Wednesday, September 22, 2021

Sanuk Donna Aerokush Review: Sidewalk Surfers!

Article by Dominique Winebaum


Sanuk Donna Aerokush ($75)

Sanuk® is part of Deckers Brands along with UGG®, Teva®, HOKA ONE ONE® and Koolaburra by UGG®.  I am enjoying my first pair of Sanuk although I am familiar with the innovative footwear designs from Deckers Lab, such as their edgy lifestyle shoes with an orientation towards recovery and max cushion.  

Since May, I have been wearing a pair of Deckers Lab KO-Z sandals, the GLDTR, slipping into them the minute I wake up and whenever I am home. (RTR Review) After five months of wearing them days in and days out, they still look fresh and have become my recovery footwear of choice, and I do have options!  

I am excited about this new arrival, a pair of Sanuk Donna AeroKush, with a colorful stripe pattern --  outdoor slip on shoes for a casual and summery look without having to forgo comfort and support. Sanuk's motto is “Sidewalk Surfers, Sandals, Shoes, and More”.

Quick Strides 18-Race Shoe Decisions: Endorphin Pro+, Metaspeed Sky, Adios Pro 2, Adios 6, Phantasm. A Big 5K PR. Adventure Racing. Endorphin Speed RunShield. Stryd Findings.

Article by Jeremy Marie, Nils Scharff, Derek Li, Alex Tilsley and Sally Reiley


Race Shoe Decisions: Endorphin Pro+, Metaspeed Sky, Adios Pro 2, Adios 6, S/Lab Phantasm. A Big 5K PR. Adventure Racing. Endorphin Speed RunShield, Stryd Findings.

Monday, September 20, 2021

Altra Paradigm 6 Review: Lighter Weight, Softer Ride, More Minimal Upper. 10 Comparisons

Article by Jeff Beck


Altra Running Paradigm 6 ($160)


Introduction

Jeff: Altra’s biggest road shoe is back, and if you squint, it doesn’t seem like much has changed - but upon further inspection, virtually everything has changed. The upper has been reworked and is much more breathable, but the big shift is under the foot. 


Altra tells us the following about the Paradigm:

The first Altra shoe inspired by and developed with an Altra athlete. Meet the Paradigm 6, a shoe that is blurring the line between support shoe and everyday trainer. Altra Elite Athlete and two-time Olympian Kara Goucher’s input helped us take this shoe to the next level, adding an Altra EGO™ MAX midsole and slimming down the overall design while maintaining its key support features.

The Paradigm 6 is one of the first Altra shoes to feature their EGO Max midsole material, and if this is a glimpse of what is to come at Altra I’m far more optimistic than I was a few weeks ago. We’ll get into it in much more detail below, but this shoe brings soft and bouncy in ways not many shoes do. Unfortunately, there are some issues as well, but this is still a big step forward.

Pros:

  • Toebox is an Altra, plenty of room up front - Jeff
  • EGO Max midsole does soft and bouncy right - Jeff
  • Very reminiscent of the first gen Paradigm in profile and overall spirit - Jeff
  • Breathable upper - Jeff
  • Surprisingly lightweight for the size, dropped 37g / 1.3 oz in my US10.5  from last year - Jeff
  • GuideRail doesn’t announce its presence if not needed - Jeff

Cons:

  • Upper is sloppy/baggy in the midfoot - Jeff
  • Tongue likes to slip off to lateral side pretty quickly - Jeff
  • Awkward fitting upper makes it hard to stay on platform - Jeff

Sunday, September 19, 2021

Saucony Endorphin Speed RunShield Multi Tester Review: For the Weather and for its Ride, Fit and Looks!

Article by Adam Glueck, Michael Ellenberger, and Sally Reiley

Saucony Endorphin Speed RunShield ($180)


Introduction

The Endorphin Speed is a nylon plated uptempo trainer/ racer with a PWRRUN PB midsole made of expanded PEBA beads. With a 35.5mm heel / 27.5mm full stack height it is amply cushioned. The version tested here has a weather resistant upper which reduces the weight of a US men’s 9 from the inline Speed to around 7.5 oz / 213g, very light for such a maximally cushioned shoe.


This RunShield edition is a water resistant version of one of RoadTrailRun’s favorite shoes of 2020 and now 2021. The RunShield upper reduces the weight of the Speed by 0.46 oz / 13g in a women’s US8 and yet more in larger sizes. According to Saucony: The RUNSHIELD material upper is water resistant, but also light and thin which as a side benefit results in a shoe that is lighter than Endorphin Speed 2 as the Speed 2 has  3D printed  elements (adding a bit of weight)  and the RUNSHIELD upper is sublimated which does not add weight.  


No other changes to the inline Speed 2 are called out beyond a potentially more cold suitable ColdTrac outsole (confirming).  How does this new upper fit? What are the effects on ride of the lighter weight and new upper? Any other changes noted in test? Please read on to find out

Friday, September 17, 2021

Saucony Endorphin Pro+ Initial Video Review and Comparisons: Joining the Sub 7 oz /200g Super Carbon Race Shoe Club!

Video by Sam Winebaum

Saucony Endorphin Pro+ ($250)

In the Video I detail and give 1st run impressions of the Endorphin Pro+. It is compared in the video to Endorphin Pro v1, ASCIS Metaspeed Sky, Puma Deviate Nitro Elite, and Nike Next% v, all sub 7 oz club members.

Endorphin Pro+:

  • new lighter upper drops weight 0.6 oz / 17g from v2 and 0.8 oz / 23g from v1 and it is felt as we are now 6.9 oz /196g US9 (confirmed with sample)
  • new unusual and supportive sock liner
  • same 35.5 /27.5 stack of PWRRUN PB and same outsole.
  • true to size with a comfortable race shoe appropriate fit. 
  • available Late September Saucony Endorphin Pro+ Early Access. $250

Watch the Initial Video Review with Comparisons (15:54)

 Some tested samples were provided at no charge for review purposes others were personal purchases. RoadTrail Run has affiliate partnerships and may earn commission on products purchased through affiliate links. These partnerships do not influence our editorial content

The opinions herein are entirely the authors'.

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Please let us know mileage, paces, race distances, and currently preferred shoes

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Thursday, September 16, 2021

Deckers X Lab NVRSTP 19-25 Review: Run Race Vest? Very Large Day Pack? Ideal Active Travel Companion? All!

Article by Sam Winebaum

Deckers X Lab NVRSTP 19-25 Pack ($275)

Deckers Lab is the skunk works and innovation lab for Hoka, Sanuk, Teva, and UGG all Deckers brands.  Directed by the founder of Hoka Jean Luc Diard, and we may remember what he up ended in run shoes with Hoka maximal in a time of minimal in the late 2000’s. Deckers X Lab can be counted on to stretch the envelope with wild concepts with more recently the “Hubble Geometry” broad hiker and shoe heels, the more moderate “swallowtail” heels no making their way into the mainline Hoka such as the Mach 4 and Zinal. They sell "concept" shoes and sandals as a lifestyle brand play.


Now it is clear Jean Luc, a long time and accomplished ultra runner are tackling run and other carry solutions with the NVRSTP vest/pack. 


It has a total of 19 pockets (9 on the front, 10 on the back) with expandable capacity from 25L to up to 40L through a top roll top pocket. Those familiar with typical “run race vests” will know they generally have between 5L and 10L of capacity so this thing has far more capacity.  Made of ultra light materials, the NVRSTP is over the top in storage capabilities and versatility.. and price at $275.


I am a huge fan of “day pack” capacity with front pockets with the recent Camelbak Octane 25L. It is my all time favorite do it all from run to hike to travel to work/laptop pack.  Will the Deckers replace it?

Wednesday, September 15, 2021

Quick Strides 17: Scott Speed Carbon RC, Altra Paradigm 6, NB Rebel v2, ASICS Magic Speed, Ray-Ban Stories Glasses, Skechers Max Road 5, NB RC Elite 1, OG OG Vaporfly goes back to the races!

Article by Peter Stuart, Jeff Beck, and Sam Winebaum

Altra Paradigm 6, NB Rebel v2, ASICS Magic Speed Scott Speed Carbon RC, Ray-Ban Stories Glasses, Skechers Max Road 5, NB RC Elite 1, OG OG Vaporfly goes back to the races!

Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Suunto 9 Peak Multi Tester Review: Who says a fully capable sports watch can't also be Elegant!

Article by Sam Winebaum and Jeff Valliere

Suunto 9 Peak ($699 Titanium, $569 Stainless Steel)

Pros:  Jeff V./Sam:  

  • small, thin, light, 

  • elegant form factor, 

  • excellent battery life with customizable battery modes and FusedTrack, 

  • accurate GPS, accurate altimeter, 

  • simple menus, touch screen.

Cons: Jeff V./Sam:  

  • OHR accuracy, 

  • limited 24/7 activity tracking, 

  • lack of onboard maps, 

  • utilization of screen space could be improved, 

  • screen can often seem dim indoors and tough to read, 

  • screen glare outdoors,

  • data digits could be chunkier and easier to read, 

  • would love to have a robust web app, 

  • price,  

  • watch faces are very limited.

361-Meraki 4 Multi Tester Review: A Steady, Durable, Mileage Builder

Article by Zack Dunn, Beto Hughes, Michael Ellenberger, and Sam Winebaum

361-Meraki 4 ($130)


Introduction


Sam: The Meraki 4 is 361’s bread and butter, heavy duty daily trainer. At 10.6 oz  / 300g (US9) in a men’s 9 with a “relatively” modest total stack of 23.5mm forefoot / 31.5mm heel so 8mm, drop. In today’s world of super light high stack trainers these stats tell me we are dealing with a shoes that seeks to deliver lots of durability, support, and stability with that low forefoot stack a sign that it is flexible.  


But the Meraki 4 is not an “antique'' by any stretch. It has a state of the art engineered mesh upper with instead of an inner gusset tongue a mid foot underlay panel laminated to the outer upper reminding in some ways of the approach of the adidas Celermesh in shoes such as the adios Pro 1 and 2 but here more panel than grid.


Underfoot, the midsole is dual density with QuickFoam a rubberized foam with an outer skin underfoot with below that a new LTEVA layer. Embedded between the layers is a not super wide (so not a big plate spanning mid foot) fiberglass QuikSpine shank for a touch of guidance/support, “linear integrity”, and propulsion. Finally we have a copious well decoupled outsole with plenty of easy flex. All of this says to me on the surface tha is a more traditional daily trainer of the heavy duty variety with a promising ride and surprisingly fair $130 price point.


Pros: 

Zack/Sam/Beto: superb upper fit and lockdown: solid heel, secure midfoot, decent front room 

Zack/Sam/Beto: nice forefoot flex 

Zack/Beto: midsole is soft and forgiving, has a sponge like feeling

Sam: ride combines a soft dense landing with a responsive snappier and flexible take off 

Zack/Beto/Michael/Sam: Build quality and overall durability seem very high

Beto/Sam/Michael: 361 Quickspine has a nice transition from heel to toe at easy pace and is stable at mid to forefoot landing.

Sam: single trainer great value option for moderate pace daily training-durable, very secure, stable, decently lively


Cons: 

Zack: not the most versatile shoe (a little too nimble for long runs, too soft for fast paces)

Beto/Sam: heavy for fast paces and long runs.

Beto: a little bit narrow if you have a wide foot.

Michael: upper material tends to bunch


Stats

Estimated Weight: men's 10.6 oz  / 300g (US9) 

Samples: men’s 10.3 oz  / 292g US8.5, 12.8 oz / 364g US13

Midsole Stack Height: 16mm /25mm

Full Stack Height 23.5mm / 31.5mm, 8mm drop

Available August 2021. $130 

Monday, September 13, 2021

Ray-Ban Stories Smart Glasses Video Demo and Details: Coolest Run Tech Since GPS?

Video by Sam Winebaum

Ray-Ban Stories ($379 w/ Transition lenses)

In the brief video I demo and explain Ray-Ban Stories, smart sunglasses with dual 5MP cameras for still and 30 sec video clips, 3 microphones, hands free voice command, call answering, music and with 2 excellent speaker in the temples (so good situational awareness). They really look like classic sunglasses and not ugly monsters as earlier attempts at such glasses were. Prescription lenses also available.

Watch the Short Video Demo filmed with Stories (1:29)

The Ray-Ban Stories were a personal purchase. Available from Ray-Ban HERE

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Comments and Questions Welcome Below!
Please let us know mileage, paces, race distances, and currently preferred shoes

RoadTrailRun receives a commission on purchases at the stores below.
Your purchases help support RoadTrailRun. Thanks!

RUNNING WAREHOUSE
USA  Men's & Women's SHOP HERE
FREE 2 Day Shipping EASY No Sweat Returns
EUROPE Men's & Women's SHOP HERE
AUSTRALIA Men's & Women's SHOP HERE
 
ROADRUNNER SPORTS
Men's & Women's SHOP HERE
Join VIP Family, Get Free Shipping and 15% in VIP Benefits on every order, Details here

FLEET FEET
Men's & Women's SHOP HERE

SHOPPING FROM EUROPE?
TOP4RUNNING
Men's & Women's SHOP HERE
Use RTR code RTRTOP4 for 5% off all products, even sale products
FREE Shipping on orders over 99, 30 days return policy, no questions asked.

HOLABIRD SPORTS
Men's & Women's SHOP HERE
FREE Shipping on most orders over $40

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Men's & Women's  SHOP HERE

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Thursday, September 09, 2021

ASICS Fuji Lite 2 Multi Tester Review: Fun and Energetic Trail (& Road) Speedster, 16 comparisons.

Article by Mike Postaski, John Tribbia, Renee Krusemark, Shannon Payne and Sam Winebaum

ASICS Fuji Lite 2 ($120)


Introduction

Sam: The Fuji Lite 2 is a lightweight, flexible trail shoe with in its capabilities mix strong road capabilities. It features a softer and bouncier Flytefoam midsole of the same material as the MetaRacer, Nimbus Lite and Kayano Lite and with at least 10% recycled cellulose nano fibers from sugar cane waste 


The midsole is backed up by a stout, full coverage ASICS Grip outsole with 4mm lugs.

The upper is a light recycled engineered mesh with a trail worthy toe bumper and solid rear hold.

Coming in at 9.3 oz / 264g for a men’s US9 with an approximate 30mm heel / 26mm forefoot full stack height, 4mm drop, there is plenty of cushion and adequate protection (no rock plate but flexible forefoot). 


Just the kind of combination that says to me the Fuji Lite 2 will go anywhere, trail or road, and fast.