Saturday, April 26, 2008

Product Review

The thing about us triathletes is that we're a marketers dream as the biggest group of early adopters on the face of the planet (or the biggest group of suckers). As a marketer myself I generally pride myself on being able to sniff out what's hype and whats legit. I also do a lot of research and take my time before jumping on anything so brand spanking new. Insert the new tri shoe from Zoot. Gotta say - I put on these flats and fell in love. Immediately. Everything you need to finish off any sprint or oly distance. I slipped into a pair and it was like my foot was the mold. The Zoots designed the shoe specifically for triathletes (natch) so they have all the requireds and a couple of insights - like built-in quick laces and properly placed tabs on the tongue and the back rim to make it easy to slip in and pull on from the rear of the shoe without having to bend completely over (especially when your quads and hammies are spazing out from the bike).

They perform adequately as racing flats although I'm not sure that I want to train in them (too much). I will say that the shoe has a really high arch and if you've never raced in flats or have done any barefoot training (in actual bare feet or in Nike Frees) they are going to feel weird. And that said, I would also advise that you be a pretty efficient runner to be in a pair. They are also a rather steep $120 (twice what I normally pay for my racing flats). So don't chance an internet buy. Get to a dealer and try them on pavement. The store I went to let me do so without socks. I'm glad they did. Its the way I would be wearing them and I actually went down a half size because of it. I also tried on the Zoot neutral cushioned trainer while I had the chance. As a everyday trainer they have some work to do - ok I'll say it - I think they kinda sucked. The fit was all wrong. The toe box is really wide. It's as if they spent all their time on the flat and slapped the trainer together at the last second. The two shoes could not have been more different.

I'll have to update this after my first actual race.


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