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SAUCONY RIDE ISO 2 REVIEW

SAUCONY RIDE ISO 2 – SHOE REVIEW

by BRIAN METZLER | MAY, 2018

For runners who crave reliable comfort, the Saucony Ride ISO has always paved the way to smooth miles by delivering the best balance of feel-good cushioning and a highly-adaptable fit. 

The Saucony Ride ISO 2 is a dependable shoe when it comes to cushioning – not too much, not too little; just right. The cushioning comes from a combo of PWRFOAM with an EVERUN topsole that’s responsive enough to tackle high mileage. 

The Ride
ISO is unrivaled to accommodate a wide range of foot shapes and with a double layer jacquard mesh upper it enhanced breathability for 2019 makes it a winner.   

Guest JackRabbit reviewer, Brian Metzler took the new Saucony
Ride ISO 2 out for some test runs and gives the low-down on this dependable style. 

THE BUZZ

The popular, smooth-running Saucony Ride ISO returns with improved upper technologies that ensure an adapting fit for the specific shape and movement of a runner’s feet.

The soft and stable midsole cushioning package on
the running shoe returns unchanged, allowing the Ride ISO 2 to serve up the same reliable combination of softness and responsiveness with a touch of stability.

WHAT'S NEW WITH THE SAUCONY RIDE ISO 2

The updated ISOFIT closure system does a better job of integrating with the lacing system and locking down the foot at the saddle, while the new FORMFit technology —a contoured three-layer midsole system that morphs to the shape and
movement of a runner’s foot—to create a near-custom fit right out of the box.

The new Ride ISO now has crystal rubber in the forefoot for extra durability and responsiveness. Add to that an upgraded engineered double
jacquard mesh for more comfort, and an improved heel grab and lockdown. 

Saucony Ride ISO 2 - Run on

FIT-FEEL-RIDE

The subtle updates have really dialed-in the fit of the Ride ISO 2. It’s comfortably snug with no slippage, but it also feels like there is a touch of room in the toe box thanks to the double-jacquard mesh in the forefoot.

The tri-layer footbed/midsole system—a top layer that conforms and changes with the foot, a middle layer of responsive Saucony EVERUN foam that adapts to pressure points and a contoured midsole—creates a plush and stable cradle
underfoot without eliminating the proprioceptive feel for the ground.

With the enhanced fit and feel, the ride feels especially smooth, soft and energetic. It’s not bouncy or marshmallowly but somewhere in between.
 The Saucony Ride ISO 2 is a great running shoe for those looking for the middle of the road feel. 

WHO'S IT BEST FOR?

The Saucony Ride ISO 2 suits runners with a neutral-oriented gait training races from 5K to the marathon will love this shoe.

It offers plenty of cushioning
for long runs and a touch of energy return for faster workouts.It’s also a great match for runners who have a slightly supinated (or outward rolling) stride.

PROS AND CONS OF THE SAUCONY RIDE ISO 2

Saucony Ride ISO 2 - Pros

Pros:Saucony Ride ISO 2

Runners with wider feet rejoice! The Ride ISO 2 is available in two widths—B and D for women and D and 2E for men.

The Tri-Flex groves under the forefoot
help disperse force over a greater surface area while also delivering optimal flexibility and traction.

The updated ride is a great high-mileage trainer, but it’s also versatile and light enough to run fartlek workouts,
tempo runs and mile repeats.

The 8mm heel-toe offset is a good mid-range slope, one that could be ideal for runners transitioning out of shoes with a higher offset.

Saucony Ride ISO 2 - Cons

Cons: Saucony Ride ISO 2

The Ride ISO 2 is the same weight as previous version, but it’s still not among the lightest neutral high-mileage trainers on the market.

It’s definitely not heavy, but
smaller runners or those who prefer lightweight performance trainers might find it a tad cumbersome.

SAUCONY RIDE ISO 2 SPECS

Saucony Ride ISO 2 - Specs

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: BRIAN METZLER

Brian Metzler has run races at every distance from 50 meters to 100 miles, wear-tested more than 1,500 pairs of shoes, is a three-time Ironman finisher and occasionally participates in the quirky sport of pack burro racing in Colorado. 

He's the founding editor of Trail Runner magazine, is a former senior editor at Running Times and editor in chief at Competitor Magazine. He's the author of “Running Colorado's Front Range” and the
co-author of “Natural Running: The Simple Path to Stronger Healthier Running” and “Run Like a Champion: An Olympian's Approach for Every Runner.”

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RUNNING HYDRATION: VESTS, HANDHELDS, BOTTLES & MORE

RUNNING HYDRATION

by MELANIE MITCHELL  | APRIL 2019

RUNNING HYDRATION

PACKS, VESTS, HANDHELDS, BOTTLES AND MORE

Running and hydration go hand in hand as we humans, you will be pleased to know, are not camels. We’re only designed to deal with heat or exertion for a limited amount of time.  There comes a point for any active person to consider
how to carry liquid with them in the most optimal way.

Fortunately, running hydration gear has evolved as much as we have as runners and now you can choose from running hydration packs, vests, hip belts, hand-held bottles,
collapsible bottles; the list goes on!  
Here’s a few of our favorites at JackRabbit for 2019 to keep your tank topped up as the heat rises and activities get longer, just like the days of summer.  

RUNNING HYDRATION PACKS AND VEST

ULTIMATE DIRECTION VESTS

Hydration packs are the best of all worlds for runners, adventures in the woods, ultra racing and heck, let’s add parenting to that list too.  Hydration is key to performance and being sure you can carry what you need for a long day on the
trail (either running or life) can be the difference between a great day or a challenging one.  Running with a vest allows you to stay focused on what you’re doing which inevitably leads to a safer run, too

When trail running
it’s no surprise you can go from glorious sunshine to rain or cold temps in a matter of miles. Having a hydration pack allows for you to be able to layer on and off as needed while still being able to run hands free. It also gives you
a secure place to stow your phone, keys and maybe some bandaids.

Ultimate Direction vests are loaded with features that puts them in the Rolls Royce class
of water carriers for running, mountain biking and day-hiking the trails. The 4.0 versions of the Ultimate Direction vests are feather-light, breathable and ergonomically designed for male/female. Each one is designed so you can access
every pocket without having to remove the vest. If you’ve ever wrestled for a gel in a pocket on your back, you’ll welcome an Ultimate Direction Vest with open arms. 

SHOP ULTIMATE DIRECTION

RUNNING WAIST BELTS & HANDHELDS

AMPHIPOD BOTTLES

For those who don’t need the scale of a running hydration vest but don’t want to use a hand held bottle the waist pack is a great alternative.  Hydration pros Amphipod have the Amphipod Stealth Runner Water Bottle Waistpack, a
minimalist solution to carrying water on hot trails running or hiking.  The water bottle is ‘flat’ so it lies nicely against the small of the back for a no-bounce fit. Add to that an ergonomic and comfort wide adjustable waist band band
and you have a hands-free water carrier for summer runs.

Also from Amphipod, are a series of handheld ergonomic running water bottles to suit every hand and water carrying preference. The Amphipod Hydraform Hydro Minimalist Handheld Flask is designed to fit into the palm with a comfort, grasp-free thumb lock strap which has to be one of the best inventions in hand-held bottles this side of the century. It nicely reduces hand fatigue; the last thing you need while running.
 The flask stores 20 oz of liquid plus a couple of slots for gels making this a go-to for +hour long runs in the heat.

SHOP AMPHIPOD

HYDRO FLASK WATER BOTTLES

Keeping hydrated is not rocket science, and much like training, consistency is key. ‘Binge’ drinking is never a good idea, and that applies to water and your daily hydration strategy. It’s been proven to be optimal to drink little and often
throughout the day over chugging a liter a couple of times a day.  Hydro Flask keeps hydration on-the-go easy, fresh and adaptable to your preferred drink of choice.

If you want to keep your water cold or your tea piping hot, a Hydro Flask is a worthy investment.  Tests have kept hot drinks hot for 12 hours and cold drinks cold for 24! That’s a whole lotta hydration right there.  

Hydro
Flask’s secret is a double-walled stainless steel bottle that comes in a whole rainbow of colors for every season to suit both your hydration needs anf your color preference.

SHOP HYDROFLASK

HYDRATE AND RECOVER

NEW! MOBOT FOAM ROLLER BOTTLES

NEW!  Raising the bar on the concept of running hydration and recovery Mobot Foam Roller Water Bottles have arrived at JackRabbit. Think outside of the hydration tank and consider
the Mobot as ‘active meditation’. The stainless bottle keeps you hydrated and the bottle encourages you into the daily practice of massage encouraging you to slow down, hydrate, breath and roll.

A tough stainless steel water
bottle is crafted in the perfect width to wrap in a foam roller outer shell so you can hydrate and foam roll on the go.  The Mobot bottle mimics trigger point release techniques used by sports therapists and comes in a portable size so
you’ll never find yourself without hydration or a foam roller. 

SHOP MOBOT FOAM ROLLER WATER BOTTLES

ELECTROLYTES, FUEL AND RECOVERY

NUUN LAUNCHES ENDURANCE AND RECOVERY 

Nuun has always been known for their electrolyte and vitamin tablets. So easy to transport while on the go, or traveling, they’ve been the go-to for so many runners and athletes looking to keep their every day hydration brimming to the top.
 

In 2019 Nuun has launched Endurance and Rest – a collaboration with world renowned exercise physiologist Stacy T. Sims PhD, to evolve the sports drinks they offer for endurance exercise and endurance recovery.

Together
they have developed a totally new drink product –  Nuun Endurance – optimized for the physiological stress the body endures over long distance (over 90 minutes) and high-intensity exercise.  The resulting drink is a source carbs for energy
and electrolytes for hydration in a ratio that maximizes the absorption of fluids and nutrients while minimizing gastric distress.  No one will argue with that concept. Try it out on your next long run or bike for yourself.

Secondly,
we are sold on Nuun Rest.  We don’t even have to listen to our mothers to know that rest is key for runners, athletes and every one of us. Nuun knows this too and have created Nuun Rest to help get the most the hours of shut-eye.

Nuun Rest calls upon three key ingredients magnesium, tart-cherry and potassium that all play a key role in relaxing the major muscle groups, reducing inflammation and easing nerve functions that keep the brain alert and awake. 

SHOP NUUN NUTRITION

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BEST CUSHIONED RUNNING SHOES 2019

 

BEST CUSHIONED RUNNING SHOES

by BRIAN METZLER  | APRIL 2019

 

 

BEST CUSHIONED RUNNING SHOES

2019 EDITIONS AVAILABLE AT JACKRABBIT

Running shoes with maximal cushioning have become one of the hottest categories at JackRabbit stores and JackRabbit.com, and with good reason—most runners love cushioning! 

Although Hoka One One gets credit for helping the category of max cushioned shoes explode in the early 2010s in the wake of the minimialist shoe movement, there have been plenty of thickly cushioned shoes on the market for years. In theory, the original Nike Air Max (1987) might have been the first true max cushioned running shoe, even though the term “maximalism” didn’t get tossed around until Hoka burst on the scene as the minimalist trend started to wane. 

Why run in maximally cushioned shoes? Not only does a thick midsole soften the impact of every footstep, but it also serves up a good amount of energy return for your next stride. But careful, not all maximally cushioned shoes are created equal. If you’ve been running in traditionally cushioned shoes, a transition to shoes with thickly cushioned shoes takes some getting used to. The biggest differences are the slightly subdued proprioceptive “feel” for the ground and, in some cases, the rolling sensation from a “rockered” or convex shoe geometry. Studies have shown runners exhibit increased impact forces and loading rate when running in a maximal versus traditionally cushioned running shoe. 

We compared four of the top maximally cushioned running shoes available in 2019 to see how they differ. Read on to learn our JackRabbit point of view.

 

ADIDAS ULTRABOOST 19

Price: $180
Weights: 10.8 ounces (men’s size 9.0); 9.9 oz. (women’s size 7.0)
Heel-Toe Offset: Men: 10mm (29mm heel, 19mm forefoot); Women: 10mm (29mm heel, 10mm forefoot)

The Buzz: Adidas has continued to tweak its Boost foam applications. The latest version of the Adidas UltraBoost serves up 20 percent more energy return and now has a torsion spring embedded in the midsole for additional forefoot support and faster heel-toe transitions.

The updated Continental Stretchweb rubber outsole offers more surface area of adhesive rubber for greater traction on both wet and dry surfaces.

Differentiator: Soft, flexible and very energetic, the UltraBoost 19 is one of the springiest shoes available. Whereas a few previous models were deemed to be too marshmallowy soft, this version is lively and energetic, offering an ideal blend of softness and responsiveness.

Buy the Adidas Ultraboost if: You love the feeling of a soft, bouncy ride!

BROOKS GLYCERIN 17

Price: $150
Weights: 11.0 ounces (men’s size 9.0); 8.6 oz. (women’s size 7.0)
Heel-Toe Offset: Men: 10mm (36mm heel, 26mm forefoot); Women: 9mm (33mm heel, 24mm forefoot)

Buzz: The softest shoe in Brooks’ line, the neutral-oriented Glycerin has become even more cushy and comfortable in its 17th edition. It’s built on the marshmallowy soft DNA Loft midsole foam—a compound that blends air, rubber and foam—but it also features super plush interior and high aesthetic appeal.

Differentiator: This shoe combines softness, style and comfort like few other shoes on the market. The cushy midsole is soft and bouncy, offering an optimal blend of shock absorption and energy return. The stretchy mess upper and 3D printed overlay offer an comfy and accommodating fit for a variety of foot shapes.

Buy the Brooks Glycerin if: You’re looking for a supremely comfortable fit and feel. Running in the Glycerin is akin to driving in a luxury SUV decked out with high-end creature comforts and stylish appeal. 

HOKA BONDI 6

Price: $150
Weights: 10.8 ounces (men’s size 9.0); 9.1 oz. (women’s size 7.0)
Heel-Toe Offset: Men: 4mm (37mm heel, 33mm forefoot); Women: 4mm (37 mm heel, 33 mm forefoot)

The Buzz: The Bondi is Hoka’s most thickly cushioned shoe has one of the biggest midsoles on the market. It’s made from a modified EVA compound that is 30 percent softer than traditional EVA foam to keep the shoe light and nimble despite its oversized chassis.

The Differentiator: Like most Hoka shoes, it features a rockered (or convex) geometric profile, which reduces hard heel striking and increases forward proulsion. Key updates to the sixth edition include improved upper for increased comfort and breathability, a better heel collar with more padding and extra security and a new outsole that reduced weight and optimized durability.

Buy the Hoka Bondi if: You appreciate a rolling ride that can help you avoid a heavy heel-striking gait.

NEW BALANCE FRESH FOAM MORE

Price: $160
Weights: 10.2 ounces (men’s size 9.0); 8.1 oz. (women’s size 7.0)
Heel-Toe Offset: Men: 4mm (30mm heel, 26mm forefoot); Women: 4mm (30mm heel, 26mm forefoot)

The Buzz: The Fresh Foam More is first true maximally cushioned shoe from New Balance, and wow, what exquisite cushioning it is! Only a few road running shoes have ever had this much plush cushioning under foot.

Differentiator: Unlike some high off-the-ground highly cushioned shoes, the Fresh Foam More serves up a secure and stable ride without any side-to-side wobbling. It’s also the firmest and least flexible ride of three shoes in our comparison.

Buy the New Balance Fresh Foam More if: You like soft cushioning in a running shoe but need stability and crave firmness in every step.

 
 

 

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NEW BALANCE FRESH FOAM MORE STAFF RUNNERS

NEW BALANCE: FRESH FOAM MORE

by MELANIE MITCHELL  | APRIL 2019

NEW BALANCE: FRESH FOAM MORE

MAX FRESH FOAM CUSHIONING ARRIVES

A new member of the Fresh Foam family has arrived from New Balance, the Fresh Foam More, a maximalist shoe that is a great option for your longest weekly
training runs. 

True to its name, the 'More' gives you more Fresh Foam to run with and keeps the weight to a minimum with specifically designed grooves for a great cushion to weight ratio.

The Fresh
Foam More scores a high grade from our run testers as being excellent at the job it was designed to do – being your parter in crime for long runs with max-cushioned support.

JackRabbit runners laced up some Mores, putting
them to the test to see how the shoe fits, how it runs, and how their feet felt throughout the journey.  

NEW BALANCE FRESH FOAM MORE

STAFF RUNNERS WEIGH IN

KENZI: ORANGE THEORY CLASS + WEIGHTS 

“The Fresh Foam More was my first high cushion shoe experience. I love the upper the most and since I not used to high-cushion, I liked that it is a stiffer cushion because I do actually believe that there is a thing as too much cushion.

I took the shoe about 3 miles running followed by the weight room section of class. One thing to note, while it is a traditional running shoe, I actually wasn’t bothered by the extra cushion or rocking motion during the floor section like I usually am when wearing other true running shoes. That was a huge plus!  The additional cushioning helped alleviate some of my joint soreness after my run; it’s stiffer than I expected, but I actually enjoyed that.”

KRISTYN – 5K TESTER

“I am used to a less cushioned shoe, so this was a whole new experience. The sizing felt true to size, maybe a little wider than I am used to (I wear the New Balance Zante for comparison) which gave my feet a little more room to settle in.  

Giving the shoe some test runs, I could feel towards the end of my run more pep in my step and helped me keep up the pace when i was getting tired.” 

LAURA  – ULTRARUNNER

“I’ve put around 50 miles on the shoes so far in my test runs, and I am a regular runner in cushioned shoes for my road training. I thought the shoe fit really well!  The mid-foot is secure enough but not too tight to where it’s uncomfortable.  I am used to running in maximalist shoes, and the midsole was a lot more stiff than I thought it was going to be. Initially I was unsure about it, but now the FFM has come into my shoe rotation as a preferred choice

I like the toe-box in that it also fits feet really well. I have borderline narrow feet so I don’t like shoes that fit wider and this shoe fits my needs perfectly well, all while still providing enough wiggle room for when my feet inevitably swell due to dehydration.”

ERIC – TENNIS COMPETITOR TURNED RUNNER

“I am a runner that leans towards a decent amount of cushion in my running line up.  The Fresh Foam More compares well with what I already run in; a soft shoe, but stiff enough to give a good forward spring while not allowing me to sink into the shoe, which I was worried would happen from the max Fresh Foam in the midsole.  I admit to having an irrational fear of my heel slipping out of a shoe (don’t ask me why!) but no worries on this one. I knocked out some 4 mile runs to put the shoe through its paces, and here are the top three things I like the most about the Fresh Foam More

1. My favorite is actually the heel (see aforementioned fear!); it’s wonderfully snug to sit in and I feel secure with the padding on the back while I’m situated inside the shoe; there is no feeling of being on top of the shoe’s midsole like others.  
2. The midsole is very high quality, yet it is not just squishy where I would sink into it, as it retains the firmness required to move quickly: a beautiful balance!  
3. The nicely spacious toe-box is a treat, it’s a good size where I’m comfortable moving but never feel like I’m swimming in it.”

MELANIE: TRIATHLETE AVOIDING THE AGING PROCESS 

“When I see a maximalist running shoe, my feet get a little giddy.  I’ve tried them all, run in them all, tried less cushion, then gone back to max cushion for long runs.  The Fresh Foam More has been an interesting addition to my running shoe collection. The cushioning appeared less in the toe area – not in bad way, but in a different way to other styles in this category, pushing the foot from heel to toe in a rocking motion; I liked it. Once the brain adjusted to that motion, I was well into a test run and started to melt into the spring effect.  

Compared to other maximalist shoes, it’s worthwhile to note the Fresh Foam More took more breaking in compared to others, but nothing that would impact my opinion on the shoe. I am thrilled there’s a new max shoe in town worthy enough to add into the shoe rotation, keeping my feet strong and ready for the long miles ahead.”

EMILY – I WALK, I RUN, I DO IT ALL

“A great max-cushion neutral stability shoe! While the Fresh Foam More is officially called a neutral running shoe, I would say it's a bit more neutral/stable as it does provide a lot more structure than other neutral running shoes I’ve worn in the past. 

The Fresh Foam More features a stacked midsole foam underfoot which gives it a sturdier feeling than other max-cushion running shoes and actually provides more support without the extra weight. It’s also a good option for a walking shoe because it has a slight rocker bottom, but not so much that it compromises the overall stability. 

The style does run on the smaller side, so I recommend going up a 1/2 size. I’m usually a women’s size 9 but ended up getting the 9.5 which fits as it should.”

SHOP NEW BALANCE FRESH FOAM MORE

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URBAN RUNNING WITH ON CLOUDSWIFT – REVIEW

 

ON RUNNING – CLOUDSWIFT

by MELANIE MITCHELL  | APRIL 2019

 

 

ON CLOUDSWIFT

URBAN RUNNING WITH JACKRABBIT

The Cloudswift from On Running is a brand new performance category running shoe specifically designed with the urban runner in mind. 

When you’re living in the city, pounding the pavements, a runner needs cushion but doesn’t want to be weighted down with a heavy shoe, especially when the thermostat of summer is cranked up.

The Cloudswift is a welcome new running shoe specific to the urban running category.  It features a superior new cushioned midsole unique to On and an engineered mesh upper to let your feet keep their cool in the urban landscape.

We asked our urban runners at JackRabbit HQ to take their shoes out on the streets to test them on the city roads of Colorado.  It’s not all trail running here in the Rocky Mountain state we call home!

But before we hear from our urban adventurers, here's why the Cloudswift was born. 

ON CLOUDSWIFT:  HELION CUSHIONING + A TOUGH SOLE

The city is a tough place to run, and On set out to create a tougher, more more cushioned shoe anchored on the newly-engineered midsole featuring their proprietory Helion foam.

Do we need more foam? Yes, we do runners.  

Helion superfoam is a engineered for cushioning, light on weight but big on energy return. It combines the cushioning benefits of foam previously only possible in two separate materials. This foam is BIG on rebound. 

Add to that bounce, a new more substantial sole style and you have a urban running shoe that responds to and protects against the concrete jungle. 

 

ON CLOUDSWIFT: OUR URBAN RUNNERS SPEAK OUT

MELANIE: TRIATHLETE TRAINING AND LIVING IN THE CITY
'Dialed-in fit for this road warrior'

“While I dream of running the trails with the wind in my hair, the reality is most of my weekly training runs are out my front door and straight onto the asphalt. The Cloudswift shoes have been a game-changer in terms of cushion for the 5, 8 and 10 mile urban routes on my dance card.

They feel substantial enough I don’t feel the grind of the hard surface nearly quite as much. Having less tired legs heading into increased training mileage is going to get me to race day happier! Another bonus is the wider soIe for a more stable base – a bonus for this runner with a tendency to trip … often.

I see more pairs of Cloudswift in my future.”

MICHAEL: RUNNER OF THE STREETS
“Extra spring but not extra weight”

“As a signed up and sealed fan of On, the Cloudswift came into my life hot on the heels of a new pair of On Clouds. While I have found there’s been a breaking in period in the On Clouds, the Cloudswift feels ‘just right’ from day one.  Great comfort for a long run or even just walking around town. The Helion is my new favorite cushioning in an On shoe, much lighter and more comfortable. Having knocked out some 5k runs testing, I had noticeably extra pep in my step.” 

EMILY: EXPLOSIVE GYM ATHLETE
“Springy, and I like springy”

“The Cloudswift has a wider base than the Cloudflow which is perfect for this runner; I have wide feet but not wide enough to need width-specific shoes. Having run in many other On styles before, the Helion superfoam is a bit softer than that on the Cloudflow and adjusts to temperature fluctuations really well.  This is going to make this style spot on for running on city sidewalks so hot you could fry an egg on them or so cold it feels like you’re running on frozen bricks. 

The lacing system on the new Cloudswift is different than anything we’ve seen from On before as it takes a bit more pulling and tugging to get the stretchable side band locked into a place where your mid-foot feels supported. 

The break-in period takes a few days but after about a week running in the Cloudswift, I can absolutely say this is my new go-to shoe for everything from running to more explosive gym workouts because the superfoam is so springy.

The regular women’s size 9 felt a little on the small side when first on for but ended up fitting perfectly once I broke them in.  For reference, I err on the side of a larger size 9 and occasionally have to size up. Also of note in the Cloudswift, the heel cup is shallower on the sides than other On shoes I’ve worn. 

I’m the type of runner who just must match their socks with their shoes – if you can even see my socks at all, that is! If you’re oddly particular about your sock game like me, I would recommend a low-profile option like the On Low Sock (lowest of the low) or the Balega Ultra Light No Show Sock if you like a little more cushion behind your heel.”

 
 

SHOP ON CLOUDSWIFT

 

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Fun Runs Interviews

HISTORY OF THE BOLDER BOULDER 10K RACE

 
 

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MEET YOUR MATCH: SUPERFEET INSOLES

 

MEET YOUR MATCH: SUPERFEET & HOKA ONE ONE

 

 

THE KEYS TO YOUR SOLEMATE: SUPERFEET

Running insoles may confuse many as you stare at a wall of them coloring your local running store. But these slivers of color could be the answer to matching you to your perfect running shoe.

Insoles can improve the fit of your running shoes, make sure your arches are supported where they need it and they can provide extra stability and help to spread the running load when your foot hits the ground.  Add to that the two words every runner dreads – plantar fasciitis – insoles have been known to help the condition with their arch support and general foot stability for the runner. 

Just as every foot is different and every running shoe is different, a quality running insole can bridge the gap to turn the best running shoe into the perfect running shoe for you.

Superfeet are the 'podiactric scientists' behind some of the best running insoles available today. Their insoles use cutting edge technologies to produce insoles to suit a variety of runners. Superfeet have been gathering data on people's feet for over 40 years; that's a lot of feet! 

We've taken our fave Hoka One One running shoes and paired them with the appropriate Superfeet insole to give you a solid grounding (pun intended) on how you can use an insole to dial in your favorite running shoe.

 

HOKA BONDI 6 & RUN COMFORT

Superfeet Run Comfort Max:  This heel-cradling insole, the best-selling running insole from Superfeet is specifically desigend with the runner in mind.  It's build for comfort and durability, and like all Superfeet insoles, they are guaranteed to provide reliable support and comfort of up to 12 months or 500 miles – whichever comes sooner.

Slipped into your running shoe, the insole disperses impact for a more comfortable run allowing you to run longer with more efficiency. Remember, the Superfeet Run Comfort Max is the 'green insole' when you're shopping.

HOKA Bondi 6:  With a 36mm insole, the HOKA Bondi is epic in its cushioning you could almost think you are running on clouds. It's a perfect shoe for long runs and running on tired legs.
 

HOKA CAVU 2 & RUN COMFORT THIN

Superfeet Run Comfort Thin: The Superfeet Run Comfort Thin insole is 20% thinner than other Superfeet styles for the runner who needs a slim fit in their shoes, but also need the support of an insole. The thin profile works with your race shoes and offers no extra bulk for a dialed in fit.  

HOKA Cavu 2: The Cavu 2 is one of the styles in the HOKA Fly line, and one of the lightest shoes in the collection weighing in at 7.2 ounces.  With that light of a shoe, you need a light insole to complement the lightness of foot you get from slipping your foot into a pair.  If you're new to HOKA, the Cavu is a great starting point to launch into the lightness the brand is so well known for.  

Check out our review of the HOKA Cavu 2

HOKA MACH 2 & RUN COMFORT WOMEN'S

Run Comfort Women's: As the mantra goes, 'women are not small men', and their feet are no exception. With that firmly at the front of their mind, Superfeet have devised the Run Comfort Women's running insole specifically adpated to the geometry of the female foot.   

This insole features a narrower heel and specific arch length alongside the tried and tested deep heel cup and impact technology to disperse impact. 

HOKA Mach 2: A fabulous addition to the HOKA shoe line up, the Mach 2 has been completely retooled and is one of the most versatile shoes for lightweight training and as a race-day shoe. As a nod back to the HOKA Clayton, the Mach 2 should be a great smooth runner for dynamic training.  Check out our full review of the HOKA Mach 2

 
 

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NEW BALANCE FRESH FOAM MORE REVIEW

 

NEW BALANCE FRESH FOAM MORE – SHOE REVIEW

by BRIAN METZLER | APRIL, 2019

Introducing a brand new style from New Balance – the Fresh Foam More, a max-cushion shoe, the first to be released from New Balance.

Hot on the heels of the Beacon, New Balance has honed in on the producing a running shoe that is secure in its cushioning by working the sole and midsole to make sure the ride is comfortable yet offers a stable run for those transitioning to or used to the maximal cushioned running experience.

Guest reviewer Brian Metzler tested the new Fresh Foam More on the roads of Boulder, Colorado and gives his feedback on this new addition to all our JackRabbit and partner stores. 

THE BUZZ

This is first true maximally cushioned shoe from New Balance, and wow, what exquisite cushioning it is!

Only a few road running shoes have ever had this much plush cushioning under foot. (The Hoka Bondi and Altra Duo are a few comparably cushioned shoes.) But unlike some high off-the-ground maximally cushioned shoes, the New Balance Fresh Foam More serves up a secure and stable ride without any side-to-side wobbling.

WHAT'S NEW?

NEW BALANCE FRESH FOAM MORE

New Balance adapted its data-driven Fresh Foam technology to create its most thickly cushioned shoe ever. The foam is soft but not marshmallowy soft.

Although it’s a neutral shoe, the midsole foam has been engineered to be slightly firmer on the medial side and slightly more pliable on the lateral side to over a bit of stability for runners who mildly overpronate.

New Balance Fresh Foam - Run on

FIT-FEEL-RIDE

Stepping into the Fresh Foam More feels like stepping into luxury. With a soft interior highlighted by a padded heel collar, a soft Ortholite sock liner, a very wide tongue and an interior bootie construction, the shoe wraps the foot from every side.

The comfortable fit and feel are enhanced by a stretchy and supportive double-jacquard engineered mesh upper that comfortable adapts to various foot shapes. Despite the exceptional girth and mass of this shoe, the Fresh Foam More serves up a very smooth, rhythmic ride with a surprisingly light and agile sensation.

Although it has a moderately stiff flex pattern, it’s not so stiff that it inhibits comfort or the continuity of the ride. The foam midsole feels a bit firm when you step into it and walk around, but it feels increasingly softer and more revitalizing once you’re out on a run. 

WHO'S IT BEST FOR?

Runners who appreciate thickly cushioned shoes for long runs will love the New Balance Fresh Foam More.

Our wear-testers reported that if felt similarly soft and energizing in the first mile as it does in the last mile of a run, making it ideal for weekend long runs of 2-3 hours.

PROS AND CONS 

NEW BALANCE FRESH FOAM MORE

New Balance Fresh Foam More - Pros

Pros:New Balance Fresh Foam More

Under the max cushioned midsole, there’s a 5mm layer of rubberized EVA foam serves as the ground-contact layer while also providing more cushioning, a touch of medial-side stability and smooth heel-to-toe transitions. A slight concave cup under the heel helps keep the foot and energy return trending in a forward direction, while wider hex shapes in the front of the shoe serve as smartly placed flex grooves.

A small, lightweight TPU overlay on top of the tongue acts as a guard against lace sting for runners who tie their shoes extra tight.

A small internal heel counter provides subtly support at the rear of the foot, while the shoe’s exceptionally wide foot print adds to its inherent stability.

New Balance Fresh Foam More - Cons

Cons: New Balance Fresh Foam More

The Fresh Foam More isn’t a go-fast shoe capable of short and fast intervals or fartlek workouts that require explosive accelerations.

But it’s light and agile enough to serve as a half marathon or marathon shoe and can hold its own on longer tempo runs.

NEW BALANCE FRESH FOAM MORE

Brooks Glycerin 17 - Specs

SHOP NEW BALANCE FRESH FOAM MORE

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: BRIAN METZLER

Brian Metzler has run races at every distance from 50 meters to 100 miles, wear-tested more than 1,500 pairs of shoes, is a three-time Ironman finisher and occasionally participates in the quirky sport of pack burro racing in Colorado. 

He's the founding editor of Trail Runner magazine, is a former senior editor at Running Times and editor in chief at Competitor Magazine. He's the author of “Running Colorado's Front Range” and the co-author of “Natural Running: The Simple Path to Stronger Healthier Running” and “Run Like a Champion: An Olympian's Approach for Every Runner.”