Whether you’re taking a stroll through a local park or training for a marathon, your running shoes can affect the way your body moves and feels. Your heart will appreciate the cardio, but your joints and muscles may feel the impact of a rough ride. With proper support and a secure fit, your feet, ankles, knees, and hips will work like a machine to get you to your finish line. These running shoes can provide the support you need.
Why should you buy running shoes?
If you’re looking to make walking or running a regular routine to better your physical, emotional, or mental health, a quality pair of shoes is a smart purchase. Even if you work long hours on your feet, shoes can make the difference between enjoying your job and feeling exhausted. Running shoes, even when used for walking or standing, are designed with high-performance features for lasting comfort.
They will often include one or all of these high-performance attributes:
- Shock absorption
- Lightweight stability and support
- Outsole durability
What should you consider when shopping for running shoes?
- Width: For those with wider feet, look for shoes that feature a larger toe box to allow ample room for your foot. Narrow-footed runners should opt for slimline designs with wide laces in order to tighten the shoes to your correct size.
- Support: Those with high arches need proper support from the midsole that reaches your foot. There should be no gapping. If you suffer from pronation while running, you should look for shoes with added structure through the midsole and heel support to keep your foot in the right position.
- Flexibility: As your foot bends with each step, your shoe should move with it. Heavier, more supportive soles may create stiffer shoes. If you are looking for shoes with more flexibility, go for running shoes that are lightweight and have moderate cushioning.
How long can you expect a pair of running shoes to last?
When it comes to a shoe’s longevity, there are a lot of factors to consider. Of course, frequency of wear is the main contributor, but so is the way you use them. Running, walking, cross-training, or other cardio activities can all wear your shoes down differently. However, with normal wear and proper care, quality running shoes like the ones listed here should be expected to last approximately a year. If you’re an avid runner, many recommend replacing your shoes every 400 to 500 miles.
New Balance Women's FuelCore Nergize V1 Sneaker
These shoes are comfortable, versatile, sleek, and supportive.
Pros: These New Balance sneakers feature REVlite midsoles that provide lightweight and responsive cushioning for all-day comfort. The soles are made of memory foam for a plush feel. The shoes are lightweight, so your feet won’t get tired when wearing them for long hours. These shoes have a sleek and modern design that goes with lots of attire and is snug to provide support. These comfy everyday shoes are available in 12 colors.
Cons: Unlike other New Balance shoes, these have a performance fit, and it’s suggested to order half a size larger than normal for the right fit.
Bottom Line: You can feel comfortable all day long in these high-performance sneakers. Whether you wear them for running or just for running around town, your feet can feel comfortable and supported. The bootie design and sleek style add to their versatility. To enjoy these shoes to their full potential, pay attention to the size guide and consider ordering up half a size.
ASICS Women's GEL-Kayano 27 Running Shoes
These shoes are designed to support your feet through the entire gait cycle for greater comfort and less fatigue.
Pros: These running shoes are made to support your feet through the entire gait cycle with its Rearfoot and Forefoot Gel Technology Cushioning System. This system absorbs shock from the moment of impact to the toe-off phase, keeping your feet comfortable with every step. The outsoles feature high-abrasion rubber, making the shoes durable in places that matter most. These supportive shoes’ features continue with a DuoMax support system for lightweight stability and Flytefoam Technology for an energetic bounce during your steps. You can choose from 15 different colors, ranging from neutral to vibrant hues.
Cons: These may be pricier than other options depending on your size and color choices.
Bottom Line: The long list of supportive features in these shoes are worth it when it comes to comfort for running or staying on your feet long hours of the day. The shoes have attributes from the toe to heel that make them comfortable and supportive without being too bulky. While you may have to pay a higher amount of money for these features, the support and comfort might be worth the investment.
adidas Women's Cloudfoam Pure-2.0 Running Shoe
Feel like you're walking on cushy clouds in these shoes that come in 15 colors.
Pros: These shoes feature super soft Cloudfoam cushioning for ultimate comfort while walking. The outsole is synthetic and lightweight, so you won’t feel like you’re clunking around because of the shoes. These shoes have a snug feel that is very comfortable and moves with your foot. These shoes are available in 15 colors.
Cons: Because of the snug fit, without a shoe tongue, these can be hard to put on, especially when they’re new. The casual, sock-like feel would probably not be supportive enough for serious running.
Bottom Line: If you’re looking for a casual pair of shoes to wear while doing errands or going walking, these are great shoes. The snug fit feels like a comfortable sock that is flexible and moves with your foot. The soft Cloudfoam cushioning adds to the shoes’ comfort, and you can wear these for hours at a time. This unique fit means that there’s no tongue, and it can be difficult to get the shoes on without shimmying your feet into them. Once they’re in, you’ll love them, but it can be a bit of a gripe for some. These shoes are more casual and would probably not be a good idea for serious running.
New Balance Women's 510 V5 Trail Running Shoe
You can enjoy the beauty of nature with shoes that provide traction for uneven and unexpected terrain.
Pros: These trail shoes feature ABZORB midsole technology, which absorbs impact through a combination of cushioning and compression resistance. The rubber soles are durable enough to take a beating from rock edges and rough terrain. They also have toe protection, so even if you stub the shoe tip, your toe won’t bear the brunt of the impact. Traction around the outsole allows the terrain to move away from the shoe, so you have safe strides on the trail. Even though these shoes are built to withstand the tough side of nature, the uppers are made with mesh and synthetic materials, so your feet will be able to breathe during use. These trail shoes come in 11 different colors.
Cons: These are heavier and a bit clunkier than traditional running shoes meant for the road.
Bottom Line: If you want to take your running to the trails, these shoes can provide the traction and support you need to be safe. The features of this shoe will protect all areas of your feet so you can stay safe and enjoy your trail running. From the ABZORB midsole technology to toe protection and extra traction, these are high-performance shoes. With all trail running shoes, these will take some getting used to if you’ve never worn a heavy-duty shoe before. It’s best to break them in gradually for better comfort.
Brooks Women's Ghost 13 Running Shoe
These running shoes feature smooth support for runners and walkers alike.
Pros: If you’re looking for a smooth running experience, these shoes are a top choice. No matter your stride, these shoes will absorb the shock thanks to an integrated system of shock absorbers. They are thoughtfully designed with BioMoGo DNA and DNA LOFT cushioning that work together to provide softness without losing responsiveness and durability. These shoes are available in 15 neutral and fun colors.
Cons: You may want to order half a size up for the best comfort. Depending on your size and color choices, these may be pricier than other options.
Bottom Line: If you’re looking for a shoe that delivers top performance for running or walking, these are a solid choice. Known for their longevity and supportive features, these shoes allow your feet to feel and respond to the road while also being supported, cushioned, and safe. While you may find that ordering a half size up is best for the proper fitting, the variety of colors to choose from is fun.
Choosing the best running shoes for you doesn’t have to be difficult. After considering what issues are most important for your feet and their comfort, you’ll be able to find an all-star choice that can help you achieve greater strides in your healthy and active lifestyle.