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Staff tested: The best new spring running shoes

We tested some of the hottest new running shoes for spring to see if they live up to their claims. Find out which pair is best for you

1 / 7
new balance

1. New Balance REVlite 890

I run better with heel-to-toe support, which often means my running shoes and cross trainers are clunky. But not these. New Balance’s REVlite 890 (217 grams) has a sturdy sole that follows my natural step. And it’s got a bit of bounce that should keep me motivated to run a bit longer. The fabric is incredibly breathable. I like the look of the soft grey and minty green synthetic material, instead of that white mesh that gets filthy. I would recommend this shoe for women who run, jog and take brisk walks. And seriously, though, how cute are these?!

– Lisa Hannam, associate editor
New Balance, $150

2 / 7
adidas

2. Adidas Adizero

You know how when you first slip a shoe on, you just know? The Adidas Adizero Boston went on like well-fitting gloves. I stood, I walked around my living room, and I was positive these would never give me blisters and needed no breaking in. I took off out the door and went for four kilometres in total comfort. I’m not a fan of the bright pink colour; my feet must have looked like a couple of bouncing jelly beans. But not once did I feel they were not comfy and supported-leaving me only to worry about sweating it out on the uphill part at the end.

– Bonnie Munday, editor-in-chief
Adidas, $140

3 / 7
nike

3. Nike Free Run 2

I’ve been running races for a few years now, and I’m always looking for tricks to shave a few seconds off my PRs. A couple of years ago I tried and liked the Nike Frees and I was eager to test the 2011 iteration, so I brought them along to a hill-training session with my “run faster” running group at Toronto’s Energia Athletics. They’re a very lightweight shoe with a nice, snug fit (although a tiny bit too tight across the front of my wide feet-as always, try before you buy).

I found these more solid than my old Frees-before, I felt as though you could feel the pavement through the shoe (weird but not a bad thing necessarily), and while that’s still the case with these compared to more-supportive shoes, it’s not as severe. Unfortunately they didn’t propel me up the “hill of death” any faster than usual, but my feet did feel lighter on the pavement on the jog back to the studio. I pronate, so I would hesitate to use these shoes for every run, but I’ll definitely be using them for track and stair workouts, and you’ll see them on my feet come race day.

– Kat Tancock, senior web editor
Nike, $125

4 / 7
brooks

4. Brooks Adrenaline GTS 11

I’m currently suffering from plantar fasciitis on my left foot so I need a shoe with good arch support. While not as well-fitted as custom orthotics, this shoe made a huge difference. I even ran in them while out with my dog! I felt like I was walking on a cloud.

Although they’re not the prettiest shoes I’ve seen in the market, they’re light-weight and the upper is made of a mesh material that is moisture-managing. The shoes fit well while still feeling roomy in the front. I guess that has to do with the mesh material in the upper. This is my first pair of Brooks and I’m now a huge fan.

– Stephanie Han, art director
Brooks, $150

5 / 7
saucony

5. Saucony Grid Fastwitch 5

The first thing that I noticed about these shoes-apart from the funky, bright colours-is how lightweight they are. I definitely notice a difference running in these kicks, because I never feel like they’re weighing me down. They provide good support and cushioning, and also seem to have a wider toe box than others I’ve tried-a real bonus for my wide feet. The “trash talk” on the soles (“I’m Winning!” on my left and “U R Losing!” on my right) is a fun touch. At $90 they’re great value, so I’d likely buy a replacement pair once these ones wear out. My only complaint? The metallic detailing on shoes this bright is a little too much for me. Looking forward to putting them to the test with a 5K spring race!

-Alicia McAuley, associate web editor
Saucony, $90

6 / 7
mizuno

6. Mizuno Wave Elixir 6

From the second I put on these runners, I noticed how the upper lining of the shoe fit around the contours of my feet. I wondered if this would hold true even when I was running and it did. The Mizunos provided the support I needed while surprisingly still being light and flexible. I’m not going to pretend I am a runner of any sort but in these shoes, with the Mizuno Wave technology doing such a great job absorbing the shock with each step, I was able to run longer in comfort.

I would definitely recommend buying these shoes. My one piece of advice would be, try the shoes on before buying because they seem to run a little small in size.
– Cathleen Yoo, web intern
Mizuno, $150

Related:
Barefoot running: Should you ditch your shoes?
The best shoes for runners
The ultimate beginners’ running program

7 / 7
mizuno

6. Mizuno Wave Elixir 6

From the second I put on these runners, I noticed how the upper lining of the shoe fit around the contours of my feet. I wondered if this would hold true even when I was running and it did. The Mizunos provided the support I needed while surprisingly still being light and flexible. I’m not going to pretend I am a runner of any sort but in these shoes, with the Mizuno Wave technology doing such a great job absorbing the shock with each step, I was able to run longer in comfort.

I would definitely recommend buying these shoes. My one piece of advice would be, try the shoes on before buying because they seem to run a little small in size.
– Cathleen Yoo, web intern
Mizuno, $150

Related:
Barefoot running: Should you ditch your shoes?
The best shoes for runners
The ultimate beginners’ running program