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Women’s Running Shoes: A Few Faves from 2012

January 9th, 2013

2012 came and went, leaving us with fond memories of the Games in London, epic moments at our own races, and a collection of exceptional running shoes. Here’s a spotlight on five of our best selling women’s running shoes from 2012.

Asics Gel Nimbus
If you’re on the prowl for a supremely cushioned, neutral daily trainer, the Asics Gel Nimbus 14 would definitely get a second date. And after a month you’ll probably want to elope. The shoe has that comfy Asics step-in feel, and the heel-to-toe transition is nice and smooth. The ample heel and forefoot Gel units offer premium impact protection, and the mesh upper is breathable and secure.

We also like: Saucony Triumph 10 and adidas adistar Ride 4.

Brooks Adrenaline GTS
You need support to correct overpronation, but you don’t want a heavy, super built-up shoe. The Brooks Adrenaline GTS deserves a look. It has maximum support and a nice dose of cushioning to keep your feet happy. This workhorse of a shoe is built to stand up to the long runs you’re ready to log.

We also like: Mizuno Wave Alchemy 12 and Saucony Omni 11.

Nike FREE Run
The Nike FREE Run+ 3 has been a popular choice for women who want something lighter and more flexible than a traditional trainer, but don’t want to take the plunge into the “barefoot” shoe world. This neutral trainer is designed to give you a more natural running feel, but still packs a cushioned platform for a bit of protection. Add in a seamless upper and a wide array of color choices and you’ve got a fun performance shoe for many occasions.

We also like: Brooks PureFlow.

Saucony Kinvara
For long epics or short jaunts at almost any pace, the Saucony Kinvara 3 can be your new running partner. Seriously. This baby can handle speedwork, racing and daily training with ease for all you neutral runners out there. The soft platform still provides the responsiveness you need to feel energized on longer runs. The upper remains light but still provides a secure fit thanks to welded overlays. And did we mention all the pretty colors?

We also like: Asics Gel Lyte and Brooks PureConnect.

Mizuno Wave Rider
If you want a firm, responsive ride in a traditional neutral trainer, then get stoked on the Mizuno Wave Rider. The open mesh of the upper is incredibly breathable to keep you cool, and hugs your foot with a close and secure fit. Mizuno’s Wave technology spans from heel to the midfoot, offering ample shock absorption. And the ride is so smooth it might just encourage you to log a few extra miles.

We also like: Saucony Ride 5 and adidas adizero Boston 3.

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Two Shoes, One Goal: Get Runners To Try Zoot Footwear

February 22nd, 2010
Mens Zoot Energy 2.0 and Advantage 2.0

Men's Zoot Energy 2.0 and Advantage 2.0

To be a serious player in the running shoe market it is essential to have a good selling neutral shoe and support shoe at or around $100 MSRP.  In 2009, Zoot attempted to accomplish this with the introduction of the Energy (neutral) and Advantage (support) at $110 MSRP. While the shoes were decent performers, they had no wow factor. They were often see as a more affordable alternative to the go-fast TT and Tempo. Well, that has now changed.

Click here for the Men’s Energy 2.0 or Advantage 2.0

Click here for the Women’s Energy 2.0 or Advantage 2.0

Noticeable improvements without a price increase.

From the initial step-in, the improvements made to the Energy 2.0 and Advantage 2.0 are apparent. Caressing the foot in a glove-like manner the two shoes just ooze refinement. The feel underfoot is has been greatly enhanced. Although the midsole materials have not changed, the distribution of the shock absorbing Z-Bound material has been separated into two distinct zones. A resdesigned outsole is a bit thicker and aids in providing better cushioning. The result of these changes is a ride quality that is much more lively than last year’s shoes. Reminds us a bit of the Brooks Launch, which has been selling in huge numbers.

Why all this talk of the two shoes together?

The Energy 2.0 and Advatnage 2.0 share the same tooling (chasis) and have nearly identical uppers. Some may be wondering if it makes sense to build a neutral shoe and support shoe from the same mold. Well this is not new. The first Asics Landreth was a neutral version of the popular Asics GT-2000 series. The Brooks Defyance is a neutral version of the preceding year’s Brooks Adrenline GTS and until recently the Saucony Ride and Guide shared the same tooling. Although the level of success of these different models has varied, runners have certainly found a favorite in a shoe that may otherwise not have existed.

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