Runners Need are teaming up with the Royal Parks Half Marathon to help you become a greener runner

Recycle my run initiative at Royal Parks

With the boom of plogging and as more and more races go plastic-free, this year, the environmental impact of running seems to be under the spotlight in a way they've never been before. Another brand encouraging runners to do their bit is Runners Need, who are celebrating the return of their successful Recycle My Run initiative at the Royal Parks Half Marathon 2018.

With a collection point in the race village, runners who are taking part in the Royal Parks Half Marathon on 14 October are being encouraged to donate an old pair of trainers at the event, in return for a £20 voucher to spend on new shoes in store.

Related: 6 environmental running brands you might not have heard of 

According to data from Runners Need, the average runner buys over 20kgs of clothing per year, and in the UK alone, 300 million pairs of running shoes are thrown away annually. Partnering with clothing and shoe recyclers SOEX, Runners Need collect old running shoes, allowing them to be reused where possible around the world, or when they become unwearable, broken down into 80 different components with every single part being recycled. These recycled elements then go on to be included in everything from new trainers, to athletics tracks.

runners need recycle my run

The Recycle My Run initiative has been running for a number of years and is not restricted to just Royal Park Half Marathon runners. As well as at the race village, from 14 October runners can drop old shoes off in exchange for a £20 voucher in one of their 38 stores nationwide. The voucher can be spent on new running shoes online and instore, with terms and conditions applying.

How to tell when your shoes need replacing

Whilst the experts at Runners Need recommend changing your shoes every 500 miles, we’re not sure you should always wait that long. As a rule of thumb, once you’ve been running in a pair of shoes for six months, or clocked up around 300 miles (whichever comes first), you should think about upgrading your running shoes.

Over time, the cushioning in running shoes provided by the foam in the sole loses its springiness and becomes less responsive. Running in old trainers is not only compromising your performance, but its putting you more at risk of injury. For more information on the basics of choosing the right running shoe for you, have a read of our buying guide. 

Finally, if you’re in need of some inspiration when it comes to spending your voucher, check out the best running shoes for both men and women in our 2018 shoe guide here.