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Brooks Cascadia 12 Shoe Review

When going out west on Vacation, I knew I needed a trail shoe.  My husband and I have hiked several times on the east coast, but many people indicated how rocky and rigorous trails could be out west.  Thinking out loud, there have probably been times I could have used a trail shoe while hiking out east too.

brooks cascadia 12 shoe review

The Cascadia seemed like a good option.  I’ve had success with many Brooks Running shoes including both the Ghost 10 and Glycerin 15.  Instead of getting a hiking boot, I opted for the gortex (weatherproof) Brooks Cascadia.

Brooks Cascadia Fit:

The Gortex version makes the shoe stiffer and less breathable but that is precisely what I was looking for.  I wanted a shoe that would protect me from harsher elements.  That being said, it still fits appropriately.  In my running shoes, I’ve worn between 10-11 wide.  I purchased a pair of 10.5 shoes and have been fine.  The upper is constructed from a double mesh material that I found highly flexible, breathable, and provided a durable layer of protection.

brooks cascadia 12 shoe review

Brooks Cascadia Ride:

Personally, I’ve used these more for climbing and hiking versus running on trails.  I’ve used them a couple of times to run, but for the most part, they have been great hiking shoes.

There is a lot of cushion for a trail shoe.  My biggest fear was getting a trail shoe that was firm or rigid.  Since we have done 10+ miles of hiking before, my feet would not be happy with that.  The cushion of the Cascadia is soft like the Ghost but hard enough to grip the ground appropriately.

It doesn’t have the grooves of a rigorous hiking boot, but did have enough for the hikes I was doing.

The Gortex version allowed me to cross several streams without too much of an issue with my feet getting wet.  Something that was ideal.

Final Thoughts:

I like the Brooks Cascadia 12, and I’m so glad I decided to purchase it.  Since purchasing, I’ve done a variety of trails including Zion National Park, Colorado Springs, and even hiking in New Jersey.  It definitely makes a difference when hiking.  I’m glad I finally took the plunge and purchased a pair.

Questions for you:

Do you have a separate pair of trail shoes?

Have you ever used a Gortex or weatherproof product?

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Nike Zoom Fly Review

When Nike created the “breaking 2 project”, they created two shoes: the Nike Zoom Fly and the Nike Zoom Vapor Fly 4%.  The Nike Zoom Fly retails at $150, while the Zoom Fly 4% comes in at $250.  That is, if you can find a pair of Zoom Vapor fly 4% in your size.

The Zoom fly is a bit heavier and made for the everyday runner (or any runner not trying to break 2 hours in the marathon).

It’s made more for training.  When we first brought them into work, I wanted to try them because “everyone was”, however, I had plenty of shoes in my rotation.  Waiting enough time also gave me the option to buy a flashy red colorway too.

Nike Voom fly red

Fit:

The Zoom Fly is more narrow than many of Nikes training shoes including the Pegasus and Vomero.  The upper is seamless so it’s able to fit wider feet.  They don’t make either in a “wide”.  I bought a women’s size 10 which is fine, but I do believe a 10 wide would be a slightly better fit.

Nike Voom fly red

Ride:

The shoe weighs about 8.75 ounces for men and 6.5 for ladies.  While it’s not the lightest, it’s definitely a lighter shoe.

The Zoom Fly has  10 mm heel-toe drop so it isn’t minimal either.  The focus of the shoe is for “everyday” training.  It’s not the shoe meant to run sub 2 hours in a marathon but the shoe to keep you healthy during training.  Nike is in the process of changing many of their running shoes to the new technology you see in the Zoom Fly and Zoom Vapor Fly.

I’ve run just over 100 miles on it and I like the fit and feel a lot.  It’s soft and cushioned but not too squishy.  It’s responsive enough that I like to do workouts in it without my feet feeling too beat up.  I was doing workouts in either the Saucony Type A or the Altra Escalante but have found the extra cushion to be nice and better to recover faster.

One thing I will say is, similar to the Nike Lunarglide, there isn’t a whole lot of traction at the bottom.  On a rainy day or mud, be prepared to not feel as much contact with the ground.

Nike Voom fly red

Finally, something I shouldn’t comment on but I will is these are a good looking pair of shoes.  It’s always fun to run in a shoe that you’re like…wow these are sharp.

Personally, I see the Nike Zoom Fly as a tempo, speed, or racing shoe.  While I know many people who do the bulk of their mileage in the Zoom Fly, I personally need more cushion.

Current Rotation:
Saucony Freedom (daily runs, easy runs)
Brooks Glycerin (daily runs, easy runs)
Brooks Levitate (easy runs)
Hoka Clifton 4 (daily runs, easy runs)
Nike Zoom fly (workouts)
Altra Escalante (workouts)
Saucony type A/Endorphin (racing)

Questions for you:
Did you watch the Nike Sub 2 hours documentary?
What is your current favorite running shoe?

How to Tell You Need New Running Shoes

How to Tell You Need New Running Shoes

If you run more than a few months, then chances are you’re faced the runner’s question: When I should buy new shoes?

First, it’s not every 400 miles.  That is a ballpark answer, but it differs for every single person.  Thinking out loud, some people can get 1000, and some people get 200.  It depends on the individual.  Don’t immediately get rid of your shoes at 400 miles if you still feel good…

While chit chatting with The Dumb Runner, via twitter, I realized how common of a question it was!

The Short Answer of Replacing Shoes:

If you hurt and haven’t done anything differently in your training, it’s probably the shoes.

The Long Answer:

There is no scientific proof that running shoes should be retired after 400 miles.  Four hundred miles is the average, but many factors play a role such as:

  • Where you run (harder ground and cold can break down a shoe faster)
  • Your weight and how hard you hit the ground (causes the materials to break down quicker)
  • Your Form: If your form hits at exact points, you’ll break down those points on the shoes much faster. For instance, I land very far on my toes, but because I put a lot of pressure in a tiny pinpointed area of a shoe, my shoes break down the quickest there.  Sure half of the shoe is usable, but it’s not the half I use.

So Here are Some Ways to Determine if you’re Running Shoes have Lost their Cushion: 

First, you’re googling: have my running shoes lost their cushioning?  If you’re asking the internet and unsure, then your shoes have probably lost their cushioning…  

But here are Some Other Ways:

You’ve Run a Lot in the Shoes:

If you’ve spent at least 6 months in a single pair of shoes, they are probably reaching their limit.

If you can’t remember, a good way is to write the date on the side of the shoes.  It’s unnecessary to calculate the exact mileage of every pair of shoes you own. By knowing the date you bought them, you should be able to roughly estimate how many miles you’ve run in them.  401 miles versus 399 does not matter…

Your Body Hurts and You Haven’t Done Anything Differently:

As indicated earlier, if you’ve done nothing different but your body aches, and nothing feels good, your shoes are probably worn out.

You Can Visibly Twist Your Shoes:

Your running shoes shouldn’t be flexible. If you if you can bend and twist them, then they have probably lost their cushioning.  Even brand new racing flats are hard to twist and bend.

You Flip Your Shoes Over and Visibly See Tread Worn Out:

If you flip your shoe over and see a hole in it or worn through the tread, it’s probably worn out.  This is what most people envision as a “worn out shoe,” but just because you can’t visibly see wear marks doesn’t mean your shoes aren’t worn out.

So now what?

As someone who works in a running specialty store, I always recommend getting fitted for shoes.  Your feet and body change.  That being said, if the shoe has worked for you and the model is the same there is no sense in changing.

Every year styles are updated and changed.  This could mean they fit differently, sizing is different, or they just “feel” different.  Updates typically work for the majority of runners, but that doesn’t mean 100%.

I will say, current styles and models of shoes are never any cheaper online.  Older styles of shoes might be cheaper but they will also last less time.  If a shoe sits in a warehouse for long periods of time, it’s more likely to break down quickly.

Hopefully, you are able to get as many miles out of your running shoes as possible (staying healthy of course).

Other shoe related posts:
Factors You Never Knew Played a Role in Your Running Shoes
How to Choose the Best Running Shoes (For You!)
Should You Wear Running Shoes Outside of Running?
How Alternating Shoes Can Benefit Your Running:

Question for you: How often do you replace your running shoes?

 

How to Choose the Best Running Shoes (For You!)

How to Choose the Best Running Shoes (For You!)

As someone who works in a running shoe store, I can tell you I’ve personally fit about 1000 people for running shoes, and I’ve watched hundreds more be fit too.

Searching for your own personal shoes can be tough.  What do you look for?  How do you know when they are “right”?

When searching for running shoes, I always advise people to get fitted at their local running store.  Thinking out loud, people that work in a running store have seen dozens of brands, styles, and companies. Plus they know shoes well.  That being said, you know your feet.  You know what feels most comfortable.

Most people come in and have no idea what to look for in a running shoe. 

The short answer: Does it feel good? 

Yes, then it’s the right shoe for you.

No?  Then it’s not the right shoe for you.

The Long Answer:

Here are some important details you should look for in shoes.

Size (Length): 

I cannot emphasize this enough.  Do not buy your shoes too small.  During the day, your feet can swell and lengthen anywhere from a half-full size.  This is magnified during running!  Always make sure there is a thumb’s width of space between your biggest toe and the end of the shoe.

Yes, your feet lengthen over time and age so make sure you get your measured frequently.  After putting your shoes on, make sure you can wiggle all of your toes.  If you can’t the shoe is too tight or too narrow.  This brings us to point number 2.

Size (Width): 

The width of a shoe is one of the most underlooked aspects of a shoe.  Most running specialty stores carry at least wide if not double wide!  Do not be scared to go into a wider shoe.  If you are getting holes on the side of your shoe from your pinkie toe, this could be a sign the shoe is too narrow.  Having extra room is always better than not enough.  I never knew I needed a wide until working at the store.  Now, I love it.

Heel: 

In any running shoe, your heel should feel both snug and secure.  It should never feel tight.  If you feel as though you are “slipping,” lace your shoe to the final eyelet. This will you’re your heel more into place.  Some shoes are cut lower than others but make sure you’re comfortable in the cut of the back too.

The heel should never feel tight, but there can be a little bit of movement.  If the heel feels uncomfortable in the store, then it won’t feel good while running.

Feel:

You can be fit into the appropriate shoe but it doesn’t feel good, it doesn’t.  How a shoe feels to you is one of the most important aspects of the shoe.  You want a shoe that feels natural.  You don’t want a shoe that “you’ll have to get used too”.  Don’t get a shoe to alter to your stride because that can create many more issues.  Running Stores recommend taking the shoe for a quick run in the store.  That initial few steps often can tell you an immediate yes or no.  Also, most running stores have an exchange policy to work with you.

With so many different shoes out there, it can be hard to figure out which one is “best for you”.  Remember, there is no right or wrong answer but only what feels good and keeps you injury free.

Other Running Store Topics:
Thoughts While Working at a Running Store
How to Get the Most Shopping at a Running Specialty Store
Should You Wear Running Shoes Outside of Running?
How to Find the Perfect Pair of Running Shoes
There is no Perfect Running Shoe

Questions for you:
What is your current favorite running shoe?
When was the last time you bought running shoes?

Brooks Ghost 10 Shoe Review

In the Spring, I ran in the Brooks Ghost 9, and it was one of my favorite shoes of 2017.  I ended up running the entire 300-400 miles, and it was replaced in my rotation with other models including the Glycerin 14 and Launch 4.

To be honest, the Brooks Ghost 10 was one of my most anticipated updated shoes!  Brooks is not paying to me review their shoes.

Working in the running store, I can tell you the Brooks Ghost is one of the most consistent shoes on the market. If you like the 1…you’ll probably like the 2 and the 5 and the 10. I like the Ghost 9, and I also like the Ghost 10.

Most of the update from the 9 to 10 is in the midsole.  The Ghost 10 introduces a new two-piece midsole design.  It makes it more fluid for running and able to accommodate many different foot strikes evenly (IE: whether you run heel to toe, on your toes on somewhere in the middle).

The updated Ghost 10 also has less seems with minimal stitching and overlays. For someone with wider feet, like myself, nothing rubs.  If you have bunions or a wider forefront, you’ll probably appreciate this as well.

Fit:

The Ghost has a narrow heel and wide toe box which is the ideal shape for many people’s feet.  It hugs the arches appropriately and for the most part, fits true to size.  It’s been hard finding shoes that do fit true to size recently, plus everyone’s foot shape is slightly different (including your left and right foot).

Finding a shoe that accommodates both feet can be a challenge.  The Ghost has plenty of space.  I wore a regular size 10 in the Ghost 9 and wear a regular size 10 in the Ghost 10.

Ride:

With the included new two piece and fluid midsole, the shoe is much more responsive to where you need the cushion.  For many people, they benefit from a much softer heel.  For myself, I benefit from a much softer and well-cushioned forefront.

How can the shoe be so adaptive to so many foot types? Brooks uses a unique Cushion Material called “BioMoGo DNA foam.”  It’s essential, like memory foam.  It molds to your feet and cushions you where you need it. Out of any brand, the cushioning is the most adaptable to your stride.   It’s soft, light weight and well cushioned.

It’s soft, light weight and well cushioned.  I’ve run speed workouts but also long runs in the Ghost.  Ideally, I like to do my easy runs and long runs in the shoe though.  Since I’m not running a lot, I do the majority of it in the Brooks Ghost 10 right now.

In summary, I like the Brooks Ghost and think it’s a great shoe.  The updates from the Ghost 9 to the Ghost 10 have only enhanced the fit.

Current Rotation:
Brooks Ghost 10 (any run)
Brooks Glycerin 15 (Review to come! any run)
Hoka Bondi 5

Other Shoe Related Posts:
Should You Wear Running Shoes Outside of Running?
How Alternating Shoes Can Benefit Your Running:
Five Secrets about Buying Running Shoes
How to Find the Perfect Pair of Running Shoes
How to Get the Most Shopping at a Running Specialty Store

Question for you:

What is your favorite running shoe?  Has it changed through the years? 

 

36 Pairs of Running Shoes Later

36 Pairs of Running Shoes Later

During the last year, I’ve run in a lot of shoes.  Since I work at a running store, I’m able to see and try new shoes.  Typically I only try shoes I think I will like.  Why would I waste time, injury, and money on a shoe I probably wouldn’t like?

Thinking out loud, I thought it would be fun to look back at all of the shoes I’ve run in since May 2016.  That and I needed to clean out my closet.

Brooks:
Brooks Ghost
Brooks Glycerin 
Brooks Launch 3
Brooks Launch 4
Brooks Pureflow (review to come when I get back to running again)

Saucony:
Saucony Ride 9
Saucony Zealot ISO 2
Saucony Freedom ISO 
Saucony Triumph ISO 2
Saucony Type A (Racing Flat)

Asics
Asics Nimbus 19

Hoka:
Hoka Clifton 3
Hoka Bondi 5

adidas:
adidas SuperNova

New Balance:
New Balance Fresh Foam Zante

Nike: 
LunarGlide 8

Mizuno:
Mizuno Wave Enigma 6

Including racing flats, it ended up being 36 pairs of shoes.  Most shoes had between 200-400 miles on them.

Favorite Shoes:

Brooks Ghost, Glycerin, and Saucony Freedom.  This particular year, all three shoes were great options.  I felt as though the Brooks Ghost fit my foot the best.

Most Surprising Shoe (Positive):

I didn’t think I would like the Nike Lunarglide or Brooks Launch as much as I did. The Lunarglide went through a substantial update which allowed those needing a neautral shoe to run successfully in it.

Before the Brooks Ghost 9, I hadn’t had success in any Brooks shoes. Both shoes were great, and I saw both of those to the end of their lifespan.

adidas SuperNova (Negative):

I thought I would like the Supernova because I liked the Energy Boost. The SuperNova felt good for shorter runs, but my feet would ache (because of the width) for longer runs.  I logged less than 100 miles in it before deciding it wasn’t getting any better.

Longest Lasting Shoe:

adidas are supposed to the last the longest.  Realistically, I know they do, however, due to the width I haven’t seen any pair I’ve tried to it’s full potential of 700 miles.

Shortest Lasting Shoe:

Any racing flat will last less around 100 miles.  The Saucony Type A was no exception!

Total Shoes (including flats): 36

Questions for you:
Which running shoes are currently in your shoe rotation?
How many pairs of shoes did you run in this year?

Running Related Posts

Running Related Posts

Recently a reader sent an email and asked if I could put together a list of articles I’ve written recently about running shoes and training.  Thinking out loud, none of the articles are “new”, but it makes a lot of sense to have them all compiled into one spot.

Instead of doing a Running Store post this week, I thought I would get all of the posts together in one spot.  As always, if you have a question about shoes, the running store, or anything else feel free to ask.  I’m not an expert or professional but I do like running and working in a running store.

Recent Shoe Reviews:

Adidas Energy Boost
Adidas Supernova

Asics Nimbus 19

Brooks Ghost 9
Brooks Glycerin 14
Brooks Launch 4

Hoka Clifton 3
Hoka Bondi 5 

New Balance Zante

Saucony Freedom ISO
Saucony Zealot ISO 2

Important Shoe Related Topics:

There is no Perfect Running Shoe

Running Shoe Reviews Are (Mostly) Worthless

Running Shoe Specific Topics:

Five Secrets about Buying Running Shoes
How Alternating Shoes Can Benefit Your Running
Should You Wear Running Shoes Outside of Running?
Should You Race in Racing Flats?
How to Transition into Minimalist Running Shoes

Training Posts:

Are Losing Toenails a Runners Rite of Passage?
How to Prepare for Running in the Heat: 
Why 5ks are the Best
How to Race Well
How to Race in Unfavorable Conditions
How to Run in the Heat

Running and Nutrition:

Protein and Running

Other:

Thoughts While Working in a Running Store

There you have it!  As always if you have any questions or comments, feel free to ask.  I’ve gotten a couple questions regarding nutrition (something I’m still trying to figure out) as well as fun things to do outside of running that I’ll be chatting about soon too!

Questions for you:

What is a fun fact about your job?

What is one thing you enjoy about the sport of running?

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