78 best expensive running shoes

Based on reviews from 296 experts and 26,720 users. Learn how our rankings work or see our guide to expensive running shoes. Updated Feb 2020.

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  1. Any color
    Nike Air Max 2017 - White
    Nike Air Max 2017 - Grey
    Nike Air Max 2017 - Grey
    Nike Air Max 2017 - Black
    Nike Air Max 2017 - Grey
    $190 $74 Save 61%
  2. Any color
    Adidas Ultraboost All Terrain - Black
    Adidas Ultraboost All Terrain - Red
    Adidas Ultraboost All Terrain - White
    Adidas Ultraboost All Terrain - Brown
    Adidas Ultraboost All Terrain - Black
    $220 $102 Save 54%
  3. Any color
    Adidas Ultraboost Parley - Black
    Adidas Ultraboost Parley - Carbon Carbon Blue
    Adidas Ultraboost Parley - White Carbon Blue Spirit
    $200 $98 Save 51%
  4. Any color
    $200 $66 Save 67%
  5. Any color
    $200 $60 Save 70%
  6. Any color
    $190 $70 Save 63%
  7. Any color
    $200 $140 Save 30%
  8. Any color
    $300 $219 Save 27%
  9. Any color
    $240 $92 Save 62%
  10. Any color
    $200 $60 Save 70%
  11. Any color
    $200 $60 Save 70%
  12. Any color
    $190 $120 Save 37%
  13. Any color
    $200 $71 Save 65%
  14. Any color
    $240 $150 Save 38%
  15. Any color
    $220 $150 Save 32%
  16. $190 $130 Save 32%
  17. Any color
    $200 $90 Save 55%
  18. Any color
    $200 $110 Save 45%
  19. Any color
    $250 $160 Save 36%
  20. Any color
    $200 $80 Save 60%
  21. Any color
    $210 $150 Save 29%
  22. Any color
    $200 $95 Save 53%

Expensive running shoes

Many footwear companies are committed to providing quality and appealing shoes to consumers worldwide. A lot of these brands have products that sport commanding names, features or designs. Some of their shoes even have the distinction of carrying the company name or the category of footwear in which they’re placed. All these elements work together heighten monetary value, and that’s why there are expensive running shoes in the market.

The elements of some of the most expensive running shoes

best expensive running shoes
Best expensive running shoes - February 2019

A tested and proven midsole technology

The most expensive running shoes don’t usually have mediocre underfoot experiences. Most, if not all of them, feature a cushioning system that provides reliable and unrelenting performance, either on the roads or trails. The hefty price tag should be justified, so the efficacy of the platform and its capacity to last long are always taken into account.

It is also worth noting that the midsole technologies of expensive running shoes are usually products of years and years of research. The innovators and shoe designers collaborate to create impact-mitigating units that are better than the industry-standard ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA). Now, EVA isn’t a bad thing; in fact, being used to this day proves that it still packs a punch and is continuing to provide excellent comfort and underfoot protection.

But change and advancement in footwear technology require better iterations of the features that have since released. People also clamor for lighter experiences, better propulsion, and superb impact attenuation. Being durable doesn’t hurt, either.

Some prominent midsole technologies that grace expensive running shoes are:

  • The Boost technology - Adidas jumped on the opportunity to license the boost™ technology because it proved to be a highly lucrative step in the world of cushioning systems. Not only did it look unique (fused pellets gracing the midsole shape instead of the traditionally smooth one-piece product), it also had high-rebound capacities that energized the foot and mitigated landing impact. The lucrative Adizero Prime Parley pseudo-lifestyle shoe and the trail-optimized Terrex Agravic XT GTX are just some of the shoes that feature the boost™.
  • React foam - Nike wants to break into the same realm of greatness that Adidas was able to tap with the now-revered clump of TPU pellets. The Swoosh brand didn’t want a rip-off of the boost™, but a genuine step up from all midsole technologies that have come since. The React foam was born from that design philosophy. It was a mix of everything: springiness, light composition, flexibility, and long-lasting performance. It’s relatively fresh in the industry, but it’s quickly gaining the hearts and minds of consumers, with products such as the Nike Epic React Flyknit and the Odyssey React that are modern-looking yet rated for efficiency.

Established sequences

Many neutral running shoes have consumer-friendly price tags, but there are a bunch of products that have noticeably steep price ranges. These rosters of footwear may have been with runners for years.

People appreciate when there are products that stand the test of time, that push forward with new designs and fresh changes. But it also means that companies enjoy the trust and goodwill that people have for some of their creations. Established running shoe series serve as proof that there is a market for products that are highly coveted by consumers worldwide.

Some popular running shoe series include:

  • Ultra Boost - The boost™ midsole foam has created a range of running shoes that are highly revered. The full-length platform became iconic as it’s used for both lifestyle and sports. Several iterations have been released since the technology was first shown in the year 2012, and they include the original (and later-tweaked) Ultra Boost model, the extra-breathable and moisture-removing Ultraboost Clima, and the Ultraboost Uncaged Parley which involved yarns made from recycled ocean plastic.
  • Air Max - The Air Max series of Nike running shoes began in the 1980s, a time of great boom of innovation and imagination from Nike. These products feature midsoles that have air-filled plastic compartments. While some only have these cassettes of compressed air in the heel part, the more lucrative ones use full-length Air Max tech to cushion each footfall. The marriage of functionality and the visually unusual aspect of these shoes make them top-tier. Examples are the Flyknit Air Max 2016 and the Nike Air Max 2017.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it okay to use expensive shoes for competitions?

Not all expensive running shoes are designed for distance running. In fact, some of them are only crafted for short distances, moderate speed training sessions, and casual use. So, you should know if the shoes that you own are actually meant for contests and long runs. Price isn’t always a determinant of a shoe’s durability. Examples of expensive shoes that are optimized for marathons and other competitions are the Reebok Floatride Run Fast Pro and the Nike Air Zoom All Out Flyknit.

How long do expensive running shoes last?

Running shoes typically last for 400 to 600 miles, depending on usage. If you are one who frequently uses athletic shoes for just about any activity, then expect the lifespan of your pair to quickly diminish. Factors such as consistency of use, type of event and level of care contribute to the health of the midsole, upper and outsole. It is recommended to have a rotation of multiple footwear to lessen the chances of early damage.

Jens Jakob Andersen

Jens Jakob is a fan of short distances with a 5K PR at 15:58 minutes. Based on 35 million race results, he's among the fastest 0.2% runners. Jens Jakob previously owned a running store, when he was also a competitive runner. His work is regularly featured in The New York Times, Washington Post, BBC and the likes as well as peer-reviewed journals. Finally, he has been a guest on +30 podcasts on running.

This shoe has recently been added to RunRepeat. There are still not enough reviews for us to assign it a CoreScore.
A score from 1 to 100 that summarizes opinions from users and experts. The average CoreScore is 78. More...