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The 10 Shoes Experts Are Wearing Now

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The Best Spinning, Running, Trail Running, Marathon, and Cross-Training Shoes

For the Cyclist/Spinner

Winner: Specialized BG Riata Women's Sport MTB Shoe ($85; specialized.com)
Tester: Caroline Dawson, a Spinning master instructor in New York City
"I taught three Spin classes in a row, and my feet were totally comfy the whole time in these mountain-bike shoes. They're perfect for indoor cycling -- stiff enough to give you pedaling power, but flexible enough for you to walk from the locker room to the studio without falling over."
Runner-Up: Pearl Izumi Vagabond M4 ($85; pearlizumi.com)

For the Beginning Runner

Winner: Brooks Glycerin 5 ($110; brooksrunning.com)
Tester: MaryKay Mullally, founder of the running organization Step Up for Life (stepupforlife.com) and a certified running coach in San Diego, California
"This shoe felt like a natural extension of my foot! I barely noticed I had it on during my four- and five-mile runs. They're comfortable and flexible, and didn't make my feet sweat."
Runner-Up: Asics GT-2120 ($95; asicsamerica.com)

For the Trail Runner

Winner: Adidas AdiStar Trail 3 ($120; shopadidas.com)
Tester: Nancy Hobbs, founder and director of the American Trail Running Association in Colorado Springs, Colorado
"This is a shoe I would recommend to all trail runners -- I love the look, the feel, the fit. It's solid but not boxy, offers great support in all areas of the foot, and grips rocky terrain, even when you're running downhill."
Runner-Up: Nike Shox Junga ($110; nike.com)

For the Wannabe Marathoner

Winner: Asics Gel-DS Trainer 12 ($110; asicsamerica.com)
Tester: Kelly Richards, state representative for the North Texas division of Road Runners Club of America
"I was surprised that such a feather-light shoe had so much cushioning. They felt great as soon as I put them on. I got a lot of envious glances from other runners, too."
Runner-Up: Saucony Triumph 4 ($120; saucony.com)

For the Cross-Trainer

Winner: Nike Free 5.0 ($90; nike.com)
Tester: Violet Zaki, personal trainer and fitness instructor at Equinox Fitness in New York City "The shoe is lightweight and doesn't really need to be broken in. I was able to point and flex my feet freely while teaching several kickboxing classes, without any tightness. Plus, its compact shape didn't take up much space in my gym bag!"
Runner-Up: New Balance WX760 ($75; newbalance.com)

Originally published in FITNESS magazine, May 2007.

 

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