I am in dire need of a new pair of running shoes because I have been using the same ones since I ran Cross Country in high school, and these babies are pretty done-up. I rolled out to the Foot Locker today and realized I don't even know how a sweet pair is supposed to feel like anymore.
I tend to run on both wooded trails and asphalt - I pretty much loathe the track - so I need a versitile shoe. My foot is rather narrow and has mid-to-high arches, hence I like a shoe with decent ankle support and cushioning. Lightness and air-flow are a plus, but durability outweighs those attributes.
My current pair are Mizuno's (which I like), and today I tried on some New Balance that fit better than the Nike's. Again, I'm not quite ready to throw down close to 100 bucks on a sub-par pair of shoes I'm going to using quite a bit.
So if any one has some experience in this area, I would much appreciate some advice.
Holy god. That's a damn lot of money for a shoe. How serious are you into running? If you're willing to spend over $100, you might want to ignore me...I was working on the assumption that you wanted shoes for...ya know...running...not...god, what's gonna make a damn pair of shoes worth $100+? Jeez...
Your primary concern with any shoe is fit, it could be a million dollar brand name shoe, but if it does not fit, you will suffer everyday. Your secondary concern is quality/durability since you will be using these shoes on a regular basis. Try on a bunch of different brands, and go with the best fit from a decent brand.
Go to a running shop. Not a sports shop but a dedicated store that sells running equipment. They should be staffed by runners who have a lot of experience and training in identifying which type of shoe is best for you.
They will (or should) ask you what you will be doing, how much you run and what your goals are.
They will (or should) then get you to try on a pair of 'neutral' shoes and get you to run up and down outside the shop so they can see your running style.
Then they will try different shows based on your running style and the arches in your feet and so on to find a pair that is right for you.
Reccommending specific brands is useless if someone is doing a lot of running as there is so much variety in what people need from shoes and choosing a show with support ideal for one person could result in another person ending up with really quite bad injuries.
Go to a running shop and find the show that is right for you, not right for someone else.
My shoes cost me £80 (~160US$), but I run 8 miles every couple of days - bad shows = pain. £80 and no pain = good.
Avoid Nike running shoes like the plague. I used to work at a store that sold running shoes and we had a pediatrist come into the store and strongly recommend that we steer people away from Nike because they aren't particularly good for your feet.