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The past two years have brought many changes to our daily routines, including our health and fitness. When many gyms closed in 2020 and 2021, people got more creative with their workouts — and according to fitness tracking brand Strava's 2021 Year in Sport Report, that trend doesn't appear to be slowing down.
Walking and running are more popular than ever as methods of staying fit, as we have all come to enjoy the importance of getting outdoors. And while running consistently can be a great way to stay active, it can also be challenging for your body if you haven’t got the right equipment.
The right pair of shoes can mean the difference between a pain-free jog or a potential injury, which is why we’ve rounded up some of the top-rated running shoes on the market to help the next time that you’re in need of a new pair.
Whether you’re a newbie to running or are an endurance athlete, scroll through to find a selection of runner-approved kicks.
When lululemon's first ever running shoe recently hit stores, it quickly became a go-to for outdoor and treadmill runners. The Blissfeel running shoe has a thick layer of compound foam to balance cushioning, energy return, and performance with each stride.
Promising review: "Such an amazing shoe! My foot has never felt more comfortable. I’ve already put quite a few miles on these babies, and they do not disappoint. Feels like running on a cloud!"
These bestselling running shoes feature a new, ultralight midsole foam that shoppers say virtually disappears underfoot. The thick sole helps to absorb shock while the early stage Meta-Rocker offers a smooth ride.
Promising review: "I've gone through about 7 pairs of Cliftons now and have yet to be disappointed. Such a comfortable, versatile and breathable shoe that breaks in very quickly when new. They're the perfect width and allow my feet all the space they need."
With their sustainable materials and lightweight construction, Allbirds's upgraded Tree Dasher 2 running shoes are a great choice for runners of all levels. They feature added grip on the soles compared to the original Tree Dasher, which helps provide stability when you're on the road.
Promising review: "I keep coming back to these shoes! I wear them as a healthcare provider - moving around all day and then on my days off they’re great for walks. They hold up well and I find the my running shoe size works well (about 1/2 size bigger than other shoes). I get a new pair every year."
These plush running shoes are designed with comfort in mind. They feature extra lugs on the outsole for a more centred transition and a knit upper with foam around the heel to prevent blisters.
Promising review: "Best shoes I’ve purchased, couldn’t imagine running in anything else...Completely stops pronation of the foot and ankle while running. Your knees and hips will thank you."
If you prefer to get your run on through trails rather than on the road, these shoes are worth considering. They're designed with larger lugs, delivering better push-off grip and braking grip in all surface conditions.
Promising review: "I’ve been buying Speedcross shoes for years now and I absolutely love them. With the new 5s I noticed they feel a bit more responsive and secrete when I’m tearing up the climbs and especially on the declines. I trust these shoes to grab the dirt without slipping."
These colourful running shoes are designed with a responsive FuelFoam midsole and a bold geometric shape. The innovative outsole returns energy to your stride, which helps propel you forward as you run.
Promising review: "I love the extra bounce these shoes give me on a run, and the extra padding to take stress off my ankle."
A dual-layer midsole construction features a top bed foam layer and Fresh Foam underfoot cushioning, for heel impact dispersing, sustained comfort. These shoes also feature an engineered mesh upper with strategic zones of breathability.
Promising review: "Love these shoes. They are like running on clouds. They have enough stability for gravel trail runs. They fit narrow feet beautifully."
These Nike running shoes have an adjustable midfoot band and a clip at the heel for added stability as you run. They also have thoughtful details like breathable mesh uppers and reflective trim to keep you safe in low light conditions.
Promising review: "The Air Zoom Vomero 16 is a great choice for outdoor runs. I am working on improving my running for a half marathon and have been running outdoors more than usual. The foam cushion is comfortable and really feels flexible and responsive to my running."
For long distance running, shoppers say that these Saucony running shoes are tough to beat. SPEEDROLL Technology propels you forward effortlessly, so you can run faster, not harder and shave time off your new personal best.
Promising review: "These are my favourite running shoes! They are light and comfy, the roll through feels amazing, and they just fit perfectly! Not too snug, not too loose. I have run many races, half marathons, 10 milers, and 10Ks in them."
These sneakers have FF BLAST+ cushioning that keeps the shoe lightweight while increasing shock absorption in each step. Featuring responsive performance with every step, these shoes also create a more comfortable feeling while you run.
Promising review: "I absolutely love the new Gel Nimbus 24 running shoes. They have so much cushioning that I feel like I'm bouncing with each step. And the fabric seems way more durable than the 23s."
The Ghost 14 shoes use DNA LOFT technology throughout the midsole for a smoother experience from heel-to-toe. The result is a zero-distraction run so you can focus more on your performance and less on uncomfortable footwear.
Promising review: "Since I discovered Brooks Ghost, I have not been able to wear anything else for my cross-training workouts. Stable shoe, wide enough and yet feel like I'm on a cloud."
Not only are these running shoes some of the most affordable around, they have also received rave reviews from shoppers. Charged Cushioning helps protect against impact, while leather overlays add durable stability and a mesh upper keeps your feet cool.
Promising review: "This shoe is extremely comfortable and fits perfectly. I feel I’ve gotten really good value for the money I spent. I would definitely recommend this shoe to anyone."