Running is a workout you can do practically any day of the year if you’re not afraid of the elements. Even if the weather outside is a little too vicious, you still have the option of heading to the gym to clock in your miles, making it an easy go-to workout. Just like your muscles break down and tire out as you run, your shoes wear out as well. But unlike your muscles, your shoes can’t hit the snooze button and wake up refreshed the next day –they take a pounding on muddy terrain, gritty asphalt, and unforgiving concrete. That’s why it’s never a bad idea to invest in a new pair of running shoes.
Swimming through the sea of running shoes can be a daunting task that can take a big chunk of your precious time. You have to make sure the shoes support your heel, are wide enough for your feet, wick moisture away, and provide an exceptional amount of comfort to decrease the chances of injury on the track. Keeping in mind all the aspects that make up a reliable pair of running shoes, we compiled a list of footwear that will get the job done. Whether you’re training for your next marathon or trying to level up your PR, you’ll find a pair of shoes on this list that’s the optimal fit for your soles.
With comfort and style in mind, Asics created the Gel-Kenun running shoes with a sleek perforated design and a ‘Rearfoot Gel’ technology cushioning system that diminishes shock on impact. They’re also built with ‘Guidance Line’ midsole technology that improves your gait efficiency and ‘Ortholite Lasting,’ which is material that provides your underfoot with plush comfort along with strict moisture management and breathability. To reduce the potential for irritation and friction caused by traditional stitches and seams, Asics employed a seamless construction for a lifetime of smooth running.
Saucony Cohesion 10
If you’re looking for an everyday running shoe, the Saucony Cohesion 10 model provides fantastic cushioning to help you focused on your performance instead of your feet. These shoes are built with ‘Grid,’ the first sole-based stability and cushioning system providing your feet with comfort from every angle. They also have an injection molded EVA and a rubber sole for a reliable grip on the road. Saucony’s relentless work ethic and endless study of the biomechanics of top-tier athletes leads them to make some of the best running gear in the world, and that’s evident with the Cohesion 10.
Adidas Questar TND
For a more fashionable look, the Adidas Questar TND might suit you with its 3D color-shifting geometric effect on the upper mesh. Don’t count it out for functionally though because it’s built with dual-density ‘Cloudfoam’ for high-end cushioning, a rubber sole for stability, and a comfy textile lining. It also has an ‘Ortholite’ sock liner for ankle support and a snug fit when you take on more extreme routes to get your cardio up. The Questar TND shoes come in a variety of colorways.
Brooks Launch 4
If you’re hunting down a pair of springy shoes to go with your upbeat stride, the Brooks Launch 4 is exactly that. With ‘BioMoGo’ DNA midsole cushioning and blown rebounding rubber, you’ll have enough bounce in each step to get you past any finish line, rain or shine. These shoes also fit better than previous models thanks to an updated U-Groove design for a natural alignment of your heel. They also have a lightweight design with an air mesh upper for a breezy fit that won’t weigh your feet down.
Nike Air Max Fury
Built with a single-layer upper and a reliable ‘Max Air’ cushioning underfoot, these functional and stylish shoes can be used on the track, but still look fashionable enough for late night drinks. The ‘Flywire’ design works with the laces for ideal support while the partial internal bootie adapts to your unique stride. The Air Max Fury also provides you with an excellent grip while you put in road work thanks to its rubber outsole. These kicks come in three simple, clean colorways.
Meant for running on the road, the GT-1000 provides overpronation support for flat-footed runners. To give your hardworking feet the comfort they deserve, these kicks have a breathable fabric lining and removable ‘ComforDry’ foam insoles. They’re also equipped with ‘I.G.S.’ (Impact Guidance System) which works to increase the foot’s natural gait from each heel strike through toe-off. Couple that with the rear and forefoot gel system which reduces the shock of impact, and you’ll feel the extra energy when you run.
Under Armour Micro G Assert 7
Made to keep your feet in their natural stride, these shoes have strategically placed rubber traction to support high impact zones, increasing the durability of the shoes. For additional comfort and a custom fit, the Micro G Assert has a full-length EVA sock liner and tough leather overlays for greater stability to hug your midfoot. They also feature full-length ‘Micro G’ foam that has the power to provide you with explosive takeoffs right after every cushioned landing.
Mizuno Wave Catalyst 2
Quality footwear made in the USA, these responsive running shoes are built by a company that has been getting things done right since 1906. Built with a synthetic sole and an air mesh intercool upper, these kicks might be the most comfortable running shoes you’ll ever pick up. They also have a fan wave plate for maximum cushioning and energy return as well as a soft anatomical sock liner for further arch support. Finally, the Wave Catalyst 2 is equipped with an X10 outsole to provide you with maximum traction so you can push the pace.
Standing out with its shiny, jet black design, the ZigPulse is a low-cut running shoe that helps you get to the next level. A full IMEVA Zip midsole provides superior cushioning and carbon rubber placed in the appropriate area to help provide your feet with optimal comfort on even your toughest runs. In addition, the ZigPulse has TPU midfoot support for increased stability and torsional austerity. The upper is made with synthetic leather to contribute to the overall support of your feet while shaving off some weight for a lighter stride.
New Balance Fresh Foam Cruz v2 Nubuck
Made with a nubuck leather midfoot saddle, these running shoes have a handsome, clean design. The comfortable bootie construction and knit upper will help to improve your stride and the deconstructed heel will make it easier to slip on so you can start your run right away. You can definitely wear these shoes when you run to go grab some drinks or some miles on the track, where their ‘Fresh Foam’ cushioning will provide you with soft landings all the way to the finish line.
Reebok Fast Flexweave
Using a figure-eight weave to bring together eight different fibers, the Flexweave combines durability, breathability, and stability to create a running shoe that won’t let you down. The shoe has a dual-density midsole with 3D foam and a carbon toe/heel outsole, providing you with a cozy fit that keeps your feet happy. Wearing these shoes you’ll be able to power through your daily run or finish a 5K in record time.
Altra Running Solstice
If you typically do short 5K to 10K road races, the Solstice running shoes can provide you with super lightweight protection from impact. They are made with an exposed EVA outsole and have a ‘FootShape’ toe box to allow your toes to stay loose and spread out naturally, in addition to letting the big toe keep a straightforward position for maximum stability. The shoes also have a ‘Zero Drop’ platform that puts your heel and forefoot at the same distance from the ground, encouraging a low-impact form as you run.
Nike Air Zoom Winflo 5
Equipped with a multi-surface traction underfoot and an engineered ‘Flymesh’ that provides a comfy and breezy feel, these shoes will put in as much work as you do. For extra support, they have an inner-sleeve for a sock-like fit and a cushion foam sole that’s responsive to your particular running form. The Nike tech in these running shoes will provide you with a smooth ride on any track you tackle, keeping the possibility for injuries at a minimum.
Hoka One One Speed Instinct 2
The Speed Instinct 2 running shoes are made for running on rugged terrain, allowing you to be nimble on your feet while it shields them from the rocky trail. Incorporating Hoka’s ‘PRO2Lite’ technology, these shoes come with additional cushioning at the heel and a more receptive forefoot. They also have a comfy lightweight midsole, sitting on a full rubber outsole that features multi-directional lugs that claw into the trail. This trail racer has an adaptive fit thanks to its refined upper and a superior, breathable mesh pattern.
Brooks Cascadia 12
If the wild outdoors is where you do your running, the Cascadia 12 can be your go-to running shoes. These shoes are produced with a tight-knit mesh upper and synthetic fiber overlays that keep your feet feeling fresh. Their ‘Four-Point Pivot Posting System’ technology allows these shoes to provide reliable suspension on both sides of the heel and forefoot. Utilizing a ‘BioMoGo’ DNA midsole, the Cascadia 12 has cushioning that will go the distance on miles of trail runs. When the time comes to scrap these shoes, their environmentally friendly construction will allow them to break down 50 times quicker at the landfill.
12 Best Men's Running Shirts
Grabbing a pair of quality running shoes will definitely boost your performance, but you shouldn’t just stop at upgrading your footwear. Check out our list of the best men’s running shirts on the market.