10 Best Lightweight Running Shoes For Men in 2022

Jens Jakob Andersen
Jens Jakob Andersen on
10 Best Lightweight Running Shoes For Men in 2022

For speed freaks and competitive runners, whether on the road or the muddy trails, the lighter the shoe, the better it is. We all love that barely-there feel while having that needed support and protection.

With a high-performance lightweight running shoe, you will get a boost in pace and challenge the pros on race day or at least beat your PB.

We've rounded up 200+ of the best men's lightweight running shoes on the market, from Saucony to Nike to Brooks, to make sure that you've the perfect footwear for your speed training sessions or the coming race. But how do you know you’ve the right pair? This guide can help you. Ready? Set, go.

How we test running shoes

We do our due diligence and handpick all the men’s shoes on the market today that weigh less than 8.8 oz (250 grams) in US size 9. We don’t discriminate when it comes to brands (around 30 of them out there) in this initial selection process. What is most important is how they fare and perform when we put them into our rigorous evaluation process, which involves the following:

  • We buy all the running shoes from our own pocket to avoid any taint of brand loyalty and bias.
  • We cut the shoes into essential parts in our testing lab, like we really dismember a shoe into little pieces.
  • We then measure 30+ parameters of a particular model and closely check their midsole construction, breathability, and durability, among others.
  • We go outside and run at least 30 or more miles for each pair, in various speed training and racing conditions. We evaluate each model based on our own personal experience.
  • We collect more information from shoe experts and regular users. We reduce all their feedback in a summary.

To conclude the whole process, we assign each pair of shoes a CoreScore from 0 to 100. The top-rated models go straight to our best picks in different categories.

Best men's lightweight running shoes overall

Saucony Endorphin Speed
Saucony Endorphin Speed
Top pick

Corescore

93
Superb!
4.6 / 5 from 3,552 users
92 / 100 from 29 experts

Pros

  • Fast & responsive
  • Cushioned especially for the long runs
  • Spring, trampoline effect
  • Excellent durability 
  • Featherweight like a race shoe
  • Breathable
  • True to size
  • Perfect foot lock
  • Incredible value

Cons

  • Needs adaptation period 
  • Questionable grip on wet surfaces

Verdict

Among all the shoes we've tested, nothing comes close to how the Saucony Endorphin Speed fits the bill as a speedster that can certainly go the distance! Whether it's a 10K, half marathon, or marathon, you can set PBs in this baby! Might feel weird while walking or jogging, but becomes a perfect fit when you really pick up the pace. It's made for speed, and it sticks to that!
See our full review and facts
Saucony Endorphin Pro
Saucony Endorphin Pro
Also great

Corescore

92
Superb!
4.6 / 5 from 1,024 users
92 / 100 from 27 experts

Pros

  • rocks and pushes you forward
  • generous cushioning
  • super breathable
  • supportive fit
  • great for halfmarathons
  • built for speed AND distance
  • feels like a rocket

Cons

  • lace bites

Verdict

The Endorphin Pro is a shoe that literally pushed us to paces! It's smooth-rolling and explosive - it's easy to set/beat PRs in this shoe. Despite it being speed-oriented, we never had issues with discomfort, even in high-mileage runs. A reminder: this shoe is a race-exclusive speed monster. If you run slow, or if you want it to double as your training shoe, consider something else.
See our full review and facts

Best road lightweight running shoes for men

Brooks Revel 5
Brooks Revel 5
Top pick

Corescore

86
Great!
4.4 / 5 from 6,552 users
89 / 100 from 4 experts

Pros

  • True to size
  • Fits like a dream
  • Accommodating stretchy upper
  • Efficient transitions
  • Surprisingly peppy
  • Laces stay tied tightly
  • Low to the ground
  • Durable construction
  • Great deal
  • Do-it-all shoe
  • Impressive weight
  • Breathable

Cons

  • Not for long runs
  • No reflective details

Verdict

An affordable trainer that's got the makings of advanced running shoes? Hello, Brooks Revel 5! It's a smooth and lively jack-of-all-trades that will keep your feet comfy and bouncing. It can push the pace, eat up half-marathon distances, and breeze through your daily runs!
See our full review and facts
Brooks Hyperion Tempo
Brooks Hyperion Tempo
Also great

Corescore

89
Great!
4.4 / 5 from 6,383 users
90 / 100 from 32 experts

Pros

  • Very light
  • Fast shoe
  • Responsive ride
  • Secure fit
  • Breathable

Cons

  • Stretchy laces
  • Narrow toebox

Verdict

Easily, the Brooks Hyperion Tempo is a speed training shoe we'd HIGHLY recommend to those who want to run fast! This shoe is everything we could ask for in a speedster - it's light, supportive, and very responsive. It literally pushed us forward! What's even surprising is that it's a comfortable shoe too. Even better, after logging 60 miles, the shoe still looks pristine!
See our full review and facts

Best trail lightweight running shoes for men

Nike Juniper Trail
Nike Juniper Trail
Top pick

Corescore

81
Good!
4.2 / 5 from 602 users
82 / 100 from 1 experts

Pros

  • Great lockdown
  • Fits true to size
  • Lightweight
  • Comfy
  • Affordable
  • Sturdy
  • Good lacing system

Cons

  • Forefoot can slip over the edge of the midsole
  • Lack of rock plate
  • Grip is pretty bad on anything technical

Verdict

The Nike Juniper Trail is an affordable off-road shoe that seems ideal for beginners and people who want a little more grip for easy trails. With durable materials, trail-specific design features, and an excellent ground feel, this is an excellent choice for compact dirt and gravel trails.
See our full review and facts
Merrell Trail Glove 6
Merrell Trail Glove 6
Also great

Corescore

77
Decent!
3.8 / 5 from 932 users
90 / 100 from 4 experts

Pros

  • Natural ride
  • Lightweight
  • Snug fit
  • Durable
  • Grippy
  • Straight-out-the-box comfort
  • Stable
  • Versatile
  • Sustainable

Cons

  • Less ground feel

Verdict

The Trail Glove is a famous Merrell minimalist shoe line that gives runners a barefoot-like experience. The minimal cushioning allows you to feel the trail while encouraging the foot to move naturally. Bear in mind though that it is best suited for light trails. Aside from making the collection better performance-wise, Merrell also follows a better path to sustainability by using recycled and environmentally-friendly materials for the Trail Glove 6.
See our full review and facts

Best value lightweight running shoes for men

Nike Flex Experience Run 10
Nike Flex Experience Run 10
Top pick

Corescore

77
Decent!
4.3 / 5 from 1,972 users
N/A

Pros

  • Fits true to size
  • Excellent ground feel
  • Great lockdown
  • Super lightweight
  • Chart-topping flexibility
  • Super comfortable
  • Best for slow-paced runs
  • Daily-wear friendly
  • Attractive design
  • No break-in period

Cons

  • Less than average durability (~200miles)
  • Poor grip on wet surfaces
  • Narrow fit
  • Low toe box

Verdict

The Nike Flex Experience Run 10 is an all-round running shoe with a lightweight construction and featherweight price point. With a perfect fit and huge amounts of flexibility, the Flex Experience Run 10 is a perfect shoe for your active days.
See our full review and facts
Brooks Launch 9
Brooks Launch 9
Also great

Corescore

83
Good!
4.3 / 5 from 102 users
85 / 100 from 4 experts

Pros

  • Smooth heel to toe transitions
  • Lighter weight
  • Comfy ride for long miles
  • Perfect for any pace
  • Opens up to wide feet
  • Not tippy when cornering
  • Stable on gravel
  • Can double for casual wear
  • Sustainable outsole
  • Great-value

Cons

  • Not as energetic as expected
  • Pricier than before
  • Not for narrow feet

Verdict

Looks fast, can run fast. This aside, the Launch 9 from Brooks is a daily trainer that can handle any speed you put into your run. Whether you're going fast or slow, it performs. On top of this, it can handle any distance. From short runs, 5Ks to 20 miles, it doesn't disappoint. Ultimately, get the Brooks Launch 9 if you're after a solid all-rounder that doesn't hurt the wallet or the feet.
See our full review and facts
Author
Jens Jakob Andersen
Jens Jakob Andersen

Jens Jakob is a fan of short distances with a 5K PR at 15:58 minutes. Based on 35 million race results, he's among the fastest 0.2% runners. Jens Jakob previously owned a running store, when he was also a competitive runner. His work is regularly featured in The New York Times, Washington Post, BBC and the likes as well as peer-reviewed journals. Finally, he has been a guest on +30 podcasts on running.