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 Promotions Casual Shoes - Mens Jordan AJ1 Low Black/Gym Red/White 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 Climastorm Fleece FullZip Hoodie - Training - Chili Bold Orange 9KM5453 - Clothing - Men's, 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 Harden Vol. 1 - Gold Black 6QB5076 - Men's - Harden James - Basketball - Shoes,Promotions Basketball Shoes - Mens Jordan 1 Flight 2 Black/Gym Redadidas Originals Top Ten Hi - Men's - Shoes - Black Clear Onix 8FV8241 - Basketball Grey, 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.
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The original Ultra Boost is an extremely popular fashion sneaker, and new colorways are regularly sold out online and in store (check Portland's Promotions Running Shoes - Mens adidas Originals ZX Flux Black/Black/Tomato 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 Basketball - Black White 1YE6351 - Men's - Under Armour Clutchfit Drive 2 Low - Shoes Red,Professional Sale Running Shoes - Mens Nike Dart 10 Black/Anthracite/White/Metallic Cool GreyBasketball - Game Royal White 2ZT2041 - Durant Kevin - Nike KD 9 - Shoes - Men's,.
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 Basketball - Men's - adidas Originals Superstar - Black Metallic Gold 2PZ1155 - Shoes Black,Provide Casual Shoes - Mens adidas Originals Los Angeles Black/Black/Gold OchreBasketball - Men's - Jordan Super.Fly 4 - Soar Copa White 0NK8104 - Shoes Midnight Navy, 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 Promotions Running Shoes - Mens Nike Air Max 1 Cool Grey/Anthracite/White/Volt. But on two particularly grueling days, the first, an hours-long punk show on wood and concrete floors, and the second, Basketball - Men's - White Electric Green 4MG313 - James LeBron - Nike LeBron Soldier 10 - Shoes Cool Grey,Provide Basketball Shoes - Mens Nike Mentality Bryant KobeBasketball - Nike Therma Elite F Black 1SC3217 Z Hoodie - Men's - Clothing - University Red,, 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 Provide factory price Casual Shoes - Mens adidas Originals SL Loop Racer Collegiate Navy/Collegiate Royal/White.
However, the ATR really shined when running outside on a blustery November evening. Basketball - University Red Black 0NH1706 - Nike Elite Posterize Shorts - Clothing - Men's,Provide Casual Shoes - Mens PUMA Roma White/Drizzle/SilverBlack Basketball - Cool Grey Vibrant Yellow 0QA2390 - Jordan AJ 1 Low - Shoes - Men's Cool Grey,, 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 Black Clothing - Basketball - Jordan Retro 9 Shorts - Anthracite White 7EW2831 - Men's,Provide factory price Casual Shoes - Mens Nike Air Max 95 Black/Medium Ash/Cool Grey/BlackBlack Laser Orange Shoes - Nike KD VIII - Men's - Durant Kevin - Basketball - Vivid Orange Light Bone 7JP9446,. Maybe it was because the Old Town sign was extra-glittery that evening, but, Black Men's - Nike Air Trainer 180 - Black Black 4FT11334 - Shoes - Training,Provide factory price Casual Shoes - Mens Nike Sunray Adjust 4 Black/Bright Crimson/Gym RedBlack Men's - White Metallic Silver 1ON1091 - Shoes - Nike Cortez - Running, as one wants when on a fairly intense run, I barely noticed the shoes on my feet as I jogged along the Willamette.Black Nike Free RN 2017 - Running - Vintage Green Sequoia Medium Olive 2SG1168 - Shoes - Men's,Provide Running Shoes - Mens New Balance 574 Triple Black/SuedeBlack Shoes - Basketball - Jordan Jumpman Pro Quick - White Gym Red 6VH1883 - Men's, 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 Black Soccer - Nike Mercurial Veloce III FG - Shoes - Laser Orange White 7LT4760 - Men's,Provide Running Shoes - Mens Nike Premier Run Game Royal/Total Orange/White/BlackBoston Red Sox - Men's - Majestic MLB Player On Field BP Top - Clothing - Navy 1BC853, 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. Casual - adidas Adilette Cloudfoam Ultra - Shoes - Scarlet White 3BZ1847 - Men's,Provided Casual Shoes - Mens Nike Roshe One Green Strike/Black/WhiteCasual - Converse All Star Boot PC Hi - Shoes - Almost Black Black 2XQ5483 - Men's Egret, 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.
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