Running for fun and fitness is a very common activity these days. There are good reasons for that. It can extend our lives, build strong bones and muscles, and relieve stress. But it also puts quite a bit of stress on our feet. That's because modern runners tend to run on hard surfaces that our bodies weren't designed to deal with. That can lead to serious long-term injuries for those who don't take the threat seriously. For that reason, every good runner knows that they need to take care of their feet with a great pair of running shoes. This article will look at several of the best pairs of running shoes on the market today. Keep in mind this is only a primer. There are hundreds of good pairs out there, and every foot needs the right one.
As the second iteration of the New Balance FuelCell RC Elite series, the v2 improves on its predecessor in almost every way. It has a thicker midsole made of ultra-soft foam and a higher stack size that provides a nice cushioned feel when running. It's a bit heavier than its predecessor, but the extra comfort more than offsets that disadvantage. They're also built with a carbon fiber plate that helps the wearer store the energy of each heel strike and reflects it into a stronger push-off for their next stride.
If it's possible for a 107-year-old brand to feel fresh and innovative the Brooks Ghost 14 running shoes pull it off. They're a favorite of distance runners and casual runners because they split the difference between softness and stiffness – making them perfect for every running tempo on any terrain. It's the very definition of a neutral running shoe and is a workhorse that will deliver years of use without showing serious signs of wear.
The Asics Magic Speed is another neutral running shoe built for racing and training runs alike. They feature Asics's FF Blast midsoles that offer just the right amount of cushioning to go with their half-length carbon fiber plates. They also feature vented mesh uppers that make them super breathable and comfortable to wear for long periods, especially in the heat. But they also offer a nice, snug fit that creates a feeling of stability when running in them. They borrow some of their design from the upmarket Asics MetaRacers – but manage to improve on their price significantly.
The Saucony Endorphin Pro 2 has earned rave reviews from just about everyone who's tried them on. Some testers even call them the most comfortable running shoe you can buy. But they don't prioritize comfort over all else. Despite their comfort, they're fast and light with an extra-thick rubber outsole that should make them very durable. They're also available for as much as $50 less than any comparable model, making them the perfect combination of budget-friendly and high-performance.
Although they don't have as high of a profile as the other running shoes on this list, the Newton Gravity+ has something they do not. They feature a patented system Newton calls its Action/Reaction™ Technology. It's designed to create a trampoline-like support system that helps runners conserve energy and run further and faster than they could otherwise. In independent testing, runners who'd never used the system before were 1% more efficient. But in an activity where seconds can count, that's a significant advantage worth having. As with most innovations, they're a bit controversial in the running community, but that doesn't mean they're not worth a try.