Running is a great way to increase serotonin levels in your body, reduce stress levels and stay fit. If you’re fairly active, you know that finding the right running shoes for your workout can be tough. Depending on the support you need and comfort you desire, that will also affect the brands you buy.
Whether it’s Nike, Adidas, New Balance or Under Armour, you need something to give you the performance you need to maximize your workouts. It might be cold out, but that doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice your routine. If you’re running a marathon or on a treadmill at the gym, there are many different pairs you can use for different purposes. You can also get all-weather shoes for autumn and winter seasons. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the best shoes for a number of different activities.
Running Shoes to Consider Buying
Here we go! The shoes we’re about to mention can be used for a variety of purposes. Remember to do your research and try on a bunch of pairs before you buy a set online.
1. Editor's Pick: Nike ZoomX Vaporfly NEXT%
- Marathon shoe
- VaporWave technology
- Carbon-fibre plate to reduce energy loss
With more cushioning under your foot and more reduced weight up top, the Nike ZoomX Vaporfly NEXT% delivers on the right blend of energy return and comfort. It’s got the patented ZoomX foam and a carbon-fibre plate to give you the right balance. It also has VaporWeave mesh and a unique-lacing design so your feet don't sweat excessively while you work out. Nike has also updated the laces loop through lightweight side sashes to eliminate the need for an arch band, giving you more breathability. The redesign reduces shoe weight and relieves pressure on the top of your tendons. This is a great shoe for marathon runners. No, they aren’t the prettiest shoe but they can definitely perform.
2. ASICS Men's Gel Nimbus 21
- FlyteFoam® propel technology
- AHAR® outsole
- Rearfoot and Forefoot GEL® Technology cushioning system
Run further than you ever thought possible in the ASICS Men's Gel Nimbus 21s. This shoe combines its patented Flyte Foam and gel technologies for a smooth run every time. If you’re a long-distance runner, this is a great shoe for you, especially if you’re running on concrete often. The Gel-Nimbus 21 was designed for comfortable, long-distance runs and not explosive sprints. All the extra cushioning does make the shoe heavier than others but if you’re running long distances, this is something to be expected.
3. Adidas Ultraboost 19 Shoes
- 11 ounces
- Midsole drop: 10 mm (heel: 29 mm/forefoot: 19 mm)
- Dual-density Boost cushioning under arch
These shoes are great trainers for the gym so if you go often, consider this pair. They are lightweight and are great for running as well; Adidas added 20% more of its Boost technology into the midsole of the shoe, which made it firmer and bouncier. The torsion system built into the sole also adds some snap to the heel-to-toe transition and the knit upper is built with motion-weave technology for adaptive stretch and support. It's a solid shoe that is built to last.
4. New Balance FuelCell Rebel
- 2-part high-rebound FuelCell midsole
- Trace fiber
- Transcluent rubber outsole
Maintain new paces in your tempo run with the New Balance FuelCell Rebel. This lightweight running shoe was engineered to include two-tuned components and has a high-rebound FuelCell foam. They’re great for walking and jogging; they're also good if you’re doing plyometrics, jumping, quick-feet drills, traditional lifting and resistance training. For the every day runner, this is a great shoe to wear.
5. Nike Zoom Pegasus Turbo 2 SE
- Weight: 220 grams
- Drop: 10mm
- Soft foam for tempo runs
As one of the more successful upgrades from the original Zoom Pegasus Turbo, its upper mesh-fabric has been updated to be even lighter. The foam base has also been updated without compromising on the metrics of this great all-rounder. It’s comfortable for longer runs and it has great traction on concrete and other hard surfaces. This is definitely a shoe that you should look at for the gym and running.
6. Saucony Type A9
- Rubber soles
- Lightweight flex film
- Not water resistant
For runners looking for a lightweight, flexible shoe, the Saucony Type A9 could be a marriage made in heaven. It doesn’t have the most cushioning but if you aren’t looking for a ton of padding for your feet, it could be a good option for you. They aren’t the best for beginners but for a seasoned runner, these shoes have a lot of benefits. You’re likely to get a lot of feedback depending on the surface but if you want something that is super lightweight and direct, this is the shoe for you.
7. Reebok Forever Floatride Energy
- Full carbon rubber outsole
- Locked-in heel stability
- Offers neutral foot motion
These running shoes have a Floatride Energy Foam midsole for lightweight responsive cushioning and its upper mesh provides support and ventilation so you can have breathable shoes. Designed for the everyday runner, it’s also great for the gym when you’re running on a treadmill and has the versatility to handle other activities as well.
8. ON Cloudswift
- Breathable textile lining for comfort
- Helion super foam
- CloudTec rubber outsole
This shoe is built to handle the hardest of surfaces, including concrete and cobbled roads. The Cloudswift is recommended for people who don't like overly soft, super-cushioned runs; these shoes can straighten out uneven running surfaces like no other. That said, due to the stiffer sole and the soft upper frame, it can be difficult sometimes to find the perfect hold for runners with high bridges. Still, it’s relatively solid if you’re an outdoor runner or using it to work out at the gym.
9. HOKA ONE ONE Mens Clifton 6 Running Shoe
- Full compression EVA midsole
- Full ground contact design
- Strategic high-abrasion rubber zones
Its combination of speed, light cushioning, lateral stability and comfort make the Hoka One’s a one-of-a-kind shoe. It delivers a smoother ride with a more comfortable fit and includes an embroidered design that improves lockdown without extra weight. If you can’t afford to have different shoes for different sessions and are looking for the best bang for your buck in one pair, this is enough of a multitasker to be a strong contender for your cash.
How to Pick the Best Running Shoe?
You should always factor in your biomechanics, your weight, the shape of your feet (arch or no arch) and the surface you’re running on. Just because they work for someone else, doesn’t mean that they will work for you. When buying, always consider:
- Weight: The longer the distance, the more cushioning you need. If you’re a heavier set individual, it’s also important to consider a shoe with cushioning to withstand the pressure that comes from pounding the pavement. Lighter shoes often have less cushioning, which won’t benefit you in the long run.
- Drop: This method measures how much your toes drop below your heel. A higher drop can lead to more heel striking. Most shoes have a drop between 8mm and 12mm some shoes have less than 6mm and a few designs have zero drop.
- Cushioning: The purpose of buying a shoe with cushioning is all about impact absorption. If you pound the pavement hard, then you need the absorption to protect your feet. If not, you could encounter foot problems over time.
- Flexibility: This depends on how much the shoe bends and measures the force required to achieve this indicates how pliable the shoe is.
Running Shoe FAQs
How Do I Pick the Best Running Shoe
Fit is the most important factor when picking a shoe. Your feet can tend to spread as you run and to accommodate that, there should be roughly one thumb width between the end of your foot and at the end of the shoe. It should wrap comfortably around your feet and depending on the shape of your foot —narrow or wide — all of these factors go into choosing the right shoe.
How Often Should You Replace Running Shoes?
You should replace your running shoes every six months if you run more than 30 km per week. It’s always important to check the bottom of the shoe to see how it has worn down over time. If you land hard on your heels with each stride, you're going to wear through shoes more quickly than more efficient runners.
Should a Running Shoe Be Loose or Tight?
Running shoes that are too tight lead to blisters and toe pain, while shoes that are too loose cause your foot to slip around leading to ankle or knee injuries. Understanding where your shoe needs to have room and where it should be snug will help you get the best fit for your run.
How Do I Know if I Need Neutral or Stability Running Shoes?
Take a look at the bottom of your running shoe. The wear on your shoe will likely reveal your foot type. If your shoe shows even wear, you have a neutral arch and are a normal pronator. If the inner soles of your shoes are usually worn down, you are an overpronator and probably have a low arch.
Start Running Shoe Shopping Today!
Running shoes make for a great gift idea. If your partner has been hinting at that special pair of running shoes this holiday season, there are a number of deals you can take advantage of. If it's been running through your mind for the last several weeks, check out our latest deals on RedFlagDeals.com. If you're looking to stay active and find a shoe that will perform outdoors or in the gym, check out the forum sidebar to see some of the discussions from the running and athletic community.
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