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Elliptical miles on shoes?
JeannieY posted:
Hi Rich,

The other day at the gym I ended up using the elliptical machine because all the treadmills were being used. Since I keep a good record of the miles that I put on my running shoes (I usually stop using them once they've reached 350-400 miles), I was wondering if I should add the miles from the elliptical machine too. I plan to use it more often so I can vary my cardio more, but just wonder about this.

Rich Weil, MEd, CDE responded:
Hi Jeannie,

Certainly the heel won't wear out on the elliptical because there's no heel strike. If you don't land on your heel when you run then no problem with heel wear. Although there's no pounding on the elliptical, the mid- and forefoot of the shoe will eventually wear down because of the repeated compression of the shoe as you plant your foot down to push off. They won't wear out as quickly as with running (if you're a forefoot or toe-strike runner), but over time they will. I suggest that once you notice a little less comfort as you push off on the elliptical that you take the shoes to the store and try on new ones and see how they feel compared to the old. If you notice the shoe is more stable and the padding in the forefoot seems more supportive and comfortable, then you'll know it's time for new shoes.

One thing you might do is wear a cross-trainer on the elliptical since they tend to have more cushioning in the forefoot of the shoe. That will be more comfortable on your feet.

I hope that helps.