Thursday, October 23, 2014

Found a Running Shoe I Love

I received an awesome opportunity to be a wear tester for the new Mizuno Wave Rider 18.  For those who already know what I run in, you know both of my other current pairs of shoes are also Mizuno, Wave Rider 16 and the Wave Creation 15.
Which is why I was even more excited to test out this shoe, because I have been only running in Mizuno's for the past several years, because frankly I love the brand an love that when they update a shoe, they don't ruin it!



STYLE

As if you can't tell in the pictures, these shoes are really great looking.  The black toe front, blends gray then into white in the heel.  With a light green color accent.

They call it the Black/Silver Florida Key's.
This shoe also comes in 2 other color options.

I've actually had several compliments on them from family, friends and other runners.  Which is pretty cool, because I honestly don't remember the last time I was complimented on how awesome my running shoes looked!

So many shoes these days are a bit over the top either too bright or too busy.  I'm not a fan of those kind of shoes for myself, and to be honest I have always wanted a cute black pair of running shoes. So the fun color on these shoes earned some major high points from me!



THE FIT

One thing about running shoes is the fit, they HAVE to feel right. Not just when you first put them on, but they need to feel good for miles and miles and day after day.

Since mine came in the mail, I ordered the same size that I normally wear in Mizuno and when I received them the fit was perfect, I didn't have to exchange them or anything.
Shoes that run true to their size are a major plus in my book, and the Wave Rider 18's definitely earned a thumbs up for me in this category too!

I run between 23-28 weekly miles right now.  I have been wearing these shoes every other day since I received them to break them in correctly and gradually.



COMFORT

Nothing better than a new pair of running shoes that feel awesome on your feet when you put them on.  Even better, a pair of shoes that feel incredible on your feet even after you finish running in them.
I broke these in slowly, and I am really loving them!  They honestly are comfortable and great for my feet during the entire run!

I really like the cushion in the heel and toe front area.  I am not sure exactly, but I don't think the previous version of this shoe had the cushion in the toe front like these do.  In fact I was comparing this new one to my previous version, and I really think these are a much better improvement in this aspect from earlier versions of the toe cushion shoe.

They are still a great flexible shoe, so for those who like comfort, flexibility and stability these are an excellent choice.

To be honest, I had a hard time wanting to take them off.  I was seriously tempted to wear them to work a few times.  But I didn't, I like to keep my running shoes just for running, to get a longer and better life out of them!


SPECS

This shoe is light weight (7.8 ounces to be exact), it's perfect for training and distance running!  They are made for runners who wear and train in a neutral shoe.  (Which since I am just coming off bad tendon injuries, neutral shoes are all I can wear, or will wear ever again!)
It also really does give you the smooth ride, that it promises!  Very similar to the way your foot stride feels in the previous versions of this shoe, although just slightly more heel cushion (in my opinion) that it's predecessors.
They've also improved the durability of the shoe, with new outsole pattern.


CHANGES

If you are like me and wore previous versions of the Wave Rider, I really enjoyed both the 15 and 16 models.  (I did not own the 17.)
Like all runners, when you find a shoe you love you cringe when they come up with a new model, because of the fear they changed the things you loved about the shoe.  Which is why a lot of runners then end up being forced to switch model's or brands.

Great news, the Wave Rider 18 may have some changes.  But for me, none of them were on the negative side, in fact I would say they actually made it better without ruining the feature's I previously loved.
In fact, I really like the lighter weight.  I can tell a little difference in the liner, and I must say I LOVE this so much better than previous versions, especially the softer mesh quality!!!

I wish I could tell you all the technical aspects.  But I am not a shoe scientist.  I just go by what I feel, and what I think about running shoes after wearing them many miles.

As someone who is getting back into medium mileage, with plans to get back into marathon condition over the coming months.  A great shoe is highly important, not just for my feet, but for my knee's and body.  I love the feel of the Wave Rider 18, and the way they respond to the heel to toe strike as I run, and science aside that is great enough for me!



WHAT I LOVE

What I love about Mizuno's Wave Riders, they don't break down like some brands.  I am able to get the full life out of the shoe, and able to get lots and lots of mileage out of them before I have to replace them.

Even though I am in the early stages of wearing the Wave Rider 18's, I can pretty safely say, that these should follow in that same pattern as I am used to with it's previous versions.  Possibly, I'll even enjoy them more because I really do like the make of the new softer and more durable mesh.

The lighter weight is also great, I love how they feel as they hit the ground after each step.  They really do provide a stable step as you hit the ground and then push off with the toes.

MY FINAL THOUGHTS

For those who know me as a runner, they know not a lot of shoes make my recommended list.  I have tried many brands and models out through the years.  I have made a few mistakes in a few wrong pairs, and I have also found a few great pairs.  I have already gone through over a dozen pairs of running shoes in the past 4 years as I have been working on my 50 states marathon goal.  So I like to think I have learned the good and bad about running shoes!

So when I tell you I love the Mizuno Wave Rider 18's, and recommend them.  I am being completely honest with you!  I would not say so on my blog it if I didn't truly believe it and feel it!

I think Mizuno's Wave Rider 18's are great for a wide range of runners.  Low to high mileage training shoe for any runner looking for a neutral shoe.  Also because I am coming off foot injuries, feel they are a great shoe to use to come back to running with.  I also think they would (and for myself, will be) a great 13.1 or 26.2 marathon shoe!  Actually, I am looking forward to introducing them to their first race!



Want a little more information on the Wave Rider 18?  
Check out the Wave Rider 18 Page.



What do you think of the look and color of the new Wave Rider 18's? 
If you are shopping for a pair of new running shoes, do you think you will give the Wave Rider 18's a fit test at the running shop as your trying shoes on?
What is your favorite aspects of a great running shoe?



DISCLOSURE:  I was provided a complimentary pair of the Wave Rider 18's and compensated for my review.  However, I was not required to write a positive review, all thoughts and opinions above are my own.


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