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Spring Shoe Review

I’m sure most of you, like me, spend what feels like the bulk of your day making decisions. Not just any decisions, but really important, life-altering decisions. You know—like Poplar or Park, skim or whole, boxers or briefs? Commando?

Choosing a running shoe is often this very same sort of question. And the industry does little to help by building so many great (and some not so great) products. Here are eight of best additions to the shoe wall this Spring. There’s a little something here for everyone.

Still have questions? Stop by and see the folks at your local running specialty shop. They’ll assist you with those decisions—well, most decisions. I find the commando question makes some folks uncomfortable.

HOKA CHALLENGER ATR 2

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Like your trail shoes to be light yet well cushioned? Are you curious about the “maximal cushion” craze? Hoka’s second edition of the Challenger has some well received updates including a padded tongue and a revamped upper design. This shoe is perfect for all your trail needs, shining the greatest at longer distances. $130.

NEW BALANCE ZANTE V2

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If your spring running calendar is starting to fill up, it may be time to think about adding a “faster” shoe to your running repertoire. The Zante 2 is a perfect shoe to take a few seconds off your 5K time without sacrificing cushioning or fit. NB’s Fresh Foam is soft yet springy. The mesh upper wraps well in the mid-foot and opens up for a spacious toe box. $100.

ADIDAS ULTRA BOOST

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The Ultra Boost is Adidas top spec’d cushion shoe. It is the pinnacle of Boost technology, utilizing it for 100 percent of the midsole cushioning. Boost foam paired with a fully knitted upper creates a sock like fit with a very plush yet bouncy ride. This shoe is ideal for the Neutral runner looking for a light weight offering in the Maximum cushion category. $180.

ASICS NIMBUS 18

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As its name suggests, running on the Asics Nimbus has always been like running on a soft, fluffy cloud. The 18th iteration is no different offering a plush ride and a seamless upper for one of the most comfortable rides around. $150.

NIKE FREE RUN DISTANCE

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This is a brand new offering for the Free dynasty; a flexible midsole with enough cushion for distance running. Initial consumer response has been very impressed with the plush step-in feel. It is minimal enough for some strength training yet has the substance for distance running for the mechanically efficient. $120.

MIZUNO WAVE INSPIRE 12

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The 12th rendition of the Mizuno Inspire features a thicker sole, designed to absorb more ground impact than the Inspire 11. The fit of the Inspire is undoubtedly snug in the midfoot and heel for those with a narrow heel, just like Mizuno loyalists have come to love. Mizuno’s fit is always anatomically dialed, and the 12th Inspire is no different. $120.

Do you have questions about getting started or finding a plan to work for you? Stop in and talk to anyone on our staff. We’ll be happy to help!

Feb Roswell is the General Manager and Footwear Buyer at Fleet Feet Sports. Most of his decisions are determined by rock, paper, scissors. For more information call (901) 761-0078 or visit our website at fleetfeetmemphis.com.

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