A new season not only brings a fresh collection of clothes, but also a whole new set of adventures to get after. And while we fully endorse a wardrobe update — workout wear included and encouraged — you’ll want a solid pair of sneakers to support you during all your fun physical activities. So we did the legwork to find the 12 top sneakers that’ll keep you comfy straight through fall, and rest of the seasons, too. Because to reach the top of a hill — or the peak of your fitness — you have to start from the bottom…and that involves your feet.
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The 12 Top Sneakers for All Your Fall Activities
1. For Long, Light Runs: Brooks Levitate ($150)
Equipped with a new bouncy technology (dubbed DNA AMP), these running shoes offer excellent energy return — without added weight. The sole also has an arrow-like design to help smooth the transition from heel to toe, and the knit upper offers seamless, flexible support. So when you feel like you’re slowing down as you tread toward double-digit miles, these shoes will help pick you right up.
2. To Clock Mid-Distance Mileage: Nike Air Zoom Structure 21 ($120)
Stability in the heel and support in the arch and forefoot make this Nike update extra comfortable on the road. The best part, though, is the superior breathability in the upper — courtesy of the mesh material that keeps your feet cool. The lightweight construction also means these running shoes won’t weigh you down when you’re trying to speed up. Plus they come in wide and narrow fits. Consider your 10K PR in the bag.
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3. For Frequent, Fast Jogs: Puma’s Speed Ignite Nightcat 2 ($130)
Get outside to pound the pavement at any time of day in these Pumas. They have a reflective logo and detailing to keep you visible in low lighting, and they’re super lightweight yet still supportive. Providing next-level rebounding and turn control, they also work well for maneuvering around windy paths or dodging fellow city dwellers. And they’re cushioned enough to keep feet happy if you’re skyrocketing your step count a few days in a row.
4. To Catch Speed and Air: Hoka One One’s Clifton 4 ($130)
The thick foam sole of these Hoka runners provide unparalleled cushioning when you’re jumping onto boxes or bettering your burpee. But despite the dense look, they’re surprisingly lightweight (in other words, permission to pick up the pace!). Take them to the track and you can mix explosive movements, like squat jumps, right into your speed practice. Your body might go outside its comfort zone, but your feet won’t.
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5. For the Studio, Streets and Sprints: Asics’ Gel-Kenun ($130)
Meet the shoe that’s there for you, every step of the way. This Asics sneaker has a gel-cushioned heel to absorb shock if you’re reaching new heights in a plyo-packed HIIT class or crushing intervals on the treadmill, where the lighter, more springy midsole also comes in handy. Better yet, the seamless construction allows for all-day comfort — and the athleisure look will please even the most style-obsessed athlete.
6. To Kick Butt on Bags and Beyond: Under Armour’s Threadborne Push Trainer ($110)
If you want a stable shoe that’s flexible enough to pivot through jabs, crosses and kicks, this Under Armour trainer is for you. And it’ll move with you during squats and lunges, too. The combination of a lightweight construction, snug upper and durable outsole means you get traction, without feeling constricted. Translation: You score best of both worlds in one pair of kicks.
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7. For Lifting Weights: Reebok’s CrossFit Grace ($100)
Nail your next WOD in these Reebok sneaks. The mix of mesh and synthetic material of the upper allows for better airflow and ease of movement, while the durable outsole keeps you solid through each lift. Designed with a low cut for added ankle mobility, the sneakers also offer freedom to jump around during the conditioning portion of class.
8. For Support and Space in Strength Training: Altra’s HIIT XT ($100)
Typically known for their running shoes, Altra now introduces their first cross-trainer — and it does not disappoint. Delivering a design similar to the runners, it fully mimics the shape of your foot. (Read: it has a wider toe box and zero-drop platform.) That means you can spread your digits and evenly distribute your weight while hoisting dumbbells or barbells. To finish it off, it has a stable sole to keep you steady but is light enough to toss a few box jumps into your routine.
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9. To Walk Around Town All Day: New Balance’s Fresh Foam Cruz ($80)
Standing on your feet for long stretches just got more comfortable thanks to these New Balance slip-ons. The brand’s signature foam bottom gives you that cloud-like cushioning, while the knit construction keeps your feet snug. Explore the city streets or take them to the park — either way, your feet get a hug of soft support.
10. To Gain Speed on the Trails: The North Face’s Mountain Sneaker ($100)
Step into these North Face kicks and you get a sock-esque feeling — except with extra support under your foot and special reinforcements in the arch. For more structure as you take on rough landscapes, the shoe has an extra grippy sole and a suede overlay for laced-up security, both good for taking on turns and trekking over debris. They’re so cozy you won’t want to take them off — so you might as well keep checking off those nature-filled miles.
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11. For a Few Hours Spent Hiking: Vionic’s Everett High-Top Trail Walker ($140)
For those who like long, challenging walks in the woods, lace up these podiatrist-approved shoes from Vionic. The water-resistant upper and durable bottom protects you from the elements, whether that’s the weather overhead or the ground under your feet. You also get room for your toes to breathe and good grip as you move up, around and over mountains.
12. To Backpack for Days: Merrell’s Chameleon 7 ($170)
Comfort, high-level stability, breathable mesh, water resistance and a shock-absorbing heel make these hikers easy to wear all day, night and every time in between. You’ll feel the security as soon as you slip into the shoe, which also comes with a contoured, removable insole for a snug fit. With just the right combo of flexibility and rigidity, you can take on tough terrain with confidence. It’s time to book that multi-day hiking trip.
Disclosure: All products featured on our site are hand-picked by our editorial team in the hopes of getting you closer to your health and fitness goals. We only recommend products we love and believe that you will, too. If you come across an affiliate link on our site, that means we receive a small commission should you decide to make a purchase.
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