Best Running Shoes for Heavy Runners: A Detailed Guide

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Running is an excellent activity for people of all shapes, sizes, and ages. You only need a pair of running shoes and some willingness to do the work. No special equipment is involved so anyone could take it up as a hobby or a way to exercise.

I have seen many overweight people take up running to lose weight. This is a good idea since running can help you burn calories and the fat accumulated around your belly and waist. Furthermore, it can positively impact your overall physical and mental health.

If you are a beginner runner trying to decide on an ideal pair of shoes for your daily running adventures, you have come to the right place. This guide will tell you everything you need to know before buying some specialty shoes for running. Let’s get right into it!

How to Choose the Best Running Shoes For Heavy Runners

Some people buy several pairs of running shoes only for the sake of having them or because they like the overall design of the shoes. But everyone serious about running will know there’s more to buying running shoes than just the design. The best running shoes for heavy runners must be comfortable, functional, and ideal for your running environment.

There are several key questions to consider if you do not want to make a mistake when selecting your next ideal running shoe. Here are those questions and the possible answers to each of them:

Where Will You Run?

trail running

First, you need to think about your running destinations. Are there any parks or hills nearby where you can run? How about hiking or trekking trails you can try?

Specialty running shoes have several subcategories, including running, trail, or training shoes. The first is best for regular running trips on asphalt or similar surfaces. The second is for technical trails that involve at least some trail running. The third is best for gym exercising or using a treadmill.

You can choose between regular or trail running shoes depending on the location you want to run.

Do You Need Extra Traction?

Trail running shoes often have added traction, whereas regular running shoes do not. This is because technical trails sometimes involve walking over stones and uneven terrain. If you want to avoid slipping on such routes, you will want to wear shoes with proper traction.

For heavier runners who do not plan on visiting such trails and are more interested in regular jogging, a pair of standard running shoes will likely be the best choice. No extra traction is needed but it can always come in handy in moderate amounts.

Do You Want More Cushioning?

The same thing that applied to traction applies to cushioning as well. Additional cushioning comes in handy when you run on uneven terrain and want to minimize the strain on your legs. 

With maximum cushioning, you will feel little to no strain because the shoes will serve as shock absorbers. But if you have soft cushioning only, chances are you will feel all the bumps on the road.

It all comes down to your needs and preferences – only go with added cushioning if you need it and think you will feel comfortable. Otherwise, medium cushioning will suffice.

Do You Know Your Size? 

white running shoes

Size is also essential. Many people buy small shoes thinking they will loosen up with time, or they buy slightly larger shoes because they do not want to feel trapped in the shoe. Both of these options are not a great idea, especially if you are planning on taking running seriously.

The best thing for any heavy runner would be to wear shoes that fit well. You need the shoes to be just the right length and width. You should measure your feet or buy shoes in the afternoon, after work when your feet are slightly swollen from all the activity of the day.

You can either have a professional at a sneaker store measure your feet for you or you can measure them yourself by tracing them on paper. Make sure you measure both feet as it is common to have feet of slightly different sizes.

What is Your Budget?

Decide on your budget and stick to it. Some specialty shoes might be more expensive than standard shoes, but the investment is often worth it. Specialty shoes offer the best features and are quite long-lasting. Remember that you are investing in the next few years.

Heavier people should replace their running shoes more often, so you might want to put off buying more expensive shoes until you come close to your weight goal. In the beginning, any regular shoe with comfortable soles, cushioning, and support will do the trick.

Best Running Shoes for Heavier Runners: Top Features

New Balance, Adidas, and Nike are some well-known shoe manufacturers that create perfect shoes for heavier runners. To help you decide which shoe is perfect, I have created a short list of the top features you need to keep in mind:

Right size

fitting shoes

Choose shoes that are the perfect length and width. Larger shoes will cause slipping, whereas smaller ones will cause pain and blisters. So, always go for the correct size and fit, and ensure you break the shoes in before taking them to the actual trail.

Lightweight design

Lightweight design is also quite important because the added weight to your feet will only make you feel less comfortable. So, ensure you get running shoes that are made from lightweight rubber and mesh material for the upper.  

Extra cushioning

Cushioned shoes can be very comfortable, especially when you are running on an uneven trail. You can go for soft or firm cushioning, depending on what you like best. The shock-absorbing properties on cushioned shoes make these shoes even better for heavy runners so you should definitely consider getting some shoes with excellent cushioning.

Stable soles


I have found that the best running shoes for heavy people offer outsoles with great traction, midsoles with amazing flexibility, and insoles with pristine comfort. It is essential for the outsole also to be durable and able to withstand the wear and tear that comes with running as a heavy person.

Breathable design

Breathable sneakers are best for running in warm weather as they keep your feet from sweating. You should go for sneakers with a mesh upper to get the best breathability. 

Great arch support

Arch support is also essential for larger people because their feet in general carry heavier weight. You should get shoes with proper arch and ankle support to keep your arches and ankles from hurting and becoming swollen after a run.

Durable design

Finally, durability is also a bonus to any shoe. Heavier people are known to wear out sneakers quite fast so they have to replace them every few months. Durable shoes will not suffer as much from wear and tear so you will be able to wear them longer. Also, go for sewn sneakers instead of glued ones because sewn ones generally last longer. 

Wrap Up 

Thank you for reading this guide on the best running shoes for heavy runners. I hope you have a clear idea of the best features for your next pair of running shoes. Remember that support, durability, and stability are always necessary. Cushioning, breathability, and other extra features are an added bonus. Let me know in the comments below which is your favorite pair of running shoes as a heavier runner. I cannot wait to read all about it!

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