How To Find the Best Mud Running Shoes

Are you looking for the best mud running shoes? What factors do you need to consider?

If you are looking for a way to generate a little bit more adrenaline during your runs, then you have probably thought about obstacle courses. I remember when I first started running, I was trying to train for half marathons and marathons. Eventually, I was looking for something more. It simply wasn't enough to run in a giant loop and kill half a day.

I was looking for something that had a little bit more teamwork, more excitement, and more thrills. That was where I got interested in obstacle course races such as Tough Mudder and Spartans. At the same time, I realized that my typical road running shoes simply were not good enough. I needed to find the best mud running shoes.

Of course, there are plenty of options out there for mud running shoes. Here are some of the factors that you need to consider if you are looking for the best mud running shoes.

Table Of Contents

Shoes That Provide Outstanding Traction

running down a forest track
Trail running offers new opportunities and new challenges

Of course, one of the biggest challenges of running through the mud is slippage. There is simply no way around it. You are not going to be able to get a good grip on the mud. Therefore, your shoes need to do everything they can to help you. So, how can you find running shoes that will provide you with better traction? 

Try to find shoes that have logs that will grip the surface deeply. If you are looking at the sole of the shoe, try to find relatively long prongs that almost look like cleats. This is important because they are going to dig into the mud, preventing you from slipping, such as with the Salomon Speedcross shoes.

On the other hand, you are going to pay a price for these prongs as well. If they do a great job in the mud, they are probably going to be uncomfortable when you transition to the pavement. Therefore, you need to consider the exact nature of the run as well. If the run involves not only mud but also smooth pavement, then you may be looking for shoes that provide you with a little bit more of a balance. 

Salomon Men's Speedcross 5 Trail Running, Black/Black/Phantom, 11
  • Trail Running Shoes: Featuring an aggressive grip, precise foothold, and protection, the Salomon Speedcross 5 is the ideal shoe for runners who want to conquer soft, technical trails
  • Get Rough: Redesigned with deep, sharp lugs for an improved grip and a more dynamic upper for better fit and stability, the Speedcross 5 is the perfect shoe for trail runners who aren't afraid of wet, dirty terrain
  • Go The Distance: Whether you love road running in your neighborhood, an escape to a local trail, or something more rugged, Salomon makes shoes that ensure you have a smooth ride on any and all terrain
  • Time To Play: Whether you are into trail running, hiking, backpacking, or mountaineering, Salomon has shoes and gear for kids, men and women to help you conquer a new distance, personal record, or event
  • Since 1947 Salomon has created innovative outdoor sports gear. From running and hiking to backpacking, skiing and more, our shoes, boots, bags, apparel and accessories help make any path your own

Shoes That Provide a Snug Fit

If you want to reduce your chances of developing blisters on the inside of your feet during your runs, then you need to try to keep the moisture away from your socks. Unfortunately, when you go for a mud run, this can be a bit of a challenge. The reality is that no shoe is perfect. There's probably going to be some degree of moisture inside of your shoe. On the other hand, if the shoe has a snug fit, you can limit this. 

For example, some shoes have joined together the tongue and the upper portion of the fabric. This makes the shoe feel a little bit less bulky. It will also prevent mud, dirt, and moisture from sneaking into your shoe.

If you are tired of feeling that squish as you run, then make sure you find a shoe that has a snug fit, such as the Inov Mudclaw. Of course, the downside is that these shoes are not going to be nearly as effective on the pavement. A snug fit might also prevent your feet from breathing, causing them to overheat. 

Shoes That Protect Against the Rocks

trail running over rocks
You need to ensure your foot wear protects your feet from uneven and sharp surfaces

When you are looking for shoes that will work well during a trail run, you should obviously try to find a shoe that is focused on the sole. That way, you have extra padding as you traverse branches, pebbles, and tree roots.

On the other hand, you also need to be concerned about rocks. Rocks are a serious obstacle that can cause you to twist your ankle or cut your ankle or foot. Therefore, try to find shoes that have extra padding not only on the sole but around the entirety of the foot. 

The Merrell Trail Glove provides exceptional protection against the rocks. With durable material, you will not have to worry about puncturing your shoe and cutting your foot as you run. The drawback to such firm material is that it doesn’t have a lot of give, so you might feel like your foot has been locked in place while you run.

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Merrell womens Trail Glove 5 Sneaker, Black, 9 US
  • Vibram TC5+
  • Merrell Barefoot 2 construction for enhanced proprioception and stability during variable movement

Shoes with Ankle Support

When you are running through the mud, you are not going to be running on an even surface. Unlike the pavement, which is always flat, there might be some variation in the layout of the surface. Therefore, you may not have a smooth landing with every step. This increases the chance of rolling your ankle, leading to an injury. 

As a result, you need to find shoes that are going to provide you with adequate ankle support, such as the Salomon XA Pro Mid. Even though you should never reach for a pair of boots, you do need to find shoes that have some extra support around the ankles, resembling hiking shoes. That way, you don't have to worry as much about rolling your ankle if you land on a tree root by mistake.

The downside is that extra ankle support may cause the shoe to be a bit heavy, weighing you down as you get tired; however, it is probably worth it to reduce the chance of injury.

Salomon Men's X Ultra 3 MID GTX Hiking, Black/India Ink/Monument, 8
  • Waterproof Hiking Boots: Whether you are hitting the trails or looking for a solid work shoe, these extra durable, waterproof, mid height hiking boots are designed for maximum traction on all terrains
  • A Better Way Down: Designed with Descent Control Technology, the X Ultra 3 Gore Tex mid height hiking shoe efficiently tackles technical hikes and really shines during tough descents, even in wet conditions
  • Adventure Awaits: Whether you love a local day hike or hitting the trails for a multi-day adventure, Salomon makes innovative hiking and backpacking shoes and boots for men and women to help you go the distance
  • Time To Play: Whether you are into trail running, hiking, backpacking, or mountaineering, Salomon has shoes and gear for kids, men and women to help you conquer a new distance, personal record, or event
  • Since 1947 Salomon has created innovative outdoor sports gear; From running and hiking to backpacking, skiing and more, our shoes, boots, bags, apparel and accessories help make any path your own

The Final Word on the Best Mud Running Shoes

These are a few of the most important factors that you should consider if you are looking for the best mud running shoes. Running through the mud is a great, a new challenge for those who are looking for a bit more excitement as they run.

In order to place yourself in the best position possible to succeed, find the best pair of mud running shoes you can, relevant to the terrain you choose.

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