Finding a great shoe is hard enough, which is why we have asked top runners on Instagram to share their favorite shoe with you.
There are a swarm of brands to choose from, but which may be the right shoe for you? Brooks, Asics, Nike, Adidas, Saucony, Karhu, Mizuno, Hoka One One, Skechers, Zoot, New Balance, and many more try to claim your attention on being the best shoe.
Trying out different brands may be challenging, so take the time to learn from the experts of Instagram. These top runners have defied odds, built up their endurance, and continue to run strong with every step they take. With the right pair of shoes, they have conquered distances at their very best, and you can too.
Check out the top 18 runners on Instagram who share why the perfect shoe can define your greatest run.
Elizabeth Inpyn is a sports nutritionist, coach, and enthusiast for helping people achieve their goals for wellness who says,
“My favorite brand of running shoe is Karhu. I like to wear different shoes for different types of training sessions. Their Strong series is great for long runs and when I'm doing a lot of running on the road or concrete surfaces. The Fast series is for speed work and the Flow is for racing. The company is small but super attentive to customer needs, always quick to answer questions and they make a durable well built shoe. They aren't as flashy as the bigger brands but that's what I like about them. I've tried just about every shoe out there and there are a few other brands that I run in from time to time but the one I keep coming back to is Karhu.”
Elizabeth can be found on Instagram @inpyn, and on her website www.inpyn.com.
Amanda C. Brooks is an advocate for healthy running and a worldwide traveler who states,
“I've been running in the Saucony Kinvara since the very first model and they're on 7 now! I found the lower heel to toe drop helped with IT Band issues, while the light cushioning felt much better to me than any minimalist shoe. They're light, comfy and perfect for up to my half marathon road races.”
Amanda is on Instagram @runtothefinish and on her website www.runtothefinish.com.
Carlee Padot McClurg is a change maker, a runner, and a world wanderer who states,
“My favorite brand of running shoes is Brooks. They have been with me from the beginning and continue to help me #RunHappy. With that being said, selecting a running shoe is a very personal decision – one that should not be taken lightly! I always recommend that anyone looking for a new running shoe go to their local running specialty store to be fitted by a professional. Sure, bright colors and fun patterns are great, but if the shoes don't fit your feet properly or hinder your body due to your running form – you will hate the run! Find what works best for you (not what your friends are wearing, not what looks the coolest and not what's necessarily on sale or the cheapest) and I promise your runs (and body) will thank you for it!”
Carlee is on Instagram @carleemcdot, and on her website www.carleemcdot.com.
Linsey Corbin is a professional triathlete and an Ironman champion who says,
“My favorite brand of shoes is Saucony. I like them because I have been wearing them for years! They have a wide variety of shoes. My go-to's are the Triumph for easy runs, Zealot for aerobic runs, Kinvara for tempo runs and the Type A for racing. They have kept me injury free by providing stable support & they allow me to reach my training and racing goals.”
Linsey is on Instagram @linseycorbin, and on her website www.linseycorbin.com.
Abigail, otherwise known as Abby is a running coach, social media influencer, and blogger who claims,
“I love Mizuno shoes, especially the Wave Rider. They have the perfect amount of cushioning without being too heavy. Also, the Wave Riders are really durable and hold up well through all my outdoor runs.”
Abby's Instagram is @backatsquare0, and on her website www.backatsquarezero.com.
Emily is a dedicated treadmill runner, a marathoner, and ultra-marathoner who states,
“My preferred brand is Mizuno. I switched to their wave prophecy about 4 years ago & haven't looked back since. I'm [unfortunately] a heel striker – so the maximum cushioning plus the smooth landing & transition helps a lot.”
Emily is on Instagram @runemz, or you can discover her website at www.runemz.com
Alice is fitness blogger, travel journalist, and a runner who claims,
“I swear by the adidas Ultra Boost, and wouldn't dream of doing a half marathon without them. They provide so much cushioning and bounce, and I feel they really protect all aspects of my feet. I've tried the PureBOOSTX too which are also springy, though have by no means as much structure.”
Alice is active on Instagram @alice_tate, and on her blog www.flashanthology.com.
Tyler C. Andrews is a professional runner, writer, and explorer who says,
“HOKA ONE ONE provides me with the shoes and gear that I wear in training and racing. I run a lot of mileage – over 160 miles per week at times – and I owe a big part of my ability to stay healthy to my HOKAs. They have tons of cushion to protect my bones and joints, while still providing a smooth ride and a light shoe. I love ’em!”
Tyler is on Instagram @tylercandrews, and actively on his website ty.strivetrips.org.
Monica Olivas is a blogger, marathon runner and eater who says,
Monica is on Instagram @runeatrepeat and frequently on her blog runeatrepeat.com.
Beth is a professional triathlete, Ironman champion, and mother who states,
“My favorite running shoes are the HOKA ONE ONE Clifton 3s. They are such a versatile shoe great for both training and racing. I love how they are super lightweight, but offer a ton of cushioning for those long or hard runs.”
Beth is on Instagram @imbethgerdes and on her website californiatraining.blogspot.com.
Nadia is a coach, speaker, writer, and marathoner who says,
“My favorite brand of running shoes varies depending on my needs and what is being released currently with brands. I believe in experimenting what works best for you during your shorter and longer runs. I have ran in Brooks, New Balance, Nike, Hokas, Skechers, Asics, Solomon, Innovate, Zoot, and Adidas. As I enjoy training in different brands, my favorite that has worked for me is Brooks Pure Flows for long road races, Pure Grit for racing on the trails, and the Cascadias for training on the trails as it is a heavier shoe than the Pure Grit. However, they have recently changed their Cascadias to a firmer “more responsive” feel, which felt uncomfortable. Therefore, I wanted comfort and am now using New Balance Fresh Foam for the trails. I am a neutral pronator with relatively proper running form.”
Nadia is on Instagram @irongirlnadia and on her website nadiatherunner.blogspot.com.
Amanda Allen Nurse is a marathoner, Lululemon Ambassador, and a learning yoga teacher who says,
“My favorite running shoes are the Adidas Adios Boost 2 and the Ultra Boost. I alternate between the 2 for runs and wear my Adios Boosts for racing. The Adios boosts are lightweight and gave a larger toe box for my wider feet. They are a great 5k-marathon racing shoe because they have a bit of cushion and support while still being minimalistic and light. There's a reason it's a favorite shoe amongst world class marathon champions!
The Ultra Boost is my favorite trainer. They are super comfortable and cushioned. On shorter runs or days after a long run or hard workout, these are my go-to shoe because they have great shock absorption (good for the achy knees, ankles, hips after a tough run). I also wear these on the airplane (they slip on and off easily without untying the shoelaces!), if I am walking around all day, or anytime I will be on my feet for an extended period of time. These shoes are amazing. I wouldn't recommend them as a racing shoe, and it's best to alternate these with another favorite sneaker, but these shoes are great. Plus they are breathable and cute too!”
Amanda is on Instagram @amandarunsboston and on WIMB, at www.wellnessinmotionboston.com.
Julia Sette is a successful marathon runner who claims,
“My favorite brand is Nike, especially the LunarGlide model! I'm also becoming a big fan of the Lunarepic the latest model that Nike launched! The Lunarglide model is perfect for me cause I'm a pronated runner. I think they are comfortable, fit perfectly and I never felt any pain with them. The Epic model it´s also comfortable and I think it's a great shoe for long runs!”
Julia is on Instagram @juliasette77.
Katie is a wife, mother, teacher, and runner who says. ”
“Cinderella is proof that the right pair of shoes can change your life, but most runners might choose a PR over a stuffy prince any day. The single most important advice I have for finding the right shoe is to go to a running store and not just a store that sells running shoes. I've had many experiences in large chain stores inquiring after specific shoes where I have had to hunt down an employee, been mostly brushed off and pointed in the general direction of the shoe area, and ultimately been given little or very poor advice. In contrast, at true running stores, I am able to take the shoes for a quick run, discuss my goals and training, and have been fitted with the best product for my specific type of running.
After using a lot of different shoes, I have found that Brooks suits my needs the best. I love the Brooks Launch 3‘s for my long runs and the weeks where I'm logging high miles. It's a neutral shoe but I feel it gives me a little more spring in my push off, and I do the majority of my training in this shoe. They keep my feet feeling supported and cushioned without feeling weighted down. For my tempo runs and speed work I vary between the Brooks Pure Cadence 4‘s and the Brooks Pure Flow 5‘s. Both of these shoes are lighter, but still provide good support for the miles that I am training to go faster. There are so many great running shoe brands to choose from, the most important thing is to research what will work best for your body type, your feet and foot strike, and the kind of running you are doing. So whether it is Asics, Brooks, or Saucony (all brands I've used) make sure you get fitted by someone who is an expert on running shoes and at a real running store. Happy running friends!”
Katie is on Instagram @runningourlives and on her website www.runningourlives.com.
Steph McGregor is a physiotherapist, ultramarathon and marathon runner who states,
“My favourite running shoe is the Adidas Ultra-boost, which I describe is like walking/running on little pillows! I'm a mid-forefoot runner so I really like how much spring there is in the forefoot cushioning of the shoe without adding a lot of weight. Up until December this year I was wearing Asics and constantly struggled with really tight calves and sore feet, but once I switched to the boost that completely went away! I'm on my third pair now and I'm pretty much obsessed! The only thing I have found is that they don't work well in really wet weather as the upper is more like a sock or thinner breathable mesh (which is great in the heat). I'm hoping they come out with a winter/water-resistant version so I can wear them all year long in the rainy Pacific Northwest.”
Steph is on Instagram @anygivenrunday and on her website www.anygivenrunday.com.
Carly is a personal trainer and fitness blogger who says,
“Adidas Pure Boost – For years I’ve found trainers have held me back from feeling my best when running, until I came across the Pure Boost, it feels like I’m bouncing on clouds, my arch feels secure and my ankle protected.”
Carly is on Instagram @carlyrowena and on her website www.carlyrowena.com.
Sashea Lawson is a mom to be, runner, triathlete, and yogi who says,
“My current favorite running shoe is the New Balance Fresh Foam 1080. I've been running in them for a few months and love it! They are extremely comfortable and don't require a ‘break in'. You can just slip them on and go. It has a mesh upper that I love because it's flexible so my toes get to spread out and it's breathable so my feet don't get hot & sweaty in this summer heat. I also love the cushioning. I'm currently 9 months pregnant and have been hitting the ground harder because of the added weight. This shoe cushions that impact allowing me to run for miles without my feet or joints hurting. If there is a ‘Best Running Shoe For Pregnant Runners' award, this one gets it :)”
Sashea is on Instagram @sassyfitgirl and on her website www.sassyfitgirl.com.
Alysia Montaño is the Olympian with the flower in her hair, a 7x USA champ, a bronze medalist, and a mother who states,
“My preferred running shoe brand would be from Asics. Asics has a wide variety of shoes to suit any runner regardless of weight, foot size/shape, gender and running style. Another big draw to my love of Asics is its ability to cater to all of my fitness needs. I have no problem finding trail, racing, road, or casual shoes. Bottom line is I love Asics! It's the one stop shop go to brand for me!”
Alysia is on Instagram @alysiamontano and on YouTube, www.youtube.com/c/alysiamontano.
Gina is a positive and passionate ultra and tri runner who states,
“I have been running in Brooks running shoes since 2006 and have been one of their ambassadors since then. So, I only wear Brooks!! My favorite trail shoes are the Brooks Pure Grits and Cascadias. Brooks has a wide array of shoes to fit all feet, and I have found many work for me (whether road or trail). I probably own close to 40 pairs at this time. YIKES!!! And I gave about 20 pairs away at the beginning of year to girls on the run.”
Gina is on Instagram @happytrigirl and on her website www.happytrigirl.com.
Nicole is a runner, climber, and RRCA Running Coach who says,
“I always rotate through 3 pairs of shoes at a time, but one shoe that is a staple for me is Topo Athletic Fli-Lyte. From the moment I tried it on, I was in love with the wide toe box, comfortable heel, and natural feel. I've put about 2,000 miles on this model, and I have no plans of being without this shoe! I would recommend it for anything from speed work, to long runs, and marathons. I've used it for all of these!”