Where to Find Cheap Running Shoes: Tips, Brands & Timing Your Purchase
Running on a budget? If you are on a tight budget and love to run, you might be wondering if you can still participate in the sport. The answer is a resounding yes.
If you are a runner, you know that the word “cheap” is relative. With running shoe prices averaging somewhere between $115 – $120, it is obvious that some shoes are quite expensive.
For purposes of this article, “cheap shoes” will be anything selling for under $100.
How to Choose the Right Running Shoes for You
Runners are typically looking to check certain boxes when purchasing running shoes.
- Structural Needs: Do you need motion control? Cushion?
- What Type of Runner are You? Do you run trails? Mostly road? What type of mileage do you run?
- Heel Height: What kind of drop do you prefer?
- Fit: Let’s face it, some shoes fit you differently than others.
- Style: While some people ignore this, for others the pretty factor is essential.
Shoes Priced Under $100
Did you know that some shoes are consistently priced under $100? The expert runners at RunnerClick had the opportunity to rank some awesome shoes that can be had at exceptional prices. Check out the 7 Best Cheap Running Shoes Buying Guide.
The top-ranked shoe is the Brooks Revel. Built to last, high on durability but low on price, this shoe is great for a neutral runner who is serious about performance but can live without the fancy bells and whistles of some of the higher-priced counterparts.
Although I am a Brooks girl, Asics offers another great shoe at a fantastic price. The Gel-Venture is another neutral shoe. So if you are in need of motion control, this may not work for you.
If you need a stability trainer, the Asics Gel Pulse is an option for you! The one thing to note is it may not be quite as durable as a more expensive shoe.
Cheap Shoe Hunt
When I asked athletes to weigh in on their favorite way to save money on shoes, the most popular answer is to purchase your shoes when the company has flipped to the next generation.
For example, as a runner who has worn the Brooks Ravenna for years, I was always watching the Brooks site. As soon as they upgraded the Ravenna 9 to the 10, I started hunting for a discount price on the 9. Buying a shoe in “last year’s model” can save a considerable amount of money.
Running Coach, Evan Wood, echoes this strategy stating;
“Having worked in a run specialty store, I can share that the best time to get a great deal on any “high-end” running shoe is immediately after a new version comes out. Many stores will no longer display the outdated model on the sales floor because it’s neither current nor so old that it’s on a clearance table. Usually, they are kept in the stock room and can be anywhere from 20-40% off. Those who know this tend to snatch them up quickly, so I recommend calling your local store every once in a while to ask if they know when a new model will hit their shelves.”
The one thing of which you should be aware if you are purchasing shoes in a previous year’s model is that you should not store shoes for too long. Believe it or not, shoes have a shelf life. You should not store a pair of shoes for longer than 48 months as they do start to degrade.
Runner Kelly Rogers, Sub-30 club, has a great way to get her shoes cheaper. Rogers searched eBay for shoes that someone has bought, worn to try out, then returned to the vendor.
Since most sellers post multiple pictures of each item, you can tell that the shoes have very little tread pattern wear. Another website for selling gently used apparel such as shoes include ThredUP.
Also, don’t neglect Facebook Marketplace where you may stumble across a diamond in the rough, or Zappos which may have scattered discounts or sales.
Finding last year’s models of shoes on sale for cheap may seem like a scavenger hunt but it really isn’t. You can just search the particular shoe you are looking for by googling the specific model that is not technically outdated. Discount websites offer these shoes at a lower price.
Making Shoes Last
Lastly, you should do your best to make your shoes last.
You can do that by following these few steps:
- Always untie your shoes before removing them.
- Rotate your pairs of shoes so you are not wearing the same pair two (or more) days in a row.
- Never put your shoes in a dryer.
- Clean shoes with a gentle detergent and avoid the washing machine if possible.
Let’s face it. Running shoes are not inexpensive. Saving money is a wise choice when you can!
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