Best Shoes for Long Runs in 2024: Complete Reviews With Comparisons

close-up legs male runner athlete run marathon race

Cushioned clouds or responsive rockets? Stability shields or barefoot bliss? We’ve all been there: that pre-long-run shoe debate.

Finding the best shoes for long runs can feel like deciphering ancient texts, leaving you questioning your sanity (and arches) with every stride. To help you out, we’ll dive deep into the shoe-niverse to unearth the perfect kicks for conquering those marathon miles.

So lace up, grab your doubts, and let’s find the soles that’ll carry us, comfortably, to the finish line. It’s time to ditch the shoe-phoria and find our “ah-ha!” on asphalt.

Comparison Chart

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Best Shoes for Long Runs (Men’s)

1. Hoka Clifton 9

We’ve trekked through the shoe jungle and stumbled upon an oasis: the Hoka Clifton 9. Remember that cloud-cushioned bliss we craved? This bad boy’s got it in spades, and then some.


Let’s dissect what makes these kicks tick (and keep our toes happy on those long hauls).

  • CMEVA Midsole: Picture sinking your feet into a marshmallow that magically propels you forward. That’s the Clifton 9’s signature EVA foam midsole. It’s light as a feather yet absorbs impact like a champ, saving your joints from the pavement pound.
  • Knit Upper: No blisters here, buddy. The Clifton 9’s engineered knit upper is like a hug for your hoof. It’s breathable, stretchy, and conforms to your every curve, keeping your feet comfy and irritation-free mile after glorious mile.
  • MetaRocker Tech: Don’t be fooled by the plushness. The MetaRocker technology guides your foot through a smooth heel-to-toe transition, promoting a natural gait and keeping your stride stable, even when fatigue sets in.
  • Reflective Heel: Safety first, friends. The Clifton 9’s reflective heel panel turns you into a beacon in the pre-dawn or post-dusk miles. Cars? Pfft, they’ll see you coming a mile away (pun intended).


  • Lightweight and exceptional impact absorption
  • Smooth heel-to-toe transition for a natural gait
  • Upper offers breathability, stretch, and a comfortable fit
  • Enhances safety for visibility in low-light conditions
  • Provides a plush and comfortable feel for long-distance runs


  • Potential issues with long-term durability
  • Not suitable for individuals with wider feet

2. Brooks Ghost 15

After floating on Hoka clouds, let’s shift gears and explore the smooth, dependable terrain of the Brooks Ghost 15. This shoe’s not about flashy feats or breaking land speed records. It’s a loyal companion, offering comfort and stability with every stride.


Let’s see if the Brooks Ghost 15 can haunt your long runs with pure, unadulterated running bliss.

  • Balanced Cushioning: Picture a plush mattress that cradles your feet but somehow propels you forward like a magic carpet. That’s the magic of the Ghost 15’s DNA Loft v2 midsole. It’s light, soft, and absorbs impact, protecting your joints so that every stride feels effortless.
  • Segmented Crash Pad: The Ghost 15 is a master of stability. Its Segmented Crash Pad acts like a team of tiny shock absorbers, guiding your foot smoothly from heel strike to toe-off. So, no matter how your foot lands, this clever system ensures a balanced, wobble-free ride.
  • Breathable Mesh Upper: The Ghost 15’s engineered air mesh upper hugs your feet and keeps them comfy and blister-free. No more pre-run anxiety about sweaty, irritated toes. Just pure, unadulterated running freedom.
  • Impressive Support: A comfortable, stable shoe sounds great, but what about support? Well, the Ghost 15’s 3D Fit Print adds a touch of structure without sacrificing that pillowy feel. Like a gentle hug for your arches, it ensures a secure, confident fit that lets you focus on the run, not your wobbly ankles.


  • Provides a cushioned feel with forward propulsion
  • Offers stability for a smooth heel-to-toe transition
  • Keeps feet comfortable and blister-free
  • Adds structure without sacrificing comfort
  • Comfort + stability for a reliable, consistent running experience


  • Not designed for flashy feats or speed records
  • Possible sizing issues for those with wider feet

3. Saucony Triumph 21

The Saucony Triumph 21 isn’t just about comfort; it’s about an elevated experience. It’s not the lightest or fastest, but is it the undisputed king of long-run shoes? Let’s find out.


Picture yourself gliding on a red carpet of clouds, feeling confident, supported, and ready to conquer any distance, any pace. Intrigued? Let’s break down the crown jewels of the Triumph 21:

  • PWRRUN+: Plush doesn’t have to mean sluggish. Triumph 21’s upgraded PWRRUN+ cushioning is softer, springier, and lighter than ever, leaving your legs feeling fresh even after marathon miles.
  • Flat-Knit Upper: The Triumph 21’s upper isn’t just a pretty face but a fortress of comfort. The flat-knit construction wraps your foot in a breathable, secure hug, conforming to every curve without suffocating them. No more mid-run shoe adjustments or hot spots!
  • Redesigned Lacing System: The Triumph 21 boasts a lacing system that lets you fine-tune the fit for anything from quick bursts to leisurely strolls. Whether you’re chasing PBs or soaking up the scenery, this shoe moves with you, not against you.
  • Sustainable Materials: Let’s face it, sustainability shouldn’t be an afterthought. Triumph 21 boasts vegan materials and recycled components, proving that comfort and conscious choices can go hand in hand. Not only will you feel good on your run, but you’ll also feel good about doing your part for the planet.


  • Upgraded cushioning for lasting comfort
  • Secure upper without mid-run adjustments or hot spots
  • Caters to various running styles and paces
  • Aligns with eco-conscious choices
  • Provides an elevated, luxurious feel for a premium experience


  • Premium features come with a higher price tag
  • Not the lightest option for those prioritizing weight

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Best Shoes for Long Runs (Women’s)

1. Hoka One One Bondi 8

Now, for the ladies, we’ve got the Hoka One One Bondi 8. This isn’t your average cushioned shoe. It’s a first-class ticket to foot nirvana, designed to conquer cobblestones and crush those long-run blues.


Here’s how the Bondi 8 will redefine your relationship with the pavement:

  • Lighter Cushioning: The Bondi 8 takes running comfort it to a whole new level. Its all-new, lighter-weight foam makes each step feel like a gentle bounce, leaving your legs feeling like they’re floating on air.
  • Effortless Heel Strike To Toe-Off: For smooth transitions, the Bondi 8’s extended heel with billowed grooves acts like a magic carpet. No more clunky landings or awkward stumbles. Just pure, uninterrupted momentum.
  • Durable Construction: The Bondi 8’s more rubber coverage and strategic internal collar foam keep your feet protected and comfortable without sacrificing that luxurious lightness.
  • Sustainable Style: Eco-conscious queens deserve eco-conscious kicks. The Bondi 8 delivers with recycled engineered mesh, lining, and even a recycled sockliner.


  • Has a gentle and bouncy feel
  • Ensures smooth, uninterrupted momentum
  • Offers protection without compromising lightness
  • For eco-conscious runners
  • Designed for various terrains


  • Not for those seeking a shoe geared specifically for speed
  • The fit may be narrow

2. ASICS Gel-Nimbus 25

The ASICS Gel-Nimbus 25 lets you tap into pure zen by offering plush cushioning, supportive stability, and a smooth ride. But is it a good pair to use for long runs?


For comfort-craving, sustainability-minded runners, here’s how the Gel-Nimbus 25 can help you crush long runs like a boss:

  • Pillowy Midsole: The Gel-Nimbus 25’s signature FlyteFoam Blast ECO PLUS midsole is a blend of pillowy softness and responsive bounce. It effectively absorbs impact so your joints feel like pampered royalty.
  • Enhanced Support: The reinforced knit upper and flexible mesopiede insert gently hug your foot, providing a supportive, secure fit that feels like an extension of your body. Say goodbye to wobbly ankles or mid-run shoe adjustments!
  • PureGEL Tech: With the iconic PureGEL technology, you get tiny shock absorbers strategically placed in the heel and forefoot to cushion impact and smooth out your stride.
  • Sustainable Design: The Gel-Nimbus 25 delivers with at least 75% of its upper material made from recycled content, and a solution-dyed sockliner that reduces water and carbon emissions.


  • Impressive impact absorption and joint comfort
  • Offers a supportive, secure fit for stability
  • Reduced environmental impact
  • Ensures a zen-like running experience


  • Relatively higher in cost than other running shoes
  • A bit heavier and may impact speed

3. Mizuno Wave Inspire 18

Craving for that sweet spot between plush comfort and supportive stability? Enter the Mizuno Wave Inspire 18. These kicks are basically cheerleaders for your feet, pushing you to conquer long runs without ever letting your ankles wobble.


Let’s look at its best features to see how it can be your new ride-or-die sidekick:

  • ENERZY Foam: Picture sinking into a pillow made of bouncy marshmallows. That’s the Mizuno ENERZY foam. It’s softer, springier, and absorbs impact like a champ, helping you beat your personal bests.
  • Wave Plate: No need to clutch your ankles here! The double fan-shaped Wave plate guides your foot through smooth, stable transitions. Think of it as a high-five for every step, keeping you confident and in control, even when fatigue sets in.
  • Mesh Upper: Say goodbye to sweaty, grumpy toes! The engineered mesh upper keeps them cool and comfy even on those scorching summer runs.
  • Eco-Friendly Materials: Who says performance can’t be green? The Wave plate is made from recycled materials, so you can crush your long runs and crush your carbon footprint all at once. Go you, eco-warrior queen!


  • Ensures a comfortable and responsive running experience
  • Promotes smooth, stable transitions
  • Keeps feet cool and comfortable, even in hot conditions
  • Prevents the ankles from wobbling
  • Contributes to a reduced carbon footprint


  • Sizing differences
  • Color range may not be as extensive

Endless Miles and Happy Feet

After comparing one pair to the other, who walks away with the “best shoes for long runs” crown?

For plush pillowy paradises, the Hoka Clifton 9 for men is your ultimate ride. It’s light enough to dance but soft enough to conquer marathons. But if maximum marshmallow majesty is your jam, the Hoka One One Bondi 8 for women takes the cake (or should we say, cloud?).

Remember, finding the perfect kicks is a personal journey. So, lace up, test drive, and discover your own champion for conquering endless miles in blissful comfort. Happy running!



6 thoughts on “Best Shoes for Long Runs in 2024: Complete Reviews With Comparisons”

  1. The Hoka Clifton is a great shoe. I have tried it on, on numerous occasions in an attempt to convince myself that is was worth the price tag.  Each time I come away saying I want these shoes.  Each time I leave with the next best thing.  I may have to break down and get a pair after your review.  I have bookmarked your site for future purchases.

    • Hi, MrDon1, and thank you.

      Yes, it is a great shoe, without a doubt!

      Don’t hesitate to contact me to help you with anything else or if you have any questions.

      Thank you for your kind words.

  2. Ooh these descriptions make me feel like I’m running on air already! 😅. I’ve owned a pair of Saucony running shoes similar to the Saucony Triumph 21 for men mentioned here.  I loved them; they were so comfortable and I never had any issues.  They were so great I bought them a second time!  Right now I have cross trainers, but looking at these makes me think it may be time for another set of sweet running shoes!

    • Hi, MJessica, and thank you.

      Yes, it is a Saucony. Always have very good shoes! Strong and good brand.

      Don’t hesitate to contact me to help you with anything else or if you have any questions.

  3. Although I’m not currently able to engage in recreational long-distance running due to injury, I still find pleasure in the occasional jog. It’s remarkable to see the significant advancements that long-distance running shoes have undergone in the past two decades.

    For someone like me, are there any other factors, aside from cushioning and stability, to consider when selecting the best shoes for long-distance running? 

    • Hi, Matt, and thank you.

      Thank you for your kind words.

      There are some things to keep in mind. Foam is very important, so I wanted to mention that, too, even though you talked about cushioning. There are many different types of foam, and those have effects, too.

      When running long distances, it is important to have lightweight shoes. Too heavy shoes reduce stamina and are not comfortable. 

      I want to mention one thing more. That is why it is important to consider the breathable upper, too.

      Don’t hesitate to contact me if you need anything else or if you have any questions.


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