The Best Running Shoes for Men in 2023

These are the top-performing racers and trainers most loved by the guys on our test team.

Table Of Content

    In our lab and on the feet of our 280-runner wear-test crew, we are continually testing the Best running shoes for men. About half of those runners are males, and they are an extraordinarily varied collection of individuals. Some are extremely fast athletes putting in insane mileage and vying for the Olympic Trials; others are just getting into running or returning from injury. From full-time English teachers and new parents to night-shift nurses and grandfathers, we have runners of all shapes, sizes, ages, talents, and backgrounds.

    They all have one thing in common: they love to run and put in at least 25 kilometers each week in their test shoes. There’s a shoe here that you’ll love as much as they do, and you can scroll down for a range of shoes that cater to varied stability and cushioning requirements.

    Our Top Picks: The Best Running Shoes for Men

    Shoes  Price
    BEST ZERO-DROP SHOE Altra Via Olympus Check Price
    BEST ROAD-TO-TRAIL SHOE Hoka Challenger ATR 7 Check Price
    BEST BUDGET SHOE Nike Air Winflo 9 Check Price
    BEST UPDATE Skechers GOrun Razor 4 Check Price
    BEST FOR LONG RUNS Asics GlideRide 3 Check Price
    BEST DAILY TRAINER New Balance Fresh Foam X 880 v12 Check Price
    BEST FOR SPEEDWORK Saucony Kinvara 13 Check Price
    MOST VERSATILE Saucony Endorphin Speed 3 Check Price
    BEST 5K TO HALF-MARATHON RACER New Balance FuelCell SuperComp Pacer Check Price
    BEST MARATHON RACER Nike ZoomX Vaporfly Next% 2 Check Price
    BEST FOR WIDE FEET Topo Athletic Specter Check Price
    BEST FOR WET TRAILS VJ Spark Check Price
    BEST LIGHTWEIGHT TRAINER Hoka Mach 5 Check Price
    BEST CUSHIONED TRAIL SHOE Salomon Ultra Glide Check Price
    BEST STABILITY SHOE Brooks Adrenaline GTS 22 Check Price

    Reviews: The Best Running Shoes for Men

    The 15 Best Running Shoes for Men


    Stability in running shoe design refers to a shoe’s ability to support proper running form. Typically, this signifies a low amount of pronation (more on that here). If you like stability and are an overpronator (your feet roll inward excessively), these shoes offer characteristics to assist in counteract that movement. Firmer foams in important parts of the midsole, such as a medial post, or extra material on the sole’s edge to prevent the foot from twisting, such as the GuideRails on Brooks’ Adrenaline GTS, are examples of this. If you don’t overpronate, you’ll probably choose a “neutral” shoe with no extra support elements that won’t interfere with your stride.


    Opinions on this subject vary greatly. Runners who want to run fast may prefer a stiffer shoe with an excellent ground feel. Others choose soft materials that cushion impact pressures. Previously, you had to give up some cushioning to get a shoe that felt lightweight enough to let you shave fractions of a second off your finish time. That is no longer the case, thanks to advancements in foam technology. The Skechers GOrun MaxRoad 5, one of our most cushioned sneakers, weighs only 8.7 ounces in a men’s size 9. This is useful for longer runs since the additional cushioning helps alleviate aches and pains in fatigued feet and joints.

    How We Test and Select

    To choose these shoes, we sought advice from Runner-in-Chief Jeff Dengate on the best running shoes for guys, as well as comments from hundreds of male runners on our wear-test crew. We’ve collected together some of the standouts that have garnered extremely excellent grades and appreciation from our male testers after putting numerous pairs through the wringer and analyzing the data. (For a more detailed overview of our rigorous testing procedure, see how we rate shoes.) Looking for advice on how to achieve the greatest fit and price? We’ve also got you covered when it comes to deciding on your new favorite pair.


    Altra Via Olympus

    The Via Olympus offers a very cushioned ride with a wide foam foundation for long-distance running—very long-distance running. The midsole is Ego Max, an EVA-based compression-molded foam used in the Paradigm 6 and Timp 4, two additional Altra shoes with maximum cushioning. (A stability shoe, the Paradigm, has a more straight, parallel geometric contour to the ground. It also makes use of Altra’s standard last. The Via, on the other hand, has a curved sole that promotes a rocker action, and its foot form is wider and more accommodating.) The contoured heel collar and pillowy tongue add to the level of comfort.

    While the weight approaches 10 ounces (men’s size 9), the Via feels remarkably light and silky. “I was in love with this sneaker. I’ve clocked 113 miles in it as of today. “The large toebox was incredibly comfortable, especially on longer runs,” stated one tester. “At first, I found the heel cushioning to be bothersome when jogging uphill. But after I got used to the sneaker, it was virtually effortless.”


    • Inspired by the plush, supportive Olympus trail shoe
    • The rocker-shaped sole encourages rapid turnover.
    • Allowing for a large breadth and toebox


    • It may be too broad for people with smaller feet.
    • Gradually migrate to a zero-drop platform.


    Hoka Challenger ATR 7

    Hoka overhauled the outsole of the Challenger ATR 6. The seventh iteration of the sneaker is now more adept on both highways and trails. An angular and squarish lug pattern grips rough and bumpy terrain, while more exposed foam triangles and small, tight squares towards the center roll the shoe smoothly down the pavement. The large spacing between the 4mm lugs also aids in sluicing water and shedding much more rapidly. The substance is now a robust, slightly sticky rubber as well. The design prevented trail crud from clogging the tread, making the trip back to the trailhead seem light and effortless.

    “I was apprehensive that it would perform well on different surfaces, but it did. My new favorite pair is in the running. These shoes were grippy enough for trails but not so much that they were uncomfortable on the road. “I even used them for treadmill speed intervals,” one tester remarked. “The lugs might be more aggressive for very rough and tough technical terrain, but then I imagine they would be unpleasant on highways. Overall, I believe the traction is an excellent compromise.”


    • It is lighter than the ATR 6.
    • The new top mesh fabric is more breathable.
    • More padding than the ATR 6.


    • Not suitable for deep mud.
    • Not suitable for speedwork.


    Nike Air Winflo 9

    It’s difficult to top the newest Winflo for running performance and aesthetics for under $100—despite the enhanced midsole and revamped upper, the price hasn’t changed. Nike changed the composition of the shoe’s Cushlon cushion for v9. It’s still not as responsive as the brand’s higher-end ZoomX or React, but testers noticed a gentler ride when compared to prior Winflo models. A bigger Air unit now covers the whole length of the shoe, resulting in a smoother transition from heel to forefoot.

    “The cushioning isn’t very bouncy, but it strikes the appropriate combination of lightness and shock absorption. When compared to my beloved Hokas, it’s a tie,” observed one tester, who had a firm heel strike. “This shoe gets my highest recommendation for fit and comfort. There were no pressure areas for my large foot, sufficient toebox space, and the smooth collar cushioning gripped my ankle firmly.”


    • Ankle collar that is both soft and secure.
    • Longevity of the outsole


    • Long runs cause cushioning to lose some response.


    Skechers GOrun Razor 4

    We praised and awarded the Razor 3. Skechers believed they were onto something special when they left the shoe virtually unaltered for four years. That’s unheard of in an industry where the formula is changed every year. The Razor 4, on the other hand, is a completely different beast. And you can feel it on your feet and under your feet. The new Hyper Burst Pro midsole is heavier, but it’s also more bouncy and durable. It provides steady cushioning to the end of your long run and is temperature resistant—it will not get harder on a chilly day.

    A carbon-infused forefoot plate in Skechers’ signature H-shaped structure is also new to the Razor. Skechers employs small bits of carbon fiber on the edge with a band that goes across the forefoot of the midsole rather than a full-length single sheet of carbon fiber as seen on normal plated shoes. The shoe is still fairly flexible, considerably more so than plated shoes, but the additional component makes the forefoot feel a touch snappier than TPU foam alone.


    • More arch support is provided by the new sock liner.
    • Goodyear rubber extends the life of the outsole.


    • The Razor 3 is heavier.


    Asics GlideRide 3

    “When I think of a luxury, cushioned shoe, I go back to my normal choices like an Asics Nimbus or Brooks Glycerin, two of my favorite shoes. They do not, however, compare to the GlideRide 3. “It’s simply an incredible pleasure to run in,” said one tester, who competes in 50Ks and 10-hour backyard challenges.

    So, what distinguishes GlideRide from the competition? Much of it is Asics’ “GuideSole” design, which combines two soft foams with an aggressive rocker form. A TPU plate on the inside twists the toe upward like a ski slope. The design of the GlideRide 2 is the same, but the foams used are softer (the part closest to your foot is now bouncy FlyteFoam Blast+), and the plate is more flexible. GuideSole’s goal is to limit ankle motion, which has been demonstrated to assist certain runners to step more effectively and so waste less energy. It works, according to our tests, although it may take a few runs to get used to the sensation. The Gel-Cumulus 24 is ideal for a more classic ride.


    • GlideRide 2 is lighter.
    • Smooth ride with high energy return
    • Excellent outsole grip and durability


    • The thick top mesh gets a little heated.
    • Laces that are too long


    New Balance Fresh Foam X 880 v12

    “The 880 gets the honors for my favorite shoe line,” one tester stated. The 12th iteration is softer than ever thanks to a new two-layer midsole, the upper is comfy and adaptable for large feet, and the ample blown rubber outsole handles high-volume marathon training well—especially if the majority of your runs are on icy roads and sidewalks. It’s not the lightest shoe on the market, but it’s agile enough to keep you going without clunkiness into the double-digit distance. (The new FuelCell Rebel v3 is recommended for people who want less assistance but more speed and pep.)

    Furthermore, New Balance recently adjusted the durometer (firmness measurement) of the 880’s Fresh Foam X cushioning, making it seem a tad softer this time around. If you often alternate between your daily run and lengthy hours on your feet, this is a wonderful option that can handle both.


    • The toe box is rather large.
    • Cushioning is soft, and the ride is smooth


    • It is heavier than the 880 v11.


    Saucony Kinvara 13

    The Kinvara had a wonderful homecoming in the 12th edition. The 12 brought the Kinvara back toward its racing roots after the 11 became stiffer and heavier—we got rather strong “daily trainer” impressions from its exceptionally soft tongue and thick upper. The 13 continues in this vein. This Kinvara is the lightest weight it has ever been. It offers a tight midfoot lockdown and a more minimalist-feeling ride for flexible toe-offs and good ground sensation, just like the shoe’s earlier generations. Saucony’s new Pwrrun foam blend in the midsole now combines a combination of EVA and polymers to increase energy return. It doesn’t have the punch of the Endorphin series, but it’s responsive enough for tempo runs on dry roads and speed sessions around town.


    • Upper is more breathable and has a more secure fit.
    • Toe-off flexibility and a solid ground connection


    • Poor traction on rainy roads


    Saucony Endorphin Speed 3

    While most fast runners would still go for more expensive carbon fiber racers like the Endorphin Pro and Nike Alphafly Next%, the Endorphin Speed is a good alternative for the rest of us. It’s still stiff and snappy, even though the winged nylon plate is significantly more flexible than carbon fiber, and the cushioning works well for short, rapid races up to marathon distances. The Speed, on the other hand, thrives in everyday training. For tempo runs and interval training, it provides all the oomph you need while saving you money over more expensive race-day versions.

    The most noticeable differences between the shoe’s second and third versions are all positive. The ride is bouncy, softer, and more stable (due to a new plate shape, wider platform, tweaked Pwrrun PB formulation, and more midsole foam overall). Saucony also used a stretchier mesh upper, which our wide-footed testers thought made the fit around the toebox more accommodating.


    • PEBA foam is soft and bouncy.
    • The nylon plate promotes rapid turning.
    • Speed in training and racing is exceptional.


    • The heel cup is a touch constricting.
    • Price increase of $10 from the Speed 2


    New Balance FuelCell SuperComp Pacer

    Some runners dislike the sinking sensation provided by thick, squishy foam. They want the shoe to allow their foot to respond when the sole hits the pavement. If that describes you, get the Pacer. This shoe has a quick performance but feels much softer than thin racing flats. This is due, in part, to New Balance’s “Energy Arc.” They’ve sandwiched a curved carbon-fiber plate between two layers of compression-molded EVA foam. However, the bottom layer has been hollowed down, creating a void into which the plate sinks, enhancing the cushioning power of the thin sole. The impact is similar to that of a trampoline: the curved plate flattens and then snaps back to shape, transferring energy to the runner—the plate couldn’t flatten without the space.

    “I’m in love with these sneakers. “I used to do track events in New Balance racing flats, which I enjoyed, but the Pacer is significantly lighter and has a greater energy return,” stated one tester. “The carbon-fiber plate feels like the shoe is helping to lift my foot off the ground, allowing me to run faster and turn faster!”


    • Very light and sensitive.
    • Excellent ground feel


    • For longer distances, some runners will prefer additional cushioning.


    Nike ZoomX Vaporfly Next% 2

    The Nike ZoomX Vaporfly Next% 2 is one of the quickest sneakers available, including sensitive ZoomX foam and a carbon-fiber plate. This cutting-edge technology enables elite marathoners to compete in under five minutes, but it’s not just for the pros. Even at slower speeds, the shoe feels incredibly propelled and energizing, making each step a bit more efficient and less exhausting. The top Vaporweave has also been modified to a flexible mesh that keeps you comfortable late in the race. That said, the comfort and durability of this shoe make it ideal for quick short distances, whether racing or not. Overall, it’s one of the fastest and most bouncy sneakers we’ve tried.


    • Wider and more comfortable forefoot fit than the previous version
    • Exceptionally high energy return


    • Expensive


    Topo Athletic Specter

    Topo invented the Specter by putting its spin on current “super sneaker” trends. Without a midsole plate, this max-cushioned shoe provides a comparable bouncy ride that appeals to energy-returning runners while allowing Topo to stay loyal to its barefoot-inspired beginnings. The design team achieves this by combining a unique rockered EVA midsole with a core of more premium Pebax foam. One quick tester, who typically trains at a 6:45 pace for his daily kilometers, summed up the Specter experience well.

    “When you run in the shoes, your stride seems like you’re floating along. “My footstrike was gentle, yet I felt decent energy return, and the form and flexibility of the shoe allowed for a seamless transition from heel to toe,” he added. “The cushioning is gentle, but not so soft that you sink into it, which may make certain shoes seem sluggish. Instead, it’s a fantastic long-distance ride—more than sufficient for double-digit miles.”


    • More pliable than the majority of plated racing shoes
    • The ride is bouncy and well-cushioned while maintaining decent stability.
    • Natural foot mobility is enabled by the wide toebox and decreased drop


    • Not as quick as shoes with carbon fiber plates.
    • The spacious toebox for racing was criticized by several testers.


    VJ Spark

    “One morning in July, I went for a run with a friend in the Adirondacks. He was sporting the Spark, a sneaker that had not yet been published. “We had 5,000 feet of vert in the first seven miles and a 3,000-foot drop in the last three miles, and he was glued to the wet rocks on Giant Mountain like a gecko the entire time,” Dengate recalled of his first meeting with VJ’s Spark. We saw it for ourselves when we received our test samples. VJ’s butyl rubber outsole is responsible for the great traction. The 5mm lugs aren’t as long as YakTrax and aren’t as sharp, but they’re sticky and flexible enough to grip the slippery ground.

    The Spark is meant to be super-lightweight and quick, so while it won’t provide enough cushioning for an ultramarathon, it will suffice for trail runs and obstacle events. The pretty normal and thick EVA isn’t as bouncy as the latest nitrogen-injected TPU products, but you don’t buy the Spark for its cushioning. You buy it for the grip to speedily sidestep roots and rocks, or even to leap an OCR fire pit and mount a rope wall.


    • Excellent wet-surface traction
    • The riding is light and agile.


    • The fit is a half-size short.


    Hoka Mach 5

    The new Mach 5 is a cushioned road shoe that feels as light and explosive as a racing shoe while remaining robust enough for long training runs. It is possibly our favorite Hoka ever. Hoka retained quick design elements from the brand’s race-oriented Carbon X and Rocket X (such as propulsive energy return and a sportier, more streamlined upper that hugs your foot) while omitting the carbon plate. The main news with the v5 is an improvement to the brand’s normal ample cushioning. The shoe now features a modified version of Profly+ midsole foam, which gives lots of zoom and bounce.

    The early-stage Meta-Rocker (a curved sole shape) hasn’t altered; it still moves you fast from heel to toe. Some of us missed Mach 4’s big heel tab, which made getting your feet in and out easier, but the deletion helped the 5 lose nearly half an ounce in weight. Overall, it’s a shoe that shines at interval track sessions, weekend long runs, and recovery jogs.


    • The new Profly+ midsole is soft and responsive.
    • March 4 is significantly lighter.


    • In wet and icy conditions, there is little traction.


    Salomon Ultra Glide

    Salomon’s quick kicks have a reputation for being fast, but they’re also fairly forceful, aggressive, and narrow—better suited for elites than midpack runners. Salomon’s Ultra Glide is their softest and most approachable trail shoe, providing cushioning that most runners would love. Pat Heine, a videographer, used the shoe on day 5 of a 327-mile FKT run in April 2021. The hills, pebbles, and hours piled up after more than 250 kilometers, and he welcomed the Ultra Glide’s help for the last stretch. “The top gave ample protection for my fatigued feet when I inevitably kicked pebbles and roots, while the rocker design and extra padding underfoot took the sting out of pavement and particularly-rocky areas, allowing me to complete the last 75 kilometers,” he stated. The lightweight midsole blends EVA and Olefin for a more forgiving, durable, and bouncy ride that thrilled our wear-test team of Hoka fans.


    • Quick-lacing enables quick adjustments.
    • It is suitable on both simple routes and tough single track.


    • Slips a little on damp, flat pebbles.


    Brooks Adrenaline GTS 22

    The Brooks Adrenaline GTS is a popular stability shoe that uses a lighter, less noticeable GuideRails technology rather than a medial post to give support. The 22nd edition features the same design, which inserts material around the borders of the sole to keep your feet aligned. (Because the additional support engages only when needed, it is suitable for both overpronators and neutral runners). The DNA Loft foam that runs the whole length of the midsole makes the shoe feel somewhat softer and smoother than prior editions. The Adrenaline still provides good shock absorption, and the rubber outsole provides outstanding grip and durability for long-distance runners.


    • Excellent arch support
    • a more comfortable ride than prior versions


    • Less suitable for high-intensity exercises
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