Running shoes really make a difference. They are the only equipment you need when you hit the road. Hence a good pair can protect you from injury, provide better comfort, and improve performance. Since your feet carry three times your body weight when running, running shoes can help prevent blisters and pains.

Unfortunately, the running shoes world can be a minefield to navigate. There are endless choices amidst technical terms that even the seasoned runner may find it hard to pick a pair. No worries, though. We’ve done more than wet our feet with the best running shoes for your needs. Below are the top-rated running shoes for you.

Top Running Shoes 2023 Reviewed

Best Running Shoes Reviewed 2023

The Brooks Ghost 15 is a reliable and consistent running shoe that offers an effortlessly comfortable feel. This shoe provides lightweight cushioning, a breathable upper, and fits to size. It is updated with a DNA Loft v2 midsole foam that combines EVA, rubber, and air. This feature makes the midsole softer and lighter, unlike what you’d experience with the Ghost 14.

While the Brooks Ghost 15 feels like a versatile shoe owing to its soft and cozy feeling and supportive feel, it’s better as a road running shoe than for hitting the trails. It’s neither heavy nor light, weighing 9.8oz for men and 8.8 oz for women. In addition, it has a high drop zone of 11mm. Higher is better in running shoes since it offers lots of heel cushioning and smooth transitions.

We like that the Brooks Ghost 15 comes with thin but molded insoles. They provide additional support and are removable. Hence, you can throw them in the washer if they begin to stink. The outsole is segmented rubber that flexes with every stride. You will find it flexible while running but stable so you won’t find them wobbly. They are the ultimate everyday running shoes for multiple uses, including walking, HIIT, circuit training, and even working.

Nike Pegasus 39 is an all-rounded shoe that will support your runs whether you’re jogging or sprinting. It will also support newbies looking to run their first 5K or marathon. It’s a lightweight design, with the men’s US 9 weighing only 9.2 ounces. With that said, you’ll find the midsole responsiveness ideal for long and everyday runs.

The midsole boasts Nike’s Zoom Air bags in the React midsole. It delivers great cushioning for contact landing. Nike Pegasus 39 is true to size, and the heel no longer showcases any slip. In addition, the toe box is roomy, and you can find it in a wider width if you have wide feet. Again, the balanced sidewall gives it a neutral character to benefit even those who underpronate.

With the engineered mesh and Flywire technology on the upper, it is breathable and feels snug. The padded tongue is a huge plus since it adds cushioning around the shoe’s collar.

Looking at the outsole, the Nike Pegasus 39 features a carbon rubber outsole with fin-like lugs. It grips well, making rearfoot transitions effortless. The thick foam insole works together with the underfoam to add plush cushioning. The Nike Pegasus 39 is designed for the daily trainer and you can use it for everything.

Lululemon Blissfeel 2 feels great on your feet. It is an everyday running shoe designed to provide a secure fit. While the shoe supports you, it also has quick toe-off speed. This shoe is designed for women with the understanding that women have a different center of gravity from men and how their feet strike the ground is different too.

This shoe boasts a wide base that provides a smooth roll forward. It also comes with Lululemon’s compound foam which doubles as balance and impact-absorbing foam. As such, it cushions the feet without giving a mushy feeling. This shoe moves with you. It has a flexible and stretchy upper, and it feels snug.

Although the Lululemon Blissfeel 2 secures the foot, it still has plenty of wiggle room around the toe area. The thin but padded tongue adds to the overall feel of the upper sock-like feeling. Looking at the outsole, we discovered that Lululemon is all about the shoe’s feel, as it includes a heel landing pad. The rubber outsole is segmented with lines that run vertically and horizontally to offer exceptional grip.

If you’re a beginner looking for a running shoe that feels great from the get-go, the Lululemon Blissfeel 2 should be right up your alley. We like the execution of the different elements to give you a secure fit without inhibiting speed.

Saucony Endorphin Pro 3 running shoes are made for speed. This shoe is more forgiving if you don’t make full contact landings and your gait is not 100% neutral. Hence, it provides excellent support when you have a bit of outward foot roll. Being a carbon-plated shoe, the Endorphin Pro 3 delivers lots of energy return. It is suitable for the long-distance runner as it’s light and roomy to accommodate swelling and prevent discomfort when the miles hit double digits.

This shoe’s heel-to-toe offset is 8mm. It is the perfect middle ground that won’t stretch your Achilles tendon. Hence, it’s good as a daily runner that won’t leave your feet feeling sore. In addition, it can suit new runners and those returning to running.

Saucony Endorphin Pro 3 is lightweight, weighing 7.2 ounces. It has added foam (4mm) to make it more responsive, cushier and more responsive. It has all the qualities of a durable shoe featuring a beaded PEBA midsole that resists creasing. Furthermore, the rugged rubber outsole allows you to put in some serious mileage without upsetting tread wear.

If you’re looking for a soft and cushioned ride, the Saucony Endorphin Pro 3 is your best choice. It has ample toe box room, although it may feel squishy if you wear thick socks. The tongue also tends to slide, which can be annoying. So, you will still need thin socks. Get it for long-distance runs where you need energetic propulsion.

This neutral trainer is designed for hitting the road and logging big miles. The New Balance Fresh Foam X 1080 V12 feels great when walking and running. It features comfy engineered mesh on the upper to cradle the foot comfortably. This shoe’s forefront has soft cushioning to provide a friendly transition.

When you look at the heel, you’ll notice the generous bevel that comes in handy for smooth transitions. It also makes any foot strike pattern easy, particularly a gentle heel strike when taking long-distance runs. Your heel locks in, and the shoe opens slightly in the midfoot and a little more in the toe box.

With a no-stitch overlay on the upper, the shoe maintains stability. In addition, the tongue is well-cushioned and does not slide. It has an 8mm drop for responsiveness, making it easy to make full-contact landings. Although the design is a bit heavier at 9.5 oz, the ride is fun.

We like that it comes with a molded insole that’s removable. It provides under-arch support whether you’re powering through the last mile or taking it slow. You’ll always feel supported. The New Balance Fresh Foam X 1080 V12 is our top recommendation when you want a mildly responsive running shoe with a locked foothold.

Mizuno Wave Rider 25 is flexible and comfortable with a 12mm drop for high performance. It has tons of foam to cushion the heel and give you a smooth landing if you’re a heel striker. You can also go from the treadmill to strength training since it will move the center of gravity forward.

This shoe is designed for neutral runners and light pronators. It has a comfortable, full-length midsole with Enerzy foam that’s soft and bouncy. The forefoot is flexible, while the rearfoot has a plate to improve stability. It gives you a snug fit and security all around the foot. Therefore, it works great as an everyday trainer and long-run shoe.

We found the Mizuno Wave Rider 25 exceptionally durable thanks to the sturdy outsole with a generous amount of rubber. Still, it has deep flex grooves for a pleasant underfoot and peppy toe-off. As a road runner, you will like that it maintains its traction even through wet pavements.

Mizuno Wave Rider 25 is ideal for easy-paced runs and daily workouts. It provides a soft and flexible ride. At around $105, it falls in the high-end category, so expect effortless reliability for 100+ miles.

Nike ZoomX Vaporfly Next% 2 is for the serious runner, so looks aside. With a high energy return, you can take this pair on the run as soon as it arrives, and it will help propel you to wherever you want to go, no matter the distance. This shoe uses PEBA-based foam and a full-length plate on the midsole to produce a spring-like feeling.

A carbon plate under the forefront curves up to the rear. While anchored at the forefront, the carbon plate is suspended by foam in the rear. It gives you a propulsive effect from the suspended part, while the forefront makes it easy to achieve roll-offs.

Nike ZoomX Vaporfly Next% 2 upper is wide open to offer ample airflow. The shoe does not feel warm in the summer, and you’ll not be freezing in winter. The mesh fabric is redesigned to form to your foot. Furthermore, this shoe can accommodate different foot shapes due to the additional volume in the toe box.

The Nike ZoomX Vaporfly Next% 2 delivers high speeds and is not your everyday running shoe. It’s made to be used a few times a year since using it every day could result in leg pain. It delivers performance, which you want when you’ve trained for a marathon.

The Hoka One One Clifton 8 is built for a stable and smooth ride. It comes with an updated midsole, upper, and outsole. The midsole uses CMVA cushioning (compression molded ethylene-vinyl acetate) that allows the shoe to be lighter than its previous version, the Clifton 7.

This shoe produces a soft underfoot with a plush feeling. It gives you a smooth rockered transition that comes in handy if you want a daily trainer or a recovery running shoe. It’s best on the road for medium-paced runs and can take you through long distances, including marathons.

Hoka One One Clifton 8 has a 5mm heel to drop. It is best if you land on the middle or the front of your foot. It keeps your foot in a natural position and is easy to transition into if it’s your first running shoe. The EVA foam cushions your ride and produces the smooth transitions.

Owing to this shoe’s rocker shape, it is sufficient for long-distance runs. It helps you build tempo, allowing you to go as fast or slow as you want. Thus, it also doubles as an excellent walking shoe. The outsole is carbon rubber and exposed EVA foam featuring a wide transition channel in the middle. It allows for a firm ride with a sturdy grip.

Hoka One One Clifton 8 is extremely comfortable. You can use it as a daily trainer or run a marathon in it. The secure arch feel proves suitable for people with different foot shapes. And due to its lightweight design, it can also make an outstanding recovery shoe.

The Saucony Triumph 20 is a premium option in the daily trainers’ category. It offers a snug fit with soft foam cushioning and a thick rubber outsole. We like that it’s lightweight, even with the thick cushioning. It’s not just a daily trainer, but it will also offer exemplary cushioning for sprints, long-distancing running, and strength training.

This running shoe uses PWRRUN+, also known as beaded polyurethane-based foam that is soft and light. It gives you a well-cushioned underfoot and a bit of a rocker feel. Weighing at 10 oz for a men’s 10.5 and 8.3 oz for a women’s 7.5, it’s neither heavy nor light. The heel-to-toe offset is 10 mm which makes the foot switch slow. It can help with Achilles tendinopathy and plantar fasciitis.

The Saucony Triumph 20 fits true to size. It feels snug as it has a narrow heel but decent heel cushioning. The heel collar, and rounded shape prevents heel irritation. With the stretchy mesh and lace-up style, no worries about hurting a bunion when slipping the shoe on.

Saucony Triumph 20 brings plush comfort in a stylish style. It holds your foot and adapts to your ride. We feel it fits great if you have narrow rather than wide feet. You’ll love it on treadmills or on the pavement, and it will help you go the distance.

Asics Metaspeed Sky+ is a running shoe for speed training and competition. It is a neutral shoe with a 5 mm heel-to-toe drop. The shoe is also lightweight at 7.2 ounces. It allows you to make an easy mid to front-foot landing. Everything about the geometry is unique as it comes with a carbon plate that sits closer to the foot. Hence it gives you a firm feel that excels in marathon distances.

This shoe has more cushioning and control as it features more midsole foam in the forefront. The thick midsole produces a more propulsive ride using FF Turbo foam, a wide midsole base, and a redefined upper. Traction is excellent, thanks to the rubber outsole. The rubber has holes in it which sheds the shoe’s weight. Furthermore, it has a shallow groove under the heel, improving stability by distributing your weight.

Another thing we like is that it comes with ribbed laces, so they stay on and won’t start to fray after a few runs. The new mesh upper is softer and has a more welcoming toe box. Moreover, the liner feels smooth, and the heel cap gives you a luxurious feeling. The best feature is the forefoot bounce that protects you and provides cushioning over long distances.

Overall, the Asics Metaspeed Sky+ gives you the confidence to run by meeting your needs for stability, lockdown, and support. You won’t worry about missteps or feeling tippy, making it a must-have for long-distance training.

The Altra Lone Peak 7 is a sleek train running shoe that is comfortable and responsive. It secures your foot, enabling you to tackle technical terrain. Thanks to the MaxTrac rubber outsole, this shoe can take you from dirt trails to gravel with an effortless grip. It has 25 mm of stack, a wide toe box, and zero drop midsole.

This shoe does not require a break-in period because it fits right out of the box. It is comfy with cushioning on the heel, ankle, and tongue. The midsole features Altra EGO foam, a blend of many cushioning compounds. Even though it feels soft, it provides the ground contact needed for running on various surfaces.

We like the secure upper as it is lightweight and brings lots of fresh air to your feet. The upper is engineered mesh which is thick and almost weatherproof. No snow, mud, dirt, or moisture sticks to it. Again, the inner upper is a soft mesh that adds comfort.

From the overall design with the medium/firm EGO midsole to the ultra-grippy outsole. The Altra Lone Peak 7 is the ultimate trail running shoe.

Brooks Glycerin 20 is a fun running shoe with 15 colors available. It works for its purpose and comes at a reasonable price which is why most people reach for it. The Glycerin 20 comes with a full midsole featuring DNA Loft v3 foam. The shoe is bouncy, light, and durable as a nitrogen-infused foam. It is soft with a rubber substation that will help you clock hundreds of miles.

An airy mesh upper is fairly breathable with a nice level of comfort. It offers plenty of cushioning around the tongue and collar to give you a comfortable step-in feel. The plush cushioning combined with a high drop provides responsiveness and speed. In addition, the chunky heel provides a smooth forefront transition adding comfort.

The outsole on the Brooks Glycerin 20 is incredibly durable. It is made of carbon rubber and lacks side-to-side flex grooves. The shoe features re-oriented flex grooves that make it hard to dent the rubber. Hence, it is not as flexible, so you won’t like it for speed.

Brooks Glycerin 20 is a neutral shoe with soft cushioning. It makes a remarkable everyday trainer for stability thanks to its wide footprint. You can also benefit from it as a recovery shoe. The only drawback is the laces since you need to double knot them to avoid re-lacing them mid-run.

Best Running Shoes Buying Guide

Whether you are buying your first pair or preparing for a race, the shoes on your feet are super important. There are several factors to consider when buying running shoes. Once you find the right pair, you’ll find it easy to achieve your running goals. These are the essential tips to get running shoes that fit your needs.

Where Do You Run?

The first important factor is where you run since you’ll encounter road and trail running shoes. Road running shoes cushion your feet against the hard ground and help you to move comfortably. On the other hand, trail running shoes are designed to not only cushion on hard surfaces but also protect your feet when handling rough terrain. In addition, the outsoles also feature grippy lugs and technical specs to take you through technical terrain, steep inclines, mud, wet, and snowy paths.

What Are Your Running Goals?

When you know the intended use of the shoes you pick, you can match it to your needs. For example, are you looking for running shoes for sprinting, long-distance running, or recovery? Long-distance shoes need to be cushioned, so they tend to be flexible, while speed-running shoes are stiffer to create a form-fitting feel for added stability.

Do You Need Specific Support for Your Gait?

You can get away with a neutral running shoe if you have neutral pronation or supination. This means that your feet and ankles align upright during every stride. You also have a normal arch, and your shoes wear evenly. If you overpronate, i.e., your ankles and arches lean inward downward as you run, have a flat arch, and wear shoes on the inside, you may need stability or motion control shoes.

Lastly, if you underpronate, your foot rolls outward (supination), and your knees bend inward in every stride. You also have a high arch, and your shoes wear on the outside; you can benefit from neutral shoes with midsole cushioning and support.


You can choose either running shoes that make you feel like you’re running on air (plush feeling) or those that make you feel underfoot. Pick the shoes that feel the most comfortable as oftentimes they will be the suitable for you.

How the Shoe Fits

Running should not have a break-in period. When you wear the shoe, it’s critical that your foot does not slide at the heel, forefoot, or midfoot. They should feel snug and secure with an upper that hugs your foot while the toe box leaves extra room for your toes to wiggle naturally. A good rule of thumb is to have at least one-half or one thumbnail of space from the end of your toes to the end of the shoe.

Also, it’s better to fit shoes at the end of the day since the feet tend to swell. Consider the shoe fit if you wear aftermarket insoles. If you don’t wear insoles, you may want to consider them since they personalize the shoes’ fit to your feet, allowing you to have additional support on your feet’ arch, heel, and balls.

Brooks Ghost 15 is a cut above the rest. It’s the shoe you get used to for daily training and the one you pick for racing. You get exceptional comfort, cushioning, and support that it’s easy to call it ‘the one.”

Special Mentions

The top list showcases the top-recommended options by seasoned runners. We came across many brands and designs, and we believe the following list covers more options for you to consider. We’ll tell you why these running shoes did not make the top 12 list of the best running shoes 2023.

Brooks Ghost 14 Women’s/ Brooks Ghost 14 Men’s: This exciting daily trainer is also a wonderful workhorse. With a soft yet responsive midsole, it meets the needs of the daily runner. With that in mind, the outsole tends to wear fast.

ASICS GT-2000 10 Women’s/ ASICS GT-2000 10 Men’s: This budget stability shoe employs gel technology and Flytefoam cushioning for impact resistance. It’s ideal for beginners who tend to pronate or if you have flat feet. We feel the shoe runs warm, so it can be uncomfortable if you wear thick socks in summer.

Adidas Adizero Adios Pro 3 Men’s: This is a lightweight shoe with resilient cushioning. It offers an aggressive toe-spring, which improves speed. The size fits to size and comes with stability features for long-distance running. Nevertheless, the price is a bit too steep for a shoe that lacks a heel hold.

Puma Deviate Nitro 2 Men’s / Puma Deviate Nitro 2 Women’s: If you want a shoe for speedy runs with durable features, the Puma Deviate Nitro 2 has it. Its high stability and decent cushioning make it suitable for easy and uptempo runs. However, the toe box is not very roomy and can be a source of discomfort when you need lots of toe wiggle room.

ASIC Gel-Cumulus 24 Men’s/ ASIC Gel-Cumulus 24 Women’s: This shoe is ideal for running workouts. While it’s not for speed, it has generous cushioning for impact resistance. It’s also a durable model that will last hundreds of miles. Nevertheless, it runs warm and is not for wide feet.

Brooks Adrenaline GTS 22 Men’s/ Brooks Adrenaline GTS 22 Women’s: This shoe boasts bi-directional correction and supports runners with flat feet and plantar fasciitis. While it’s a daily trainer, it’s heavy and not as stylish as everyday wear.

Under Armour Charged Assert 9 Men’s/ Under Armour Charged Assert 9 Women’s: This neutral running shoe can help you improve speed. It’s well-rounded and can take you from the tracks to the gym without a problem. Still, it does not have the best heel lockdown; hence it’s not ideal for high-performance runs due to heel slippage.

Adidas Adistar Men’s/ Adidas Adistar Women’s: This is a protective running shoe that’s made for slow, easy runs. It offers stable landings, but the lack of energy returns means it cannot help you with speed.

Cropped Oluwasegun

Loise Wambui is a freelancer and sub-editor, a graduate with a Bachelor of Arts (Economics) degree. Born in Beachwood, she has over 10 years of experience under her belt and is one of our top writers for all-around content. From sous vide cookers to stock pots, smartwatches, and even pet feeders. Loise has a keen eye for detail and spends a lot of her time providing expert recommendations in these areas for Top Ten Reviews. So, if you’re wondering which stock pot is best to whip a thanksgiving or whether a productivity tool can really help you improve your work quality, Loise is the one to ask. When not working, she loves reading, traveling, and trying out new recipes.

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