Until those guys with the Swoosh come up with their next game-changing design innovation we can all reap the rewards of their competitors’ race to keep pace. The latest entry into the ultralight, barefoot-feel, deep-grooved sole runner is Asics’ gel-blur33. Weight: less than 10 ounces. The heel packs Asics’ proven gel-cushioning technology but the rest of the story is pretty obvious.
Some cyclists pretend everyday is another stage on the Tour de France; spandex, goo, bootie covers and all. Others of us, break up the training schedule with some bike commuting or simple transportation. For these recovery days, Timberland has a shoe. It looks like a normal loafer while you stroll, but when you saddle up the specially-designed sole supports your feet for pedaling.
NB’s US574 is a classic silhouette; a design that has stood the test of time. And now, you can get a pair of these Made In America runners in a rainbow of colors. Get on the NB site and create your own from (literally) millions of possible color combinations. Once your custom kicks are designed, they’ll be shipped to you in four to eight days.
Usually Adidas doesn’t follow trends, but in the case of the ultralight, barefoot-feel runner, their ClimaCool Ride model is jogging with the pack. This model features flyweight construction and keeps you floating down the road on a forgiving cushion of their specially formulated Adiprene™ foam. Available in a whole rainbow of bright, monochrome colorways, these ClimaCool runners look just as good as they feel.
A lot of people are working out & walking around in Nikes with the Free sole. If you haven’t tried them yet, just do it. It almost feels like you’re barefoot. This new model is an upgraded sequel to the wildly popular Free Run+. This fresh model’s got a new overlay pattern on the upper offering support, while maintaining flexibility. The first few colorways Nike is releasing include black/white, grey/green & white/red.
The worst part about being a runner can be shopping for running shoes. 99.99% of running shoes are hideously ugly and the remaining .01% don’t fit right. Puma is taking a novel approach to design with their new FAAS 300 shoe. It’s lightweight & minimalist, yet still packs their BioRide technology, an integrated comfort system—just what you need for logging serious miles.
NB’s 410 style is old school, yet looks fresh. It has a slimmer and lower profile than other vintage runners in the New Balance line and that’s a plus when you’re rocking slim jeans. Nobody wants big, bulky clown shoes.
Pressure in the tires carries your car down the road on a cushion of air. Nike’s Air Max sole uses the same principle to support your body. Their latest model, the 2011 Air Max+ uses the proven, full air sole of its predecessor and features improved breathability, a plusher feel and an updated look on the upper. It also comes Nike+ ready.
A uniquely durable material we usually see in the form of FedEx mailer envelopes or as a weather barrier on houses, Tyvek™is an unlikely material for sneakers. But that didn’t stop Civic Duty founder, Steven Weinreb, who developed the material and the brand for a good cause. Offering 5 styles in pop colors, Civic Duty also creates a unique shoe each year, donating 100% of the profits to social charities.
Put your drinking shoes on. New Balance has just released their classic 576 model in a unique collection paying tribute to traditional British pub cheer. The three models, named the King’s Head, the Red Lion, and the Royal Oak are all made of full-grain European leather and feature tricky interior linings that’ll make you thirsty for a pint before you’ve even walked halfway to the bar. Available at select Neiman Marcus stores.