Sunday, April 15, 2012

adidas adiZero F50 2 gives runners a nice pop...

One of the perks of doing what I get to do with this web site is occasionally getting sent shoes to try out.

Unfortunately, a combination of illness and injuries have cut my running down after the first of the year, so I'm finally getting around to reviewing the adidas adiZero F50 2 (left/photo courtesy adidas Media Relations) running shoes.

Back in the days when I actually was coaching track and field athletes, and selling shoes at Foot Locker, I'd get questions on what the best running shoes are (disclosure: at the height of my involvement with Club Ballard, the team was sponsored by Nike, so for the obvious reasons, I steered my athletes to Nike).

Regardless of my like/bias for a certain brand, I always operated under the philosophy of the three F's: fit, feel, and function. If a shoe fits well, feels good when you actually run in the shoe, and does what you feel the shoe is supposed to do, you are well on your way to happiness with the shoe you've picked out.

When I put the shoe on with my orthotics, the first thing I noticed was the racing shoe/track spike fit. I'll probably never get back to running a competitive road race anytime soon, but when I put the adiZero F50 2's on, I actually had delusions of grandeur that maybe, if I could ever lose 20 pounds, drop my body fat percentage down, and ran more, that I might try to get back to some semblance of competitive running.

I've had the opportunity to take the shoes on about 70 miles worth of running, predominantly on the roads along Lake Washington Boulevard and Seward Park, near my home.

If you've worn racing shoes, you'll know what I'm talking about when I can safely say that the adZero F50 2 gives a bit of a "pop" when you're running, and gives you that feeling that you can go faster than the pace you're running at (for me not a good idea, as someone might have to scrape what remains of my carcass off the sidewalk, especially with my myriad of injuries, loss of conditioning, etc.).

Where that pop is coming from is the Sprint Frame, which is best explained by the reviewer from runningshoesguru.com, who said, "the frame is not to be confused as a stability device, but a spring loaded performance aid. The thermo plastic plate is hidden inside the shoe under the midsole and runs the length of the shoe. Its designed to push down as the foot flattens out from forefoot to heel, and as is begins to leave the ground the plate springs back."

This shoe is ideal for lighter to medium weight runners who have little to mild overpronation issues, and are looking to transition to a neutral shoe. Larger runners should stay away from this shoe.

As my conditioning and my mileage increases, I look forward to doing tempo runs and maybe doing some track work on them…at the rate I'm going, I might be ready to run the media 800 at next year's world track & field championships in Moscow…or maybe not.

NOTE: Special thanks to Caitlin Albaugh at adidas media relations.

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