I've made my selection of the best every day running shoes of 2020 based on style AND functionality. There is plenty of talk and hype with the running world welcoming shoes with carbon plates in the sole unit to help propel you as you strike the ground. For a lot of serious runners and competitors that's great, for for someone like myself who enjoys running but not as competitively, I need a trainer that will last the test of slow to medium paced running. I've therefore trawled through all the offerings from running shoe brands for 2020 and have come up with the following selection.
Hoka One One Elevon 2
When researching new running shoes for myself, Hoka had just released the 2nd iteration of the Elevon. I had always heard positive things from people about Hoka and of course it's super cushioned soles. I did try a Speedgoat 3 which was just way too narrow for me to try which got me made me write off Hoka from there on. However, the Elevon 2 looks and performs every bit a solid every day and recovery shoe (the serious runners will understand). The heel is slightly extended for heel strike runners with it's Profly midsole allowing for cushioning along the sole while giving a responsive toe-off.
The Elevon 2 is also a rather stylish looking trainer despite its chunky nature. Although the have been doing collaborations with fashion brands giving them a bit of a fashionista makeover. This one however will keep you firmly in the performance end of the spectrum with an every day runner
Nike React Infinity Run Flyknit
When I heard that this shoe is meant to reduce injury I had a mixed reaction – part of me was excited as I have dodgy ankles from horrific injuries, so this was music to my ears. But then the other part of me was wondering why running shoes don't have these capabilities already. I mean we're pounding the streets which isn't that great for the joints. That's why I tend to try to run on grass as much as possible to ease the impact. However, Nike ensures us that with their research this shoe will "help reduce the risk of running related injuries".
I really like this shoe. For me it's a hybrid that is a good recovery run shoe for those serious runners, but a solid shoe for those of us needing cushioning and protection. I've been using it exclusively in my rehabilitation from achilles tendonopathy. The energy release upon strike and stability is thoroughly welcomed. Out of many running shoes, it actually fit the best around the ankle despite there not being copious amounts of cushioning. However, if you want a performance runner, you should get one of the Zoom families into your rotation.
Nike Pegasus 37
There has been LOTS of hype surrounding the new incarnation of the Pegasus, which has been one of Nike's stable mid-range running shoes with millions of runners more than likely to have run in a variation of it in the past. As with most of Nike's development, they like to add their latest sole unit to the relevant upper. Remember when Lunor was on basically all the on Nike shoes. This time it's React. So they've used the React foam in the new iteration of the Pegasus while ALSO including a Zoom airbag in the forefoot – perfect for those, like me, who has a forefoot strike. With that in mind, it's not ideal for those who are used to heel striking as there isn't much support for high impact.
Adidas Ultra Boost 20
I've always been a huge fan of Adidas Ultra Boost and this year's version sticks true to tradition by giving us another solid running shoe offering maximum performance. Featuring a Primeknit+ upper for a hugging fit around the foot while remaining breathable. The Boost midsole is as powerful as ever, giving you that dependable energy return when striking the ground. Then there's Continental rubber to give you added grip.
Asics Nova Blast
I've been running in Asics for several years now. They took over the mantle from Nike as my main running shoe due to their dependable models. This, however, breaks the mould and pushed the boat out for them, trying to catch up with others who are making sexy lightweight running shoes. It took me a while to appreciate the style but I'm now very much onboard. They're the best performance shoe out there without a carbon plate in (along with the Saucony Endorphin Speed).
Saucony Endorphine Speed
For serious runners. This was heralded as the one to really push Nike in the marathon runner shoes with a fast lightweight number that could shave off seconds on PBs. I've heard very positive things about this shoe – and well done to those who managed to get hold of it, as they sold out fast. There are already new colourways coming out for AW20 and I'm sure this will stay relevant for years to come. I wouldn't be surprised if the Endorphine Speed becomes on of Saucony's flagship models.