Sock It To Me

I hate it when a sock starts to bunch up in the bottom of my shoe during a run—something that happens when it gets old and loses its elasticity. If I’m out for a short run, I won’t stop to fix it. For anything longer than 4 miles, a wrinkly sock puts you at risk of getting a nasty blister, which means it’s best to pull over and straighten things out. But what happens to that sock when you get home?

After a run, I typically strip down and toss my clothes—offending sock and all—into the hamper. Everything gets washed later and that wimpy foot hugger ends up back in the sock bin. Since a lot of my socks look alike (I try to buy them when stores have two-for-one deals), I can’t pick out the failure just by looking at it and it manages to stay in rotation for several more weeks.

This little game of sock roulette could easily be avoided if I simply threw the worn out pair into a garbage can instead of a laundry basket, but that just seems wasteful to me. Like the five pairs of past-their-prime running shoes snoozing under my couch, I want to use those old socks for lighter activities (walking the dog comes to mind), but when they’re out of sight, they’re out of mind too.

What do you do with your old socks? How many pairs of retired running shoes do you have lying around?