The 11 Best Running Shoes for Beginners

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Last Updated on November 9, 2022 by Mandy Schmitz


Best Running Shoes for Beginners Blog Title Image

These days, running has become a popular form of physical exercise because you can run at any time you want and it doesn’t cost a lot to start. If you are a beginner, you need to consider some things, especially shoes. So, what qualities do the best running shoes for beginners have, and how do you choose the budget running shoes or an excellent running shoe?

These are some of the questions this piece will discuss the best running shoes for beginners. There are hundreds of options for beginner runners regarding running shoes. However, our team has done the heavy lifting for you by curating the best running shoes for beginners on the market.

The Best Running Shoes for Beginners

Whether you are looking to start running or already running and intend to take things further, you need to find a suitable pair of the best running shoes for beginners before pounding the pavements. Additionally, you can set yourself up for a lifetime of running and not a few months when you find some of the best running shoes for beginners that are ideally suited to your running and body type.

With so many different shoe styles and designs with fresh foam midsole available on the market, we’ll help you find the perfect fit for your running goals. Without further ado, let’s take you to our list.

Here are the best running shoes for beginners:

1. ASICS Men’s Gel-Contend 7 Running Shoe

ASICS Men's Gel-Contend 7

ASICS Gel-Contend 7 provides support and cushioning for runners and is one of the best running shoes for beginners. You can be sure of getting more from this budget-friendly shoe. Beginner runners with supination and even neutral runners will find the shoe perfect. It is a lightweight shoe with an OrthoLite sock liner, a durable AMPLIFOAM midsole, engineered mesh upper, and rearfoot GEL technology.

The Gel-Contend 7 has Guideline technology that promotes consistent and natural stride for runners. Its outsole is designed with textured rubbers, providing heel-to-toe offset. The shoe is effective on gravel or tracks in any weather, even though it is not fancy. With that, the sole makes for an even ride and improves the flexibility of the sole with the sole’s grooves. They made the sole from AmpliFoam, the Rearfoot Gel cushioning.


  • Handy guidance line for a beginner running shoe
  • Durable and grippy outsole
  • Value for money
  • Plenty of cushioning
  • Stable
  • Good heel lock
  • It fits true to size

The Gel-Contend 7 is designed with an engineered mesh, and if support and durability are your focus, the shoe provides excellent cushioning.

Click to get ASICS Gel-Contend 7.

2. Nike Men’s Running Shoe

Nike Men's Running Shoe

Most runners will find Nike Men’s Running Shoe quite an efficient and budget-friendly shoe, whether you are a casual, beginner, or undemanding runner. These right running shoes ideally exceed your expectations with such a high level of cushioning and other great features. Also, you will like the lightness of the whole shoe and the EVA midsole, which is pretty thick with the feel of overall protection and support.

The shoe’s lightness will amaze you even though it is firmly cushioned. It is one of the best running shoes for beginners because you won’t feel it as heavy as you run. As a runner looking for an affordable entry-level shoe, we recommend going for this shoe. This road-running shoe has a sleek, minimal, and classic design. Ultimately, it offers a beginner runner good value for their money.


  • Breathable
  • Lightweight
  • Affordable
  • Impressive traction
  • No break-in period needed
  • Great energy return
  • Roomy toe box
  • True to size

Durability and comfort are two main qualities of Nike Men’s Running Shoe, and it is a supportive shoe that can handle most types of runs.

Get your pair of Nike Men’s Running Shoe today!

3. NIKE Pegasus Trail 3

NIKE Pegasus Trail 3

Beginner runners will fall in love with NIKE Pegasus Trail 3 because it is perfect for a more cushioned ride to rack up long training miles and a bit more sturdy on the run-commute to work. This shoe is versatile and works for a host of use cases. The Pegasus 3 does not complicate things as it strikes the right balance of support and breathability with a pretty regular engineered mesh upper, including new balance fresh foam. It doesn’t have spongy underfoot, and your foot will sit comfortably in the heel. As such, your toe box will not get cramped.

The shoe is always great pulling a running shoe that looks great, and the Pegasus 3 ticks this box, and you will indeed find it as one of the best running shoes for beginners on the market. It has a simple two-layer mesh in the upper with a lightweight, slightly harder outer one. The interior has a tighter weave softer material that keeps your foot comfortable and wicks away sweat.


  • Reflective swoosh
  • Durable design for new runners
  • Wide loop on heel
  • Wide for a Nike
  • True to size
  • Very comfortable
  • Soft, bouncy ride

If you want to run on smooth and rough surfaces, Nike Pegasus the best running shoe that allows you to run on both surfaces. The upper is wonderfully comfortable for any duration run.

Buy NIKE Pegasus Trail 3 now.

4. Brooks Cascadia 16

Best Running Shoes for Beginners -Brooks Cascadia 16 Men's Trail

Brooks Cascadia 16 is a neutral, mid-cushion trail shoe, and this shoe must be in your wheelhouse if you want to start running. This running shoe is 20 percent lighter and 5 percent softer than previous models because Brooks infused it with their new DNA Loft v2 cushioning. Don’t worry about any debris you can encounter underfoot because it gets protection against this from the updated Ballistic Rock Shield.

Cascadia 16 is one of the best running shoes for beginners because it can handle various terrain, from technical, rocky trails to well-maintained horse tracks, even for heavier runners. The running shoe boasts a roomy toe box, and its length ensures that your foot has enough room as you navigate downhills. The elastic-type mesh is excellent at securing the midfoot without causing any blisters or hotspots.


  • Lacing options
  • Aggressive
  • Rock plate
  • Gaiter attachments
  • Durable
  • True to size
  • Great lockdown
  • Wide toe box
  • Grippy outsole

Cushioned and stable thick midsole makes Brooks Cascadia 16 suitable for a beginner runner on any terrain.

Click to get Brooks Cascadia 16.

5. Saucony Women’s Ride 14 Running Shoe

Saucony Women's Ride 14

Saucony Women’s Ride 14 Running Shoe has improved comfier and sleeker upper, and it remains a reliable, well-cushioned, and simple, and beginner-friendly shoe. The new upper that improves style, comfort, and breathability makes it one of the best running shoes for beginners. The improved breathability is due to inner padding and perforations in the upper’s outer mesh. The outsole rubber is resilient on light gravel and rocks and is grippy, durable on slick terrain.

The EVA Pwrrun midsole provides a firmer feel and ample cushioning for beginner runners. The Pwrrun cushioning feels relatively controlled, moderately responsive, and reasonably strong for new runners. The shoe has a more pronounced toe spring that helps roll the foot quickly through push-off.


  • Do-it-all shoe
  • Wide feet friendly
  • No break-in
  • True to size
  • Luxurious, soft feel
  • Breathable
  • Durable

Saucony Ride 14 boasts sufficient flexibility and feels firm, making the running shoe ideal for a smooth ride. It is also versatile and reliable for various terrain.

Get your pair of Saucony Women’s Ride 14 now.

6. ASICS Men’s Gel-Cumulus 23 Running Shoe

Best Running Shoes for Beginners -ASICS Men's Gel-Cumulus 23

ASICS Men’s Gel-Cumulus 23 maintains the Cumulus tradition of being a neutral, versatile daily shoe durable for several kilometers. The ASICS Gel-Cumulus model is one of the best running shoes for beginners because it is ahead of many Asics shoes with some changes to widen the fit, soften the ride, and make it a bit more accommodating. The shoe boasts new age nuances as a traditional daily trainer for excellent foot shapes.

ASICS Gel-Cumulus has a surprisingly soft and plush upper that offers a flexible but slightly snug forefoot and a secure heel. The smooth midfoot and flexible forefoot provide an excellent transition through the shoe’s front half. There is a clunky heel from some posterior heel flare, like trail shoes. However, anyone can agree that those are the more traditional Asics heel that feels right at home. You will also notice some tweaks from the older version to keep the tradition.


  • Decent grip
  • Durable
  • No break-in period
  • Smooth ride
  • Budget-minded
  • Do-it-all shoe
  • True to size
  • Lightweight for a daily trainer
  • Comfortable

Enjoy a secure, surprisingly soft, plush upper from a great running shoe like Asics Gel-Cumulus 23 to make your foot happy.

Try ASICS Men’s Gel-Cumulus 23 today.

7. Brooks Men’s Adrenaline GTS 21

Brooks Men's Adrenaline GTS 21

This Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21 provides beginner runners cushioning, new balance, maximum cushioning, and support where it’s needed most. The sturdy stability of the shoe makes it one of the best running shoes for beginners. It was designed for runners looking for dependable running shoes. The shoe will make you feel comfortable when you put in the miles and is thoughtfully constructed where it matters, even though it isn’t flashy.

Using Brook’s DNA Loft foam throughout the midsole length for a slightly cushioned ride gives this running shoe a slight upgrade from the GTS 20. They have also tweaked the 3D-printed mesh upper for a more snug fit. Even with that, the running shoe provides room for the toe.


  • Promising outsole durability
  • Soft cushioning
  • Gusseted tongue
  • Secure fit

Brooks Men’s Adrenaline GTS 21 will provide you with sturdy stability. The running shoe is a dependable running shoe for the everyday run.

Click to get Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21 today.

8. Saucony Women’s Guide 14 Running Shoe

Best Running Shoes for Beginners -Saucony Women's Guide 14

Saucony Guide 14 is indeed the coziest running shoe yet, from its plush midsole to its laces down. It is one of the best running shoes for beginners as the running shoe boasts a new streamlined exterior; TPU medial post offers stability and an even softer Pwrrun midsole. Suffice to say that this model lends strength to a responsive and smooth trainer for beginner runners.

This shoe’s stability has gotten a makeover with the spruced-up upper that looks race-ready and fast. You can relish the coziness of the shoe’s interior and cushioned platform on daily miles. The Guide 14 also has a sturdy heel counter and lightweight TPU medial post to lend support.


  • Durable running shoe
  • Perfect midfoot lockdown
  • Good grip
  • Familiar Saucony fit
  • Wide toe box
  • Mild stability

Saucony Guide 14 provides a lightweight/responsive ride for new runners with genuine moderate stability and it is ahead of any stability shoes.

Get your pair of Saucony Guide 14 now.

9. Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 38

Best Running Shoes for Beginners -Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 38 FlyEase

If you want a running shoe with versatility for speed work or even marathon distances, we recommend choosing Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 38. It is one of the best running shoes for beginners because of its bounce and cushioning. Nike has continued to adapt and evolve with technology and relevancy. This Nike Air Zoom uses the contemporary Nike design language used by such brands as VaporFly.

The outsole of this running shoe combines carbon rubber in the rear and blown rubber in the front to balance durability, traction, and weight. While it has plush and soft upper material, the mesh is sandwich-styled fabric. Nike used their proprietary React foam, a blend of TPE and EVA for the midsole.


  • Grippy outsole
  • Durable
  • Padded upper
  • Hugs your feet
  • Peppy toe-off
  • Stable, fun midsole
  • Wider than past models

Cushioned and stable midsole best describe Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 38. The running shoe is also affordable, well-fitting, durable, and comfortable.

Try Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 38 now.

10. Brooks Ghost 14 Men’s Natural Running Shoe

Brooks Ghost 14 Men's Neutral

Brooks Ghost 14 is carbon neutral, dependable, and comfortable running shoe. It provides plenty of cushioning and comfort and is reliable, even though it may not be the most exciting shoe on the market. Ghost 14 is durable and solid and can deliver a bit of snap at faster paces.

Brooks designed the mesh upper to provide plenty of support and comfort to be a perfect running shoe while also using a 3D print design to feel secure for the foot. In addition, there has been a boost to the heel collar for a snugger feel at the back of the shoe. The underfoot has a thick rubber outsole to grip roads or slightly uneven terrain with flexible Omega Flex grooves that support any swift direction changes.


  • Breathable
  • Stable
  • Smooth ride
  • Plenty of padding
  • True to size
  • Comfortable

Brooks Ghost 14 is a responsive running shoe with a more responsive design. The running shoe is a real deal over the 13.

Click to get Brooks Ghost 14.

11. Under Armour Men’s Charged Assert 8 Running Shoe

Best Running Shoes for Beginners -Under Armour Men's Charged Assert 8

The midsole’s Charged Cushioning makes the Under Armour Men’s Charged Assert 8 one of the best running shoes for beginners. The Charged Cushioning uses compression molded foam to provide durability and responsiveness, like the new balance fresh foam. The running shoe is comfortable and has a nice EVA sock liner.

Under Armour designed the shoe’s outsole with solid rubber without covering the whole bottom of the outsole. You will also find the shallow and deep flex grooves between the forefoot and midfoot perfect for your feet, making them very flexible.


  • Perfect for various occasions
  • Comfortable fit for all-day wear
  • Lightweight

You can wear Under Armour Charged Assert 8 all day because of its comfortable construction. It is highly comfortable with excellent support for your foot.

Get your pair of Under Armour Men’s Charged Assert 8 now.

Now, you have nothing to worry about when getting the best running shoes for beginners. Go through the list above to decide on your choice. While doing so, keep in mind some features like cushioning, support, and comfort.

What to Look for In the Best Running Shoes for Beginners?

Taking things further, you must know everything about your choice of best running shoes before buying them. Additionally, you must know everything about the model’s critical features, including:

1. Midsole

The midsole is between the upper and outsole with the idea of guiding your foot through the stride and protecting your feet from impact. As such, look for the best midsole thickness without excess weight, too firm or soft.

2. Heel counter

The rearfoot has a semi-rigid cup that supports the heel. Some models offer the same function with their external heel wrap, and others do not come with a heel counter for easy movement. However, the heel counter can support stable landing with every step, even though they have nothing to offer regarding any motion control.

3. Ankle collar

The shoe opening has the ankle collar as it holds your heel in one place. Some shoes have thick padding. Therefore, ensure to look out for the ankle bones interaction with padding, heel slips, and Achilles Tendon’s irritation because of the curve at the back.

4. Upper

The upper entails everything above the sole, and it is a combination of layers of mesh and fabrics. Ensure that the upper of your choice running’s shape is smooth to the touch of your feet and fits your foot. It must not have any binding or chafing at any point.

Do I Need Running Shoes to Start Running?

You do because running shoes are essential, and picking the best running shoes for beginners is even critical. The most crucial element of any running shoe is comfort. That is why you need to get a running shoe that feels good on your foot and fits well while running.

Additional Tips to Start Running As a Beginner

It may sound silly to prepare yourself before starting running since it appears so simple. However, you can make your training more effective and increase enjoyment by learning a few basics of running. Start running after about one minute of walking and one minute of running. Then, increase the running intervals. Other tips include:


After poring over the details of each model, we chose ASICS Men’s Gel-Contend 7 Running Shoe because of its rugged constructions and ample cushioning for all forms of runs. Alternatively, we also picked Nike Men’s Running Shoe because of its versatility and cushioning as one of the best running shoes for beginners.


Besides that we have also reviewed running shoes for other conditions, which you can find here:

Mandy Schmitz
Mandy Schmitz
Mandy Schmitz is a freelance consultant and project management expert with 10+ years of experience working internationally for big brands in fintech, consumer goods and more. Join me here on to learn how to optimize your business operations and find the latest product & software reviews.


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Mandy Schmitz is a freelance consultant and project management expert with 10+ years of experience working internationally for big brands in fintech, consumer goods and more. Join me here on to learn how to optimize your business operations and find the latest product & software reviews.

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