Best running shoes for 5K

If you’ve been running long distance for a while then you will know how vital it is to ensure that you have a good pair of running shoes that are designed to be used for running a 5k or more. There are particular things that long distance runners need in their running shoes that may not be needed for runners who only run short distances, because let’s face it - the longer you run, the sorer you get!

We all know how tricky it can be to get a good pair of running shoes that are going to properly support you - there are a lot of options out there to choose from and not all of them are good. Thankfully, we’re here to take a lot of the guesswork out of choosing a good pair of running shoes for 5K. Read on to find out more about the best running shoes for 5k, in addition to a handy buyer’s guide to help you to narrow down your decision. 

Best Running Shoes for 5K

OUR TOP PICK

ASICS Women's Gel-Kayano 24 Running Shoes, 5M, Smoke Blue/Dark Blue/CANTELOUP

There’s definitely a lot to love about the Asics Gel Kayano 24 running shoes if you’re looking to run a 5k. With a fantastic fit and feel, these running shoes are well equipped to give you the support you need on your 5k.

For the upper, ASICS have brought in a Meta Heel clutch that will keep your heel in place as you are running, providing a nice fit that doesn’t slip. The shoe is comfortable, without any irritation or friction getting in the way. The midsole features FlyteFoam which provides the soft and cushioned ride that users love so much.

The shoe comes in both a men’s and a women’s version, so there will definitely be something to suit you. It’s very durable too, so you don’t need to worry about it falling apart as you pound the pavement. For an enjoyable ride that will work well for many miles, you should definitely consider the ASICS Gel Kayano 24.

Pros

  • Durable
  • Fits well
  • Comfortable

Cons

  • Not many color options availabl
ASICS Women's Gel-Kayano 24 Running Shoes, 5M, Smoke Blue/Dark Blue/CANTELOUP
  • I.G.S (Impact Guidance System) Technology - ASICS design philosophy that employs linked componentry to enhance the foot's natural gait from heel strike to toe-off.
  • SpevaFoam 45 Lasting - Employs 45 degree full length SpevaFoam 45 lasting material for a soft platform feel and improved comfort.
  • Plus 3 Midsole Technology - 3mm of additional height on women's models helps relieve achilles tension.

EDITOR'S CHOICE

Brooks Hyperion Black/White/Nightlife 8.5 B (M)

If you are a neutral runner or an underpronator, the Brooks Hyperion may be just what you need for your 5K. These shoes are pretty well known in the running world for their lightweight form and enjoyable ride.

The shoe consists of a woven upper that means it is very thin, close to the foot, lightweight and soft on the interior. This provides impeccable breathability, keeping your feet cool all throughout your run. The midsole is well cushioned and lightweight, and will adapt to your strides as you run. 

In addition, the shoe has a durable outsole, and features omega flex grooves that will give you more natural forefoot fluidity and movements.

Pros

  • Comfortable upper and midsole
  • Encourages natural flexing as you run and walk
  • Good ventilation

Cons

  • Somewhat narrow for wider feet

BEST VALUE

HOKA ONE ONE Mens Clifton 6 Black/White Running Shoe - 9.5

For top notch performance the Hoka One One Clifton 6 definitely is a running shoe to consider. The Clifton 6 is a fantastic running shoe for long distance running such as 5ks because it focuses so much on the comfort of the wearer. 

The Hoka One One Clifton 6 running shoes feature a massive amount of Hoka foam underfoot that provides a comfortable and soft ride. Yet, despite its softness, the shoe is still firm enough to be a good solid running shoe. It also has a streamlined upper that gives an even better fit, without any extra weight being added as a result. 

The shoe isn’t just great for 5k runs though. This shoe is a very versatile, well rounded performer  that works well for long runs and for fast tempo runs, so you don’t need to worry about having separate shoes for different styles of workouts. It’s definitely a great choice, and for what it offers it’s also pretty affordable!

Pros

  • Works well for faster running and long distance
  • Cushioned and soft
  • Fits well due to streamlined upper

Cons

  • None
Brooks Men's Adrenaline GTS 20, Black/Black, 11 D US
  • THIS SHOE IS FOR: Runners who need a perfect blend of support, cushion, flexibility, and reliability. The modernized, streamlined design satisfies runners who crave a low-profile look.
  • SUPPORT AND CUSHION: Provides just the right amount of stability and support, great for overpronation while providing high energizing cushioning. Ideal for road running, cross training, the gym or...
  • BALANCED, SOFT CUSHIONING: The DNA LOFT Crash Pad cushions each footfall and works with BioMoGo DNA to adapt to your every stride.

RUNNER UP

Mizuno Women's Wave Rider 23 Running Shoe, citadel-glacier gray, 9 B US

The Mizuno Wave Rider 23 is certainly one of the best running shoes for long distance runs and 5ks, and it has so many great features to boast. This snappy riding running shoe really stands out from many others like it on the market for a plethora of reasons.

To start with, these running shoes are suitable for runners of all ages. It doesn’t matter if you’re old or young, fast or slow, these shoes will be reliable and carry you far on some of the toughest runs. The shoes have a modern look and feel to them, but they aren’t just about their looks. The shoes provide lots of lovely cushioning and it’s very stable, providing a ride that you won’t soon forget.

This shoe does have a slightly firmer feel than a lot of other running shoes on the market and for that reason they may not be the best fit for every runner, but as a whole most people seem to like this feature.

Pros

  • Durable
  • Modern, stylish look
  • Firm, yet cushioned feel

Cons

  • Not all runners enjoy the firmer feel
Mizuno Women's Wave Rider 23 Running Shoe, citadel-glacier gray, 9 B US
  • The Wave Rider 23's Mizuno Wave cushioning technology provides ultra soft comfort in a super secure fit
  • Lightweight and breathable mesh upper offers controlled temperatures and top unwavering performance
  • Wave Rider 23 features a dual compound midsole using U4ic and U4icX technologies for unrivalled responsiveness and exhilarating runs

RUNNER UP

Brooks Women's Glycerin 18, Purple/Cantaloupe, 10.5 Medium

The Brooks Glycerin running shoes are certainly a great choice if you’re looking for a running shoe with a luxurious feel. You could stand in these shoes for hours and still feel the same pillowy softness as you did when you first put them on!

The shoes feature a luscious fabric on the heel collar, which is also cushioned. It has a padded tongue that is extra comfortable for your foot, and an internal bootie that envelops your foot for optimal comfort. In addition, the shoes feature a full length DNA Loft midsole, which is incredibly soft and comfortable. 

The shoe provides a very bouncy ride in addition, which will really help to take your running to the next level, helping you to increase speed and maintain your stamina even for long distance runs. The shoes are definitely worth investing in just for the cushioning and softness alone, but the added support they offer really make these shoes stand out from the crowd. They’re certainly not the cheapest shoes out there, but they’re worth it for the comfort you will get.

Pros

  • Comfortable cushioning
  • Ideal for long distance runs
  • Padded collar and tongue

Cons

  • Somewhat expensive
Brooks Women's Glycerin 18, Purple/Cantaloupe, 10.5 Medium
  • THIS SHOE IS FOR: The Glycerin 18 is perfect for runners who think there's no such thing as too much cushioning. The upper enhances comfort by perfectly balancing stretch and structure.
  • SUPPORT AND CUSHION: Provides neutral support while offering the maximum amount of cushioning. Ideal for road running, cross training, the gym or wherever you might want to take them! Predecessor:...
  • SUPER-SOFT CUSHIONING: Increased DNA LOFT super-soft cushioning allows for even more extreme softness, without losing responsiveness or durability, while the OrthoLite sockliner provides premium...

Best Running Shoes for 5K: A Buyer’s Guide

Comfort

Comfort is a must have when you’re on the hunt for a pair of running shoes, especially for running a 5k. Running for long distances isn’t always easy so there’s no need to make it more complicated than it needs to be by wearing ill fitting shoes that feel like running on pins and needles. While every single person has different feet, it can be somewhat subjective what’s comfortable from one person to the next. Nevertheless, there are a couple of things that you can do an research when you are looking for a pair of shoes so that you can figure out if it will be comfortable for you.

To begin with, you should take a look as the features and design of the shoes. If the lining is high quality then the shoes will more than likely be comfortable to wear. Another thing to look out for is a flexible upper, and this will add to your overall running experience. You should also check what other reviews say when you are looking for a pair of running shoes because they will generally tell you how comfortable a pair of running shoes are. The more reviews you read the more of a well rounded opinion you will get, which ultimately results in a more well informed decision being made.

Durability

We’re about to state the obvious here, but the more you run in your running shoes the less time they are going to last. As you rack up those miles you will get more wear and tear on your running shoes. Because of this, it’s important to prioritize durability when you are selecting a pair of running shoes. Look for the kinds of features that will make them last for a long time. For example, look for running shoes with a durable outsole, a high quality construction that uses high quality adhesives, an upper consisting of tough synthetic fibers and in addition, look at reviews that tell you how durable your chosen pair of kicks are. As a brief side note though, while it can be nice to have lighter running shoes for the sake of saving yourself extra fatigue, it is worth being mindful of the fact that lighter running shoes are less durable than heavier running shoes so this is something that you are going to need to consider when you are out shopping for your new running shoes.

Breathability

It doesn’t matter what the weather is like, if your heart rate is going up and you’re really pushing yourself, you are probably going to sweat. As you may well know, your feet are not immune to sweat, so it’s vital that you choose a pair of running shoes that are well ventilated. This is not just to keep your feet cool. Ultimately, sweaty feet can result in a lot of unpleasant side effects when in a pair of badly ventilated shoes, such as chafing, hot spots and some pretty painful blisters. These things can all be killers to your performance, which is nothing short of disappointing when you’re trying to run a 5K. As a result of this, you should make sure that you consider breathability when you are looking to buy a pair of running shoes. 

Usually, the amount of breathability and moisture wicking capabilities that a pair of running shoes has can come down to the materials and design of the upper. The design is the key element here. You should be trying to look for a pair of running shoes that have a lot of wide mesh that means the moisture will escape into the outside air. Sadly while a lot of support is certainly a good thing, having more support inyour running shoes can sometimes mean that the moisture wicking capabilities are hindered. Generally this is a result of the fact that the added support in most running shoes comes from overlays, which are usually attached to the uppers to help support people who under and over pronate. As you can probably imagine, this kind of material can also get in the way of the mesh. For that reason if you do need more support, you should consider a supportive shoe that is also quite breathable too.

Shock Absorbing

The more you run the more times your feet hit the floor, which means it’s pretty important that you look out for your feet and get a pair of running shoes that do a good job of absorbing the shock you put your feet under. When you are choosing a pair of running shoes, have a look for options that have a lot of cushioning in the midsole and the outsole. Also look at reviews from other users that have said what they are like as far as absorbing shock is concerned. If you weigh more then this is particularly something to look out for because you have more body weight landing on the floor. 

Stability

Shoes can lose their stability after a certain amount of time, so it’s important to make sure that you have good cushioning and padding. If your shoe doesn’t have these things because they’ve been used too much, it may be time to get a new pair of running shoes. You can usually find out how stable your running shoes are by looking at online reviews or by trying them out in store if this is something that you are able to do.

Value

The amount of money that you spend on a shoe vs what the shoe offers may not seem like the biggest priority, but it’s certainly something that you need to consider. As you’re going to be running long distances, your shoes are likely to get worn out quicker so you should also be considering value in addition to the other factors like breathability and comfort. 

One way to make your running shoes last for longer is to alternate between two different pairs of running shoes. If you let your running shoes air out between uses you will be able to look after them better, thus extending their lifespan. You can also make sure that you often wash them off by hand using warm water and soap, getting rid of any mud and dirt as you go. 

Style

There’s nothing quite with the confidence that comes with a stylish pair of running shoes. A lot of studies have actually suggested that people who feel confident in their appearance as they run can run farther and more frequently than those who aren’t happy with how they look. While aesthetics shouldn’t be your main decision making factor, it’s still nice to have a pair of shoes that you will feel happy in!

Terrain

You should always consider the kinds of terrain that you are planning to run on before making a decision about what running shoes to buy. The right pair of shoes for someone who is running on roads and sidewalks is completely different to the right pair of shoes for someone that runs on trails. It’s never a good idea to buy a pair of shoes with the aim of making them a jack of all trades that can run anywhere, because they simple weren’t designed to be like that, especially when you’re running for long distances. 

Frequently Asked Questions

How often do you need to replace your running shoes?

Usually running shoes designed for 5ks will be more durable than a lot of other running shoes. If they aren’t that durable then you should probably avoid buying them in the future. If you properly maintain your running shoes you will also add to their overall lifespan. With that being said though, you are likely going to need to replace your running shoes after every 200 to 400 miles, though this is largely based on whether you think that they are worn down enough. It’s not in your best interested to keep a shoe that has accumulated more than 400 miles of distance. 

How can I choose the proper size of running shoe for a 5k? 

You should firstly think about the kinds of terrains that you are going to be running on, the kinds of weather in the place you’re going to be running, and then assess the traction, flexibility, breathability, protection level, support and the overall fit of the shoe. 

When you are looking to buy a shoe in a sports shop, ask lots of questions such as whether it’s suitable for marathons and 5Ks. If you’re looking online, asses reviews by customers that have used the shoes before as this will steer you in the right direction.

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