Once upon a prophecy, God granted man legs so that he could run. In today’s world, we say that if you’re going to do it, do it with haste and unwavering precision.
The running crowd is no doubt a different breed of athlete who takes their pavement-pounding seriously. Choosing the right shoe to get the job done can, therefore, be near-impossible based on individual feel, running style, running environment and foot shape. Not to mention matching your fancy running shoes with the right running shorts, running tops or running jackets.
Regardless, for those who need some help in this department, we’ve compiled a list of the best running shoes for men today. Bear in mind these are all road running shoes, and so won’t be suitable for going off the beaten track. They also provide varying levels of support and cushioning, so be sure to check out each manufacturer’s full range of styles to find something that may be better suited to your particular needs.
Allbirds Tree Dasher
The New Zealand born Allbirds brand are fast making a name for themselves for making the most comfortable shoes, sustainably made with natural materials like merino wool and eucalyptus tree fiber. Their latest release, the Tree Dasher, is perhaps their best looking shoe to date. It's wide fit and mesh upper combines stability and comfort. We hate to admit this, but we've tried this shoe and it's pretty damn good.
On Running Cloudstratus
Swiss company On was founded to "revolutionise the sensation of running." The Cloudstatus is best suited road-runners and is one of On's more premium offerings. Its features proprietary CloudTec technology in its construction (in this case there is a double layer for extra cushioning) to provide support all around your foot, while a Speedboard helps to cushion your foot and spring you forward. On says the Cloudstratus is an ideal shoe for long-distance and marathon runners.
Nike Zoom Fly SP Fast
Sportswear giant Nike was born with the very mission to assist and mould athletes. Its running shoes are developed based on countless hours of research to provide the wearer with the best possible support and function. The Zoom Fly SP Fast has been given Nike's own React technology; a cushioned layer to absorb the impact of each stride and to give you an helping hand leading into the next. They're lightweight too, thanks to a deconstructed upper layer, with yarns fused together to provide optimum support without the unnecessary bulk. They look phenomenal too, and even come with a hi-vis carry bag.
Adidas Ultraboost 20
Adidas' Boost technology was a revolution in running when it launched in 2013. Originally developed for serious runners before trickling down into the lifestyle sector. Nowhere is it better implemented though, than in the Ultraboost shoe. The Boost sole is married to a knitted-upper that adapts to your feet and gives support in vital areas. A number of colour variations ensure you'll be able to find a style to suit you.
Asics GEL-Kayano 26
The Asics Gel-Kayano has been a mainstay in the running-sphere since its introduction in 1993. Named after designer Toshikazu Kayano, the iconic running shoe is consistently revered as one of the very best. It's stuck to the Japanese philosophy of kaizen, which means gradual improvement. As such, each iteration of the shoe has been an evolution as opposed to a revolution. This latest model is said to be ideal for runners who overpronate, while Asics' proprietary GEL is on hand to provide ample cushioning.
Under Armour UA HOVR Machina
While Under Armour's UA Hovr Machina provides you with everything you'd want from a running shoe: cushioning, support and energy return (in this case from the Pebax propulsion plate), it's got a brain inside it too. This means it can connect to the companion MapMyRun app to give feedback based on your running metrics. We think it looks great too, no matter which colour you choose (there are 5) and the addition of reflective strips will help you be seen at night.
Brooks Running Transcend 7
Brooks has been manufacturing a variety of sports shoes since 1914, however, due to some financial complications some years later, adjusted its approach to focus solely on running. Since then it's remained one of the leading names, and has attained several "Best Running Shoe" accolades. The Transcend 7 utilises the company's DNA LOFT cushioning technology (of which there is helpings of in this shoe thanks to a newly designed midsole), as well as its GuideRails system which provides high levels of support to help prevent injuries.
Hoka One One Carbon X
There's no mistaking Hoka One One shoes. Not only do they have their company name emblazoned on the side, but a good proportion of its range sport chunky soles. The French company manufacturers shoes for all types of runners: road; trail and all-terrain, with the Carbon X featured here being best suited to tarmac surfaces. As its name implies, this shoe benefits from a built-in carbon fibre plate to assist with a "smooth transition through the gait cycle." Elsewhere you'll find Hoka's FROFLY X technology which not only provides cushioning for absorption, but keeps your foot stable within the shoe too. You can get it in three different colours, but the French red white and blue is our pick.
Saucony Endorphin Pro
Saucony is an American athletic footwear brand named after the banks of the Saucony Creek in Pennsylvania on which its first factory was founded. The company produces shoes for various types of running and walking, and puts a strong emphasis on all aspects of individual runners' feet. The Endorphin Pro is a new release for 2020 and claims to be the company's fastest ever. This is thanks to a combination of Speedroll technology (elevated cushioning and stiff carbon fibre plate in the forefoot) to help propel you along, with Formfit, which wraps snugly around your feet. An knitted upper layer provides ventilation and comfort. The White Mutant colourway is also rather easy on the eye.
New Balance Fresh Foam 1080v10
New Balance has footwear styles for all manner of sports, but running is where its heart truly lies. The Fresh Foam 1080v10 is the company's flagship model, offering a premium combination of comfort and support. The Fresh Foam midsole on this latest edition provides more energy return than its predecessor, assisting you even more with each stride. A Hypoknit knitted upper layer is on hand to caress your foot in comfort while New Balance's Ultra Heel design stays snug to the back of the foot to keep it well-supported.
Puma Hybrid Speed Orbiter
Puma is a company that strives to deliver high-performance products but without sacrificing on looks. The Hybrid Speed Orbiter is a great example of that, partnering the company's own IGNITE foam and NRGY bead technologies (to provide support and cushioning) in a shoe that could easily double up as a lifestyle sneaker.