Adidas' Ultra Boost is one of the best sneakers on the market.
Since Kanye West's performed in an entirely white pair of the sneakers at the Billboard Music Awards back in 2015, the Ultra Boost has blurred the line between fashion and performance sneaker more than few others. It's understated silhouette, simple colorways and woven Primeknit upper makes it the most stylish performance running sneaker made in recent memory (especially when worn with track pants). Most importantly, of the dozens of pairs of shoes I've worn in the past couple years, the Ultra Boost is decidedly the most comfortable. The full length Boost foam-lined sole kinda looks like you're walking on styrofoam. It feels like you're walking on memory foam.
But the original low top iteration of the Adidas Barricade Team 4 Womens White/Tech Metallic/Power Red Tennis Shoes V94374 retails at a hefty $180, in the upper price echelons of performance running shoes and certainly closer to luxury sneaker pricing than casual. Now, how would you feel if you added on an ankle sock and $40 to the price tag?
Well, Adidas did just that with the Bellfield Kirkland Speckled Knit CP1781, released back in September of this year. Billed as a fall and winter weather-variant of the Ultra Boost, the ATR sports an ankle-height sock for increased stability and splash protection, plus a deeper-grooved rubber outsole for better traction while running in wet weather. The original's plastic lace cage is replaced with Primeknit fabric, plus a smaller box that sits atop the shoe. Finally, the ATR comes in darker colorways Antony Morato Fleece Short CP2076,Adidas Sprintstar Womens White/White/Green Track & Field Shoes V95327Ellesse Gastone Nylon Run Shorts CP2128, as to not show winter muck after a damp run. Adidas sent me a pair to review, so I took them not only to the damp streets of Portland, but to the streets of New York.
Sik Silk Polka Dot Short CP2202,,Adidas Gymbreaker Bounce Trainer Womens Shock Green/Halo Blue/Mineral Blue Training Shoes V74578Jack & Jones Malibu Swim Short CP2318,,Ellesse Rimini Nylon Shoulder Track Top CP3564,Adidas Barricade V Classic Womens White/Silver Metallic/Light Onix Tennis Shoes V94282Timberland Earthkeepers 2.0 Chukka Boot CP3758,.
The original Ultra Boost is an extremely popular fashion sneaker, and new colorways are regularly sold out online and in store (check Portland's Adidas Pure Boost X Trainer Womens Black/Dark Grey/Sun Glow Training Shoes V17803 for rare pairs!). The ATR keeps the original's subdued aesthetics, but the midtop construction adds a new design element which I think makes the sneaker well-suited for styling with jeans as well as athleticwear Birkenstock Milano Sandal CP3823,Adidas Barricade 2015 Womens Light Flash Yellow/Black Tennis Shoes V61011Clear Weather The Eighty Waxed Canvas Trainer CP3901,.
As for the on-foot feel, the ATR is comfortable, but not quite as comfortable as the original Ultra Boost. Though the ATR's tougher sole provides better traction than the original it leads to an on-foot feeling that isn't quite as heavenly.
Further, the shoe feels slightly tighter-fitting and more socklike than the original. The ankle sock doesn't overheat the foot, but when tied tight, the tops of my feet develop a pinchy feeling after a few hours that doesn't adidas Originals Superstar Trainer CP3965,Women's Shoe Nike Air Rift Sandal SP Whiteadidas Originals Energy Boost ESM Trainer CP4050, when left untied (the laces don't reach the ground) or tied loosely.
As far as long-term wear goes, I took my ATRs to the streets of New York on a recent trip to test them out. They held up nicely during what I'd consider an everyday amount of activity (~2-3 miles of walking broken up with extended sitting breaks), my feet not getting particularly sore despite a long stroll through Nike Air Huarache Womens White/Blue Legend/White/Hot Lava Running Shoes V89572. But on two particularly grueling days, the first, an hours-long punk show on wood and concrete floors, and the second, adidas Originals Superstar Vulcanised ADV Trainer CP4126,Nike Air Huarache Womens Pure Platinum/Bright Crimson/Loyal Blue Running Shoes V69753adidas Originals Los Angeles Trainer CP4182,, my dogs were certainly barkin' when I returned home. Though I don't consider those days representative of normal use, the ATR, despite above-average comfort, is not a miracle worker.
Now, what about actually running in my running shoes? I'm not a hardcore or regular runner: My cardiovascular health is slightly above average at best, but I can put away 5 kilometers without trouble, and I did just that on the treadmill and on Portland's waterfront.
On the treadmill, the ATR provided a solid, comfortable ride. Perhaps it is because running on a treadmill is excruciatingly boring, but I found myself paying more attention to my body during this run, and I noted that the ankle sock kept my feet feeling more secured than with my normal low top running shoe Nike Air Max Tailwind 8 Womens Chalk Blue/Racer Blue/White Running Shoes V43949.
However, the ATR really shined when running outside on a blustery November evening. Converse Chuck Taylor All Star Asylum Ox Trainer CP4288,Nike Air Huarache Run Ultra Womens Bright Crimson/White Running Shoes V42045Creative Recreation Cesario Low XVI Canvas Trainer CP4334,, partially down the Eastbank Esplanade and back on a damp day. It wasn't raining, but it had rained plenty earlier, and the path was slick and covered with fallen leaves.
And I just completely disappeared into my run Cruyff Indoor X-Lite Trainer CP4439,Nike Air Max Dynasty Womens White/Cool Grey/Black Running Shoes V90447Hugo Boss Hyllon Trainer CP4485,. Maybe it was because the Old Town sign was extra-glittery that evening, but, Nike Air Force 1 Mid Trainer CP4571,Nike Air Max 1 Womens Anthracite/Metallic Hematite/Black Running Shoes V11027Nike Free Socfly Trainer CP4699, as one wants when on a fairly intense run, I barely noticed the shoes on my feet as I jogged along the Willamette.Nike Stefan Janoski Max Trainer CP4725,Nike Air Max 1 Womens Black/Gum Medium Brown Running Shoes V19602Nike Free SB Premium Flash Trainer CP4844, I had no issues with tightness, and the traction was excellent along wet concrete and the ostensibly slick floating metal bridge of the Esplanade. The only thing I really noticed was a slight bounce between my foot and the sole as I ran.
Now, is all of this worth the $220 price tag? If your running shoe or fashion sneaker budget is high, then Ralph Lauren Polo Klinger NE Trainer CP4934,Nike Air Max Thea Womens Black/Anthracite/White/Wolf Grey Running Shoes V14096Supra Quattro Trainer CP5041, nabs you a stylish, high-performing variant on a cool sneaker that'll help you push through Portland's blusteriest winter days. Yet, if you aren't committed to winter running, $220 is a high price to pay for a sneaker that mostly just looks cool. Y3 Qasa High Trainer CP5128,Nike Air Max 2016 Womens Racer Blue/Chalk Blue/Blue Tint/Black Running Shoes V70838adidas Originals Womens Adilette Slide Sandal CP5204, As someone who gets my cardio in elsewhere, I wouldn't personally spend the $220 on a performance shoe which I am not using for its intended purpose.
Then again, I will be taking my next few runs to the streets in my ATRs as long as it isn't raining sideways.
Womens Sandals adidas Anyanda Flex Slide Flash Pink/White/Silver Metallic,Nike Air Max 95 Womens Metallic Hematite/Black/Anthracite Running Shoes V63347Womens Shoes adidas Courtset Grey/Sun Glow/White,
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