The question of how to find the best shoes to run a marathon (or a half marathon) has been asked and answered so many times. There is really no secret about it.
You need a pair of shoes that are specially made for running marathons. It needs to be a perfect fit, comfortable, yet sturdy enough to get you through those burning pavements. You’ll also need to factor in the type of trails you’ll be running on, and whether you’ll need more cushioning for it.
So, how do you find the perfect fit?
Listen to your feet. If you’re in shoes that are either too big or too small for you, then they will be restrictive and you’ll be pulling your knees all the way forward as you walk.
Or if they’re too big, they’ll be too loose and you’ll be slipping around all over the place. The key here is to find shoes that fit you in the right way, but at the same time, won’t cause you any problems when you’re actually on the road.
If you’re running in shoes that don’t fit you the right way or feel harsh against your feet, then you aren’t going to get very far. Most people who try out running in those kinds of shoes end up dropping out very quickly.
3 Key Points To Remember Before Purchasing A Marathon Shoe: Comfort, Cushion, And Durability
Comfort: Marathon running lasts longer than racing, and your feet will appreciate the comfort. Especially when the swelling starts, a comfortable toe box is a must.
Cushion: The pavement is unforgiving, especially during a marathon, you need to make sure that the shoe has a durable cushion for flexibility.
Durability: Always go for solid rubber outsoles. They tend to last longer. Since you need the shoes to last you more than just a few runs. Make sure they have sturdy outsoles.
Pro Tip: Never run a marathon in brand new shoes. Always make sure that your shoe has been sweated in before you get on the running track.
5 Best Half Marathon Training Shoes
1) Nike Zoomx Vaporfly Next
Vaporfly Next gives you that perfect texture and durability that your feet need during these long runs. These ridiculously high-priced shoes will feel worth the money once your legs start to thank you for the comfortable cushy texture.
2) Hoka One One Men’s Arahi Trainers
I tried out this brand before but wasn’t really a fan until I found these. This new Hoka series was worth the try. I could tell right away that these were the best shoes I’d ever spent money on. It is a great all-rounder trainer. They might have changed the look quite a few times, but the versatility in the cushioning gives you a nice balance on those ups and downs on the terrain.
They’re also one of the lightest shoes in the entire Hoka range. The slim carbon-fiber plate gives you the best control over speed. Giving a nice propulsive push every time your feet hit the ground.
3) The New Balance 1400 Line
New Balance has some of the best quality affordable racers. I’ve sweated in this baby on sunny 5k and 10k marathons and never regretted it.
These are light enough to keep your legs fresh while giving you a sweet 10mm drop to get snappy speed.
4) Adidas Adizero Adios Boost
Before Nike’s Vaporfly, this was the shoe worn by almost every single fast marathoner in the world. The unique design with a foam boost allows a great balance between comfort and speed. Plus they are almost half the price as what you’d pay for a Nike shoe.
The feet are a lot more fragile than the knees. And if you’re serious about your speed, you don’t want your foot stuck or slipping away from the shoe. Buying these was the best choice I ever made in my entire marathon running experience.
5) ASICS Men’s Gel Cumulus
If you’re looking for something a bit comfier to practice regular jogging and slow running. I suggest you get one from the Asics Series. These are some serious comfort running shoes.
You can pick up the pace a bit and still feel alright. It’s perfect to train in after a long marathon to sort of keep up the daily routine while making sure you don’t ruin your feet.
Which marathon shoes should you avoid?
Although these brands might give out some of the best marathon running shoes, not everything can be perfect. Some of the ranges from high-end brands end up being very sucky and might ruin your entire marathon experience.
Here are a few tried, tested, and rejected series:
- Hoka One One Men’s Bondi: This shoe just made me sink into the ground with every step I took. The cushion is so unresponsive, you don’t get any energy back from the ground. And they bounced so much, it felt like I was wearing moon boots.
- Brooks Adrenaline GTS: One piece of advice: you should never run a marathon in a shoe that is a tight or semi-tight fit. It scratches you real bad. I purchased these in an exact fit and regretted running in those ever since.
- Adidas Solar Boost: Adidas is a #1 shoe brand. Even though I am a big fan of almost all of their collection, I wouldn’t say the same for these. The Adidas Solar Boost series looks super cool until you start running. The upper starts to get so wet, it makes you feel like your feet are in a sauna. Although they did make an upgrade on that now, I personally still don’t like those.