Disclaimer: this review is based only on a three mile run. These are all initial thoughts of mine.
Once again last night, I was able to try out a demo pair of new running shoes at the Fleet Feet Social Run right off the Campus of Notre Dame. This time, the shoe was the Hoka One One Clifton 2.
This is the first time I have ever tried on, let alone run in a pair of Hoka’s. I had always considered those who run in them, almost like being in a cult. I say this because, those who have tried them have either loved them and swear that there is nothing better, or just hate them (I did hear one lady yesterday say that she did not like them).
My initial thought when I was given a pair was just how light they were. The Clifton 2 model weighs only 7.7 ounces. This would be about a full ounce lighter than what I am used to. When you look at the Hoka shoe, your first thought is probably “that shoe looks so heavy.” And it does look heavy, the sole is very misleading. Also, along with the shoe being light weight, it is a neutral shoe, so no added support.
After trying them on, you notice right away how much cushion these shoes have. Very soft and comfortable. I looked at a few other reviews and one of the complaints I have seen is that the shoes are too tight for other runners. I have narrow feet, so I felt that the fit was perfect for me, with no discomfort.
Another complaint I saw was that the shoe was uncomfortable. The representative of Hoka that was at the run stated, don’t judge the shoe in the first half mile, and she was right. I wouldn’t say it was uncomfortable at first, just awkward. The longer into the run I went, the more comfortable I was in the shoe. At about mile one, it started to feel really good. Nice cushioning on the landing and felt real smooth.
I also like the look of the shoe. Not to bright of flashy (although I think you can find some brighter colors than what they had on hand). It was just a sime looking shoe as far as colors go.
I really don’t have much to complain about the shoes. I was actually very surprised. I was ready to mock the cult followers but I actually like these shoes. Am I drinking the Kool-aid? Not yet, but maybe in the near future.
If a running store in your area is doing a running shoe demo, take a chance and go. It’s a great way of trying different shoes at no cost to you. Plus, sometimes you will walk away with some free stuff…