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 Nike Kids Free 5.0 Lava Court Purple/Fuchsia Glow/Hot Lava/Metallic Silver UK#N5-9545 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 adidas Originals Stan Smith Vulcanised Trainer CP4099, 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 adidas Originals ZX Flux Mesh Trainer CP4163,Women's Nike Core Motion TR 2 Black/Black UK#N5-9626Asics Gel-Lyte III Trainer CP4228, 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.
Converse Chuck Taylor All Star High Rubber Trainer CP4282,,Nike SB Kids SB Fokus Blue Lagoon/White/Cool Grey/Black UK#N5-9561Creative Recreation Kaplan Trainer CP4345,,Cruyff Indoor X-Lite Trainer CP4439,Women's Nike MD Runner 2 Velvet Brown/Hot Lava/Velvet Brown UK#N5-9015Lacoste Bowerey Trainer CP4512,.
The original Ultra Boost is an extremely popular fashion sneaker, and new colorways are regularly sold out online and in store (check Portland's Nike SB Kids Paul Rodriguez CTD LR Black/Teal/Black/White UK#N5-9601 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 Nike Air Max Thea Trainer CP4587,Women's Nike In-Season TR 4 Black/Cool Grey/White UK#N5-8750Nike Stefan Janoski Max L Trainer CP4644,.
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 Nike Air Force 1 Elite Trainer CP4738,Women's Nike Force Sky High Sneaker Wedge White/Metallic Summit White/Sport Fuchsia UK#N5-9472Nike Air Jordan Spike Forty PE Trainer CP4783, 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 Women's Nike Free 5.0 TR Fit 4 White/Metallic Silver/Metallic Silver UK#N5-8769. But on two particularly grueling days, the first, an hours-long punk show on wood and concrete floors, and the second, Puma Ignite PWRWARM Trainer CP4910,Women's Nike Tri Fusion Run Wolf Grey/Fierce Purple/Atomic Pink/White UK#N5-8836Ralph Lauren Polo Harvey Trainer CP4947,, 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 Women's Nike Air Relentless 5 Cool Grey/Blue Lagoon/White/White UK#N5-9013.
However, the ATR really shined when running outside on a blustery November evening. Supra Ellington Trainer CP5032,Women's Nike Zoom Cage 2 Light Aqua/White/Classic Charcoal/Volt UK#N5-9329Vans Atwood Canvas Trainer CP5115,, 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 Birkenstock Womens Arizona EVA Sandal CP5211,Women's Nike In-Season TR 5 Deep Royal Blue/Fuchsia Glow/Blue Lagoon/White UK#N5-9538Womens Shoes adidas Courtset Core Black/White/Shock Pink,. Maybe it was because the Old Town sign was extra-glittery that evening, but, Womens Shoes adidas Zero Bounce Mineral Blue/Silver Metallic/Shock Green,Women's Nike Free 5.0 Flash Black/Cool Grey/Pure Platinum/Reflect Silver UK#N5-9063Womens Shoes adidas by Stella McCartney Climacool Mint Down/Oyster Blue/Box Red, as one wants when on a fairly intense run, I barely noticed the shoes on my feet as I jogged along the Willamette.Womens Boots Aerosoles Outrider Black Fabric,Armani Jeans Repeat Print Wallet CP25Womens Sandals Aerosoles Wip Band Gold Metallic, 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 Womens Sandals Aerosoles Saving Grace Black Combo,Hugo Boss Fimon Backpack CP58Womens Sandals Aerosoles Plushed Metal Chamb Blue Comb, 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. Womens Shoes Aerosoles A2 by Aerosoles Rock Solid Pink Stripe,Women's Nike Lunar Lux TR Stealth/Pure Platinum/Wolf Grey/Pink Pow UK#N5-8994Womens Sandals ALDO Braudia Tan, 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 Shoes ALDO Russella Black Leather,The North Face Jester Backpack CP92Womens Boots Anne Klein AKGalenka Medium Natural Multi Fabric,
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