Saturday, February 4, 2012

Inov-8 Roclite 295 - Mocosins on steriods

Shoe Review Inov-8 Roclite 295

I needed to find a replacement for my Nike Alvord 7s.which have been adequate up until now. Alvords are not the greatest on limestone rock. So I searched for a replacement and the Inov8 Roclite 295 has exceeded my requirements.  My specific requirements were to have shoes that would handle limestone rock. They also needed to be able to run distance and handle mud. 

Trust has to be earned, so I had to put the Roclite 295s through a few tests.  I test every thing I use before races, especially ultra trail races.  As Ronald Reagan stated "trust, but verify".

I tested the shoes on the following:
(a) 6 miles of sand stone and yellow clay mud at Bankhead National Forest, Lawrence County, AL
(b) 10 miles of limestone rock and mud on the Rain Bow Mountain  Trail loop, Madison, AL.
(c) 20 miles of crushed gravel trail at Point Mallard, Decatur, AL

Minimalist and neutral I found these shoes to be pretty comfortable to run in. There is no traditional stone shield, but they have a 5 finger meta-shank which seems to help protect your foot from the trail. To me they feel like moccasins on steroids. They are very flexible and feel great flexing over a trail. I found the sticky rubber made running on limestone rock pretty sure footed. The trails were muddy and wet and the rock conditions were from dry to wet/damp. I did slide a little but I was very pleased with the traction.

As for as a break-in period, they are so flexible I really needed to just get my feet adjusted to them. I walked around in them and noticed that my heel was a little sore. They are a lot lower from toe to heel, so I think the lower angle made my soles sore. After I wore them a few days the soreness subsided. Running in them has felt pretty good.

I found them pretty sure footed on limestone and sandstone rock and they seem to shred the mud pretty good.  I slid on the limestone a few times. I did fall once, but it was not the shoes as much as me because I was inattentive for a moment.  Familiarity usually breeds clumsiness in my case. It was on my sixth time through the loop and lost focus.  I have been able to run in them without my normal PowerStep inserts and my feet have felt great without the orthotics. For a minimalist shoe my feet felt great. I was a little sorer after the 20 miler, but I usually finish those runs a little achy.

Great shoe for me that will be my new "go to" for technical trails and mud.

1 comment:

Dana said...

I'm so glad to hear they are working out for you!! :D