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If there’s one running gear question I get more than any other it’s “what’s the best running shoe?”
While I’ve gone over in detail the reasons that you need to find the perfect shoe for you, this year I’m happy to share with you what I consider the best running shoe! As many of you have seen from my episode of shoe hoarders (kidding), I LOVE testing out running shoes and my closet is always overflowing with them.
After 18 years running, 21,000+ miles and a whole lot of running shoes I have found one that I really love to recommend.
- Early this year I received a pair before they were released
- I then bought another pair months later
- And now I’ve got a 3rd pair
That’s love my friends and what’s even better they feel as good at mile 100 as they did on day 1.
In fact, I wrote this post initially in 2018 and am not on my 5th pair as of 2020!!
You can see my full review here. One of the key things about my thoughts on this running shoe is that I didn’t just wear it once and give you an opinion.
I wore it for training.
I wore it on race day.
I wore in when traveling for weeks through Europe.
Bonus points because the original 3 way color options have blown up to TONS of options, which means I pretty much want a pair to match every running outfit.
What Makes a Best Running Shoe?
Since I’ve said that we all need different things, what do I find so incredible about the Nike Epic Flyknit React? What are the best running shoes for beginners? What are the best long distance running shoes? Honestly the answer is going to be the same for just about any runner, there are three keys to a great shoe:
If you don’t love the way it fits your foot or feels and it falls a part right away then it doesn’t matter how fabulous the technology is! Here is why I think this shoe makes the grade as the best long distance running shoe.
Softness and Cushion
A lot of shoes claim to be cushioned, but I’ve never stepped in to any other shoe and thought it felt as immediately soft as this one. And yet, very importantly there isn’t a lack of stability or structure to the shoe.
The feeling makes me want to stay in the shoe longer!
Many cushioned shoes break down quickly, but not this one! I’ve put in tons of miles with the Nike Epic React and it continues to feel fabulous. Why else would I keep ordering more pairs for my continued training.
I’m all about using technology to my advantage and these shoes provide up to a 5% energy return with every step that you take. Just imagine how much that adds up over a long run!
The Overall Fit
I love the knit upper, which conforms to the fit of your foot, doesn’t feel tight, feels very breathable and eliminates the issues I often have with a shoe tongue slipping and sliding around.
Let’s be honest, a LOT of us buy shoes because they look cool! This time you’re not only getting a great looking shoe, but one that feels amazing and works. Initially there were only three color options available, which sold out in nano seconds. Now my friends, there is a whole SLEW of amazing colors.
- Black/White/Black or Black/Dark Grey/Wolf Grey/White are perfect for the shoe you want to go with everything.
- Gunsmoke/Black/Geode Teal/White is the last pair I chose because they’re just a little more pop
- Light Silver/Mica Green/Crimson Tint/Sail is such a fun way to finish out summer
- Rust Pink/Tropical Pink/Barely Rose/Pink Tint is sooooo gorgeous I saw it all over Europe and was holding myself back from buying
There are a number of others, I just wanted to point out a few that I love to give you some ideas.
Benefits of Finding the Best Running Shoe
What’s so great about finding a shoe that you’d deem the best?
Ease of shopping!! A huge frustration for many runners is that shoes are expensive and trying something new may not always work for you.
Comfort!! If your feet feel good, which makes your legs feel good then running is just downright more enjoyable.
Injury Prevention!! The right shoe is going to help you work on your stride, by not inhibiting your movement or not providing so much structure that it over compensates for your weak areas making them weaker.
Hopefully, my full review of the Nike Epic React will show you a bit more about this shoe and save you some time, money and energy finding the best running shoe for you!
Have you ever been so in love with a shoe that you ordered multiple pairs?
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While this post is sponsored on behalf of Nike, all opinions are 100% my own from testing and training.