Hoka Huaka (2014)

Model :  Hoka Huaka (2014)  Hoka Huaka Web

Weight :  Approx: 9.2 oz
Cushion : Medium Plus
Toe Box Room : Reasonable
Zero Drop : No
Heel to toe drop : 4 mm
Control : Neutral
Manufacturer : Hoka One One
Purchased : Yes via Running Warehouse

Test Surface : Trail and Treadmill
Miles :
~20 miles
Tasty?  A shoe I planned to love for hybrid running on Trail and Road, but alas it was not meant to be. That said let me clarify, I have a pair of Hoka Cliftons (2014), that I totally love.  In fact they have provided me with one of the best running experiences to date, so I was hoping for the same. However the Huaka’s use a stiffer RMAT material that creates just that, a stiffer ride.  I prefer a cushier and softer ride. So these are leaving my rotation, but I will remain a Hoka fan based on the Clifton.

Second Opinion:  Via The Ginger Runner

Newton EnergyNR

Model :  Newton EnergyNRNewton Motion III web small
Weight :  Approx: 9.0 oz
Cushion : Medium
Toe Box Room : Better than average
Zero Drop : No
Heel to toe drop : 6 mm
Control : None
Manufacturer : Newton Running
Purchased : Yes via Newton Running

Test Surface : Road and Treadmill
Miles : 
12.1 miles
Tasty?  The EnergyNR was my attempt at transitioning into the Newton world, but I have to say that the EnergyNR just didn’t pop for me. The upper is very soft and I love many things about the shoes, but the lugs and I just do not get along.  I must confess that I purchased the EnergyNR tried them, moved to the Newton Motion III which I did like much better, and just like with the Newton Motion III, I love the Newton concept and I still love the way everything felt about the shoe except for the lugs.  And all that said, I am likely to try some more Newton’s down the road, I am very interested in the POP2 or POP3 versions. These shoes have left my rotation, but I see more Newton’s in my future!

Second opinion :  Review by Runblogger.com

Newton Motion III

Model :  Newton Motion IIINewton Motion III web small
Weight :  Approx: 9.3 oz
Cushion : Medium
Toe Box Room : Roomy
Zero Drop : No
Heel to toe drop : 3 mm
Control : Medial side
Manufacturer : Newton Running
Purchased : Yes via Road Runner Sports

Test Surface : Road and Treadmill
Miles : 
63.14
Tasty?  I wanted to love this shoe so much, and I kept waiting to get the POP effect. I can’t say I ever felt the POP effect, and I could never get lost in the run. That said, I never had a single blister in these shoes and I never felt like my feet were overly hot.   I love the Newton concept and I still love the way everything felt about the shoe except for the lugs.  And all that said, I am likely to try some more Newton’s down the road, I am very interested in the POP2 or POP3 versions. These shoes have left my rotation, but I see more Newton’s in my future!

Second opinion :  Review by Believe In The Run

Skechers GOrun Ultra

GoRun Ultra Web SmallModel : Sketchers GOrun Ultra
Weight : Approx: 8.7 oz (Men’s Size 9)
Cushion :
Max
Stack Height : Forefoot 23 / Heel 27
Toe Box Room : Better than average
Zero Drop : No
Heel to toe drop : 4 mm / 8 mm with insole
Control : Neutral
Manufacturer : Sketchers
Purchased : Yes via Road Runner Sports

Test Surface : Road, Trail, Treadmill
Miles :
24.35
Tasty?  Maybe – This is a shoe inspired by Ultra races with a ton cushion, and I love the idea: A high cushion shoe with a minimal heal to toe ratio.  In fact I love the Sketchers brand, but the shoe did not work for me in my normal size.  Run after run I found myself with blisters on the inner part of my left or right foot, in one case both.  To remedy the situation and give the shoe a fair chance I keep debating buying another pair a half size up, but I have not as of yet.  If I do and get different results I will update the review, but as of now these shoes are no longer in my rotation. Things I loved about them: The cushioning was awesome and the tread worked great on multiple surfaces, making this a great hybrid shoe.  Down side: Maybe the fit or sizing. Perhaps try going up a half size if your considering this shoe.  

Second opinion :  Check out the Ginger Runners review.

Altra Torin (The Original)

Altra Torin Web SmallModel : Altra Torin
Weight : Approx: 10.2 oz (Size 9)
Cushion :
High 
Stack Height : 27 mm
Toe Box Room : Roomy
Zero Drop : Yes
Heel to toe drop : 0 mm
Control : Neutral
Manufacturer : Altra 
Purchased : Yes via Leftlane Sports

Test Surface : Road, Trail, Treadmill
Miles :
53.64
Tasty?  Yes! This has become my go to shoe and remains in my rotation. In fact I don’t see this shoe leaving my rotation any time soon. I have ran on road, trail, and treadmill and it has performed well every time. The roomy toe box and cushioning keeps bringing me back to this shoe, especially for recovery runs. If your new to Zero Drop shoes you may need to start with some shorter runs to adjust, but otherwise a great shoe. I have also been experimenting with the Altra Olympus, but I keep coming back this one. Altra has a newer model out and I fully plan to end up with another pair when these wear out.

Second opinion : Check out the Ginger Runner’s review.