Spring brought us an abundance of lovely new shoes, but which are best for your running?
UNDER ARMOUR HOVR Machina
£140 | Tester: Esther
One of the best value shoes around to use carbon, which can be found in its ‘propulsion plate’, visible on the sole. This certainly appears to shunt you forward, while that generous midsole gives a lush cushioned stride. The best bit? You can connect them to MapMyRun to track your stride length, cadence and pace, and then receive bespoke advice to improve your run. Crazy futuristic!
SAUCONY Peregrine 10
£110 | Tester: Louise
You will love these trail shoes for their combination of lightness and ultra-comfy cushioning, but also their confident grip and protection from the elements. Weighing only 8.6oz, they provide Gore-Tex waterproof protection with sturdy lugs on the sole to ensure they dig in on any terrain. Available in beautiful colourways, they have a trail-specific FormFit design that keeps them in place when on uneven trails, but you still feel they are roomy enough for your feet to breathe.
LA SPORTIVA Kaptiva
£140 | Tester: Geri
This is such a good-looking pair of trail running shoes. They are snug, lightweight and super grippy. However, it would probably be best to go up half a size from your normal shoe size on these. The design of this shoe has been well thought through, the wrap around sock feature makes the fit comfortable and also acts as a built-in gaiter to prevent bits of dirt from getting inside. The upper is breathable and drains water very well. The cushioning feels good, not too spongy and soft.
SALOMON Sense Ride 3
£120 | Tester: Caroline
If comfort is highest on your list of criteria for a trail shoe, then the Sense Ride 3 scores top marks with its wider toebox, supportive, sensi-fit upper and strengthened Opti-Vibe heel for bounce and support. You will enjoy the quick-release laces, especially when your pretty shoes are unrecognisably caked in mud. The focus on stability understandably compromises the flexibility and weight, but this shoe will help you go the distance in both style and comfort.
INOV-8 X Talon G235
£140 | Tester: Sarah
These shoes enable you to run with confidence over the most extreme terrain. Aggressive 8mm studs claw through soft ground and hold firm on harder stuff. Weighing just 235g, designed with non-water absorbing materials and featuring a 6mm drop, these are comfortable and feel supportive but still responsive. The one-piece seamless upper is made from ballistic nylon, they are a fabulous orange, true-to-size fit (some may find them narrow) and they make trails a dream.
BROOKS Adrenaline GTS 20
£120 | Tester: Beccy
The latest version of Brooks’ signature support road shoe doesn’t disappoint. Size wise the width fitting is generous. It’s an attractive shoe; a sleeker adaptation of a classic look. And performance? The shoe offers great support and cushioning with a high heel drop and effective motion control, which kicks in only when needed. The heel of this shoe is all about the comfort, but you still get great response from the firmer forefoot.
NEW BALANCE 1080v10
£135 | Tester: Caroline
Experience a super bouncy return in the updated NB 1080. The embossed upper adds individuality to this classic running shoe, that feels worn-in from the first outing. This shoe comes with great expectations, but thankfully it continues to deliver great midfoot support, a roomy toebox and optimum flexibility. But it’s the FreshFoam sole that oozes comfort, propelling the foot faster with each stride. A classy shoe.
361 Spire 4
€159.99 | Tester: Claire
These are lightweight with good breathability and comfort. The pressure-free tongue hugs your foot for a comfortable, irritation-free fit, enabling you to focus on the road ahead without distraction or discomfort. The outsole provides full ground contact, allowing fast acceleration; a rubber forefront and carbon rubber heel allow as much of the foot to be on the ground as possible so you can tackle your run with full speed – they noticeably push you forward. They are supportive while offering a firmer ride. A great shoe for those slightly painful tempo runs.
HOKA ONE ONE Elevon 2
£140 | Tester: Tina
A reliable daily trainer that will give you excellent cushioning and support. It offers a lovely breathable upper that’s a pleasure to run in. The midsole has Profly foam, which makes the cushioning feel firm and gives the impression of speed, and these perform well in faster sessions. The outsole is also impressive to run in (and very sturdy), with crystal rubber giving a high level of traction, even on wet pavements.
ASICS GT-2000 8
£120 | Tester: Sue
This makes for a great shoe choice if you are looking to combine comfort, protection and stability. Incredibly lightweight, with foam and gel providing superior shock absorption, giving you a soft landing with every stride. If you’re already a fan of the GT-2000 series you will agree this is by far a superior version of the shoe. Possibly consider sizing up half a size more than your regular trainer as they are on the smaller side for fit.
MIZUNO Wave Skyrise
£119.99 | Tester: Holly
A quick glance at that spongy-looking sole and you already know these shoes are going to deliver on comfort. The specially-designed foam midsole is full of tiny beads that provide cushioning on impact, making every step feel lighter, and the collar and tongue are super soft. There were no issues with rubbing even on the first wear, making you feel a bit like Cinderella in trainers, with a solid grip that does the job for road running. There’s a bit of ankle movement in these, so they might not be for you if you need a bit more stability, but if you’re used to a neutral shoe then you should find them breathable, comfortable and durable enough for everyday wear.
HOKA ONE ONE Challenger ATR 5 GTX
£125 | Tester: Laura
This is a comfortable, highly cushioned all terrain shoe. They have a thick EVA midsole, but they are incredibly light. They have a low heel to toe drop, designed to encourage an efficient stride, while the tread provides good traction. They are sturdy at the front to protect your toes, and they have a durable upper that dries out fast. The Gore-Tex offers excellent protection in wet conditions. The fit is true to size, while those with wide feet might benefit from the wider fitting. A great all-rounder.