Runners are notorious for running no matter what the weather is. You see runners outside, pounding the pavement, even when the rain is pouring down. While you might feel like a complete Bad A**, it’s rough on your shoes. Your run-in shoes can stretch out while wet, stay wet for a long period of time or change sizes if you don’t dry them correctly. Here’s how to dry wet running shoes when you need it done quick!
How To Prevent Running Shoes From Getting Wet
First off, let’s talk about preventing your running shoes from getting wet. If you can avoid the soggy situation, why not do what you can in the first place? I don’t actively seek training runs in the rain, but sometimes the situations are just unavoidable. When you’ve signed up for a race, and you’ve invested the money, it’s too late to cancel and you just have to prepare for the best possible outcome – even with a rainy forecast.
Fortunately, runners are resilient and so are our shoes! Running in wet shoes can cause more friction issues, which can lead to blisters. Also, your foot has less stability inside of the shoe. That can lead to irritation in your joint and possible injury.
Here’s How To Prevent Running Shoes From Getting Wet:
- Apply Duct Tape to your running shoes: On the outer surface of your running shoes apply strips of Duct Tape. This will act as a waterproof layer. First, put on your shoes and tie your laces how you normally would. Then you can add the strips of tape along the top and back surfaces. I would avoid adding any tape on the bottom, because you want to keep the tread of your shoes. Road surfaces will be slick and you’ll need that tread.
- Wear plastic bags outside of your socks: This method is a little tricky. The idea is that you add an inner protective layer on the outside of your sock. Apply your Body Glide balm all over your feet to prevent blisters. Then add your socks. Next, put large plastic bags over your socks and put your shoes on last.
So if you know there’s a big possibility that you’ll be running in the rain, you’ll want to avoid wet running shoes as much as possible. If you are signed up to run a multi-day race challenge, like the Run Disney Dopey Challenge, you’ll want to pack multiple pairs of shoes.
Running shoes, even without getting wet, need time to return to rest. As you run, the insole of the shoe takes a beating. That constant compression with each step changes the shape and offers less support over time. Let your shoes rest with a day in-between your runs so their structure returns.
This is even more important if you’re looking to dry wet running shoes. By packing multiple pairs of shoes, you can alternate pairs and allow ample time for the shoes to recover. The last thing you want to do is put your feet into Day 2 of wet shoes. So it pays to be prepared!
How To Dry Wet Running Shoes
Chances are, if you found this article, you already have a pair of wet running shoes lying around. You can easily dry them with several methods, but it’ll take a few hours or overnight. If you’re really in a pickle, and need it done quicker, you can use a hairdryer.
Is it OK to put your running shoes in the dryer?
Try to avoid putting your running shoes in the dryer. Even if you can’t tell right away, chances are that they’ll shrink somehow or change shape. That’ll lead to more friction problems and blisters. It’s also damaging to your dryer and the noise is unbearable. You should never tumble dry running shoes.
Can You Put Your Running Shoes In The Microwave?
Absolutely NOT. You can melt certain parts of the shoes. Sometimes the ends of the laces are covered in metal parts too. It’s a fire hazard and there’s no way for the moisture to escape. You definitely want to avoid this urban myth – it’s bad news.
Here’s How To Dry Wet Running Shoes:
- Put newspaper in your shoes to help things absorb: First, remove the insole of your shoes. All you have to do is scrunch up newspaper and add them to the insides of your running shoes. Put as much in as possible! Replace the newspaper after 1-2 hours as needed. The hardest part is finding the newspaper to use, right? Ha!
- Find A Warm Spot With Circulation: If you have more time, set your shoes out to dry in a warm (but not hot) spot that has plenty of air circulation. You can even do this outside. Shoes start to melt at 106º though, so be careful that it isn’t too hot. Please don’t put your shoes directly over as vent either (that could be a fire hazard).
- Use A Hairdryer: Put some space between you and your shoes while holding the hairdryer. You want to avoid burning any skin or melting plastic pieces.
- Place In Front Of A High Speed Fan: Another FAST way to dry wet running shoes is to remove the insole and place them in front of a high speed fan. The air will flow through the shoes and to help dry the fabric.
How Often Should You Wash Your Shoes?
This is something that is often forgotten about. You can and should occasionally wash your running shoes. If you do trail running and they’re muddy or you’ve got a stinky foot issue, you’ll want to wash your running shoes. Depending on how often you wear them, you should wash your running shoes about every two weeks. While I do think this is even more important for trail running (think of tick removal), it’s good practice for every runner.