Everyone has their own issues when it comes to finding the “right” shoe. Some of us pronate, some suppinate, some are neutral.
Some are heel strikers others land more on their mid or fore-foot.
Some like a cushioned feel, others a lower, sleeker profile that hugs the road.
There are so many choices out there that it is tough to say, “Yes – this is a great shoe!”.
Well let me tell you – the Adidas Adizero Aegis 2 … is a great shoe.
Now, all the usual disclaimers need to be shared at this point. The Aegis 2 from Adidas is not for everyone. Two years ago, it wasn’t even for me. This is a lightweight performance shoe that is best suited to short workouts or racing from the 10K up through the marathon.
This is not what I would refer to as an “everyday trainer” that you would hop in and run hundreds of training miles at a time. It is however a shoe that would be great for track work, hill repeats, up-tempo workouts and of course for racing.
It is not a stability shoe, but it does have more stability features than say the Sacouny Kinvara or Brooks ST-5 Racers. Adidas is calling this a “Guided” shoe for neutral runners who are looking for just a little more support than some of the lighter racers and trainers out there.
I stumbled upon the Adidas Aegis 2 on a visit to a local running shop here in Austin, Rogue Running. I stopped in to see Scott Rantall looking for a marathon race shoe for New York City in November. My plan was to run a couple of short shake-outs in the shoe, then race the Denver Half-Marathon as my break-in/dress rehearsal race.
If the shoe performed well, I would put them up in the closet until November 6th and the New York City Marathon. Up until two years ago I simply raced in my training shoes. It was what I was used to and frankly, I didn’t really think I needed a lighter race shoe as I was still learning the sport of marathoning. I was focused on “surviving” the 26.2 mile race at that time, not necessarily “thriving” on the race course.
But things changed as I was preparing for Austin in 2011. I wanted to “race” that marathon, not just “run” it. So over the course of the fall of 2010 into winter I started racing in lighter shoes. True Flats for the 5K and 10K races like the Brooks T6/T7 Racers and slightly more shoe for the 10-Mile and Half-Marathon distances, the Brooks ST 5′s.
My hope was I would still have “enough shoe” for those events, giving my feet, ankles, knees and hips the support and shock absorption I required, but the lighter weight of the shoe and the lower profile would allow me to really get after it and hammer away at a faster pace. Each ounce that is saved in the weight of a marathon shoe is equal to 1 second per mile saved on your finishing time.
So if I was able to run in a shoe that was 3 ounces lighter than my everyday trainers, I would be able to take :03 X 26 miles or 1:18 off of my finishing time.
What I found was the lighter shoes held up well for me over those race distances and I had no issues with injury or post race recovery.
Again, this was a gradual transition – I did not simply strap on a pair of race flats and run a marathon in them.
Disclaimer out-of-the-way, now on to the shoes.
I anticipated purchasing another pair of Brooks ST 5′s for New York, and even asked to see a pair on my visit to the store, but after talking about my shoe preference and what I was looking for, the salesperson asked if I had ever tried on the Adidas Adizero Aegis. When I admitted that I had not, she brought a pair out for me to try alongside the Brooks shoe.
After I slipped on the Aegis 2 I ran a few 25 meter strides on the track inside the store and almost immediately I thought – YES – this is a great shoe!
The shoe feels almost “slipper like” when you put it on as it has a sewn tongue that wraps around the top of the foot and does not slide around or down after lacing.
A snug fit, low profile, but plenty of support and cushioning. In my opinion Adidas has successfully threaded the needle between comfort and “raceability”.
The outer side of the shoe features a mesh material that keeps the foot cool and allows for circulation, while the inner side of the shoe has a tighter woven material that provides a bit more support and forward propulsion to keep the shoe and foot gliding forward.
The toe box is roomy, not narrow like some of the race flats you will find in the marketplace, and they were true to size. I did not have to go up a half-size in this shoe which is the case with some race shoes.
At the Denver Rock n’ Roll Half-Marathon on Sunday I ran effortlessly in the shoe and in the true testament to a race shoe – I did not think about a single footfall for the entire 1 hour 26 minutes and 33 seconds of racing. Only after getting to bag-check and taking off the Aegis 2′s did it occur to me that I had run a half-marathon in a new pair of shoes.
My feet did not have a hot spot or rub area and after changing socks, you would have hardly known I had gone for a run.
Days later, my legs feel fresh and I have nothing but glowing words for the Adidas Aegis. We most certainly have found our shoes for New York City.
So if you are in the market for a race shoe from the 10K to Marathon, you just might want to give these shoes a look at your local running shop.
Happy trails everyone! I have included a video review of the shoe courtesy of running warehouse below for a closer look at the technical aspects of the Adidas Adizero Aegis 2.