

Save money

A quality pair of new running shoes can be expensive. If you’re committed to logging hundreds of miles you may need a new pair every couple months. Add the daily wear and tear for anything else and you’ll discover that you need to replace them more frequently. To avoid that, you should use a separate, less expensive pair of sneakers for everyday wear.

In conclusion, you should wear your running shoes only for running. Yes, even if they’re really comfortable and you feel fine when you walk in them. By doing this, you will protect what you have spent so much time looking for. You’ll extend their life and reduce the amount of money you spend.

Prevent shin splints and keep your training momentum going strong

Are you a beginner runner? Then, you might’ve heard about “shin splints.” But beginner runners aren’t alone in experiencing shin splints. Veteran runners get them too. However, all runners can agree they’d rather avoid them! Shin splints describe the pain in your shin that occurs from overuse. The shinbone is the large front bone that you can find in your lower leg. Shin splints arise when bone tissues, tendons, and muscles overwork. The good news is there are ways to cure and prevent it. Prevent shin splints with our 8 tips and keep your half marathon training on track. Pro tip: click on the image, download the PDF, and post it where it’ll remind you about these tips!

1. Stretch your calves

Image of an infographic breaking down 8 ways to cure and prevent pain from shin splints. 1. Stretch your calves before and after every run. 2. Focus on your form. Try landing in the middle of your foot on longs runs. 3. Include strength training. 4. Get the right shoes. Running in running shoes does make a difference! 5. Cross-train. Working muscles differently can strengthen them. 6. Rest. Give your body the opportunity to repair itself. 7 Train on softer surfaces like a treadmill or your local trail. 8. Gradually increase your mileage. Build your body up overtime to the desired mileage.Do you feel mild shin pain? If you are running, stop and do a quick calf stretch. This should relieve your pain. To prevent shin splints, you should make it a practice to stretch your calves after every workout session. Regularly doing this will help prevent injury to your calves as well. Pro tip: with your right foot, place your toes on top of a curb and your heel at the bottom. Lean forward or try to grab your toes. Do this for 10 seconds, then switch to your left.

2. Focus on form

One method you can try to prevent shin splints is to change your foot strike. Try avoiding toe running and heel striking on your long runs. On your next run, try to land in the middle of your foot. When you land on your heel, it can stress your heels. In the same way, when you land on your toes, calf muscles are impacted. Both of these methods can contribute to shin splints and other injuries. Pro tip: learn how your stride and cadence can impact your form.

3. Include strength training

If you get shin pain during half marathon training, it could be linked to weak anterior tibialis muscles. These muscles are located on the front side of your lower leg. They make your foot flexible at your ankle. Did you increase your distance too fast? This could be a cause of your pain. You increase the likelihood of injury if your body doesn’t possess the strength needed to run long distances. 

4. Get the right shoes

For some runners, shin splints can arise due to running in the wrong shoes. Make sure you choose shoes that are specific for runners and fit your running stride. Don’t run in shoes that are old or have more than 300 miles on them. You want your shoes to be snug, not too loose or too tight. Schedule an appointment with our friends at Fleet Feet Austin and get fitted for the right shoes!

5. Cross-train

Take a break from running and cross-train. These workouts will give your body a break from the strain of running and the impact on your shins. When you run, your body uses muscles in a specific, repetitive manner. Cross-training works those muscles differently and can strengthen them. Examples of workouts you can do include aqua jogging, cycling, yoga, and swimming. Learn more about cross-training and how it helps you avoid these 5 training mistakes. Pro tip: while you aren’t logging miles, you’re still working towards your ultimate goal!

6. Rest

Rest is absolutely vital. It provides your body with the opportunity to repair itself. If your training plan calls for a rest day, take it. Use your foam roller for 15-20 minutes if you get the itch to go for a run. If you’ve just started running, exercise once or twice a week. Increase the amount of exercise as you become more comfortable with the workouts or the distance you’re running. Give your body the rest it needs!

7. Train on softer surfaces

Some beginner runners get shin splints because they run on harder surfaces. Running on the roads isn’t the only way to accrue miles. Try running on softer surfaces. If you have access to a treadmill, try alternating your runs between the treadmill and the road. Are there trails near you? Get out on the trails! You’ll avoid the unforgiving concrete and all the traffic. Plus, trail running forces you to slow down, naturally causing you to change where your foot strikes. This breaks up the repetitive motions from road running. Pro tip: due to the constantly changing terrain, trail running can strengthen your lower body.

8. Gradually increase your mileage

Shin splints while training is common, especially if you have recently intensified your training routine. If you are a beginner, you should gradually increase your mileage during your training. Runners returning from injury should slowly increase their mileage. Increasing your mileage gradually is another way to strengthen your body over time and prepare it for the distance you want to run.

Nobody wants to experience shin splints, especially runners. It can derail your training and set your timeline back. The best approach is a proactive one. Properly utilize our 8 tips to prevent pain from shin splints and keep your training on track. Do you have a way to avoid shin splints? Let us know in the 3M Half Marathon Facebook Group or on Twitter.

These downhill running tips can save your legs

It’s no secret, running on hills is beneficial. You strengthen your lower body and your cardiovascular and respiratory systems. Over time, running gets easier, allowing you to push your body further. You think hill workouts and your mind immediately goes to the uphill climb. But don’t forget, coming back downhill is just as important. Incorporate these downhill running tips to improve your form, become a better runner, and save your legs. With a ~300 ft. elevation drop from start to finish, this advice will benefit you at 3M Half Marathon.

Lean forward from your hips

Gravity naturally pulls you downhill (thanks Sir Isaac Newton!). Lean slightly forward from your hips, not your shoulders, to help maintain control of your body as you descend. If it helps, you can lean your shoulders back slightly, but not too much. This combination might feel awkward during your first couple of runs. Maintaining your center of gravity when running downhill will help avoid injuries and give your body a chance to recover from running uphill. Pro tip: engage your abs and glutes to provide extra control.

Use your arms for balance, not power

When running downhill, you don’t need the forward-back arm movement to generate power. That’s mainly used when running on flat ground and uphill. Take the above advice and partner it with your arms. As you descend, find the arm placement that best helps you maintain your balance. Your arms will naturally move back-and-forth, that’s okay. But remember that specific movement needs to focus on balance, not power.

Shorten your stride

As mentioned above, coming downhill doesn’t require as much power as going uphill. You need to alter your stride just like you altered how you use your body. Don’t overstride, you’ll overextend your body which forces you to lose control. Shorten your stride and keep your feet underneath you. You’ll feel like you should fly down the hill, but maintaining a controlled descent will benefit you during and after the race or workout.

Focus downhill

Focus beyond your feet. Continue to pay attention to your surroundings and the terrain, but don’t look at your feet. Doing so will disrupt your center of gravity and throw your stride out of sync. Adjusting your stride going downhill is designed to prevent injuries, maintain control, and allow for recovery. Looking at your feet leans your shoulders forward and disrupts your center of gravity. Then gravity takes over and you begin running faster, overextending your stride as you descend. Focus on what’s downhill and trust that your lower body will take care of you.