8 best running shoes for men in 2023

Not all workout shoes are made the same. Running shoes in particular are made to make a marathon feel more like a mile. While that might be hyperbole, there is some truth to it.

Between the Select team and yours truly, we run dozens of miles every week. We’ve raced in dozens of different 5Ks, 10Ks, half-marathons and marathons. To find the best men’s running shoes on the market, I spoke with fitness and medical experts to better understand the essentials to look for. Then, I ran around New York City in dozens of popular shoes from top brands.

SKIP AHEAD The best men’s running shoes of 2023 | How to shop for men’s running shoes | What makes running shoes different? | How often should you replace running shoes?

Our top picks

How we picked the best men’s running shoes

There are a ton of running shoes on the market. To help elevate the best ones, we spoke with experts to hone in on what goes into the perfect pair of runners.

  • Size: Our experts agree that fit is the most important thing in a pair of running shoes. We highlighted shoes with inclusive size and width options, and included that information in each recommendation.
  • Cushioning: Dr. Miguel Cunha, podiatrist and founder of Gotham Footcare in New York, says a comfortable footbed is essential to a good pair of running shoes. A footbed made with memory foam or a shock-absorbing EVA (ethyl vinyl acetate) insole can help to support the arch.
  • Price: Running shoes can be expensive. Though I tried shoes across an even wider price range, all of our recommendations cost between $75 and $170.

How I tried men’s running shoes

I have been running regularly as part of my fitness routine for the past five years. I live in New York City and mostly run outside on concrete and pavement, with the occasional dirt trail or wooden path in the parks on the weekends. I typically run two to three times a week. I run indoors on a treadmill maybe three or four times a month. My distance ranges between three and six miles.

I wear a size 10 shoe with a medium width and generally prefer a shoe with neutral support and ample cushion. Cushion helps protect my joints, particularly my knees, from the repeated high-impact of running largely on concrete and pavement.

For this piece, I tried a different pair of running shoes every week, but otherwise maintained my routine as usual.

The best men’s running shoes of 2023

Our recommendations come from a mix of expert-recommended and staff favorite brands like Asics, Brooks, Hoka, Saucony and more. Each brand offers dozens of different kinds of shoes — these were the ones that I enjoyed most or were recommended by our experts.

Editor’s pick: Asics Gel-Nimbus 25

After trying out dozens of different running shoes, this is the pair I came back to. The Asics Gel-Nimbus 25 are supportive running shoes with a ton of cushion and relatively neutral support. Regardless of the distance I ran, I never felt joint or knee pain when I ran with these shoes. They were very comfortable thanks in large part to the stretchy tongue, soft knit lining around the upper and extra padding around the lower ankle. The wide heel loop also made them easy to take on and off.

These are the heaviest shoes on our list. If you are used to shorter, lightly-cushioned shoes, these will feel slow. I wouldn’t wear them for a timed-race, but for daily training where cushion and comfort is the priority: these are it.

Sizes offered: 7-15 | Widths offered: Medium, wide, extra wide | Heel drop: 8 mm | Weight: 299 g / 10.5 oz

Best for arch support: Brooks Adrenaline GTS 22

Cunha recommends the Brooks Adrenaline GTS 22 for best-in-class arch support. He points to the shoes’ EVA foam midsole, running from the heel all the way to the front of the shoe. This midsole increases cushioning and adds pronation control, says Cunha.

The difference between the Adrenaline and the Adrenaline GTS is Brooks’ Guiderails technology. All the brand’s GTS shoes have extra support around the rear of the shoe to reduce excess movement and help keep your stride natural and neutral, according to the brand. Having used Brooks Adrenaline and Glycerin GTS shoes in years past, the Guiderails do help to keep my stride natural.

Sizes offered: 7-16 | Widths offered: Narrow, medium, wide, extra wide | Heel drop: 12mm | Weight: 10.2oz / 289.2g

Best for wide feet and bunions: Hoka Clifton 9

These shoes won our 2023 Select Wellness Award for best men’s running shoes. They are cushioned, chunky shoes with a stiff, supportive feel. Cunha recommends them for people with wide feet or bunions, as they have a spacious, accommodating toe box. While I do not have wide feet, the spacious toe-box was roomy and never scrunched my toes.

Sizes offered: 7-16 | Widths offered: Medium, wide | Heel drop: 5mm | Weight: 8.7 oz / 246.6g

Fast and lightweight: Saucony Endorphin Speed 3

These speedy running shoes are one of the best running shoes for women, so naturally, I had to see what all the fuss was about. They are the lightest shoes on this list, designed for everyday speed and tempo training, according to the brand. Doing my usual routine, I noticed a huge difference between these shoes and my usual highly-cushion shoes — these felt light, fast and springy by comparison. They naturally rolled from step to step and almost encouraged a speedy pace. While I’d still choose a heavier, more cushioned shoe for long-distance training, I enjoyed these fast, neutral running shoes for intervals and timed runs.

I also tried the Saucony Endorphin Pro 3, which are lighter and stiffer than the Speed 3. While I enjoyed the Pro 3, they are priced at a steeper, hard-to-recommend $225.

Sizes offered: 7-15 | Widths offered: Medium, wide | Heel drop: 8mm | Weight: 8.1oz / 229g

Select pick: Brooks Revel 6

Priced at $100, these shoes cost significantly less than most of our other picks on this list. They are also the best overall running shoe winner of our 2023 Select Wellness Awards. Compared to the Brooks Adrenaline, these are lighter, more flexible, and more breathable, with less support and stiffness. There is enough support to feel padded, but not so much that you can’t feel the nuances of the ground you’re running on.

While they weren’t my absolute favorite pair of shoes, they are undeniably a great value. They are only available in medium width, however.

Sizes offered: 7-15 | Widths offered: Medium | Heel drop: 10mm | Weight: 8.8oz / 249.5g

Budget-friendly: Saucony Cohesion 16

If you are looking for a more affordable running shoe, Cunha recommends the Cohesion line from Saucony. It is consistently lower priced than most of the competition, including every other shoe on this list. “These shoes are spacious, comfortable and provide excellent ankle and arch support,” says Cunha.

Sizes offered: 7-15 | Widths offered: Medium, wide | Heel drop: 12mm | Weight: 9.1oz / 258g

Durable and grippy: New Balance Fresh Foam X 1080v12

The New Balance Fresh Foam X 1080v12 are heavily cushioned everyday running shoes with impressive durability. After a full week of use, they look the least worn-in compared to every other shoe I tried. The slightly knobby rubber grips on the tread of the shoe gave me added confidence and traction while running on dirt and gravel. Like the Brooks Adrenaline GTS, these shoes have inclusive size and width options.

Sizes offered: 7-16 | Widths offered: Narrow, medium, wide, extra wide | Heel drop: 8mm | Weight: 10.3oz / 292g

Comfortable and stylish: Nike Pegasus 40

If you are looking for a pair of running shoes that wouldn’t look out of place in the office, consider the Nike Pegasus 40. The mesh texture, wide tongue, long shoe laces and flatter design don’t scream “running shoes,” and looked normal at work and on the weekends.

They are also perfectly capable running shoes, with neutral support, a springy feel and flat, knobby tread. While they were comfortable to run in, my favorite parts of the shoe had more to do with comfort and aesthetics, not performance.

Sizes offered: 6-15 | Widths offered: Medium, wide | Heel drop: 10mm | Weight: 9.4oz / 266g

How to shop for men’s running shoes

Just in the men’s section alone, there are hundreds of different running shoes to choose from. Our experts highlighted a few essential things to keep in mind as you shop.

Try them on in-person

Both Cunha and Zach Moxham, a certified personal trainer at Physical Equilibrium in New York City, recommend going to a local running shoe store if you want to walk away with the best fit possible. “Have them scan your foot or do a quick gait analysis,” says Moxham. “If they have a treadmill, don’t be afraid to hop on for a run. You can even run up and down the store to see which shoe feels best for you.”

Cunha says that specialty running shoe stores tend to have knowledgeable staff who can better inform you about running shoe options and recommendations. They can also accurately measure the length and width of your foot.

Fit is crucial

A poor-fitting running shoe isn’t going to be comfortable, no matter how stylish it may look.

If you plan to buy shoes in person, Cunha recommends buying them at the end of the day when your feet are most swollen. “If they feel comfortable at the end of the day, most likely they will feel comfortable throughout the day,” he says. Cunha also says to try on at least three different models of shoe, even two different models at the same time, one on each foot, to get a feel for fit.

Both Cunha and Moxham say to pay special attention to the toe box. “Make sure there is enough room to slightly wiggle your toes. If you can’t move your toes at all then the shoes are too tight and will eventually become painful. The tip of your thumb should fit between the end of the shoe and the end of your longest toe,” says Cunha.

What makes running shoes different?

Training shoes and stylish sneakers look similar to some running shoes, but functionally, they are very different. Cunha says that running shoes have a stiffer, more shock-absorbing sole that is suited to higher-impact activity. They also guide your motion to promote increased stability and alignment of the foot. Plus, running shoes minimize fatigue, as they are more lightweight than other types of shoes.

How often should you replace running shoes?

Finding the perfect pair of running shoes can be liberating — I know I love running a lot more when I am doing it in my favorite shoes. No matter how attached you get to one pair of running shoes, it’s important to replace them every six months or so.

“Good sneakers are designed to last for 300 to 500 miles,” says Cunha. “It doesn’t matter if they still look new, if the support is worn out, you’re at a much higher risk of injury.”

To keep track of when it’s time for a replacement, Cunha recommends noting the date each time you buy a new pair of running shoes to help keep track of that six-month interval.

Meet our experts

At Select, we work with experts who have specialized knowledge and authority based on relevant training and/or experience. We also take steps to ensure all expert advice and recommendations are made independently and without undisclosed financial conflicts of interest.

Why trust Select?

Harry Rabinowitz is a reporter at Select and a runner. To better understand running shoes and their complexities, he spoke with fitness experts and medical professionals. He also tried dozens of different running shoes running in New York City and beyond.

Catch up on Select’s in-depth coverage of personal finance, tech and tools, wellness and more, and follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to stay up to date.

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