The Best Way to Dry Wet Running Shoes

How to dry sneakers running shoes

Over the years I’ve come to realize that if the weather report says “chance of showers”, chances are those showers are going to find me when I’m running. If anyone knows how to dry wet running shoes it’s me.

Not surprisingly, a couple of weeks ago while on our 10 mile training run, Erin and I got caught in the rain. Actually, that’s an understatement. It started as a sprinkle––which actually felt quite nice after 45 minutes of running––but that sprinkle gradually turned into a shower, and then a steady rain, and before we knew it we were running in the middle of a torrential downpour. Thankfully it didn’t last long––just long enough to soak us head to toe and make those 5 miles back extremely squishy and feel twice as long.

Now, when it comes to newspapers my husband knows I usually prefer the digital version but the paper kind is actually quite handy when you get stuck running in the rain. I learned this trick from my cross-country coach way back in high school and shared it with dozens of friends over the years. After letting Erin in on this little secret a couple of weeks ago I realized this might be the single most helpful yet unknown tip for all of you runners.

To dry wet running shoes, simply yank out the insoles, crumple up a few sheets of your daily news and stuff away. You’ll be shocked at the amount of water just a couple of sheets of paper in each shoe will pull out. If your shoes are really soaked, swapping out the paper after several hours and putting them in the sun will speed the drying process along. Obviously, if you’re in a super rush to get those shoes back on your feet the dryer will do in a pinch if you can tolerate the noise, but if you have the time they should be good to go in less than a day or so with just a little newspaper.

Be sure to to hang on to a section or two of the Sunday paper this weekend for the next time you get caught in the rain!

Did you know about the newspaper trick? How do you typically dry your running shoes when you get caught in the rain?

23 Comments on The Best Way to Dry Wet Running Shoes

  1. Daniel
    October 2, 2016 at 8:19 am (3 weeks ago)

    My shoes are soaked from a race on a 3.1 mile slip n’ slide. Going to give this a try since I need them for practice tomorrow.

  2. JR
    August 5, 2016 at 5:21 am (3 months ago)

    It’s rainy season where I live right now and this tip is super helpful! Thanks!

  3. Mary Elizabeth Blaney
    July 23, 2016 at 9:07 am (3 months ago)


    that was so helpful.

  4. Mary Elizabeth Blaney
    July 23, 2016 at 9:06 am (3 months ago)

    Thank you that was so helpful.

  5. Jaisinh
    June 29, 2016 at 1:42 pm (4 months ago)

    How come I am not using this trick?
    I am dumb

  6. Kendal
    June 16, 2016 at 1:27 pm (4 months ago)

    The best way is to have sex

  7. amayrene
    June 9, 2016 at 9:58 pm (5 months ago)

    We did this in my family since the 1960s that I remember.

  8. Francesca
    June 3, 2014 at 8:59 pm (2 years ago)

    I feel dumb for not knowing this… thanks for enlightening me :)

    • Caia Albain
      September 2, 2015 at 11:56 am (1 year ago)

      The ink will not bleed and if it does, it will be on the inside of the shoe.

  9. Francesca
    May 12, 2014 at 9:22 am (2 years ago)

    Really? Hey, Thanks! This will come to good use during marathon training :)

  10. Jen@HealthyFoodandFamily
    May 9, 2014 at 11:06 am (2 years ago)

    Good to know! I did not know this trick and it will come in handy when my kids come inside with their muddy/wet shoes :)

  11. Carly @ Fine Fit Day
    May 8, 2014 at 9:17 pm (2 years ago)

    I did know this tip, but I *never* seem to have newspaper handy when my sneaks get soaked!

  12. Hilary
    May 7, 2014 at 8:07 pm (2 years ago)

    Haha my dad taught me this trick back when I used to go to camp and it always seemed to rain at least one day! It is a life saver!

  13. Helen
    May 7, 2014 at 7:33 pm (2 years ago)

    Great advice, Elle. Thank you for sharing. I didn’t know about the newspaper trick before. When I ran the 10 mile two weeks ago, I was afraid it was going to rain and I didn’t know how to dry off my shoes after if it had rained.

  14. Ashley @ A Lady Goes West
    May 7, 2014 at 5:24 pm (2 years ago)

    I did know this trick and have used it before. It’s not that easy to find newspapers laying around anymore these days though. :)

  15. Annika
    May 7, 2014 at 6:51 am (2 years ago)

    Thank you for sharing this – it will be EXTREMELY helpful in rainy London :)


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