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The best running shoes 2022

The best running shoes 2022

Choosing the best running shoes is a real challenge, especially if you’re new to running. There are plenty of road running shoes available from top brands, and picking one that suits your running needs the most is tricky; running shoe jargon is a minefield! This is why we’ve been putting in the miles on your behalf in the best shoes for road running so you can make the right choice.

In this guide, you’ll find fast, carbon-plated options for racing as well as slower, max-cushioned models bets suited for slower runs. And there are many running shoes in between for interval training, sprints, fartlek and more. Of course, there’s no substitute for trying a shoe for yourself, but here we’ve aimed to give you some great starting points, with neutral and stable options and shoes for training and race days.

We’ve tested all these shoes ourselves, so you can check our full reviews for in-depth details of what they’re like to wear long term and decide which is likely to suit you best, whatever you’re training for. Looking for a shoe with green credentials? We’ve also rounded up the best eco-friendly running shoes you can buy now.

The best running shoes

Nike ZoomX Vaporfly Next% 2

1. Nike ZoomX Vaporfly Next% 2

The best thoroughbred race running shoes available today

SPECIFICATIONS

Weight: 206g (men’s)
Heel drop: 8mm
 

REASONS TO BUY

+Super lightweight
+Insanely fast
+Great, eye-catching looks

REASONS TO AVOID

There are more durable foams on the market

The Nike ZoomX Vaporfly Next% 2 is the best running shoe, thanks to its impressive energy return that feels like nothing we’ve experienced before. This is a shoe made for running and running fast. When we tested it, we were extremely impressed by its springiness, courtesy of a full-length articulated carbon footplate and generous 40mm of ZoomX foam that never feels squishy or marshmallowy.

Its minimalist mesh upper is highly breathable, with the bare minimum of padding strategically positioned for comfort without adding too much weight. Our feel felt well connected and secure throughout our runs. The Nike ZoomX Vaporfly Next% 2 is a superb shoe for track days and races, with the potential to propel you to a new personal record. However, we’d recommend supplementing it with another, more affordable shoe from this list for your everyday training.

Adidas Adistar

2. Adidas Adistar

The ideal training shoe for longer, slower runs

SPECIFICATIONS

Weight: 345g (men’s)
Heel drop: 6mm
 

REASONS TO BUY

+Resilient dual-density foam
+Well designed rocker
+Uses sustainable materials

REASONS TO AVOID

-Chunky shoes might not be to everyone’s taste
Not the lightest shoe

The Adidas Adistar impressed us with its well-designed rocker that keeps propelling you forward during long training sessions. It’s not the lightest shoe we’ve ever tested, but its dual-density foam is tough and resilient, standing up well even after some serious mileage.

We also liked the shoe’s integrated cage system, which gives this running shoe a snug and comfortable fit. The upper is made of recycled ocean plastic and recycled polyester, which is also welcome from a sustainability standpoint.

Overall the Adidas Adistar is an excellent running shoe for those long, slow sessions and will help you maintain your form when your mind begins to wander, and you’re running on autopilot. Even after several hours, the shoes don’t feel sluggish, and the rocker design means you’re unlikely to drag your feet despite the shoes’ stack height.

Hoka One One Bondi X

3. Hoka One One Bondi X

A chunky but snappy long-distance running shoe

SPECIFICATIONS

Weight: 300g (men’s)
Heel drop: 5mm
 

REASONS TO BUY

+Responsive ride
+Snug but not tight fit
+Snappy carbon plate

REASONS TO AVOID

Chunky design

The Hoka One One Bondi X has the company’s familiar chunky style but feels snappy thanks to an embedded carbon plate. This is a new feature for the Bondi line, and together with a full-size moulded EVA sole, it results in a springy and responsive ride.

It’s softer, wider and generally more forgiving than the Carbon X 2 and better suited to squeezing a few extra miles out of your training runs than breaking personal records on race day. In our tests, we found it particularly helpful after the 10-mile mark, when our form sometimes tends to suffer. 

You’ll either love or hate its distinctive looks (the fluorescent color scheme and hefty heel unit are hard to miss), but if you’re happy to embrace its style, you’ll find it’s thoroughly enjoyable when you’re hitting the pavement for a few hours.

Saucony Endorphin Speed

4. Saucony Endorphin Speed

The best motion control shoe for fast sessions

SPECIFICATIONS

Weight: 221g (men’s)
Heel drop: 8mm
 

REASONS TO BUY

+Fast and springy
+Well cushioned
+Lightweight design

REASONS TO AVOID

Not for slow training

If you’ve fallen out of love with running recently, the Saucony Endorphin Speed could be the best running shoe to rekindle your passion for the pavement. 

This is a neutral motion-control shoe, meaning it isn’t designed to prevent the twisting motion of over-pronation but does help your foot roll and transfer energy more effectively thanks to a nylon plate in the midsole. The result is a springy, fun (but not bouncy) feel with each step.

It’s an exceptionally light shoe, and Saucony has pared down the design as much as possible to shave off extra grams. We can’t guarantee that it’ll help you hit a new personal best in your next race, but we wouldn’t be surprised.

Asics Metaspeed Sky Plus

5. Asics Metaspeed Sky Plus

A speedy carbon race shoe that gives Nike a run for its money

SPECIFICATIONS

Weight: 210g (men’s)
Heel drop: 5mm
 

REASONS TO BUY

+Speedy and cushioned
+Grippy rubber outsole
+Lightweight design

REASONS TO AVOID

Question marks over durability

If you’re looking for a race shoe that’s a great alternative to what Nike and Adidas currently have to offer, the Asics Metaspeed Sky Plus is well worth your consideration. It’s  a running shoe built to keep you quick over short and long distances

When we reviewed the Metaspeed Sky, we appreciated the spring provided by the full-length carbon plate and curved design, together with the shoe’s lightweight, responsive foam. It compresses at each footstrike before springing back into shape, giving a controlled feel while propelling you forward.

It’s pricier than the Nike ZoomX Vaporfly Next% 2 above, and it does have its predecessor’s issues with durability in the heel, but it’s a superb shoe nonetheless and feels great to run in.

Saucony Endorphin Pro 2

6. Saucony Endorphin Pro 2

A comfortable, springy carbon shoe for picking up the pace

SPECIFICATIONS

Weight: 213g (men’s)
Heel drop: 8mm
 

REASONS TO BUY

+Snappy, responsive cushioning
+Durable for a performance shoe
+Snug, comfortable fit

REASONS TO AVOID

-Relatively pricey
Not built for slow miles

Sitting in between the Hoka One One Bondi X and the Asics Metaspeed Sky listed above, the Saucony Endorphin Pro 2 is a versatile carbon plate running shoe that works well at a variety of distances – particularly training sessions at a race pace.

It might feel odd at first, but once you pick up speed, you’ll feel the benefit of that plate together with the shoe’s SpeedRoll geometry, which propels you forward with each step. There’s also less exposed foam than you’ll find on many performance shoes, which lends some welcome durability.

The chief downside of this road running shoe is its price; at $200 / £190 / AU$319.99, it’s pretty steep. If cash is tight and you’re in the market for more of a daily shoe, take a look at the Saucony Endorphin Speed 2 instead; its use of nylon in place of carbon gives a similarly lively ride while keeping costs down.

Asics GT-2000 9

7. Asics GT-2000 9

A tough, affordable and reliable stability shoe

SPECIFICATIONS

Weight: 281g (men’s)
Heel drop: 10mm
 

REASONS TO BUY

+Affordably priced
+Particularly hard wearing
+Secure, comfortable fit

REASONS TO AVOID

Too rigid for some runners

The latest iteration in the long-running GT-2000 series, the Asics GT-2000 9, is one of the best running shoes around if you’re aiming to control pronation and favor a stiffer shoe that’ll give you plenty of support during long training sessions.

This stiffness comes courtesy of a resin plate in the shoe’s midsole that prevents unwanted twisting actions as your foot rolls. This is combined with a lightweight foam midsole that gives a cushioned but not bouncy ride, plus additional gel in the heel and toe for shock absorption.

The newly redesigned single-piece mesh upper is noticeably more breathable than previous GT-2000 models, making this shoe a particularly good choice for warmer weather and indoor treadmill sessions. Highly recommended if you’re looking for a shoe with plenty of guidance – and very competitively priced.

Asics Novablast

8. Asics Novablast

The best extra-cushioned neutral road running shoe

SPECIFICATIONS

Heel drop: 10mm
Weight: 261g (men’s)
 

REASONS TO BUY

+Springy, energetic ride
+Light and breathable
+Comfortable right out of the box

REASONS TO AVOID

Can feel unstable at times

If cushioning is what you want, the Asics Novablast Tokyo is one of the best neutral road running shoes around. There’s so much marshmallow-y Flytefoam Blast material underfoot; the overall feeling is springy, energetic, and a lot of fun.

This is a great lightweight shoe with a particularly thin and breathable upper. The lack of padding in the tongue took us by surprise, but the flat laces never become uncomfortable across the top of your foot, and the thoughtfully designed mesh means increased ventilation for runs on hotter days.

The downside of all that cushioning is that the shoe can sometimes feel a little unstable if you’re running on uneven surfaces, so you’ll want to dodge the potholes, but on smooth roads, it’s a joy.

Salomon Index.01

9. Salomon Index.01

The best no-nonsense running shoe – and recyclable

SPECIFICATIONS

Heel drop: 9mm
Weight: 285g (unisex)
 

REASONS TO BUY

+No-nonsense, comfortable design
+Environmentally friendly
+Also good for everyday life

REASONS TO AVOID

Steep price

In terms of environmental impact, the Salomon Index.01 steals a lead on the Reebok Floatride Energy Grow (below) due to its closed-loop manufacturing process. The whole shoe is recyclable, and when you’ve run it into the ground, you can return it to Salomon to be transformed into other garments.

Of course, that would be little use if the Salomon Index.01 wasn’t good quality, high-performance shoe – but thankfully, it is. It feels firmer than the Reebok, making it a better choice if you’re looking for support, with a curved sole and unusual rear overhang that we found gave a welcome forward jolt of propulsion.

The upper is pleasantly breathable, and its understated design means it can shift easily between training sessions and running errands. We did find that the upper began to show dirt quite quickly, and the initial price is fairly steep, so it’s worth considering the Floatride Energy Grow as a more affordable alternative.

Reebok Floatride Energy Grow

10. Reebok Floatride Energy Grow

The lightest sustainably made running shoe

SPECIFICATIONS

Heel drop: 9mm
Weight: 229g
 

REASONS TO BUY

+Reduced use of plastic
+Extremely lightweight
+Attractive retro design

REASONS TO AVOID

Less hard-wearing than some

The Reebok Floatride Energy Grow is made from at least 50% plant-based materials, reducing the use of virgin plastic – but you wouldn’t know that from looking at it. Unlike some eco-friendly running shoes, this one doesn’t shout about its credentials; instead, Reebok has opted for a refreshingly retro design that goes as well with jeans as it does Lycra.

There’s a moderate amount of (castor-bean based) cushioning, and in our tests, we found it easy to forget during training runs. It’s not excessively cushioned and is quite flexible around the toe (particularly medially), which won’t suit those with a tendency to overpronate, but is nicely responsive if your footstrike is neutral.

There’s a lot to like about this shoe, which is also surprisingly light, leaving the similarly green but much weightier Allbirds Tree Dasher in the dust. We have some reservations about the durability of the gusset that secures the tongue to the inside, but the Floatride Energy Grow otherwise fared well after plenty of miles.

 

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Best Running Shoes For 2022

Best Running Shoes For 2022

Running shoes are a universal kind of footwear that is able to make running maximally safe and easy. To that end running shoes have excellent cushioning, support and weigh very little. This makes you able to run no just faster, but also with better ergonomics. In many shoes there is an inert made of a springy material that helps your foot spring back from the ground instead of just hitting. This in turn minimizes joint and knee pain, allowing the shoes to effectively prevent these kinds of pain.

Overall running shoes are great not just for running but actually for any sport. Walking is made better by running shoes too, and any kind of sport that requires you to move a lot will also make use of running shoes.

These shoes are not a recent invention, and they have been made by thousands of different brands. Some, like Nike and Adidas are known world wide, and others have just recently made their appearance. While some shoes have an absolutely awesome constructions, others will fall apart on you pretty soon. In order to help you make a good choice, we have assembled the best 6 shoes on the market in this list. All models presented have good reviews and will help you fix pain and run comfortably.

 

Men

Brooks Ghost 12 #1

Editor’s Pick
 
Editor’s Rating:10/10

Best Running Shoes For 2022 - Brooks Ghost 12

This model will be suitable not only for running, but also for everyday use, like walking your dog or going to the gym. That is because they are built to be worn for long periods of time without making the feet tired or sweaty.

This running shoe is very well balanced, as it has the perfect ratio of cushioning, light weight, fit and support.

The upper part of the shoe is crafted from synthetic mesh with large pores, providing ventilation and allowing air to cool off the feet. It is engineered to fit the foot perfectly, preventing chafing and discomfort, while also making the shoe feel like a part of your body.

The bottom of this shoe provides support for the whole foot, from the heel to the toes. Its back part holds the ankle, protecting it from excess movement and injury; the midsole supports the arch, and the toe box has plenty of room.

The sole and outsole are both made of tough wear-resistant rubber. They provide a secure grip and great traction on any running surface. This allows the runner to make quick turns and sudden stops without the risk of slipping and falling.

Pros: 

  • Have a great fit and do not require a long break-in period
  • High quality materials
  • Very nice traction

Cons:

  • The midsole can be narrow for people with wide feet


Adidas Men’s Lite Racer#2

 
Editor’s Pick
 
Editor’s Rating:9.9/10

Best Running Shoes For 2022 - Adidas Men's Lite Racer

This simple looking running shoe was designed to be extremely light. Because of this it has a very sleek profile, that does not limit foot movement in any way. These two factors combined make the shoes perfect for racing and sprinting.

The upper part of this model has no seams that could cause chafing damage and discomfort. It is made of a modern synthetic material that is both lightweight and breathable. When the shoestrings are tightened, the upper also tightens around the foot, making the shoe fit like a glove.

The whole interior of the shoe is very well cushioned. This totally eliminates shock and jarring damage, preventing foot and knee pain.

The sole and large outsole are built of rubber, and both provide a grip on any running surface, whether it is concrete, asphalt or dirt. Now you can focus on running top speed instead of worrying about slipping and falling.

The shoes are also very stylish looking, so they are sure to attract attention.

Pros:

  • Extremely lightweight
  • Nice-looking
  • Great for sprinting

Cons:

  • Sacrifices durability for light weight


New Balance Men’s 870#3

 
Best Synthetic
 
Editor’s Rating:9.5/10

Best Running Shoes For 2022 - New Balance Men's 870

This model is equipped with rev-lite cushioning, which is very light and springy. It totally eliminates jarring and vibration, effectively preventing problems like knee and ankle pain.

These shoes are basically a great blend of light weight, comfortability and compact size. The upper is made of a synthetic material that is perforated with large vents, allowing air to enter and exit the shoe, keeping the foot cool.

The sole is made of rubber, meaning that you are able to run and play sports without losing traction and slipping. The outsole is made of the same material, and it bends upwards at the end of the shoe, preventing toe damage from kicking something hard.

The bottom is contoured to provide maximum support and prevent dangerous movement which potentially could result in injury. Natural movement, however, remains totally unrestricted.

Pros:

  • Great quality-price ratio
  • Responsive and lightweight cushioning
  • Nice choice for those who suffer from foot pain

Cons:

  • The colored designs on the soles easily come off


Women

Adidas Women’s Cloudfoam#1

 
Editor’s Pick
 
Editor’s Rating:9.6/10

Best Running Shoes For 2022 - Adidas Women's Cloudfoam

These running shoes have a minimalistic, yet a very cute and appealing design. The upper is crafted from textile, making it just as breathable and more comfortable than synthetics. It also has about the same weight, meaning that the shoe is very light. This makes the shoe great for everyday wearing.

The sockliner on this model is made of Cloudfoam, a material that changes its shape over time to perfectly fit your foot, making the shoe more ergonomic the longer you wear it.

The outsole and sole are both made of textured rubber to provide excellent traction on any running surface, and the end of the shoe is reinforced by the outsole to protect the toes.

This model has a unique and interesting feature – it is very quick to take off and put on. As the materials that are used are elastic, the laces can be left tied, and the shoe can just be slipped on. Do not worry – it will come off only when pulled deliberately.

Pros:

  • Quick to take put on and take off
  • Great cushioning and seamless design that makes the shoes very comfortable and prevents blisters
  • Weighs almost nothing

Cons:

  • Textile wears out faster than synthetics


ASICS Women’s Gel-Venture 7#2

 
Editor’s Pick
 
Editor’s Rating:9.3/10

Best Running Shoes For 2022 - ASICS Women's Gel-Venture 7

This model is pretty inexpensive for its quality. The whole shoe is built extra-tough, so it can also be used for hiking. It will easily withstand any kind of abuse and the roughest terrain.

These shoes will be great for those who prefer to run in nature, and thus use natural trails and paths. They are designed to function like a light hiking boot, so you can run on grass, dirt and rocks. The tip is reinforced, and its purpose is to protect the toes from being hurt.

This model has the GEL cushioning system that eliminates shock and jarring, relieving the tendons and allowing you to run or walk for long periods of time without getting foot pain and fatigue.

The upper is made of a synthetic mesh that is reinforced with tear-resistant fabric. This makes it much stronger without sacrificing breathability and comfort.

The bottom of this model is ergonomically shaped, preventing the foot from moving or rotating inside the shoe. The shoe keeps the motion of the foot under control, allowing the wearer to perform any kind of natural movement while restricting dangerous foot positions.

Pros:

  • Very robust construction
  • Low price
  • Versatility

Cons:

  • Thin shoelaces


New Balance Women’s Fresh Foam#3

 
Best Material
 
Editor’s Rating:9/10

Best Running Shoes For 2022 - New Balance Women's Fresh Foam

This model is made from textile and synthetics combined. These two materials complement one another, making the shoe durable and comfortable at the same time.

The shoes are very sleek and stylish, and will certainly receive attention and complements. 

This slim shape also serves a practical purpose by making the shoes lighter, and thus allowing you to run faster.

When the shoelaces are tightened, the upper part of the shoe tightly hugs the foot, keeping it securely locked in place and preventing it from moving around or turning inside. This makes the shoe feel like an extension of your body, allowing you to perform any natural movement while preventing the ankle from turning inwards or outwards, which would result in a sprain.

The rubber sole has a very deeply-cut texture that gives the shoes amazing traction. The wearer can not just run, but also play sports where mobility and quick reaction time are required. Sudden turns and stops will never make you lose footing and fall.

Pros:

  • Very snug and comfortable fit
  • High New Balance quality for a great price
  • Has very nice support, great for those who suffer from foot pain

Cons:

  • None were found