Tag Archives: running

Inov-8 F-Lite 195v2 Review (2017)

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I was into minimalist shoes long before I even knew I wanted to start CrossFit. At the time, the pickings were slim, but one shoe that I kept seeing pop up over and over again was the Inov-8 195’s. In everything I read about them, people swore by them, and they just so happened to be the unofficial shoe of CrossFit. Eventually, I picked up a pair after I found them on sale; this was at a time where there really were no sales on them and I never even spent over $100 on shoes. I remember putting them on for the first time and being floored by just how light, flexible, and how well they fit. Not long after getting my pair, I started CrossFit. I was spoiled since I already had “the” CrossFit shoe, never knowing what it was like to use clunky running shoes at the box. Even though I spent more money on them than I was used to spending at the time, I felt thoroughly satisfied with my purchase.

As time passed, I started sipping the Kool-Aid and gravitating more towards Reebok Nano’s and eventually Nike Metcon’s. I never stopped loving my Inov-8 or anything, but worries about durability made me use them less and less. I’ve seen CrossFit shoes over the years become more stiff for lifting and less well rounded overall; which in a sense, is backwards to the well roundedness that the CrossFit theology embodies. At this point, we’re seeing trainers that are as stiff as Olympic weightlifting shoes.

The original 195’s were favored by many because of just how adaptable they were in the CrossFit setting. Flexible with just enough cushioning to run in comfortably but not enough to make the shoe unstable, 3mm drop with a low midsole stack height, sock-like fit and incredibly lightweight.  Durability of the fabric upper material was the only questionable area. After a slight hiatus, Inov-8 has refreshed their legendary shoe for 2017, retaining a lot of the features that made the shoe so popular, but now with an improved and hopefully more durable upper. 195 fans, rejoice.

Looks/Construction:

The original 195 had a look that could only be described as “Inov-8”. Aside from some choice colorways, I don’t think Inov-8 makes bad looking shoes at all, they’re just shoes you’d only want to be caught wearing with athletic gear and not something you’d want to be wearing out with some jeans on. Though the more minimal look of the new 195’s is definitely a step in the right direction, I don’t forsee myself wearing these out to the club or anything. The new upper is structured internally, the Inov-8 “tiger stripes” are still there but they’re a little bit harder to see since they’re under the new translucent mesh-ish upper. The logo is still on the side of the shoe, but it’s a little more low key nowadays; I think Inov-8 would do well to swap it to some kind of emblem, maybe just the foot/eight.

While not quite a giant shoe brand, Inov-8 still manages to produce shoes that are built solid, at least when you first get them. The plush fabric upper material was always the Achilles heel of the 195, but has been upgraded to a flexible nylon mesh for the V2. It’s dropped a ton of cushioning that made the originals so comfortable, most notably around the ankle collar, but it’s still very flexible. The bends of the shoe are a little sharper feeling but it’s still a very comfortable shoe to wear. It is also noticeably much more breathable; I would not hesitate to wear these shoes without socks on if that’s your jam. As previously mentioned, the “tiger stripes” that give the shoe structure are located inside the shoe, the toe-cap returns in the form of a thin PU external version, and though not mentioned, there is a built in heel cup to give you a little more stability when lifting. In my opinion, the nicest upgrade to the shoe happens to be the new eyelets for the shoe laces; it’s a small detail but really cleans up the look of the shoe.

The biggest things left virtually unchanged from the previous 195 are the midsole and outsole combination. I say virtually because while the midsole looks identical to the originals, the drop has been changed from 3mm to 4mm and it’s picked up the name “Powerflow”. The sticky rubber treading, Meta-flex and dynamic fascia band technology remain the same and they still come with the RopePro that was added in somewhere in the later variants of the 195. I always loved the way the midsole of the 195 felt and the outsole never failed me , so I’m not bent out of shape to see it remain the same.

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Fit:

The 195’s fall into Inov-8’s “Precision” fit line, which are typically D width shoes with a more running shoe silhouette. The toe is pointier, which accommodates Morton’s toe very well; flatter toe shapes are an issue that plagues me with training shoes, making me have to size up just so my second toe doesn’t jam into the front of the shoe. Originally I had sized the 195v2’s in my normal training shoe size, 10, but they ended up fitting way too big. 9.5 ended up being right on the money, so I’m going to say go ahead and size down half a size for the 195v2’s. Also keep in mind that these are fairly narrow shoes and don’t accommodate wide feet at all. If you’ve got Flinstone feet, you’re going to want to go with the 235v2’s.

My sizes for reference:

  • 235v2/250/215/210 – 10
  • OG 195/240 – 9.5
  • Nano – 10
  • Metcon – 10
  • WL Shoes – 9.5
  • Converse – 9.5
  • NoBull – 10

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Performance:

Well rounded AF.

195’s are legendary for a reason. Even if you’ve never owned a pair, you’ve probably heard people rave about them in your box. Usually people that never switch over to Nano’s or Metcon’s, love their 195’s because they’re so lightweight and flexible. I can’t blame them, coming back from foot purgatory that is the current state of training shoes, putting my feet in the 195v2’s felt like heaven; I feel like I can move again! Okay, that’s a little dramatic, but it almost feels like you’re not wearing shoes with how freely the 195v2’s let your feet move.

Running is always a taboo area for training shoes. Comfort usually takes a dig at stability, but not so much in the case of the 195v2’s. The midsole stack is short so there isn’t a ton of material between your foot and the ground, but it’s just enough to cushion your feet from being demolished by whatever you’re running on. The 195v2 uses an injection molded insole called “Powerflow”, that gives you better energy return than it’s compression molded counterparts, but still manages to be just as responsive. The heel area absorbs shock better while the forefoot has better energy return. They surprisingly have a good amount of “bounce” when you move around. From box jumps to double unders, I could not think of a better shoe to do a bodyweight metcon in than these shoes.

The “weak” area of the 195’s is their overall stability that they sacrifice for mobility. The 195v2’s have a more narrow platform compared to the other heavy hitters on the market and even Inov-8’s own 235v2, but they let you move more naturally so you have to rely on your own balance versus stability created by a wide outsole. Part of the reason people swear by minimalist shoes is that they don’t create a false sense of security when it comes to balance. It might take a little bit to transition to lifting in the 195’s if you’re accustomed to using Metcon’s or Nano’s, but at the end of the day, it’ll be worth it. You shouldn’t have any issues with slow lifts being unstable, but Oly might take some balance adjustments if you’re not used to more minimal shoes. Power delivery however, is excellent despite the 195’s having a “soft” injection molded insole (it’s not that soft). Once again, it doesn’t really get in the way since the stack height is so short. Would I be going for PR weight in the 195v2’s – probably not, but the 195v2’s should handle most of the weight you’re going to find on a daily basis.

Interestingly enough, though the midsole of the 195v2’s is supposed to be higher and the drop is supposed to be greater, the new models feel lower to the ground and flatter than the old models. Finally, the 195v2’s are excellent rope climbing shoes! I have no idea how that little Ropetec guard manages to hold on to the rope so well, but climbing the rope in the new 195’s is as effortless as could be. Durability is still a wildcard, but the new upper doesn’t show wear from the rope as of yet.

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Value/Conclusion:

Now that the market has so many options, Inov-8 is often overlooked just because it’s not Nike or Reebok, which is a true shame because people don’t even know what they’re missing out on. The 195v2’s pricing falls directly in line with the more popular Metcon and Nano at the standard $130. Not that the 195’s aren’t worth the price tag, they 110% are, but people are easily enticed by brand names. OG’s will have no problem dishing out the cash for the ever so excellent 195v2’s. If you’re not familiar with the name Inov-8, I’ll put my name on the line for them, they’re one of the best shoe manufacturers around and their shoes stay true to who they are as a company.

“The athletes’ interaction with the environment is the single most important factor when designing products.”

Training in the 195v2’s again feels like coming home after a long vacation. There were a lot of good times while you were away, but there’s nothing like the comfort of being at home. If what you want is an ultimately stable weightlifting shoe that you don’t care to run in or do any other variety of movements in, there might be better options out there in the form of Nike or Reebok. If you’re’ looking for one of the most capable all around training shoes on the market, you need to give the 195v2 a shot. They’re currently in my top 5 training shoes, I promise you won’t be disappointed in them.

The Good:

  • Great cushion and energy return for running.
  • Stable enough to lift most weights in.
  • Flexible and lightweight frame allows the foot to move naturally.

The Bad:

  • Won’t fit everyone because they’re narrow.
  • Styling is still ho-hum.

The Ugly:

  • People might overlook them!
  • Durability of the new up is yet to be determined.
  • They run really long.

Purchase your 195v2’s here!
Black Grey: http://amzn.to/2vPICWT
Grey Red/Green: http://amzn.to/2fAGbko
Womens: http://amzn.to/2vwQwSj

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Reebok Harmony Road Running Shoe Review

I hate running.

Actually…

suckat running.

CrossFit seems to be the fitness program people that hate running gravitate towards because our cardio is really just lifting weights faster. Sometimes you’ll see some gymanstic movements thrown in there, some kettlebells, maybe some rowing and hell, maybe even some short runs; but nothing really long enough to warrant the use running shoes. Except one workout, that is more like a CrossFit holiday than a normal holiday, that happens every Memorial Day. You guessed it – “Murph”, if you’re not quite sure what the workout is, then you’ve never done it before. It consists of 1 mile run, 100 pull-ups, 200 push-ups, 300 air squat, finished by another mile run (with a weight vest). While that doesn’t sound like a ton of running, to Crossfitters it is; especially ones that suck at running.

Typically, I do my running in training shoes that just have a little bit more cushion and flexibility. My current favorites being the Strike-Movement Intervals, Skechers Go-Train Endurance, and Inov-8 F-Lite 195’s. I caught on to the barefoot thing early on and while I don’t consider myself a great runner but I do my best to run with mid-foot strike, and avoid heel striking, though I over-supinate a little. It wasn’t until maybe a couple years ago when the Reebok Cushion 3.0’s came out, that I bought into another pair of actual running shoes. They were what I did “Murph” in last year and they were okay, but I thought they lacked a little bit of structure (I’ve heard of durability issues as well). This year, I decided to set out to find a good pair of running shoes to make my workout more, “comfortable”. I could definitely do the workout in training shoes like most people do, but this gives me a good excuse to buy another pair of shoes. Luckily for me, Reebok had just dropped the Harmony Road, a shoe that was designed to cement Reebok as a legitimate contender in the running shoe world.

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Looks/Construction:

Running shoes will look like running shoes and the Harmony Road are no different. There are luxury “running” shoes out there that are more style than substance, but they don’t count if you’re not going to actually run in them. The bulbous looks of the HR’s are not going to win any style contests but that’s not really the aim of the shoe. The current selection of colorways go from meh-fine, to hell no. I initially went with the alloy/wild orange, but when I got them I knew immediately I’d never wear them so I held off a bit until they released the slightly more palatable solid grey/solar yellow. To be fair, most running shoes just aren’t very pretty shoes in general. At least the reflective bits serve a purpose in upping your visibility at night so drivers won’t hit you.

Where the Harmony Road lack in looks, they make up in comfort and build quality. The Smoothfuse seamless synthetic mesh upper feels robust and gently envelops your foot. I haven’t tried it, but you could probably go running in these shoes without socks on without tearing your feet up. Other than their CrossFit line of products, some of the shoes that Reebok makes can sometimes have lower quality materials. The Harmony Road does not fall victim to this and I would say that this might be one of the best built shoes they make, period. There’s no loose glue, the stitching is perfect, and the materials seem like they’re meant to take a beating. I didn’t try the OSR Sweet Road, but I think it’s safe to say that these are Reebok’s flagship running product.

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Fit:

Typically, I wear a size 10 in Reebok CrossFit Nano’s, but I’d say my normal shoe size is more of a 9.5, which is what I got my Harmony Road’s in. The fit is dead on with about a thumbs distance from the front of the shoe to my toes; plenty of room for my toes to splay without touching the front. There’s plenty of width in the toe-box and not much of the way of contouring inside the shoe so these shoes should suit a number of different shaped feet. It’s really easy to get a nice locked down fit with the simple lacing system but there is also the option to lace lock if you needed a little bit more security for your heel; though I never had any issues with heel slip. These shoes run true to size and I would recommend sizing them as you would your normal running shoes, or half down from your Nano’s. Here are my sizes for reference:

  • Nano – 10
  • Metcon – 9.5
  • Speed TR – 9
  • NMD/Ultraboost – 10
  • New Balance – 9.5
  • Inov-8 – 10

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Performance:

Here’s where you can take my advice with a grain of salt if you’re a runner, but if you’re a Crossfitter, you might take some of this to heart.

The key feature of the Harmony Road is their tri-zone midsole with “Kooshride”, in which it basically absorbs shock through it’s three layered zones. If you look under the shoe, you can actually see the “Kooshride” layer, that looks like those beads kids used to iron designs with. Another thing to notice is just how much heel cushioning there is, that combined with a 10mm offset really make these shoes look like they’re geared towards heel striking. Coming from running in training shoes, the Harmony Road’s are like heaven on my feet, even with a mid-foot strike. They provide excellent cushioning and energy return, but still feel like there’s structure and stability to the shoe. It actually didn’t take me a ton of effort to adjust from wearing trainers with a flatter drop to the much larger one of the Harmony Road.

I started running a 5k every Sunday for the last month in preparation for Murph, and while I’m still not a great runner, I can at least go the whole 3 miles without stopping, which is a pretty big accomplishment to me. The ride in the Harmony Road’s is smooth and feels consistent with each step. The best way I can make the analogy is that running in the Harmony Roads feels like driving a Honda Accord: reliable, designed to be driven at normal speeds, but has excellent response and handling with superb comfort. I did notice is that the size of the heel and drop can actually drive you to heel strike if you get lazy, but you get much better propulsion running off your mid-foot, which almost feels rewarding when you’re tired. It’s almost like having a built in form check.

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Some people have said the “Kooshride” feels like Adidas’ Boost, but I don’t actually think so; it’s much more stable and less squishy feeling. Stable enough so that I got through the 300 squats in Murph without being annoyed that my feet didn’t feel planted, which is one of my pet peeves in shoes. While there isn’t a ton of lateral stability since they’re a bit tall and the drop is gigantic, I still feel like I could do most metcons in the Harmony Road’s. I wouldn’t go as far as to do any kind of Olympic or power lifts, but they should be fine for swinging kettlebells, jumping on boxes or doing burpees. Traction seems best on asphalt, which is befits the name. I tried the HR’s on a tightly packed dirt trail and they didn’t seem to “catch” as well as they did on the sidewalk, making me have to expend a little more energy.

I weighed the shoes at 11.08 oz per a men’s 9.5, which sounds heavy for a running shoe, but is pretty normal coming from training shoe. The shoes even have a heavy look about them because they just look like there’s a lot of material on the shoe. These shoes aren’t designed to be racing shoes, though they do make a version for that, which I had initially tried, but they were too narrow and the quality seemed sub-par. Since they are running shoes, I shouldn’t have to say they’re extremely flexible, but just in case you were wondering, they are! The flexibility makes the Harmony Road feel a lot less lighter and less clunky than they actually are.

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Value/Conclusion:

The Harmony Road’s go for the pretty standard performance shoe rate of $120, which is around what I was ready to spend. I know a lot of people are still shocked to see Reebok shoes that aren’t CrossFit shoes go for over a Benjamin, but these shoes are ones that are actually worth it. The build quality is among the best in the shoe world and the performance has far exceeded any running shoe that I’ve used (to be fair, not many). Though I still think that they’re in need of some MUCH better colorways, the Harmony Road’s fit comfortably, are built like tanks, and are the best performing running shoe I’ve had the chance to wear. Maybe I’m getting better at running because I kind of look forward to it now. Hell, maybe I’ll run an actual marathon.

If you’ve been following the 2017 Regionals, these are the shoes that most of the Reebok athletes have been wearing for the variation of Murph. They’re probably better athletes than me, and out of all the shoes they have access to, they picked the Harmony Road; so I must not be the only one that’s impressed. Oh and back to “Murph”, I PR’d my time at 46:28 from somewhere around an hour, granted I did it partitioned with a weight vest versus straight up without. The thing I’m really proud of is not stopping during my runs. I’m not dropping CrossFit for running any time soon, but having a great pair of shoes to run in makes me hate running a lot less. If you’re looking to improve your running game, give the Harmony Road’s a shot, you might end up wanting to run more often too.

Buy your Reebok Harmony Road running shoes here!

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Reebok X CrossFit Cushion 3.0 Running Shoes Review

Let’s get this out of the way:

I haven’t owned a pair of “running” shoes in about 4 years.

By running shoes, I mean shoes that have cushioning in them.  When I started training, I ditched anything that had padding in it for “barefoot” shoes after I read things about them being bad for your feet.  That over time, cushioning changed the way people run/walk, made your legs muscles weaker, and your knees bad.  When I started doing CrossFit, all I wore were New Balance Minimus, Vibrams, and Inov-8’s.  Changing over to Nano’s felt like walking on clouds to me at this point.  Years later, I still prefer minimal shoes, but ironically, my knees aren’t quite what they used to be and running in anything, still sucks.  I just need help with my running, I suck at it.

It was time to look for some “running” shoes.

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I had always known about the Reebok One series running shoes, but to hell if I was going to spend money on a shoe I couldn’t squat in; old habits die hard.  Before I caught wind about the new Reebok One X CrossFit Cushion 3.0 (referred to as Cushion 3.0 from here on out), I purchased a pair of Nike Flyknit 3.0’s.  They looked great, they were comfortable, still minimal, but I just wasn’t fond of running in them.  My previous choice for a running shoe prior were the Strike Movement Intervals; they just felt the best on my feet while I ran.  I do like the way sprinting feels in the Compete 6:14 , but they’re really tight and get uncomfortable after some time in them; also there’s virtually no cushioning so your feet will hurt given the surface you’re running on. All shoes, geared at training and not necessarily running.  When I received my pair of Cushion 3.0’s, I nearly foot-gasm’d when I took my first steps; It was like a wearing heaven on my feet.

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The fact that the shoes have the “CrossFit” branding on them made them a little more palatable for me.  In reality, they’re the same as the normal Reebok One Cushion 3.0’s, from what I can tell.  At the time of writing, either of the shoes aren’t really even for sale. Comparing pictures of the two shoes, there’s virtually no difference other than the “CrossFit” logo.  Let this be known right now, these are not shoes for functional fitness.  Remember why you had to switch your shoes up to something minimal?  Yeah, that spongy insole/outsole, is definitely present in the Cushion 3.0’s.  At best, they’ll handle some light cleans or air squats; mainly body weight metcons.  No signs of the RopePro or Kevlar here, I wouldn’t try thrashing these shoes like a pair of Nano’s.  That’s not why we bought these shoes though, we bought them to run in.

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The Cushion 3.0’s have three zones of support (from rear to forefoot): C43 cushioning for shock impact, T48 for smooth transitioning, and R52 foam for responsive toe-off.  If you’ve run in Nano’s, you know they’re a bit clunky to run in, Nike Metcon’s are the same way.  Over the years, I’ve developed a mid-foot strike, so having to make myself heel strike to test the C43 felt initially uncomfortable. If that’s your thing, you should feel right at home in the Cushion 3.0’s.  The C43 coupled with the TPU heel piece make for a stable landing.  The bottom’s of the shoes are littered with zoned “piston tech lugs”, CRTek heel pads in the rear for durability, and BRTek “lugs” in the front for propulsion.  Honestly, I don’t really get how all of these things help you run, but for me, the ride feels great.  Maybe it’s because I haven’t had cushioned shoes in forever, but wearing these shoes make me actually want to run.

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Construction of the Cushion 3.0’s is top notch, like you’d find on any “CrossFit” branded shoe, except this isn’t necessarily one since I’m pretty sure they’re the same as the normal Cushion 3.0’s.  The shoe is fairly lightweight, probably a bit heavier than Nano’s are, and also a bit taller due to the cushioned nature of the shoe.  The Nanoweave/Smoothfuse upper is nice and flexible, there are no hot-spots that rub your feet inside and can probably be worn without socks just fine if thats your thing; in fact, the sockliner actually feels comfortable against your barefoot. The lacing system in the mid area of the shoe keeps you locked in, but is easily undone at the top so you can get your foot in and out.  I got the shoes in a size 9.5, and it has a bit of room in the toe box, but is comfortable.  I would recommend sizing these shoes as you would Nano’s, unless your Nano’s are big, then maybe I’d go half a size down.  By looking at pictures, the only difference I could find between the normal Cushion 3.0’s and the CrossFit variants is in the mid-foot area mesh (aside from branding).  It seems like the CrossFit ones have a ballistic nylon while the normal ones have the same kind of material found in the forefoot.

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If I had anything to say about running in these shoes, is that they’re forgiving.  Like I said before, I’m not the best runner out there.  It takes me forever to find my stride, it’s hard for me to brace myself for anything other than sprinting, and I just always feel uncomfortable.  With the Cushion 3.0’s, running feels natural. I feel like my strides are longer and more powerful, when usually they’re short and choppy.  Could be due to the BRTek propulsion plates but I think it’s largely due to the amount of support that the cushioning provides.  I don’t have to worry about how hard my feet hit the ground, so I can focus on running instead of my knees hurting.  My right foot under-pronates and I don’t have to really worry about that when I run in the Cushion 3.0’s.  From a stability standpoint, I still think sprinting and cutting in minimal trainers is better, but I’d happily give up some of that for the comfort of the Cushion 3.0’s.

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Running in the Cushion 3.0’s is great, but how about training?  All the things that make it a good running shoe, make it not so good for training.  The amount of cushioning keep it from being the most stable shoe.  It’s fine for warm-up weight, air squats, box jumps, and double unders, but I would stay away from them for any heavy lifts.  Also unlike typical running shoes, the Cushion 3.0’s seem to be a fairly neutral shoe.  I don’t have any calipers to measure the heel to toe drop, but I would say that it’s somewhere close to 4mm.  If you’re looking for a one size fits all shoe, this is probably not going to be your best bet.  Don’t expect anything like the Reebok’s Sprint TR, which is basically a narrower version of the Nano.

With a price tag of $120, it’s hard to justify them as a specific pair for running, unless that’s all you’re planning on doing with them.  If you’ve got money to burn and you want a pair of running shoes to go along with your trainers, the Reebok One X CrossFit Cushion 3.0’s are a solid choice if you’re looking for something that has a bit more support to switch it up from the harsh nature of trainers.  In typical Reebok One fashion, there will also be a “Guide” model to go along with the “Cushion” model.  I don’t have exact specifications but it looks like there’s quite a bit more outsole to that shoe; it’s available now for $125.

I’m looking forward to seeing which events the athletes will use the Cushion 3.0’s for at this years CrossFit Games.

 

 

Reebok ZQuick TR Review

I know what you’re thinking…”Where’s the Crossfit Lite TR review?!”…Don’t worry, it’s coming.  I want to do something a little different with that one, so I’m going to hold off on it for a little bit.  But if you really can’t wait, the Lite TR is probably my new favorite crossfit shoe.

In the meantime, I brought you the super duper quick review of the abysmal Reebok Crossfit Sprint TR.  I really wanted to like it, because I think it’s one of the better looking designs that Reebok has come up with, but it’s narrow unstable platform is unacceptable.  Interestingly enough, I had ordered the Reebok ZQuick TR’s to just have as a comparison shoe to the Sprint TR, but ended up feeling like it was the superior shoe!  Right after the unboxing, I put the ZQuick on my left and the Sprint on my right.  I was blown away by how much more stable and solid the platform of the ZQuick was over the Sprint.  My decision to send back the Sprint took all of 30 minutes and I don’t regret it one bit.

ZQuick TR

Looks:

If Nano’s, Sprint’s and Speeds got together and made a love child, this would be it.  The ZQuick TR sports the same kind of Duracage material touted as “Nanoweb”,  found on the Nano 3.0’s and Sprints, but has more of a “Spider-Man” type webbing pattern to it.  It feels the same to the touch, but this pattern probably lends itself to better flexibility of the shoe while maintaining its protective properties.  I personally LOVE the way they look; very sleek and high tech looking in the black colorway.  The Reebok logo on the side is a little big for my tastes, taking away from the overall neat look of the shoe, but I like the delta logo so I’ll give that a pass.  There are a couple of reflective strips on the backs of the shoes for night time running, not that I do running.   Not a fan of the inside, rear part of the shoe that is not covered by the Nanoweb, I don’t know why this part isn’t covered but it looks a little cheap-o.  The fabric is the same kind that they use on the Reebok ONE Trainer, versus the heavier kind they use on Nano’s.

ZQuick TR Details

Performance:

The workout today included burpees, box jumps, and power snatches.  Not one time did I think twice about the shoe I was wearing.  This is a good thing.  The more I can focus on my WOD and less on what shoes I’m wearing, the better.  My biggest gripe about the Nano Speeds were that they were laterally unstable, due to the amount of cushioning in them.   I’m not a fan of running in normal Nano’s and sometimes the toebox isn’t long enough.  The Sprint’s were too narrow and tall for any training, possibly even for running.  There isn’t a single thing that I feel like I wouldn’t be comfortable doing in the ZQuick TR’s.  It has enough support, stability, flexibility and lightness to make it one of the most versatile shoes for crossfit.  And yes, it handles the rope just fine.  Let’s be honest; Yes,  it’s a rip off of Nike Free’s.  Where it differentiates itself from Free’s is that the platform is solid, not overly soft but not brutally minimal either, yet still just as flexible.  Looks like all that tech from Nano’s is starting to trickle down…

Weight is 8.5 grams.  That’s light.  Not so sure about the heel to toe drop or height, but it feels very similar to Nano’s, possibly millimeters taller.

ZQuick TR Instep

Fit:

Instantly comfortable.  The toebox is nice and roomy and the shoe is pointed rather than flat up front, so that your second toe doesn’t jam into the front (i.e. Nano).  Unlike the Sprint TR, the midfoot isn’t tightrope skinny, but it’s not Chuck Taylor wide either; your foot feels like its being cradled inside the shoe.  The removable Ortholite insole adds a nice amount of padding, similar to Nano’s. I would even dare to say it’s the same.  My normal Reebok sizing worked fine for me, size 9’s fit me like a glove.

ZQuick TR Bottom

Value:

At 90 bucks, I’d have a hard time recommending Nano’s over these to the casual crossfitter.  Hell, at that price, the ZQuick TR is a worthy addition to just about any level crossfitters shoe arsenal.  If you’re an L-1 and part of the ReebokONE program, it’s a MUST BUY.  The Reebok ZQuick TR handily replaces the ONE Trainer as the best deal in crossfit (without even being a crossfit shoe), for everyone besides the very wide footed.

Conclusion:

This is the shoe that the Nano Speed’s and the Sprint TR’s should have been.  I’m actually glad that this shoe doesn’t don the crossfit name though, because that would have driven the price of this shoe up.  Look past the ZQuick’s copy cat ways and you’ll find a well made, capable shoe for all your crossfit or cross-training needs, at a fraction of the price of some of the more popular choices.