Is It Safe To Run During The Winter
The most important thing to keep in mind before you head out to chase miles in the cold, no matter what shoes you’re wearing: Wait until it’s warm enough that you won’t slide on sneaky black ice, Sweeney said.
The other option, perhaps surprisingly, is to head out before the snow is plowed, since the roads are often less slippery than post-plow too, she added. To stay safe on the streets, Sweeney also suggested making sure you’re visible in low-light conditions, whether you’re wearing reflective shoes or clothes.
Is Running In Cold Harder
Running in the cold does require much more from your system than in the heat. While you might not be sweating as much, your body is working quite hard to accommodate for the lack of air that youre receiving. Cold air is harsh air and it can be quite difficult to swallow, especially when youre already out of breath from the run. Because of this, your respiratory system has to double down on providing your body with air and you can find yourself breathing pretty heavy, soon after your run has started.
How To Choose The Best Running Shoes For Winter
These are the main feature that we considered and tested the shoes on our list for. Each item on our list excels in these categories and are perfect for any winter runner. Whenever youre shopping for quality winter running shoes, these are the main features you should consider before settling on a pair of sneakers.
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How To Choose: A Buyers Guide For Winter Running Traction Devices
So, which winter traction device is best for you? To find out, you should consider a couple of factors.
Will you be running more on snow or ice?
To be honest, all of the traction devices mentioned above will provide plenty of grip when running on snow. However, if youll also be mixing in sections of bare pavement or trail and you wont encounter much ice, youll want to consider the Yaktrax Pro, as their lack of spikes, teeth, or carbide tips make them more comfortable when running on stretches of harder surfaces.
Running on ice is best done with traction devices that have distinct teeth, spikes, or carbide tips, with carbide tips being ideal in that they concentrate pressure in a small area to bite into the ice. The Kahtoola EXOspikes are a great offering with carbide tips. That said, the Black Diamond Blitz Spike and Kahtoola MICROspikes also perform excellently on ice.
Will you be running on pavement, cement, or bare trail?
If youll be running on significant sections of bare pavement, such as running a few miles to a trailhead, or climbing on bare trail up to the snowline, you might want a traction device thats easy to get on and off, compact to store, but otherwise performs best on the snowy or icy surface on which youll eventually run.
If youll be running a mixture of patches of bare pavement, snow, and ice, you might go with the Yaktrax Pro, which is more comfortable when running on bare ground than traction devices with teeth, spikes, or carbide tips.
Saucony Winter Running Shoes
Stay visible and dry this winter running season with Sauconys collection of winter running shoes. Their VIZIPRO technology mixes ultra-bright colors with reflective details to help you stay noticeable to others along your path. Looking to conquer the slush, snow and everything in-between? Turn to Sauconys RUNSHIELD collection, boasting warm, weather-resistant tech to tackle the elements head-on. There are multiple options to choose from, so finding the right fit for your needs is a breeze. Lace up and prepare to crush your training with Sauconys wide variety of sneakers ready for wintry success.
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Hoka One One Speedgoat 4 Trail Running Shoes
Rugged and ready, the HOKA ONE ONE Speedgoat 4 can be a perfect option for late-season jaunts. Boasting a Vibram Megagrip outsole, these running shoes are durable and primed for winter terrain. Zonal rubber placement along the build can help improve stability and support, perfect for uneven or altering trails. A mesh upper and gusseted tongue help improve breathability as well, working to keep your feet cool and dry. Have your greatest winter yet and train your way with the HOKA ONE ONE Speedgoat 4.
Best Mud Run Shoes Reviewed
Obstacle course racing is for the strong and determined. It isnt easy to overcome the obstacles and challenges youll encounter on a mud run, but having the right pair of shoes specifically for this purpose will definitely help. With the perfect pair of shoes, you can focus on the race itself and not on your normal road running shoes bogging you down.
The best mud run shoes should offer you comfort, traction, stability, low barefoot feel, as well as protection underfoot. You want a shoe that was created for this purpose. Ill explore this further by answering the question what makes a good mud run shoe?
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Top 3 Best And Favorites
Modeled after the popular Brooks Ghost 14, the GTX version is made for wet and sloppy conditions.
These shoes guarantee to keep your feet dry by using a Gore-Tex membrane that protects your feet from water without restricting air circulation an important feature if youre going to be running in wet, icy, and chilly conditions.
The foam material contours to the shape of your underfoot thanks to the integration of BioMoGo DNA and DNA Loft foam. These types of foam in the midsole provide support and cushioning. DNA Loft foam is a more durable material that should last longer than earlier versions of the shoe.
Two rubber compounds comprise the outsole, both thick enough to protect the shoes from more aggressive wear and tear. This extends their use far longer than shoes of most other brands. The outsole provides added cushioning but also delivers a notable thickness for a movement-friendly experience.
The best part of these shoes is that you get the comfort and cushioning of the Brooks Ghost one of their most popular shoes with waterproofing and warmth needed for winter.
- Gore-Tex technology provides excellent weather protection
- Nice cushioning and support
- Long-lasting rubber protects the shoe from aggressive wear
- Doesnt come in widths
The ON Cloudventure is equipped with a grip-rubber technology thats durable. Its traction patterns provide the runner with control on any surface.
Icebug Newrun Bugrip Gtx
For most manufacturers, winterized running shoes are more of an afterthought than they are essential. However, Icebug is an exception to the rule, because it doesnt just have a couple of winter-ready runners its entire lineup was created with slick conditions in mind. Take the NewRun BUGrip GTX, for instance. It pairs a GORE-TEX upper with an easily-adjustable BOA dial, a combination that makes for nigh-on unrivaled cold weather preparedness. And because it rides on a wide base with 17 steel studs in the sole, theyll keep your feet firmly planted and glued to the ground.
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Nike Air Zoom Pegasus 38 Shield For Men And Women
About the brand: From its roots of Phil Knight selling shoes out of the trunk of his car in 1963, Nike has emerged as the preeminent brand for athletic footwear and apparel. Known for pushing the envelope from a technology and marketing perspective, they certainly attract controversy. Side note: Phils memoir Shoe Dogs is a fantastic book chronicling the story behind the Swoosh.
What makes the Shield a great choice for running on ice and snow: Keeping with the distinct design elements of the iconic Pegasus, the Shield provides a great balance of performance and style. Features include:
- weatherized coating to keep water out with extra skin around the toes for additional water-proofing
- insulated tongue and thicker upper to keep feet warm
- extra traction to stay stable with a winter tire-inspired grip sole
Weight: 9.7 oz./8.7 oz.
Best for: Runners looking for a stylish and versatile shoe but still keeps them stable in snowy and icy conditions.
Weve included running weight to help you make your decision. Curious how running shoe weight affects your speed? Read Running Shoe Weight and How to Choose the Best Option to find out.
How Cold Is Too Cold To Run
Weve all heard the warning of going outside will cause you to catch a cold. While there is certainly some truth behind that, many experts say running in the cold can be a good thing. The lower temperatures could be a good thing for your immune system. The more time you spend outside running while properly bundled up the more resilient your immune system could become. It is important to continue dressing appropriately for the cold temperatures.
Do exercise caution should caution be warranted. If you have asthma or other breathing problems, then running out in the cold could still pose a health risk for you. The cold air makes breathing difficult, even for runners without breathing problems. So, should the temperatures start to drop, perhaps decreasing the time out running should be on your radar. When temperatures drop below 0, thats when you should consider doing some indoor activities.
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What To Consider When Shopping For A Waterproof Shoe
Most waterproof running shoes have a water-repellent membrane or liner in the upper with protective overlays to keep debris out. The best-known brand is Gore-Tex, which is designed to be water-resistant enough to block out wind and rain but breathable enough to release sweat and heat as your feet warm up. Many runners will find that this is an imperfect systemand that the shoes become a sweatfest once the temps soar above 65 degrees. But on colder days, the waterproofing effectively blocks out wind, rain, and the occasional plunge into a stream or deep slush, provided the muck doesnt rise above the ankle.
But waterproof shoes arent the only option for runners looking for serious water protection. Waterproof socks from brands like SealSkinz, DexShell, and Showers Pass are also excellent in a drizzle. Trail-running gaiters cover the tops of your shoes entirely so you can dart through a creek without water or rocks invading your shoes from above. Both methods are effective at keeping you cozy and dry for longerparticularly when combined with waterproof shoes. Just note that both waterproof socks and gaiters suffer from the same breathability issues that waterproof shoes do. In warmer weather, its often better to have wet feet and a little airflow than sweat-soaked feet with no chance of drainage or ventilation. Read on for the best waterproof running shoe options for road and trail running.
How We Test Running Shoes
We do not just cherry-pick the shoes we choose to put on this list. Each model goes through a myriad of tests in our own shoe testing lab to determine their quality as winter running shoes.
To examine every model, we carefully go through these:
- Log a minimum of 30-50 miles before giving our feedback
- Cut open each shoe to examine its parts
- Measure every part in various parameters like ventilation, lightness, stiffness, etc.
To give you an idea of how they stack up against other running shoes on the market, we also calculate their CoreScore from thousands of expert and user reviews.
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How We Chose These Shoes
Every shoe on this list has been vetted or tested by our editors here at Runners World or by members of our capable wear-test team. In addition to our own research, weve spoken with product engineers, consulted user feedback and reviews, and utilized our own extensive experience with the running shoe industry. We also analyze data from our RW Shoe Lab and mechanical tests, where weve checked and re-checked each shoes energy return, measured its midsole softness and flexibility, and assessed its stability features. Weve handpicked each of the 12 pairs below based on value, test impressions, expert recommendations, and how the shoe performs overall in cold temperatures and wintry conditions.
- TrailTack outsole has excellent grip over dry and wet surfaces
- New engineered mesh upper improves breathability
- Resilient overlays for harsh, wet weather
- Stiff ride
- Slightly heavier than other Brooks models
- Rocks can get wedged in the outsole
- Some testers experienced heel slippage
New Balance Fresh Foam 880v10 Gtx
Sure, New Balance Fresh Foam 880v10 GTX may be a shoe intended for all-weather training, but its much more than a one-trick winter pony. Thats because its based on New Balances 880v10, a dependable daily trainer for racking up miles no matter what speed. In practice, this means it sports a lightweight Fresh Foam midsole for superior cushion, a textile upper for a comfortable instep, as well as a blown rubber outsole for improved rebounding. And of course, because it comes with GORE-TEX fabric and Invisible Fit technology, its fully waterproof and exceptionally breathable.
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What You Need To Know
- A little more traction for your running action
- Our top picks to rack up the miles in cold winter conditions
- The right mix of road and trail readiness
The days are getting shorter, and the miles are getting colder. Before too much longer, the weather will be wet and slushy, too. We havent seen much more than a flurry or two here in Baltimore, but thats bound to change in the coming weeks. Our shorts and short sleeves have already settled down for their long winters nap, and now its time to send some of our favorite summer shoes with them. Instead, its time for us to bust out some of the best winter running shoes you can buy.
You wont find too many lightweight or brightly colored options on this list . Instead, get ready for a healthy dose of Gore-Tex, plenty of ice spikes, and a few chunky options that are ready for the trails. And if youre broke as hell, just grab a handful of hex screws from your local hardware store and plug a bunch of them into an old pair of road shoes. Because honestly, thats really all you need.
As always, we let our own experiences guide our list. Many of our picks come from our own runs, but we take availability into account too. We certainly cant tell you to go hunt down a Yeti and steal his feet, now can we? Anyway, lets get into the picks.
Our Favorite Stability Shoes
The Brooks Adrenaline GTS 21 is a softer stability shoe that delivers a more-controlled ride than a neutral shoe would provide. The shoe reduces pronation with the help of two pieces of foam in the heel area that coax a foot into position. Runners World recommends it for runners with flat feet, noting, however, that the pronation mitigation is subtle enough to work well for a variety of runners. We found that to be true. The shoe has a 12-mm drop , but its equal to that of the Ghost 14. The Adrenaline GTS 21 has a roomy toe box with enough stretch to give toes wiggle room on a run. The shoes upper is supportive, and its laces tie securely and are plenty long enough to facilitate heel-lock lacing.
Size range: 5 to 13 , 7 to 15 . The Brooks shoes come in narrow, medium, wide, and extra-wide widths in both womens and mens.
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Salomon Gaiter Protective Shoe Covers In Low And High
This gaiter is a perfect accessory to your favorite shoe , adding another layer of protection from wet conditions as well as rocks and debris if youre running on trails. Crafted with stretch material and a velcro closure means youll get a comfortable and secure fit that keeps you dry. Because no one wants to be wet and cold on their run!
No3 Salomon Mens X Ultra Winter Cs Waterproof 2 Hiking Boot
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How Should Trail Running Shoes Fit
Stack & Drop
Unless youre running barefoot, every shoe has a stack. Measured in millimeters, the stack refers to how high the insole sits off the ground. Shoes with more cushion inherently have a higher stack. Furthermore, most shoes have a drop in stack height from the heel to the toe.
If youre new to running, experts recommend a lower heel drop it builds a wider range of motion and strength, which makes you a healthier runner. We also find a lower stack keeps your center of gravity closer to the ground. This becomes even more important on unstable terrain, with snow covering hidden obstacles.
Flexibility is your friend on the trails. You need variability to match the variable terrain. Trail runners and those running in winter where obstacles can be hidden under snow will prefer a shoe with a firm outsole and less cushion but a firm toebox to push off of.
Flexibility and torsion can help the foot adapt to the trail and objects obscured by snow. But too much flexibility can feel unstable. Without stability, the ankle can be exposed to rolling.
How to Choose the Best Trail-Running Shoes: A No-Bull Guide
Check out our quick guide on how to buy and choose the best trail running shoes for you. It’s got lots of info, few words, and no marketing jargon. Read more