Shopping
Advertiser Disclosure

Best Running Shoes for Men: 18 Sneakers for Every Type of Runner

Best Running Shoes for Men
iStock

Our evaluations and opinions are not influenced by our advertising relationships, but we may earn a commission from our partners’ links. This content is created independently from TIME’s editorial staff. Learn more about it.

Updated March 10, 2024

They say you can’t run away from your problems, but if your problem is inactivity, well, we guess you actually can? Whether you’re a newbie in the process of motivating to get off the couch, or a long time running enthusiast looking to step up your game, footwear is all-important. That’s why we’ve rounded up the best running shoes for men to help you run as fast—and as far as you can.

How to choose the best running shoes for men

Choosing a pair of sneakers is a little trickier than picking out, say, running shorts. “If you’ve never been properly fitted for running shoes before, the best advice is to visit your local running specialty store, where expertly-trained staff can do a gait analysis to determine the best category of shoes for you,” advises Sarah Stafford, marketing director at Brooklyn Running Company. “You want to look for a shoe that is comfortable, provides the right amount of support that you need, and does not cause any discomfort or pain in the arch or heel when you run. When determining the correct size for your running shoe, runners should typically expect to go up a half to full size larger than their street shoes, so that there is a bit of extra space in the toe box, allowing the foot to expand.”

“My advice is to keep it simple,” says movement coach Brock Armstrong. “If you put on a pair of shoes that fit and they feel good, they’re good! If you put them on and they feel weird, don’t get them. It doesn’t matter what the salesperson says, your running partner says, or a blog post says. What your feet say is the only thing that matters. Listen to your immediate reaction.”

“Comfort is most important when choosing running shoes,” agrees Blake Dircksen PT, DPT, CSCS, owner of Backroads Endurance. “Try them on, walk, or jog around, and see how they feel. They shouldn’t feel like there’s extra pressure, irritation, or friction on your foot. It may take a few tries with different shoe brands and models to find the shoe that feels the most comfortable. Running shoes also have different purposes: There are your everyday trainers, your workout and racing shoes, your trail shoes, and your recovery shoes. If you’re just starting out, find an ‘everyday’ training shoe that’s comfortable and durable.”

Our top picks for the best running shoes for men

Best trail running shoes for men: Altra Superior 6

Best trail running shoes for men
MEN'S SUPERIOR 6

While many runners talk about hitting the wall metaphorically, trail running might see you hitting a wall—or tree, or rogue wild hog—literally. Since you can never be totally sure what terrain you’ll be dealing with, you need shoes that will cushion your feet, but also grip the trail itself. The Superior 6 have Altra’s MaxTrac grip on their outsoles, giving you extra traction on the trail, while their Balanced Cushioning platform keeps your feet safe and comfortable.

Specifications:

  • Weight: 9.5 ounces
  • Sizes: 7-15, half-sizes through 12.5
  • Drop: 0mm
  • Price: $130

What we like:

  • Lightweight
  • Four color options

What we don't like:

  • Some customers complain the shoe is a little too wide at the toes

The bottom line:

Enhanced traction and targeted cushioning make for a comfortable, stable stride no matter the terrain.

Get it here: Altra Superior 6


Best road running shoes for men: Adidas Adizero Boston 12

Best road running shoes for men
adidas Men's Adizero Boston 12 Running Shoes, Size 12.5, Black/Green Spark

adidas Men's Adizero Boston 12 Running Shoes, Size 12.5, Black/Green Spark

If you’re pounding the pavement, you want to feel like your feet are protected, but you don’t want to be dragging a couple extra pounds of rubber underneath you. The solution is these shoes, made from Adidas’ Lightstrike Pro foam, giving you bounce without the weight. They also feature carbon-infused Energyrods (fun fact: All modern shoe technology sounds like bad sci-fi spaceship names) designed to help limit energy loss. In addition, the Continental rubber outsole helps add a little extra grip for any road or pavement surface you encounter.

Specifications:

  • Weight: 9.5 ounces
  • Sizes: 4-14, with half sizes
  • Drop: 7mm, midsole
  • Price: $160

What we like:

  • Continental rubber outsole helps provide traction
  • Lightstrike foam is very comfortable
  • Six color options
  • Made from at least 20% recycled materials

What we don't like:

  • Several runners mention that the laces were too short for their needs

The bottom line:

Lightweight foam helps absorb the impact of running on pavement, while a Continental rubber outsole gives you tire-like grip—all without dragging you down.

Get it here: Adidas Adizero Boston 12


Best running shoes for men for sprinting: Peluva Men’s Strand

Best running shoes for men for sprinting
Peluva Men’s Strand

Peluva Men’s Strand

Armstrong’s pick for a sprinting shoe is likely to raise a few eyebrows, as well as cause some incredibly conflicted feelings among foot fetishists. It might seem weird to have toes on your shoes, but the glowing reviews from customers suggest they might be on to something. Designed to give a barefoot feel while still cushioning your feet on hard surfaces, their rubber treads will give you the traction you need to move fast.

Specifications:

  • Weight: 7.2 ounces
  • Sizes: 8-14, half sizes through 12.5
  • Drop: 0mm
  • Price: $139.99

What we like:

  • Four color options
  • Lightweight
  • Definitely a conversation starter

What we don't like:

The bottom line:

The foot-like design may make you (and onlookers) do a double take, but this lightweight shoe is perfect for experienced runners who have the need for speed.

Get it here: Peluva Men’s Strand


Best long distance running shoes for men: Asics Gel-Nimbus Lite 3

Best long distance running shoes for men
GEL-NIMBUS LITE 3

Footwear can’t help with the loneliness of the long-distance runner (never let it be said our references aren’t current!) but it can definitely help with keeping your feet safe. Designed for full-ground contact, the gel cushioning in this pair’s rearfoot and forefoot helps to absorb the repeated shock of foot hitting road, while the Asics Lite rubber outsole provides grip without adding too much weight.

Specifications:

  • Weight: 9 ounces
  • Sizes: 6-16, half-sizes through 13.5
  • Drop: 10mm, heel
  • Price: Currently $99.95, normally $160

What we like:

  • Designed using some recycled materials
  • Breathable
  • Four color options

What we don't like:

  • Some reviews say they require a little breaking in

The bottom line:

Gel cushioning and breathable materials can go the distance—and the size range (up to 16) accommodates the widest range of runners.

Get it here: Asics Gel-Nimbus Lite 3


Best running shoes for men with wide feet: Altra Torin 7

Best running shoes for men with wide feet
Altra Torin 7

If you’re constantly feeling like your feet are being squeezed while running, it’s time to look for shoes made for girthier feet. Both Dircksen and Armstrong pointed to Altra as the brand for wider-feeted gentlemen, and the Torin 7 is notable both for the consistency of its positive reviews, and the fact it’s available in both regular and wide options.

Specifications:

  • Weight: 9.8 ounces
  • Sizes: 7-15, half sizes through 12.5
  • Drop: 0mm
  • Price: $150

What we like:

  • Has the American Podiatric Medical Association Seal of Acceptance
  • Five color options
  • Breathable

What we don't like:

  • Several reviews complain the laces are too short

The bottom line:

Designed for wide feet, this running shoe has the space you need—though you may have to upgrade the shoe laces.

Get it here: Altra Torin 7


Best running shoes for men with plantar fasciitis: Nike Invincible 3

Best running shoes for men with plantar fasciitis
Nike Invincible 3

Nike Invincible 3

For those suffering from plantar fasciitis—inflammation of the tissue that connects your heel bone to your toes—shoes with supportive, well-cushioned soles are a must. Dircksen’s preference is this pair of Nikes, which are designed to fit securely but comfortably, with a super-supportive and bouncy sole to soften the impact when running.

Specifications:

  • Weight: 10.6 ounces
  • Sizes: 6-15, half-sizes through 12.5
  • Drop: 9mm
  • Price: $180

What we like:

  • Bouncy
  • Responsive
  • Seven color options

What we don't like:

  • Several reviews note that heel slippage can be a problem for some

The bottom line:

A supportive and bouncy sole makes this pair of Nikes the ideal match for runners with plantar fasciitis.

Get it here: Nike Invincible 3


Best shock-absorbing running shoes for men: Hoka Mach X

Best shock-absorbing running shoes for men
Hoka Mach X

Hoka Mach X

For all the benefits of running, there’s no denying that the repeated shock of your feet hitting the ground can wreak havoc on your body. Give your knees, feet, or other body parts a fighting chance with the shock-absorbing properties of these shoes, which have both a layer of PEBA foam (a lightweight, super-elastic substance, to cushion your feet) and Pebax plates (for energy return and shock resistance).

Specifications:

  • Weight: 9.4 ounces
  • Sizes: 7-14, half sizes through 12.5
  • Drop: 5mm
  • Price: $180

What we like:

  • Designed using some recycled materials
  • Comfortable

What we don't like:

  • Only two color options

The bottom line:

A super-elastic layer of foam and shock-resisting plates make running a little easier on your joints.

Get it here: Hoka Mach X


Most comfortable running shoes for men: Brooks Ghost 15

Most comfortable running shoes for men
Brooks Ghost 15

Dircksen is a big fan of Brooks’ shoes, saying that, “Brooks makes a good quality shoe that’s comfortable right out of the box. They seem to work for a lot of people, especially those just starting out.” The Ghost 15s, especially, have extremely positive reviews from most customers, with people praising the comfort, support, and cushioning.

Specifications:

  • Weight: 10.1 ounces
  • Sizes: 7-15, half sizes through 12.5
  • Drop: 12mm, midsole
  • Price: $140

What we like:

  • 29(!) color options
  • Carbon neutral product, made with some recycled materials

What we don't like:

  • Some user reviews say these are too narrow

The bottom line:

If you’re looking for a running shoe you don’t have to spend time breaking in, these are the sneakers for you.

Get it here: Brooks Ghost 15


Best Nike running shoes for men: Nike Pegasus 40

Best Nike running shoes for men
Nike Men's Pegasus 40 Road Running Shoes in Black, Size: 10.5 | DV3853-001

Nike Men's Pegasus 40 Road Running Shoes in Black, Size: 10.5 | DV3853-001

Nike is already a top pick for men’s workout shirts, shorts, and other athletic gear—and their running shoe selection is top-notch. The Nike Pegasus 40 is Dircksen’s personal pick for his favorite Nike running shoe, for its stability and comfort. A good all-rounder, there’s nothing terribly flashy going on here, but with its reliability and durability, it’s a solid, versatile workhorse of a shoe.

Specifications:

  • Weight: 9.4 ounces
  • Sizes: 3.5-15, half sizes through 12.5, also available in Extra Wide
  • Drop: 10mm
  • Price: Currently $103.97, normally $130

What we like:

  • Springy
  • 12 color options
  • Durable

What we don't like:

  • Relatively basic

The bottom line:

While it isn’t the most exciting-looking design, this classic running shoe is durable, comfortable, and has a good range of size offerings.

Get it here: Nike Pegasus 40


Best Adidas running shoes: Adidas Boston

Best Adidas running shoes
adidas Adizero Boston 12 Running Shoes Cloud White 7 Mens

adidas Adizero Boston 12 Running Shoes Cloud White 7 Mens

If, “All day I dream about shoes,” is your mantra, then check out Dircksen’s pick for the best Adidas running shoes. “This is a great everyday trainer, but it’s responsive and energetic enough to do some uptempo training with,” he says. “These were my tried and true trainers in college, although they're much improved now, with the higher stack height and upgraded foam technology.”

Specifications:

  • Weight: 9.2 ounces
  • Sizes: 4 - 15, half-sizes through 13.5
  • Drop: 7 mm
  • Price: $160

What we like:

  • Responsive
  • Seven color options
  • Durable

What we don't like:

  • A minority of customer reviews note that they would have preferred more secure lacing

The bottom line:

A responsive design makes these shoes a good fit for runners who like to mix up their training routine.

Get it here: Adidas Boston


Best New Balance running shoes: New Balance Fresh Foam X More v4

Best New Balance running shoes
New Balance Fresh Foam X More v4

New Balance Fresh Foam X More v4

You might think of New Balance as being the footwear of choice for Accidental Normcore dads, but they’re actually worth a look. “New Balance shoes have come a long way, and some of the world’s top athletes swear by them,” says Dr. Kellie Kopach, who’s a fitness instructor at Lifetime Fitness, and AFAA certified for 25 years. She recommends their Fresh Foam X More v4, adding that, “What’s great is that they’re a bit more economical and available at a wider variety of stores.”

Specifications:

  • Weight: 10.4 ounces
  • Sizes: 7 - 16, half-sizes through 12.5 (standard, wide, and extra wide)
  • Drop: 4 mm
  • Price: $149.99

What we like:

  • Available in standard, wide, and extra wide fits
  • 10 color options
  • APMA seal of acceptance

What we don't like:

  • A small number of reviews note that the thick cushioning might make it harder for some people to balance

The bottom line:

Thick cushioning and a wide range of sizes offer a lot of comfort to a wide variety of runners.

Get it here: New Balance Fresh Foam X More v4


Best Brooks running shoes: Brooks Ghost Max

Best Brooks running shoes
Brooks Ghost Max

Brooks Ghost Max

“Brooks is one brand that gets the fundamentals right,” says Dircksen. “Their shoes are ready for runs right out of the box, don't require any break in, and are popular for a reason.” Kopach suggests trying the Ghost Max, saying that, “It’s their most versatile running shoe—super light, comfortable, and well-built. My first ‘expensive’ running shoe as a middle school cross country athlete was from Brooks, so I have a soft spot for the brand. They never disappoint, even after so many years.”

Specifications:

  • Weight: 10 ounces
  • Sizes: 7 - 15, half-sizes through 12.5 (medium, wide, and extra wide)
  • Drop: 6 mm
  • Price: $150

What we like:

  • Available in medium, wide, and extra wide fits
  • 7 color options
  • APMA seal of acceptance
  • More than half the upper is made from recycled materials

What we don't like:

  • A minority of customer reviews raise concerns about the longevity of the tread

The bottom line:

Thoughtfully designed for runners, the Brooks Ghost Max is ready for a run right out of the box.

Get it here: Brooks Ghost Max


Best Saucony men’s running shoes: Saucony Kinvara Pro

Best Saucony men’s running shoes
Saucony Kinvara Pro

Saucony Kinvara Pro

Both Dircksen and Kopach are fans of Saucony, with Kopach enthusing that, “Saucony is a quality brand that never disappoints, making incredibly reliable shoes.” Dircksen’s pick is the Kinvara Pro, which he says is, “famed for its lightweight and nimble experience—it's a great everyday trainer, yet with a small heel/toe drop and lightweight at 9.5 ounces, it's going to give more pop than your typical everyday shoe.”

Specifications:

  • Weight: 9.5 ounces
  • Sizes: 7 - 15, half-sizes through 12.5 (regular and wide)
  • Drop: 8 mm
  • Price: $180

What we like:

  • Great rebound
  • Propel-speedroll technology to keep you moving forwards
  • Comfortable

What we don't like:

  • Some customers say they run a little small

The bottom line:

A small heel and toe drop puts a little spring in your step on your daily runs, but make sure to double-check the size chart to make sure you’re getting the right fit.

Get it here: Saucony Kinvara Pro


Best running shoes for race day: Saucony Endorphin Pro 3

Best running shoes for race day
Saucony Endorphin Pro 3

Saucony Endorphin Pro 3

Another spot for Saucony, this time going to their Endorphin Pro 3. “Lightweight and with a carbon fiber plate, these shoes are snappy and make those faster paces feel easy,” says Dircksen. Designed to be soft, bouncy, and constantly propelling you forward with their speedroll tech, you’ll be putting your best feet forward in these on race day.

Specifications:

  • Weight: 7.2 ounces
  • Sizes: 7 - 15, half-sizes through 12.5
  • Drop: 8 mm
  • Price: $225

What we like:

  • Lightweight
  • Bouncy
  • Good durability and traction on the sole

What we don't like:

  • Expensive

The bottom line:

A carbon-fiber plate provides excellent shock-absorption while speedroll tech helps propel you forward, making for a comfortable shoe to help you hit those PRs—but it is an investment.

Get it here: Saucony Endorphin Pro 3


Best running shoes for smooth cushioning: On Cloud 5

Best running shoes for smooth cushioning
On Cloud 5

For those runners who feel every shock and bump of the road under their feet, cushioning is going to be a big priority. Kopach suggests giving On’s Cloud 5 shoes a try, saying that, “On Clouds are some of the lightest and most cushioned shoes around, and while they’re trendy in the fashion world, they also offer a reliable and economic running shoe option.”

Specifications:

  • Weight: 8.8 ounces
  • Sizes: 7 - 14, half-sizes through 12.5
  • Drop: 7 mm
  • Price: $139.99

What we like:

  • Waterproof options available
  • 14 color options
  • Super-soft cushioning
  • Made with 44% recycled materials

What we don't like:

  • Some reviews complain that debris tends to get caught in the soles

The bottom line:

The cushioning makes these shoes truly live up to their name—and it’s especially appreciated for runs on hard surfaces.

Get it here: On Cloud 5


Best running shoes for recovery runs: Nike InfinityRN 4

Best running shoes for recovery runs
Nike InfinityRN 4

Nike InfinityRN 4

If you want to get your miles in but are concerned previous training has taken it out of you, schedule yourself a nice, easy recovery run, and some shoes to go with it. “I like Nike for recovery runs and light training,” says Kopach. “I recommend looking at the Nike InfinityRN 4—Nike tends to run narrow, in my experience, but not in this model.” They're also supportive and bouncy, making them ideal for gentle expeditions.

Specifications:

  • Weight: 11.1 ounces
  • Sizes: 6 - 15, half-sizes through 12.5
  • Drop: 9 mm
  • Price: $190

What we like:

  • Six color options
  • Good rebound
  • Durable

What we don't like:

  • Some reviewers say they run a little small, and recommend going up half a size

The bottom line:

A bouncy rebound and a supportive design makes this shoe a comfortable choice for all runs, but especially on days when you want to take it easy.

Get it here: Nike InfinityRN 4


Best running shoes for stability: Brooks Glycerin 21

Best running shoes for stability
Brooks Glycerin 21

Brooks Glycerin 21

For everyday stability and support, consider the Glycerin 21s from Brooks, which have been designed for a smooth, comfortable run. “These are Brooks’ version of trainers, and they are worth the investment,” says Kopach. “This is my personal favorite shoe for everyday exercise—I think I have the last 10 iterations!”

Specifications:

  • Weight: 9.8 ounces
  • Sizes: 7 - 15, half-sizes through 12.5 (medium and wide)
  • Drop: 10 mm
  • Price: $160

What we like:

  • Extremely comfortable
  • Durable

What we don't like:

  • Some customers say the upper gets a little too warm or snug

The bottom line:

A longtime favorite of many runners, this stable shoe is a great fit for everyday training no matter where your route takes you.

Get it here: Brooks Glycerin 21


Best lightweight running shoes: Hoka Rincon 3

Best lightweight running shoes
Hoka Rincon 3

Hoka Rincon 3

“Most racing super-shoes will be around seven ounces or under, so having an everyday trainer that’s in the same ballpark is a nice shoe to have in your arsenal,” says Dircksen. “At just 7.7 ounces, the Hoka Rincon 3 is a great lightweight, everyday shoe choice.” And with 17 bright, eye-catching color schemes to choose from, you won’t struggle to find a pair you like the look of, either.

Specifications:

  • Weight: 7.7 ounces
  • Sizes: 7 - 16, half-sizes through 12.5
  • Drop: 5 mm
  • Price: $125

What we like:

  • Lightweight
  • 17 color options
  • Durable

What we don't like:

  • A handful of reviews say they run a little tight

The bottom line:

An extensive number of color choices adds flair to a lightweight shoe that’s also durable enough for daily training.

Get it here: Hoka Rincon 3


How we selected the best running shoes for men

We made our choices through a combination of expert advice, in-depth research, personal experience, and sifting through countless customer reviews. Additionally, we developed categories for the top concerns among runners of all levels, then did extensive research to find the top brands known for their quality, selection, customer service, and product availability.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

Which brand is best for running shoes?

“Most of the major brands make a wide enough variety of sizes, shapes, and types of shoes that anyone is bound to find a pair they like,” says Armstrong. “It’s only when you get to the smaller brands (Altra, Hoka, Peluva, etc.) that you may or may not like them. My personal fave right now is Altra, but I have Wile E. Coyote feet (long and wide). That might not work for someone with Barney Rubble-style feet.”

What is the new shoe technology in 2023?

Sneakers specialized for activities (like basketball or tennis shoes for men) are getting more advanced by the year. “We’re in the era of the ‘super shoe,” says Dircksen. “There are racing and workout shoes now that have carbon fiber plates built into the soles, which improves running economy, decreases muscle damage, and improves performance. This new technology is being used by everyone, pros and recreational athletes alike. The everyday trainers are also seeing a shift in stack height, or how much cushion is on the shoes. Nearly all brands now have big cushioned options for their shoes. The foam used in these shoes is another technological evolution, improving the energy return for runners.”

“Shoe technology is ever-evolving, with improvements made constantly to the materials used for cushioning, plates, and other components of a running shoe,” says Stafford. “Shoe brands typically release a new version of each model once a year. Part of the fit process at a run specialty store is helping customers understand the implications of evolutions, especially in new updates to old favorites.”

What running shoes do pros use?

“Basically, anything with carbon plates in them,” says Armstrong. “The ‘super shoes’ are all the rage, from marathon to triathlon and even into track spikes. The brand of the shoe is less relevant than the technology. Spoiler: The brand they wear is usually determined by which company is willing to give the athlete free shoes.”

What are the three types of running shoes?

“Running shoes can be divided into two very broad and general categories of support: Stability and neutral,” explains Stafford. “A stability shoe is designed with supportive features in the midsole, for people who overpronate. Motion-control shoes are those models that lie on the most stable end of the stability spectrum. Conversely, a neutral shoe is designed for people with either a neutral gait or who supinate.”

“It’s important to note that many runners are not firmly in one support category or another,” Stafford continues. “Support requirements can be informed by injury, fatigue, strength, and experience. Additionally, biomechanists and footwear designers are constantly evaluating the appropriate amount of support (or lack thereof) that can best reduce injury. We recommend working with a fit specialist that can discuss training and injury history, goals, and the pros and cons of different amounts of stability.”

“Within and across these support categories you will also find varying degrees of cushion,” Stafford adds. “The appropriate amount of cushion can also be affected by training goals, injury history, and even simple personal preference in the ride of the shoe. Many runners may also consider exploring a shoe specifically designed for uptempo efforts or race day. These models maximize degrees of energy return or improved running economy, with the focus typically determined by the distance of the race.”

“We all have different feet,” says Armstrong. “And our feet all have different histories (injuries, uses, shoes worn outside of running). The main thing you need to know about the shoes is that your particular feet may be happier in shoes with stability. Your partner’s feet may be happier with more cushion. Don’t get hung up on why, just know which one feels best. And then, of course, spend as much time barefoot (or as close to it as possible) when you’re not running so you can keep your feet healthy and strong.”

The information presented here is created independently from the TIME editorial staff. To learn more, see our About page.

1.1136.0+1.64.10