This Asics Trainer Is the Best Bargain in Running at Just $100

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Running developments, whether or not it’s towering max-cushion trainers or ultralight minimalist sneakers, come and go, however Asics GT-1000 12 is proof that one area of interest all the time stays: the reliable workhorse coach. Compared with flashier fashions in the Asics running shoe lineup and amongst competing manufacturers, GT-1000 may appear a bit boring. But this venerable shoe has a legacy that stretches again many years, and it’s nonetheless one in all Asics’ flagship running sneakers.

For rookies or anybody in want of a pair of training footwear, Asics GT-1000 12 affords stable efficiency at a really enticing value level. It’s comfy and secure with an amazing match, and it’s appropriate for each quick and gradual paces. In different phrases, it checks many bins for not some huge cash.

Overall Impressions

I’ll stage with you: The GT-1000 12 isn’t the most enjoyable running sneaker on the market at this time. There’s no superfoam, carbon fiber plates, or different fancy expertise inside this shoe. It will not blow your thoughts with its responsiveness or cushioning, however it’ll maintain your ft cozy and keep out of your approach. For many runners, that’s paramount.

Fit and Feel

Asics GT-1000 12’s higher gives a cosy, no-nonsense match that by no means loosened or felt sloppy throughout my testing. I by no means wanted to make use of a lace lock on both foot, and the padding round the ankle collar and heel felt plush towards my ft. I additionally liked the design of the toe field: My toes had loads of room to unfold out, and the spacious design contributed to the shoe’s secure trip (extra on that beneath).


Cushioning-wise, Asics GT-1000’s midsole took the edge off my footfalls however by no means felt significantly bouncy or comfortable. I didn’t thoughts it on shorter runs, however on longer efforts I did want for extra cushioning. To me, GT-1000 simply doesn’t really feel as enjoyable to run in as well-padded trainers like New Balance 1080.

Asics GT-1000 12 is well-cushioned however will not weigh you down.

Michael Charboneau


The GT did, nevertheless, really feel particularly versatile. The shoe actually stunned me with the approach it curled below the balls of my ft as I moved from touchdown to toe-off. At the forefoot, the midsole is skinny and versatile, and that helped the shoe obtain actually easy transitions with every step. When I examined it towards the Nike Winflo, this streamlined forefoot building emerged as a key level of distinction: While each footwear felt related in phrases of cushioning, Asics GT-1000 was noticeably extra versatile in the forefoot. In addition, the LiteTruss labored as marketed. I may really feel a contact of help below my arch, nevertheless it by no means appeared overly intrusive or blocky.


While it may not be the softest on the market, GT-1000 felt secure, even on steep hills and damaged sidewalks. The broad forefoot and LiteTruss midsole design actually contributed, as did the sturdy heel counter (a stiff layer in the higher that helps the again of the foot) and beneficiant padding round the ankle collar. All these options mixed to create a planted, safe trip, and I by no means apprehensive about rolling an ankle or wobbling in a nook. The GT-1000 additionally has a beneficiant rubber outsole, and it served up lockdown grip on dry and moist pavement and packed trails—I by no means as soon as felt a slip throughout my take a look at runs.

Specs Pros Cons

Weight: 8.3 oz


Midsole can really feel a bit lifeless

Stack Height: 32.5 mm (heel), 24.5 mm (forefoot)


Price: $100

Lightweight and versatile

Key Features and Tech

The GT-1000 line is one in all Asics’ “Legends” footwear: key fashions, like the Gel-Kayano and Gel-Nimbus, which were round for many years and kind the core of the model’s running shoe lineup. Asics GT-1000 traces its roots again to the 1980s, though it didn’t purchase its present title till 2012. More not too long ago, there are a number of key adjustments throughout GT-1000 10, GT-1000 11, and GT-1000 12.

“From the 10 to the 11 had a pretty big progression,” Asics Performance Run Category Director John Ealy tells Men’s Journal. “It added a new technology called LiteTruss.”

LiteTruss is a layer of firmer foam in the midsole that helps the medial facet of the foot “to help guide your foot through pronation,” says Ealy. It helps counter overpronation, the place your foot rolls too far inward throughout your stride. It’s an identical idea to the medial posts used in older stability footwear, nevertheless it’s a a lot lighter foam, so LiteTruss feels much less intrusive and extra forgiving.

Asics GT-1000 12 is over an oz. lighter in males’s sizes in contrast with the eleventh iteration.

Michael Charboneau

“Traditional stability shoes feel kinda firm and stiff,” says Ealy. “This offers you the expertise of a comfortable, comfy trip however nonetheless offers you that safe pronation management.”

In addition to LiteTruss, Asics GT-1000 options EVA-based FlyteFoam cushioning in the midsole and Gel—a comfortable, gel-like cushioning materials—in the heel.

Related: We Tested Dozens of On Running Shoes. These Are the Best

The 12th iteration of the GT-1000 is a light replace. It maintains the identical midsole as the 11, however Asics swapped in a brand new streamlined engineered mesh higher with fewer overlays. The revamped higher acquired some tweaks for consolation, together with a brand new “lean-back heel” form that’s designed to forestall irritation at the again of the foot and make the shoe simpler to get on and off. The 12’s higher is each extra breathable and lighter than the higher used on 11, and that contributes to vital general weight financial savings: The GT-1000 12 is over an oz. lighter in males’s sizes in contrast with the 11th iteration.

Asics GT-1000 12 options EVA-based FlyteFoam cushioning in the midsole and Gel—a comfortable, gel-like cushioning materials—in the heel.

Michael Charboneau

Who It’s Best For

Asics GT-1000 12 is an on a regular basis training shoe. It affords a comparatively secure, reasonably cushioned platform, and particularly contemplating its low weight, it’s fairly versatile.

“To me, it’s just the do-it-all kind of shoe,” says Ealy, “you can do speedwork, long runs, easy runs, walking.”

Add in its low value level, and the GT-1000 makes a compelling providing for younger runners and rookies simply stepping into the sport. It’s an approachable shoe that’s succesful and comfy, though these qualities additionally make it an amazing alternative for veteran runners who want a reliable coach so as to add to their rotation.

Final Verdict

For an reasonably priced, versatile on a regular basis coach, Asics GT-1000 12 is a robust contender. I see this being an amazing first shoe for brand new runners who aren’t certain what sort of running expertise they need. The GT-1000 doesn’t mess an excessive amount of along with your stride or attempt to juice every step with space-age foams and plates. Instead, it offers you a snug, secure trip that lets you determine the way you wish to run—and revel in it after you have extra miles below your belt.

$97 at Amazon
$100 at Zappos
$100 at Asics

Why You Should Trust Me

I’ve been testing and reviewing outside and fitness gear since 2018 for quite a lot of publications, together with Runner’s World, InsideHook, Gear Patrol, and extra. Running footwear is the class I’ve written about the most, and I’ve examined dozens of footwear over the years, together with a number of pairs from Asics. To get extra context for this evaluate, I additionally spoke with Asics Performance Run Category Director John Ealy about the design of the present GT-1000 and the way the line has advanced over the previous couple generations.

My Testing Process

I examined my pattern pair of Asics GT-1000 12s over the course of two weeks and racked up 20 miles on them throughout that point. The GT-1000 is a highway shoe, so I principally ran on pavement, however I did embody segments on hard-packed trails as properly. I ran quite a lot of routes round Los Angeles, the place I reside, together with up and down steep hills, fast jogs on metropolis streets and sidewalks, and one longer effort alongside paved and packed filth city paths. I ran in each dry and moist climate, all the time in gentle temperatures (in the 50s and 60s—typical for L.A. winter). Finally, I in contrast the GT-1000 to the Nike Winflo 10, an identical entry-level coach, by running with a GT-1000 on one foot and a Winflo on the different.

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