Nowadays, going to a gym is an insurmountable hassle, which means there’s never been a better time to pick up (or double down) on the ultimate outdoor cardio workout: Running. If you want to stay motivated to hit the trails and pavement, then it’s only right to invest in quality workout shoes. The best ones provide just enough style (from some of our favorite men’s clothing brands), lots of durability, and ample cushion to last for hundreds of miles.
Not all running shoes are created equal, however. Before getting a pair, make sure it matches your experience level, foot shape, and the type of run you’re gearing up for. We’ve done our research and rounded up here a few of the best running shoes for men — whether you’re a newbie or a seasoned marathoner.
Best Running Shoes Overall: Brooks Ghost 13
We can’t stop raving about Brooks’ new Ghost runners, which strike the perfect balance between comfort and security, largely due to the seamless midsole foam from heel to the forefoot, which supports a smoother gait. The footbed is comfortable, but not too soft or thick to impact strides, and the 3D Print mesh adds extra breathability. Additionally, the shoes have a system of shock absorbers which translates to smooth, stable rides and heel-to-toe transitions.
Best Trail Running Shoes: ASICS Gel-Fujitrabuco 8
When it comes to off-road runs, not any pair of athletic sneakers will do. That’s why we were impressed by Asics’ Gel-Fujitrabuco 8. The brand’s secret sauce is the lugged outsoles that offer maximum traction and grip during steep, slippery, and loose terrain changes. There’s also the Rearfoot GEL technology for underfoot cushioning that absorbs shock, which aids in soothing the joints during intense impact. Plus, its multicolored outsole makes for a great statement piece.
Best Long Distance Running Shoes: New Balance Fresh Foam 860v11
Long-distance runs can be a slog, but New Balance makes the journey a bit more comfortable with its streamlined kicks, which include a swooping heel collar to prevent your Achilles tendon from chafing, a wider-than-usual midfoot for flexibility, and a sturdy mesh upper for extra durability. Every step promises a super soft landing, thanks to the Fresh Foam feature.
Other Running Shoes We Love
Allbirds Men’s Tree Dashers
Much has been said about Allbirds, the eco-friendly footwear brand that has been worn by some of the world’s most influential men (Barack Obama among them), but thankfully much of their products, especially their sustainable runners, live up to the hype. Their super cozy midsoles are made from sugarcane and recycled trees (yes, really), and they work perfectly for short runs, or socially distanced errands. The shoes are not only extremely lightweight, breathable, and flexible but also offer a secure fit.
Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 36
No running shoe roundup is complete without Nike. The company’s iconic Pegasus silhouette has been a go-to for professional runners because of its aerodynamic design and cloud-nine-like footbed, and its latest iteration is no exception. The slimmer design means less bulk, making the shoes conform perfectly to your foot and more comfortable to wear. This model is available in a variety of color combinations.
Hoka Clifton 7
We love that Hoka’s Clifton runners feature an ultra-plush cushion, yet somehow manage to be light as a feather during even the most brutal runs. The insole is foam-padded for maximum support and comfort, while the sole has rubber inserts for a solid grip. Superior stability and shock absorbency are also guaranteed, all thanks to the midsole’s durable, full-length EVA material.
Puma Ultraride Running Shoes
Speaking of lightweight footbeds, Puma’s new runners are just that. Even better, they’re embedded with a proprietary outsole fabric for maximum propulsion, so you can keep moving forward. The upper part of the shoes are made of breathable mesh material with a closure designed for a snug fit, and the midsole boasts the PROFOAMLITE for optimal cushioning and responsiveness.
Under Armour UA Charged Assert 8
These eye-catching speedsters work as well as they look. They feature a “zero-gravity feel” courtesy of their very light tongue and mesh upper, while their heel counters offer plenty of rebound for every stride. These Underarmour running shoes also come with rubber outsoles that absorb shocks well, plus a breathable fabric lining for a great fit that feels like an extension of your foot.
Reebok Forever Floatide Energy 2 Men’s Running Shoes
These minimalist runners are better for 5Ks than half marathons, and their lightweight cushioning and snug (read: secure) fit help them keep up with even the most intense sprints. The combination of the flexible upper, high-performance carbon rubber, and breathable mesh makes for durability and amazing, comfortable runs. All in all, the in-shoe feel is just perfect.
Mizuno Men’s Wave Rider 24 Running Shoe
Firm, dependable, and long-lasting are just a few descriptors for these no-frills running shoes, which feature a wavy footbed to minimize the impact of your strides (your knees will thank you later). Experience smooth transition from heel to toe, balanced responsiveness, and comfortable support with each step.
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