Best Running Shoes for Beginners in 2023: A Comprehensive Guide

best running shoes for beginners 2023

Choosing the right pair of running shoes is essential for beginners, as it can greatly impact their comfort, performance, and overall running experience. With the constantly evolving market, it can be challenging to identify the best running shoes for beginners. To help you make an informed decision, I have compiled a list of the top ten best running shoes for beginners in 2023.

This guide will explore each shoe’s features, technologies, and benefits, enabling you to find the perfect pair that suits your needs.

Read more: Best Running Shoes for Overweight Runners 2023

Featured Running Shoes in this Article

Best Running Shoes for Beginners 2023

Whether you’re embarking on your first jogging experience or are transitioning from indoor workouts to outdoor runs, the right running shoes can make a big difference. The “Best Running Shoes for Beginners 2023” guide will provide insights into the latest, user-friendly, and comfortable footwear ideal for those new to running.

I will be focusing on shoes that offer adequate support, cushioning, and stability, all while ensuring you stay within your budget. Let’s find the perfect pair to kick-start your running journey in 2023.

1. Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 40

The Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 39 is an ideal choice for beginners due to its excellent cushioning and responsiveness. It offers a comfortable fit and a lightweight design that enhances agility. With its durable outsole, this shoe provides traction on various terrains.

Nike Pegasus 40
  • The fine-tuned support and well-placed cushioning
  • Nike React technology, a lightweight and durable foam material that provides a comfortable and responsive feel
  • Nike React technology with two Zoom Air units
  • An upgraded layer of mesh provides an inviting feel and fit
  • The heel area is designed to optimize your landing and improve your stride
  • The waffle pattern provides good grip on the road
  • An extra-flexible sole provides a softer push-off
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2. ASICS Gel-Cumulus 25

The ASICS Gel-Cumulus 25 is renowned for its cushioning and shock absorption properties, making it perfect for beginners. The shoe’s FluidRide technology provides a soft and comfortable feel, while the Impact Guidance System aids in a smoother stride.

ASICS Gel-Cumulus 25
  • FF BLAST PLUS technology: Cushioning provides lightweight impact absorption and a responsive rebound
  • PureGEL technology .: Helps provide lightweight cushioning and softer landings
  • Engineered jacquard mesh upper: Helps improve breathability and comfort
  • The sockliner is produced with the solution dyeing process that reduces water usage by approximately 33% and carbon emissions by approximately 45% compared to the conventional dyeing technology:
  • Reflective details: Designed to improve visibility in low-light conditions
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10/04/2023 12:21 pm GMT

3. Brooks Ghost 15

The Brooks Ghost 15 offers a perfect blend of cushioning, responsiveness, and support. Its DNA Loft foam midsole provides a plush feel, ensuring a comfortable ride for beginners. The shoe’s segmented crash pad enhances stability and smooth transitions.

Brooks Ghost 15
  • Refined 3D Fit Print to create a more seamless, secure fit.
  • Neutral support, and high energizing cushioning. Ideal for road running, cross training, the gym or wherever you might want to take them!
  • New midsole features soft and lighter-weight DNA LOFT V2 cushioning to provide distraction-free cushioning under your feet with each stride.
  • An integrated system of shock absorbers
  • Engineered air mesh upper provides comfort and breathability with 3D Fit Print for added structure
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10/04/2023 12:26 pm GMT

4. New Balance Fresh Foam 1080 v12

With its plush cushioning and lightweight design, the New Balance Fresh Foam 1080v12 caters to the needs of beginner runners. The shoe’s Fresh Foam midsole offers exceptional comfort, while the Hypoknit upper provides a secure and breathable fit.

New Balance Fresh Foam X 1080 V12
  • Built to give you a smooth ride on any run
  • Combines plush comfort and modern style
  • The Hypoknit upper adds a soft, breathable and supportive fit
  • Fresh Foam X provides comfortable cushioning underfoot to keep you going
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10/04/2023 12:41 pm GMT

5. Saucony Ride 16

The Saucony Ride 16 is a versatile running shoe suitable for beginners. It features PWRRUN cushioning, which offers a responsive and cushioned ride. The shoe’s FORMFIT technology ensures a customized fit, adapting to the runner’s foot shape.

Saucony Ride 16
  • Perfectly balanced with cushioning where you need it
  • Smooth fit
  • PWRRUN foam midsole provides a softer stack of cushioning
  • Higher sidewalls allow your foot to sit on the shoe
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6. Adidas Ultraboost 22

The Adidas Ultraboost 22 is a popular choice for beginners due to its combination of comfort and performance. It features Boost cushioning, which provides excellent energy return, and a Primeknit upper that offers a snug and supportive fit.

Adidas Ultraboost 22
  • Socklike adidas PRIMEKNIT+ upper
  • Responsive BOOST cushioning for supportive comfort
  • A Linear Energy Push system enhances midfoot and forefoot stiffness for extra energy in every step
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10/04/2023 01:06 pm GMT

7. Hoka One One Clifton 9

The Hoka One One Clifton is known for its lightweight and plush cushioning, making it a great option for beginner runners. The shoe’s Meta-Rocker technology promotes a smooth and efficient stride, while the breathable upper enhances comfort.

Best Hoka One One Running Shoe 2023
  • Breathable open-engineered mesh upper with seamless synthetic overlays
  • Breathable textile lining for abrasion-free wear
  • Removable, foam padded insole for cushioning and support
  • Durable full-length EVA midsole to absorb shock and offer stability
  • Durable sole with rubber inserts for grip
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10/04/2023 12:16 pm GMT

8. Mizuno Wave Rider 27

The Mizuno Wave Rider 27 offers a responsive and cushioned ride, making it suitable for beginners. The shoe’s Wave Plate technology provides stability and shock absorption, while the breathable upper ensures optimal airflow.

Mizuno Men's Wave Rider 27
  • Superior drive and immaculate comfort
  • Upgraded with an even lighter upper and refined heal fitting
  • New level of responsiveness through the bio base wave plate and a smooth ride provided by MIZUNO ENERZY
  • A more cushioned midsole provides both responsiveness and propulsion
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10/04/2023 01:16 pm GMT

9. Under Armour HOVR Machina 3

The Under Armour HOVR Machina 3 combines cushioning, responsiveness, and energy return, making it an excellent choice for beginner runners. The shoe’s UA HOVR technology provides a comfortable and supportive ride, while the carbon-infused plate enhances propulsion.

Under Armour HOVR Machina 3
  • CONNECTS TO UA MAPMYRUN™: tracks & analyzes your running metrics to help make you a better runner
  • Engineered warp spacer upper for optimal lightweight containment & breathability
  • Strategically-mapped design without any overlays or seams so you can put in the miles without irritation
  • Aerodynamic heel design & external TPU heel wrap for added support & lockdown fit
  • Molded EVA sockliner provides added comfort, resiliency & cushioning for high-mileage performance
  • Responsive UA HOVR™ cushioning reduces impact, returns energy & helps propel you forward
  • Channeled rubber outsole mapped for durability in high-wear areas & flex zones to promote natural movement
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10/04/2023 01:46 pm GMT


Selecting the best running shoes for beginners is crucial to kickstart your running journey on the right foot. Each of the ten shoes mentioned above offers unique features and technologies designed to enhance comfort, cushioning, and performance. Consider your personal preferences, running style, and foot shape when making your choice. By investing in the right pair of running shoes, beginners can enjoy a more enjoyable and injury-free running experience in 2023 and beyond.

What to Consider When Buying Running Shoes as a Beginner?

When buying running shoes, especially as a beginner, there are several factors to consider:

  1. Fit: The fit of the shoe is probably the most important aspect. It’s important that the shoe isn’t too tight or too loose. There should be enough room in the toe box for your toes to move freely, but not so much that your foot slides around. Similarly, the heel should be snug but not tight. Generally, you’ll want about a thumb’s width of space between your longest toe and the end of the shoe.
  2. Running style: Your running style, including where you primarily run (on a track, the road, a trail) and your stride, should guide your shoe selection. For example, if you primarily run on trails, you’ll want a shoe with more traction and stability to handle uneven terrain. If you’re running on roads, a lighter shoe with more cushioning might be a good fit.
  3. Foot type and pronation: Pronation refers to the way your foot rolls inward for impact distribution upon landing. Understanding your foot type and how you pronate can influence the type of running shoe you should purchase. Some people have flat feet (overpronation) and need more stability, others have high arches (underpronation or supination) and might need more cushioning. Neutral runners can generally wear any type of shoe.
  4. Comfort: While a shoe might technically fit and be suited to your running style and pronation, it also needs to feel comfortable. Some shoes might have a seam that irritates you, or a lack of breathability that makes your feet hot. It’s important to try on multiple pairs and styles to find what feels best for you.
  5. Durability: Check the durability of the shoes. While lightweight shoes can feel great, they might not hold up to heavy use. Consider the quality of the materials and construction of the shoe. Some runners find it beneficial to have a rotation of shoes to extend their lifespan.
  6. Price: Running shoes can be an investment, but there are options at different price points. As a beginner, you might not need the top-of-the-line model. Remember, the most expensive shoe is not necessarily the best shoe for your feet.
  7. Special needs: Do you have any special needs such as wider feet, bunions, or do you use orthotics? These are important considerations as they will affect the fit and comfort of your running shoes.

It’s a good idea to go to a specialized running store where the staff can analyze your gait and provide shoe recommendations based on your specific needs. Also, always try to shop in the afternoon or after a run, when your feet are at their largest, to ensure a proper fit.

FAQs – Best Running Shoes for Beginners 2023

What should I look for in running shoes as a beginner?

As a beginner, you should look for running shoes that provide ample cushioning, stability, and a comfortable fit. They should also have good shock absorption to lessen the impact on your joints. Ensure they’re durable and suitable for the kind of terrain you plan to run on. Lastly, it’s important they fit well to prevent injuries and discomfort.

How do I determine my foot type?

You can determine your foot type by doing a ‘wet test.’ Wet your foot, step on a piece of cardboard or paper, and observe your footprint. If you see half of your arch, you have a normal foot. If you see almost your entire footprint, you have flat feet. If you see just your heel, the ball of your foot, and a thin line on the outside, you have high arches.

Are there any specific brands recommended for beginners?

Many brands offer shoes ideal for beginners, such as Brooks, Nike, Asics, New Balance, and Saucony. Each of these brands offers a variety of models to cater to different foot types, running styles, and comfort levels.

How often should I replace my running shoes?

Generally, running shoes should be replaced every 300-500 miles. However, the exact mileage can vary depending on the durability of the shoes, your running style, weight, and the surfaces you run on. If you notice your shoes aren’t providing as much support or cushioning, it may be time for a new pair.

What is the best way to break in new running shoes?

The best way to break in new running shoes is to start by wearing them for short periods of time during your day and gradually increasing the duration. You can also start by using them for shorter runs before gradually using them for longer sessions. Avoid running a long distance in brand new shoes, as this can lead to discomfort or injuries.

How should running shoes fit?

Running shoes should fit comfortably snug in the heel and midfoot, with a little extra room in the toe box. Your toes should have enough room to move without rubbing against the front of the shoe. There should be about a thumb’s width of space between the end of your longest toe and the front of the shoe.

Are there any 2023 models of running shoes specifically designed for beginners?

Yes, many shoe companies release models designed with beginners in mind, offering extra cushioning and support. For example, the Brooks Ghost 15, Asics Gel-Cumulus, and Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 40 have all received high marks in 2023 for their comfort, support, and beginner-friendly features.

What’s the difference between road and trail running shoes?

Road running shoes are designed for pavement and occasional forays onto packed surfaces with slight irregularities. They are light, flexible, and cushion your feet well. Trail running shoes are designed for off-road routes with rocks, mud, roots, or other obstacles. They are enhanced with aggressive tread for solid traction and fortified to offer stability, support, and underfoot protection.

Do I need different running shoes for a treadmill?

You can use the same running shoes on a treadmill as you do outdoors. However, because running on a treadmill can be softer than running on outdoor surfaces, some runners prefer shoes with less cushioning for treadmill use. It mainly depends on your personal comfort and preference.

Can I use my regular workout shoes for running?

While you can technically run in any type of athletic shoe, it’s highly recommended to use running-specific shoes when you run. Running shoes are designed to handle the forward motion and the specific type of impact running creates. Regular workout shoes might not provide the same level of cushioning, support, or durability that running shoes do, which could lead to discomfort or injuries over time.

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