Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In

Become a Member

Get access to more than 30 brands, premium video, exclusive content, events, mapping, and more.

Already have an account? Sign In

Brands

Gear

Winter Running Shoe Awards

When the weather turns dreary, it’s time to spice up your run with some hot new kicks! Check out our latest award-winning running shoes!

Get access to everything we publish when you sign up for Outside+.


When the weather turns dreary, it’s time to spice up your run with some hot new kicks! We enlisted dozens of testers to help us select the best shoes of the season. Check out their favorite pairs to find a shoe that speaks to you.

BEST NEUTRAL

Adidas AdiZero Feather 2, $115
If you like your neutral shoes to be superduper lightweight, take the Feather 2s for a spin. These airy kicks technically fall under Adidas’ minimalist line, but offer enough support to work as everyday trainers. “There is a nice balance between cushioning and being able to feel the ground as you run,” said a runner from Brooklyn. “The uppers are a meshy material, so my feet didn’t feel sweaty.” Cute colors provide a motivational boost, while the tapered heel keeps your foot secure. 5.6 oz., adidas.com

Saucony Ride 5, $110
A good neutral running shoe should perform like a luxury sedan. The Ride 5 does just that with a plush interior and state-of-the-art engineering. One tester noted, “There was no breaking in required. I put them on and it was like I had been wearing them for weeks!” The cushy feel is thanks to ProGrid technology that absorbs the shock from your stride. Runners familiar with the Ride 4 will notice the weight of the new version has been markedly reduced and that the shoe now has a lower heel. 8.6 oz., saucony.com

BEST LOOKING

Reebok Real Flex Speed, $110
This shoe combines a street-wear style and a racing- at feel. “I love the bright blue!” raved one tester. “I get compliments whenever I wear them.” The modern design is more than skin deep. Multidirectional nodes create a supportive but highly flexible sole—you can bend this shoe almost completely in half. A good  t for runners who prefer minimal support or who want to supplement their everyday shoe with a lightweight trainer. 8.1 oz., reebok.com

Mizuno Wave Precision 13, $110
It’s electric! The new Wave Precision is like sporting an 80’s dance party on your feet. “I’ll wear these on days when I want to feel bright and different,” said one 5k runner. In spite of the  ashy style, this neutral shoe is serious when it comes to performance. The grooved base conforms to a woman’s stride, while a plastic plate running from toe to heel helps to propel you forward. One tester noted, “These shoes put a spring in my step!” 8.0 oz., mizunousa.com

BEST TRAIL

Asics Gel Scout, $120
They may look cute, but these shoes are all business when it comes to tackling tough terrain. “The Scout provided me with great support even on rocky surfaces,” said one trail runner. Grippy lugs improve traction, a hidden rock plate in the sole prevents bruising and a pouch in the tongue provides a storage space for unruly laces. A great choice for off-road newbies, the Scout is versatile enough to work on pavement, and it boasts an interior testers called “cushiony and comfortable.” 9.8 oz, asicsamerica.com

Saucony Outlaw, $110
One look at the high-top ankle cuff tells you these shoes are for serious trail runners. Perfect for wild women who want to forge their own path, leaving branches and boulders in their dust, the Outlaw serves up a heavy dose of protection in a comfortable package. One dirt-loving lady reported, “The Achilles support made me feel ready and steady. No rolled ankles here!” A low heel-to-toe drop (i.e. a  at profile across the foot) means that even though the shoes may look a bit bulky, they create a natural-feeling ride. 10.1 oz., saucony.com

BEST STABILITY

Nike LunarGlide+ 4, $120
Stability shoes should feel pleasantly supportive—not like your feet trapped in your grandmother’s orthotics. The updated LunarGlides are an example of structure at its sleekest. “I was pleasantly surprised by how cushioned and springy these shoes were,” remarked one Boston Marathon finisher. “They felt great on longer runs, but didn’t weigh me down when I picked up the pace.” Updates to the previous version are dramatic: a less chunky sole, a lighter weight, a more breathable upper and the addition of FlyWire, a knit fabric that creates a more molded feel. 8.2 oz., nike.com

Brooks Adrenaline GTS 13$110
The Adrenaline GTS (read: go-to shoe) is the most popular model in Brooks’ lineup for a reason. It’s plush, durable, supportive and easy to wear. The newest model (lucky number 13) hits running store shelves in November. Adrenaline fans can look forward to positive improvements like a more flexible feel thanks to additional grooves in the sole. One tester who had never worn Brooks before said, “I like the feel overall. The shoe has great support and is very responsive when your foot hits the pavement.” 9.4 oz., brooksrunning.com

MOST INNOVATIVE

Hoka One One Stinson Tarmac, $170
Reminiscent of moon boots, these futuristic shoes promise to take your running where it has never gone before. Hoka One One has developed a cult-like following in the sport of ultrarunning where athletes value a shoe that can go the distance and protect their joints. The chunky-looking bottom is actually intended to help you move more freely by delivering maximum cushioning in a sole that gently rocks your body forward as you run on roads and trails. If you’re skeptical about the design (or the price tag), consider one tester’s endorsement, “Once you get used to the feeling of running high off the ground, these shoes are like running on sunshine!” 9.2 oz., hokaoneone-na.com

Under Armour W Spine RPM, $100
To see what makes these shoes unique, turn them upside down. Designers at Under Armour took a cue from the human form when conceptualizing the base. Made out of one solid piece of dual-density foam, the sole is carved in the shape of a spine. The result is a lower-weight shoe that goes the distance— and the best quality trainer we’ve seen from Under Armour in years. As one tester put it, “I was surprised how good these shoes felt compared to some ‘more famous’ running shoe brands. My feet felt really good in them.” 7.4 oz., underarmour.com

BEST VALUE

Skechers GOrun Ride, $80
The lowest priced shoe of the season also garnered some of the highest tester ratings. “I love these shoes!” gushed one runner. “They were extremely comfortable and my feet felt great.” The convex sole is designed to encourage wearers to adopt a more natural form of running (landing on the mid-foot instead of the heel). While some testers loved this feature “it felt so much better on my joints than heel striking,” others missed the support during longer runs. 6.3 oz., skechers.com

Asics Gel Lyte 33, $100
Just a hair shy of a double-digit price point, the Gel Lyte 33 gives you a lot of shoe for your money. Flyweight cushioning lets these kicks perform as regular trainers as well as racing shoes, and the spunky design can easily transition from the gym to the coffee shop. Testers who prefer more structure noted that the 33s were a bit lacking in support, but as one cross country runner said, “This is a great shoe for those who want a natural ride, but don’t want to sacrifice cushioning.” 6.4 oz., asicsamerica.com

MOST COMFORTABLE

K-Swiss Kwicky Blade-Light Neutral, $135
Perhaps it’s the superfoam heel crash pad. Or maybe it’s the blister-preventing, seam-free inner. Whatever the reason, our testers were wowed by the comfort of these kicks. “These shoes feel like a sock when I put them on,” noted a tester from Texas. While another remarked, “I love the overall comfort—they  t my foot like a glove.” Durable construction ensures this pair will last, as does a thumb loop to prevent crunching the heel when you slip them on. 9.0 oz, kswiss.com

Newton Gravity, $175
“I barely remembered I had shoes on,” praised one Pennsylvania based tester. This better-than naked style from Newton is a neutral shoe with a minimalist philosophy. The Gravity is structured to help you land on your mid-foot, and our testers noticed (and loved) this design. “They make you feel like a natural running machine!” While the price is high, the shoes come with supplementary materials to help you change your form slowly while avoiding injury, so you can run comfortably for the rest of your life. 7.6 oz., newtonrunning.com

BEST RACER

Puma Faas 350 S, $85
Want to wear a racing flat, but afraid of giving up the support and structure of your training shoe? Never fear. The Faas 350 S has come to the rescue! The low-profile shoe created to increase your speed is constructed with a sole sturdy enough for mild overpronator. “The shoe had great support in all areas of my feet,” attested one runner, and another noted that they “made [her] feel faster!” While testers agreed that they would save these shoes for faster runs and races, with cool styling and a great price point, they’re worth the spend. 8.7 oz., puma.com

New Balance 1600, $110
If you’re gunning for a fast time on race day, there’s nothing better than feeling light on your feet. At under 5 ounces (4.98 to be exact), the 1600 is the lightest shoe we tested, and specifically designed to give you that weightless effect. “I did notice an improvement in my speed when I had them on,” said one runner. Although it’s marketed as a “marathon racing flat,” this shoe would work as an everyday trainer for runners who prefer a minimal feel. As one tester reported, “I took these shoes on a 10-time training run and felt great every step of the way.” Note: These shoes run small, so buy one-half size up. 5.0 oz., newbalance.com