Running shoes: What you get for your money

Running shoes can differ in price by up to as much as £100. Here’s what to look for in each of the three main price categories according to David Plumer, manager at Sweatshop.

Entry level: £80-£100

The minimum requirements for a basic running shoe in this price range are: good cushioning, a breathable mesh to help keep your feet cool, a durable sole, a snug fit – without you having to pull the laces so tight that they hurt – and an outsole that is closely contoured to the shape of your foot.

Mid-range: £100-£130

If you can afford to shell out for running shoes in this medium price range you will certainly notice more finessed technology and features, such as anti-slip laces, full-length (instead of zoned) cushioning, anti-odour sockliners and designs that are sculpted specifically to suit your gender.

Top of the range: £130+

At the premium end of the running-shoe market you’ll be paying not for new technology but for advanced versions of it; the components will be of a higher spec and better quality, and the shoes will be lighter without compromising on performance.


Running shoe dos and don'ts

No piece of kit is more important than your running shoes. Here’s what you need to know before you part with your money and what to do after you slowly lift the lid off the box and take in that fresh shoe smell

Do

Buy your running shoes half a size bigger than your normal shoe size (your feet will expand on the run and you’ll welcome the extra wriggle room).

Consider buying two pairs if you run more than three times a week.

Go shopping in the afternoon; your feet expand over the course of the day.

Wear running socks and bring a pair of trainers you have already run in.

Break them in gradually.

Take care: scrape off mud; air them after a run; unlace them correctly.

Don’t

Buy a running shoe just because your friend recommends it. They will not run like you run; they will not have feet like your feet. They could be from the shire, if you follow.

Make a choice based on how cool the shoe looks. This will not help you on a 10-mile run.

Let the shop assistant rush you.

Try on as many as you like and ignore all snarky looks.

Go for a long run the first time you wear them – you may get blisters.

Over-use them. Replace after around 600 miles.