The pandemic took away contact sports for all of us, so we all had to find ways of staying in shape and feeding the competitive fire. Running, in general, has become very popular and long distance running is particularly well suited for those extra competitive types. So, the best long distance running shoes are important, especially for those less experienced runners that are just getting into the sport.
It’s actually more difficult than you may think to find a shoe that will last you many, many miles. There are so many boxes to check. Is the upper durable and comfortable? Does the midsole maintain cushioning over the long haul? Does the outsole grip in all conditions and last longer when running on hard surfaces?
Our testers here at WearTesters have put in many miles and hours in these shoes. They do it, so you don’t have to worry about purchasing a shoe and then not liking it. We’ve collected all those findings in one place, our list of the best long distance running shoes.
10+ Best Long Distance Running Shoes
- Best Long Distance Running Shoes for Everyday Use:
- Best Long Distance Running Shoes for Race Day:
- Now on Sale – Best Long Distance Running Shoes for Everyday Use:
- Now on Sale – Best Long Distance Running Shoes for Race Day
- Best Long Distance Running Shoes – Coming Soon
Best Long Distance Running Shoes for Everyday Use:
Hoka Clifton 9
The Hoka Clifton 9 is the best, most versatile Clifton to date. It’s the same great neutral cushioned shoe with added bounce and elasticity in the midsole and increased durability in the outsole. The upper is, as usual, super comfy and the fit is accommodating. There’s also a wide version for those that need it. Improved arch support will excite flat footers, but some may find it a bit distracting. It’s a great shoe for everyone from beginners to seasoned vets and can handle jogging, easy running, recovery runs, and long runs. See the full review.
Fit: True to Size, Drop: 5mm, Price: $145
Asics Gel-Nimbus 25
The Asics Gel-Nimbus 25 isn’t a snappy shoe, but there’s plenty of soft FF Blast+ cushion underfoot. That, alongside an absolutely luxuriously comfortable upper, means the Gel-Nimbus 25 is ready for a ton of road miles. We don’t recommend using it for any of your speed work, but you can churn out miles in the Gel-Nimbus 25 while saving your legs from harsh asphalt and roads.
As an added bonus, the foam flares out from the foot, creating an incredibly stable platform. Oh, and it’s built to accommodate tons of foot types. Wide-footers, flat-footers, and beginners (who are likely still figuring out what their feet are) will all find a shoe that works for them. And for wide-footers that need even more room, Asics sells an extra wide version that may be perfect for you. See the full review.
Fits: True to Size, Drop: 8mm, Price: $160
The Asics Superblast is a high-stack, fun, and versatile shoe useful for anything from easy miles to workouts to long runs. It’s so light, it feels like a race day shoe. It’s soft but stable, and even without a carbon fiber plate in the middle of all that foam, it’s got a nice pop.
While you may do a double take at the price, the shoe delivers enough value to justify the price. If you’re price sensitive, there are other shoes for you on this list. But know that you’re getting a solid shoe for the money. It’s a shoe with a smooth ride that makes you want to log more miles. And long distance runners know that’s a valuable trait to find in a running shoe. See the full review.
Fit: True to Size, Drop: 8mm, Price: $220
Puma Deviate Nitro 2
The Puma Deviate Nitro 2 is a great all-around running shoe with the only concern being a narrower fit (though we hear a wide version might be coming soon). The Deviate Nitro 2 doesn’t feel great in terms of the initial step-in squish but feels amazing the more you run, and the faster you run. It feels great for long distances.
The Deviate Nitro 2 is a smooth ride with a cushion/plate combo that feels great during workouts and helps the legs recover quicker. The upper is extremely breathable and very comfortable. The outsole uses Puma Grip, the best rubber outsole compound currently available. The Deviate Nitro 2 is one shoe that can do it all and can tackle any long distance training runs or races. See the full review.
Fits: True to Size, Drop: 8mm, Price: $160
Saucony Endorphin Speed 3
The Saucony Endorphin Speed 3 is a near-perfect everyday long distance running shoe. It’s versatile enough to handle easy running, track work, tempo runs, and even races. The fit is excellent with impressive lockdown and stealthy but solid midfoot/arch support. The PWRRUN PB in the midsole is both plush and bouncy. It’s a well-cushioned, long-lasting ride ideal for any amount of mileage. The only small issue is some slippage in wet conditions. But that can be easily overlooked because the Endorphin Speed 3 is comfortable top-to-bottom and a true do-everything running shoe. Read the full review.
Fit: True to Size, Drop: 8mm, Price $170
New Balance SC Trainer v2
The New Balance SC Trainer v2 isn’t groundbreaking like the original but it’s an extremely well-cushioned, bouncy, and comfortable, leg-saving running machine. It’s perfect for high-mileage runners and long run days because it’ll protect your legs. The SC Trainer v2 will feel a bit heavy to some but the trade-off is worth it. Plus, it’s built on an accommodating, stable platform. The build plus all that cushion and comfort will make the SC Trainer v2 worth the price as you rack up the miles. Read the full review.
Fit: True to Size, Drop: 6mm, Price: $180
Brooks Glycerin 20
The Brooks Glycerin 20 is a comfortable, breathable, and versatile daily running shoe. The DNA Loft v3 midsole is plush and can easily handle long runs. The ride is super smooth and easy on the legs. It eats up miles and never bothers you in terms of fit or feel. The traction is durable and doesn’t slip in any conditions. Just don’t get the StealthFit version because the upper on the regular version is much better fitting and more comfortable. Read the full review.
Fit: True to Size, Drop: 10mm, Price $160
Nike Vomero 17
The Nike Vomero 17 lost a forefoot Zoom Air unit and instead opted for a ZoomX and Cushlon 3.0 midsole. Nike took a risk but it worked out as the Vomero 17 is comfortable and well-cushioned for long distances while picking up speed nicely. It’s Nike’s top daily trainer in terms of versatility and midsole tech implementation. One of our testers had heel lockdown issues so keep an eye on that when trying them on. The Vomero 17 fits true to size lengthwise and is available in a wide version. To top it off, the price point is right in line with other high-performing daily trainers. Read the full review. Price: $160
New Balance 1080v13
The New Balance 1080v13 is a big departure from previous 1080 models with the squishiness and bounciness of Fresh Foam X midsole reaching new levels. The fit is great for most people and in true New Balance form there’s a wide version available for wide footers. It’s also a versatile and fun ride that can go fast or slow as needed. The only issue is the price point is higher than most daily trainers. But that said, the 1080v13 is easy to recommend if you’re not too price-sensitive. Read the full review. Price: $165
Best Long Distance Running Shoes for Race Day:
Saucony Endorphin Elite
The Saucony Endorphin Elite is the first shoe to feature Saucony’s next PWRRUN HG foam. It’s a little firmer than the PWRRUN PB in the Endorphin Pro 3 but it’s also bouncier. The carbon plate is segmented at the toe for a little more flexibility but it and the midsole curves up sharply for added toe spring. You sit inside the midsole a bit to keep you on the footbed while the midsole also flares outward resulting in one of the more stable modern marathon shoes on the market.
The outsole has no rubber at the rear so if you’re a heel striker, you may not get great durability…but midfoot and forefoot strikers should be ok. The Endorphin Elite is also one of the most breathable shoes on the market making it a great fit for warmer races. The biggest drawback is the $275 price point…but just like the Alphafly, if you’re a shoe nerd and heavy into marathons, this shoe will deliver value to match. See full review.
Fit: True to Size, Drop: 8mm, Price $275
New Balance FuelCell SC Elite V3
The New Balance FuelCell SC Elite V3 features squishy protective FuelCell foam, a nice pop from the exposed Energy Arc carbon plate, and a great ride. It’ll make your stride feel smooth while feeling lightweight. It’s a shoe that gets out of the way as you run fast paces on race day or amble over long distances on your local roads or greenway.
The SC Elite V3’s knit upper is really hard to put on and could be better but it does the job and is the best road racing shoe New Balance has built to date. Getting all of that at a $230 price point is a nice value for a carbon-plated race-centric shoe. Read the full review.
Fit: True to Size, Drop: 4mm, Price: $230
Nike Vaporfly 3
The Nike Vaporfly 3 is the most cushioned, comfortable, and stable Vaporfly to date thus making it also the best Vaporfly to date. It’s a great update. Stability, breathability, and comfort all improved while the Vaporfly line stayed bouncy, plush, and lightweight. Durability still needs work and the tongue is weirdly tall and wide but neither is a dealbreaker. The Vaporfly 3 is going to be many people’s racing shoe of choice. It puts Nike back in the upper echelon of marathon racing shoes for those (like us) who weren’t all that enthused with the Vaporfly 2 and Alphafly 2. Read the full review.
Fit: True to size, Drop: 8mm, Price: $250
Hoka Rocket X 2
The Hoka Rocket X 2 is easily the best Hoka racing shoe ever. It competes with super shoes from other brands well, is fun to wear, picks up speed nicely, works well on the track, and can handle long distances without issue. It’s Hoka’s bounciest shoe (with its new Peba foam and carbon-plated midsole), and though it’s not as plush as some super shoes, it’s still soft similar to the adidas Adios Pro 3.
The upper reminds us of Nike’s Vaporweave. It won’t take on water or stretch out but also fits tight, especially through the midfoot. This race fit won’t be for everyone but at least the toebox has some solid wiggle room. Wide footers will need to try them on or go up a half size. The upper does have some dead space in the heel and a collar that not everyone will like…but the lockdown was great despite this. Your foot won’t move around inside the shoe or pop out of it.
The outsole shows wear quickly but there’s plenty of rubber so it will be just as durable as other marathon racing shoes. Hoka has taken their racing shoe game to a new level with the Rocket X 2. Both Hoka fans and long distance road runners will be impressed. Watch Kofuzi’s review.
Fit: True to size, Drop: 5mm, Price: $250
Saucony Endorphin Pro 3
The Saucony Endorphin Pro 3 is the latest evolution of Saucony’s flagship marathon racing shoe. And it’s a winner for long distances. The midsole is slightly softer than in years past, still stable, and the upper is lighter and more breathable. The Saucony Speedroll rocker is still hella smooth and makes each footfall feel effortless. The fit is a little strange at first — the heel is narrow, and your arch will feel like it’s hanging over the edge of the shoe (similar to the OG Nike Alphafly), but that’s mainly noticeable while walking around. Get up to running speed, and the Endorphin Pro 3 becomes a bouncy, peppy shoe that feels like it’s returning loads of energy. In our minds, this is the Saucony racing shoe that finally surpassed the Nike Vaporfly and is one of the best marathon racing shoes available.
Fit: True to size, Drop: 8mm, Price: $225
Asics Metaspeed Sky+
The Asics Metaspeed Sky+ is light, stable, breathable, and super bouncy. The FF Blast Turbo paired with the carbon plate really provides a spring to every step. The AsicsGrip traction grabs every surface and is a great choice for running a race in bad weather. The upper isn’t perfect, but the rest of the shoe is so good you can overlook any small issues. The Metaspeed Sky+ is perfect for marathon race days, long training runs, or fast speed workouts. It’s versatile and one of the more impressive shoes available on the market. Read the full review.
Fit: True to size, Drop: 5mm, Price: $250
Puma Deviate Nitro Elite 2
The Puma Deviate Nitro Elite 2 is one of the least expensive shoes on this list, but that doesn’t change its performance. It’s the perfect race day complement to the Puma Deviate Nitro 2 in that it offers the same feel, just lighter and bouncier. It’s rare that a brand’s speed training shoe and race day option are so in sync.
The Puma Grip traction is some of the best available on the market making this one of the if not the best bad weather race day option. The light and minimal upper still features achilles pillows and a comfy tongue. Stability is A+ thanks to the midsole sidewalls rising at the front of the heel to help keep the foot on the footbed no matter what crazy obstacles you encounter.
And while the Nitro Elite midsole isn’t the bounciest among marathon shoes, its above-average support, awesome traction, and lower-than-average price make it a great option for any long distance run.
Fit: True to Size, Drop: 8mm, Price: $200
adidas Adizero Adios Pro 3
The adidas Adizero Adios Pro 3 is a smooth-riding and bouncy long-distance race day shoe. The rocker is improved from previous versions with a sharper toe angle and improved carbon fiber energy rods that make the shoe feel faster and bouncier. Breathability is top-notch, the outsole grips everything, and, due to a widened base, stability is great for a race day shoe. You’ll want to wear thicker socks to avoid issues with the problematic Achilles stitching but that’s the only real issue in a shoe that’s one of the best long distance racing shoes on the market. See the full review.
Fit: Typical adidas, Drop: 6.5mm, Price: $250
Now on Sale – Best Long Distance Running Shoes for Everyday Use:
UA Flow Velociti Elite
The UA Flow Velociti Elite is Under Armour’s first true marathon-focused shoe and the best midsole it’s ever made. The combined Flow and Pebax midsole is bouncy and protective. And while the midsole isn’t the best marathon racing shoe midsole, it’s a great long distance running shoe.
The Velociti Elite grips well in all conditions, features a fantastically comfortable and breathable upper, and is way more stable than expected. The tongue is a little annoying on the sides, but that’s not a dealbreaker. All in all, the UA Flow Velociti Elite is a super fun shoe that shows off some distinctive Under Armour DNA. Read the full review.
Fit: True to Size, Drop: 8mm, Price:
Now on Sale – Best Long Distance Running Shoes for Race Day
If there are good long distance running shoes for racing worthy of a spot and on sale, we will put them here. Stay tuned.
Best Long Distance Running Shoes – Coming Soon
If we test any great upcoming long distance running shoes that may make the list, we’ll put them here.