Photo of Woman Wearing Pair of Black Nike Running Shoes - best marathon running shoes

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In the world of running, there’s no greater challenge than the road marathon. Even ultramarathoners will agree that the road marathon is the true test of a runner’s grit, endurance, and speed. As such, the need for high-performance shoes has never been greater.

The good news: you don’t need to spend hours researching the best marathon running shoes for your upcoming race. So, we’ve rounded up 10 of the best marathon running shoes that will offer you optimal performance while you’re running a marathon.

Best Marathon Running Shoes for Optimal Performance

1. Adidas Adizero Prime X 2 Strung

Grey Adizero Prime X 2 Strung Running Shoes
Adidas

The Adizero Prime X 2 Strung running shoes from Adidas are an exceptional choice for marathon running, combining cutting-edge technology with comfort and durability. Engineered with a responsive Boost midsole, these shoes provide superior energy return, offering a cushioned yet springy feel to propel runners forward. Plus, the lightweight and breathable Primeknit upper ensures a snug fit, promoting ventilation and reducing friction during long-distance runs.

Finally, the unique Strung lacing system further enhances stability and support. With a sleek design and a focus on performance, the Adizero Prime X 2 Strung shoes are designed to optimize marathon experiences, making them a reliable companion for runners aiming for peak performance.

2. Adidas Adizero Boston 11 

ADIZERO BOSTON 11 RUNNING SHOES - best marathon running shoes
Adidas

Many runners dream of qualifying for the Boston Marathon. If this is you, the Adidas Adizero Boston 11 is the latest iteration of this popular shoe. After all, this shoe is best for someone looking for a more affordable option ($180) for one of their first marathons. That will double as a very wearable training shoe.

3. Adidas Adizero Prime x Strung

Blue Adizero Boston 12 Running Shoes
Adidas

The Adidas Adizero Boston 12 running shoes are an excellent choice for marathon runners seeking top-notch performance and comfort. Engineered with cutting-edge technology, these shoes feature a responsive midsole, propelling every stride with efficiency. The lightweight and breathable mesh upper ensures optimal ventilation, keeping feet cool during long-distance runs.

In addition, the Torsion System adds stability, supporting the foot through various movements. With a durable Continental rubber outsole offering superior traction, these shoes deliver reliability on different surfaces. Designed for speed and endurance, the Adizero Boston 12 is a testament to Adidas’ commitment to excellence in marathon running footwear.

4. Gel-Nimbus 25

GEL-NIMBUS® 25 Running Shoe (Men) - best marathon running shoes
Nordstrom

If spending over $200 on your running shoes turns your stomach, the Asics Gel-Nimbus 25 are a great option. It balances performance and price. At $160, they’re still an investment, but the high-quality cushioning properties will mean you get plenty of use out of them. Even better, this is true whether you’re heading out for your marathon, a quick 5K, or a tempo run that will put you through your paces.

5. Brooks Hyperion Max 

Hyperion Max Running Shoe (Men) - best marathon running shoes
Nordstrom

Another speedy shoe, the Brooks Hyperion Max provides comfort and bounce to keep you moving forward mile after mile, no matter what distance you’re heading out to do. If you’re looking for a good all-rounder shoe, this is a great option.

6. Hoka Clifton 9 

Clifton 9 Running Shoe (Men)- best marathon running shoes
Nordstrom

For some of the most popular amateur marathon runner shoes, get the Hoka Clifton 9 from Nordstrom.

After all, hokas are a crowd favorite with those who like a “softer” shoe. At $145, you get a lot for your money, and their Meta-Rocker technology will keep you comfortable from miles 1 to 26. Better still, these shoes are comfortable to walk in, unlike some of the elite shoes, so these are a good choice if you plan to take a few walk breaks.

7. Floatride Energy 5

Reebok

One highly recommended option for runners is the Floatride Energy 5 Men’s Running Shoes from Reebok. Designed to deliver exceptional performance, these shoes offer a perfect balance of comfort and support. The Floatride Energy 5 features a lightweight design and responsive cushioning, ensuring a smooth and effortless running experience. With Reebok’s dedication to quality craftsmanship and innovation, these shoes provide the reliability and durability that you need for long-distance runs.

Start Training for Those Long Runs

Finding the perfect marathon shoe is the first step in your journey toward an enjoyable and unforgettable marathon experience. Now that you know the 10 best marathon running shoes you have to choose from, don’t forget to have a well-rounded training plan and recovery strategy to ensure you get to the start line injury-free, and finish in good shape, ready to recover and set your sights on your next race.

To help you do just that, we’ve got more resources to help you. Read up on our dos and don’ts of post-workout recovery, and make sure you get that cross-training in with our guide to the best strength training equipment to use to ensure you’re strong on race day.