New running shoes that don't cost a fortune

Hi everyone,

I'm about to start Week 8 of Couch to 5k - and loving it - but I'm still running in my old Nikes that I've had for about 5 years. They are not even proper running shoes, but seem to hold up okay.

I hear that Asics are the best shoes but they cost like £150!!!! (Choke...)

I haven't had a gait analysis done but all my shoes tend to wear down slightly more on the outside and at the back of the heel.

Can anyone suggest an affordable alternative to Asics with loads of cushioning? I've been looking at "Neutral and Cushioning" running shoes online as that seems to be the type of shoe that would be right for me, as far as I've been able to determine from reading stuff online.


12 Replies

  • I wear Asics and I've had good luck with them. I'm on my fourth pair, but am always curious about other brands. Watch for sales, all running shoes go on sale at certain times of the year - usually around holidays. Most brands also come at several different price points - check if there is a cheaper model you like.

    Usually if I time it right I can get my usual pair for around $110 cdn, occasionally cheaper. New they're usually $160 or so. They're not the priciest ones, but they do the job. I always buy a backup pair in advance so I'm not rushing when they're more expensive.

    It's also worth mentioning that good running shops will let you return shoes that you've tested out on a treadmill once you've purchased them. This is definitely worth spending money on. My local shop let me return trainers even after wearing them outside for a couple runs. I was able to select a more appropriate pair with no hassle. That's worth a few extra dollars for me. Of course, if you're buying identical shoes next time, you can get them anywhere as you know they'll fit well.

  • Hi, I wear new balance shoes but having found a style that works for me I always search the Internet for "last years" model and usually end up getting a pair for around half the price. Doesn't help you with the Nikes, but might help you with the cost

  • The best shoes are the ones that fit you. Somebody else's recommendation may not be at all suitable for you. Go to a reputable running shop, have a gait analysis and listen to the advice and try on the recommended shoes.You don't have to buy from them but the guidance can be worth many months not onthe IC.

  • im a bit of a shoe advice is defo get your gait checked as this will lead you into the right direction for the "type" of shoe your going to need.....then i find its down to personal choice....i never buy shoes from the shops....i do try them on there and then find them online much cheaper.....expect to pay over £50 for a decent pair.....and change them at least every 200 to 300 miles.....worn out shoes lead to injuries.....dont be brand led you will find what you like by trial and error.....good luck and let us know what you find.....:-)

  • Quite often you will be able to get "last year's colour" at quite a decent mark down. I have some lovely Saucony shoes that I paid about 75quid for, because they are the old colour scheme. That said, I started out using Decathlon's own brand, which are pretty decent and waaaaay cheaper than brands. (But you have to try them on yourself and just try to work out if they are good for you. In my case they were. From memory they were under 50 of your GBP - no pound symbol on this keyboard apparently)

  • I opted for Decathlon own brand as I didn't want to splash out until I knew that I would continue with this running lark. £31 and they do the job. Will replace once I can afford it :-)

  • Shoes are chosen more by trial and error than brand My daughters like Bookes or new balance my son wears anything thats cheap, all three have run half marathons. I prefer Asics Pulse type, now on mark 8, I started with pulse 5, now got pulse 7. Yes the new version is £85, but you should be able to get 6 or 7 for around £50. Try sports shoes. Getting the right size can be tricky as quite often need a full size bigger in running shoes to normal. The other reason I would recommend Asics is that I was brought a pair of cheaper ones and they rubbed my feet, after a few emails they replaced them with a choice from their entire stock. Personally with after sales service like that it would take alot for me to choose anything else. The best thing is to go around as many different shops as possible trying anything they have and when you have found something you like find the best price you can, quite often older models can be quite heavily discounted.

  • Have a look in Go Outdoors if you have one. I just purchased a pair of Asics patriots for £30.00

  • You need to try them on. Your feet swell up on runs so getting a half size bigger, or more, is usually recommended. They need to be wide enough in the toe box and many brands aren't, which is why you need to try them on. If you get gait analysis it helps narrow down the choices somewhat ☺

    I have had all sorts if brands but the cheapest of them was karrimor tempo and they are fine.

  • I guess I was lucky with my 2 pairs of Asics from Braintree Freeport. Mrs S still doesn't like the bright yellow pair but 2 pairs for just over £100 can't be bad!

  • My Asics cost £44 as they were so basic. I had a very primitive gait analysis in the shop and was recommended either these or a dearer pair at around £80. Look out for last years styles often bargains to be had there. I'm perfectly happy with my shoes, just leave em up and forget em.

  • That seems very weird if someone has told you that X brand are 'the best'

    At one time I'd've recommended Sweatshop (for some sentimental personal reasons but also because they had a policy where if they'd fitted the shoes in the shop but after you'd tried them out you could bring them back - even covered in mud - and exchange them. I used this policy because the shoes that seemed great in the shop made my knees knock together outside (I loved what I swapped them for) However, they are now owned by Sports Direct. Nuff said.

    Bear in mind that if you run off road, gait analysis is irrelevant to the purchase of trail shoes.

    FWIW I started in walking boots, then Brooks Green Silence (but needed more lugs for mud), then Adizero XT (by way of the horrible horrible Salomons above... which ironically happen to be the most I've paid) Sadly those have died and I'm now on Vivobarefoot trails (which I love), Brooks Cascadia (a bit clunky for my tastes but I do need a bit more padding if I'm doing 10k on a trail rather than through the woods and bogs), and New Balance Minimus Trail (which didn't have very robust uppers so I really need to retire those. I've found New Balance good to buy from direct.

    Oh and I swap the laces for elastic locking laces.

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