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Re: High cushion shoes: am I being a stubborn idiot? [Northy] [ In reply to ]
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I was one of the people who laughed when I saw Hokas the first time - especially in the floral color ways early on. I thought they were completely ridiculous. I trained in Adidas Tempos (lightweight trainer with a small amount of stability). I was also chronically injured early on in my running career, and assumed I just wasn't made to run more than 25mpw without getting hurt.

I got a pair of the Speedgoat on a whim when I was sidelined by an IT band issue - at the time I was training in the Lunaracer (all-time favorite shoe) and the Tempos. I hated them at first, used them briefly (maybe 2wks) to get over the injury and then tossed them in the closet. A few months later I was trying again to boost my mileage to 40+ for a consistent period (figuring it was the definition of insanity to expect a different result after trying so many times), started to feel some of my common aches and pains, and pulled out the Hokas to give them a shot. They completely took the beating off of my legs.

The negative for me was that the super soft feel created a brief bout of PF, which I'd never dealt with before (was usually a sfx & tendonitis victim). I switched the insoles for a set I pulled out of my lunaracers (instead of the stock ortholite), and it went away (I would also assume that dampening the cushioning over more miles helped).

I can't give all the credit to Hokas for allowing me to finally train running with some vigor (consistent 40-60mpw pretty much ever since that buildup), because I used them as a tool to rotate with other shoes, which I think is their best use. Additionally, I made some other changes (increased cadence, slowed down my easy pace from 7-7:30 to 8-9:00, 5k race pace was 5:35 at the time). I still use them routinely for recovery runs, and I don't find them comfortable for anything fast (albeit again, I use the Speedgoat). High cushion shoes have a permanent place in the toolbox.

I currently am not using them due to a financially unsustainable affinity for the Nike Pegasus Turbo, which I think are one of the best all-around shoes available, super cushioned but also so fast. I rotate them with the New Balance FuelCell Rebel - not sure if those are considered high cushion.
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Re: High cushion shoes: am I being a stubborn idiot? [ In reply to ]
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+1

I've been using low drop minimal shoes for all marathons. But this year I'm in 'need to change something' mood, so I'm going to give Hoka's a shot.
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Re: High cushion shoes: am I being a stubborn idiot? [ask77nl] [ In reply to ]
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ask77nl wrote:
+1

I've been using low drop minimal shoes for all marathons. But this year I'm in 'need to change something' mood, so I'm going to give Hoka's a shot.

Running about a month in Hoke Cliftons. They may (may!) be slower than minimal shoes I was wearing for many years, but recovery is much better. And I’ll still in the state where recovery is #1 priority.

I think I’ll continue using high cushion for a while, probably buy Next% for races.
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Re: High cushion shoes: am I being a stubborn idiot? [Northy] [ In reply to ]
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Stubborn yes, Idiot no.
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Re: High cushion shoes: am I being a stubborn idiot? [Northy] [ In reply to ]
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High cushion shoes do not work for me, just due to my specific issues.

Growing up running cross country, I rolled my ankle so many times that now my ankles can roll all the way over without injury. I just hobble two steps, and carry on.

Except in high cushion shoes. When those things roll, it's bad for me. I had two bad ankle rolls for the first time in like 30 years when I was trying out Hokas. My first significant running injuries of any kind in decades.

So not for me.
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Re: High cushion shoes: am I being a stubborn idiot? [trail] [ In reply to ]
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trail wrote:
High cushion shoes do not work for me, just due to my specific issues.

Growing up running cross country, I rolled my ankle so many times that now my ankles can roll all the way over without injury. I just hobble two steps, and carry on.

Except in high cushion shoes. When those things roll, it's bad for me. I had two bad ankle rolls for the first time in like 30 years when I was trying out Hokas. My first significant running injuries of any kind in decades.

So not for me.

question for you. because, i... am... you. in what you describe above. so, going all the way back to 2010, this was my big, big reticence. did you actually have a case where you were in HOKAs and you rolled your ankle and this happened to you? or, are you pretty well sure that this is likely to happen, so you've made the decision to eschew this shoe type?

Dan Empfield
aka Slowman
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Re: High cushion shoes: am I being a stubborn idiot? [Slowman] [ In reply to ]
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Slowman wrote:
or, are you pretty well sure that this is likely to happen, so you've made the decision to eschew this shoe type?

No, it happened twice to me. Once was just running in the dark, and I missed a sidewalk crack, rolled. That sidelined me for about 3 weeks, which rolling my ankle has never done.

The 2nd was in a race. I was bombing downhill (my lifelong specialty). And I was in love with the Hoka for revitalizing that specialty. But rolled my ankle, and ended my race.

N=2, and it could have just been freak accidents. But being the first time in decades that I hadn't just carried on after rolling, it was enough for me.

I'm not anti-Hoka. I was loving them. And my ankles are genuinely freakishly messed up. They roll super easy. So it's a purely personal issue.
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Re: High cushion shoes: am I being a stubborn idiot? [trail] [ In reply to ]
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I have the same exact problem with ankles - numerous ankle sprains in my earlier basketball years (7+ on each side) since my ligaments are completely torn in my ankles (MRI confirmed bilaterally) so my ankles are intrinsically unstable for lateral motion.

Running is fortunately predominantly a forward motion, with not much lateral cutting, but in the case of an errant curb descent or road/trail debris, I've definitely had my fair share of bad run sprains.

My last sprain came using the Hoka Rincon, 3 wks prior to a race - was so bad I couldn't walk for a week. I'll unfortunately get worse ankle cartilage damage from that one for sure - I'm now wearing hard ankle braces to limit sprains (even though they are still rare for me) on almost all outdoor runs save race day just to play it safe.

My main shoe is still the Bondi 6 - interestingly, the higher stack height isn't as big a deal on that shoe since it's a bit wider and flatter to me than the Rincon, which feel slightly more narrow and slightly more precarious for my ankle (I can definitely notice it). Needless to say, Nike 4% would be a friggin' disaster for me if people with good ankles are feeling perchy on them! I also think with the Bondi 6, once you break it in, you get a bit of central 'sag' in the foam that also helps buffer against rolls, and as well the lighter upper on the Rincon also gives you slightly less stability once you actually roll the ankle (I've had a few mild 'saves' in my Bondi6 on rolls which likely would have been full sprains with the Rincon.)

Still, if you don't have torn ankle ligaments, it's probably not an issue for most.

My most stable shoe to date has still definitely been the Brooks Transcend 3, which is an amazingly solid and sturdy shoe, with an awesome upper that lasts literally forever (way more solid than Hokas for sure, but comes with added weight.) Alas, the shoe is too firm for me now, despite the fact it's one of their more padded shoes. That shoe is almost anti-sprain due to its build for motion control - I really notice esp compared to the Rincons, which just feel dangerous to someone like me with my bad ankles.
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Re: High cushion shoes: am I being a stubborn idiot? [trail] [ In reply to ]
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trail wrote:
Slowman wrote:
or, are you pretty well sure that this is likely to happen, so you've made the decision to eschew this shoe type?


No, it happened twice to me. Once was just running in the dark, and I missed a sidewalk crack, rolled. That sidelined me for about 3 weeks, which rolling my ankle has never done.

The 2nd was in a race. I was bombing downhill (my lifelong specialty). And I was in love with the Hoka for revitalizing that specialty. But rolled my ankle, and ended my race.

N=2, and it could have just been freak accidents. But being the first time in decades that I hadn't just carried on after rolling, it was enough for me.

I'm not anti-Hoka. I was loving them. And my ankles are genuinely freakishly messed up. They roll super easy. So it's a purely personal issue.

i have had bad ankles since i was a teenager. i used to roll them a couple of times a year, and i'd be out. like you said. for weeks. and almost nothing is more painful.

i don't want to spike the football, but it seems over the last 20 or 25 years i've developed a defense. unconsciously. when my ankle starts to roll my body unweights that leg. and i mean this is way back there on my brain stem that this happens. that leg immediately unweights and i come down quick and hard on the other foot to compensate. i'm not nearly smart enough to execute this. my body has taken it upon itself to do this out of self-preservation, bypassing my decision portal.

i would say that, in my experience, this happens in HOKAs less often to me than it used to happen, that is, HOKAs appear to be subject to a roll less often, and i believe it's the cushion that's the reason. the cushion absorbs the lever action of the shoe hitting, say, a rock or a hole. i posit this because i did wear a HOKA - the old conquest - that was for me exceptionally unstable compared to the other models, because HOKA screwed the pooch on that shoe and made it particularly hard.

Dan Empfield
aka Slowman
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Re: High cushion shoes: am I being a stubborn idiot? [lightheir] [ In reply to ]
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Interesting. Glad to hear corroboration. I might give it another go despite the risk My experiment was a long time ago, with I think the most extreme Hoka. It looks like things have dialed back a bit since then, at least in some models.
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Re: High cushion shoes: am I being a stubborn idiot? [Slowman] [ In reply to ]
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Slowman wrote:
. i'm not nearly smart enough to execute this. my body has taken it upon itself to do this out of self-preservation, bypassing my decision portal.

Ha, yes! I do that exact thing. I know it well. It's a key part of my downhill bombing barely-in-control survival strategy.

Like I just mentioned to lighttheir, I might give it another go. I was using very early Hokas (I'm a sucker for any new tech), and it very well might have been the Conquest that you mention.
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Re: High cushion shoes: am I being a stubborn idiot? [trail] [ In reply to ]
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I run the Zoom Fly 3 on the road but do not like them on the treadmill. I keep a pair of Saucony Fastwich for the treadmill

Very happy with this combination
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Re: High cushion shoes: am I being a stubborn idiot? [trail] [ In reply to ]
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trail wrote:
Slowman wrote:
. i'm not nearly smart enough to execute this. my body has taken it upon itself to do this out of self-preservation, bypassing my decision portal.


Ha, yes! I do that exact thing. I know it well. It's a key part of my downhill bombing barely-in-control survival strategy.

Like I just mentioned to lighttheir, I might give it another go. I was using very early Hokas (I'm a sucker for any new tech), and it very well might have been the Conquest that you mention.

the conquest was a real miss of a shoe. among the 3 or 4 worst shoes HOKA ever made. there's a shoe coming out, the new elevon. 2nd generation. the original elevon was kind of nice, and actually shared some common elements with the conquest, but unfortunately one of those common elements was it was too hard. the new elevon i hope fixes that. we'll see. i'm eagerly awaiting this shoe because i'm currently running in the (reissued, only available online) original bondi b - a design now 9 years old - because it remains better (for me) than any HOKA made then or since for my own training. this and the carbon x are the 2 HOKA shoes i like (carbon x for racing and fast training, tho i don't really go fast enough to qualify for fast training).

Dan Empfield
aka Slowman
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Re: High cushion shoes: am I being a stubborn idiot? [trail] [ In reply to ]
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trail wrote:
Slowman wrote:
. i'm not nearly smart enough to execute this. my body has taken it upon itself to do this out of self-preservation, bypassing my decision portal.


Ha, yes! I do that exact thing. I know it well. It's a key part of my downhill bombing barely-in-control survival strategy.

Like I just mentioned to lighttheir, I might give it another go. I was using very early Hokas (I'm a sucker for any new tech), and it very well might have been the Conquest that you mention.

Interestingly for me, ALL my running sprains have been come during easy 'mindless' running, with most (?all) of them occuring during taper weeks where I'm going slow and almost recovery pace.

I never sprain my ankle doing anything tempo or faster. I'm pretty sure that the higher effort tightens everything (muscles, etc) surround my ankle and I'm also at heightened proprioception when going at speed and ready to instantly respond to any road irregularities.

It's the darn easy cruising where everything's relaxed/floppy, and you're daydreaming, then WHAM - overrolling on that curb drop for handicapped people, or that darn stick you weren't paying attention to!
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Re: High cushion shoes: am I being a stubborn idiot? [lightheir] [ In reply to ]
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I like the Brooks “Beast”. Been on them for years and nothing that I’ve tried feels better. My feet are flat and that was a target in the design of this particular shoe. It rolls very nice running or walking.....for me. Everyone’s feet are a little different.
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Re: High cushion shoes: am I being a stubborn idiot? [Northy] [ In reply to ]
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First rule of thumb is every runner is different. It was inevitable the pendulum was going to swing off minimalism. Hoka One One came out at the exact right time when guys like Monty were struggling to actually be able to run and others were coming off the minimalism bandwagon with nagging injuries. It doesn’t sound like you are either one of those. Well there is only one Monty.

More cushion doesn’t not lead to more miles. It can of course but so can any shoe. Ideally you own more than one shoe. I suggest 3.

1. General Go To shoe - One you know will work. When you feel like crap and don’t want to run, you reach for this shoe because you know it’s the difference maker. Personally that shoe right now for me is the Pegasus Turbo 2 from Nike.

2. Long Run Shoe - Any run 90 minutes or longer. You want a shoe that is going to continue to feel good through the entire run. Some runners do go to more shoe here but it’s not always the case. Personally for me it depends on the terrain. If I happen to be on the roads I use the Carbon X from Hoka One One. Rarely am I on the roads so it’s usually a trail shoe from Nike or On.

3. Race day shoe - This one you bring out for races and any time you are on the track or doing a track like workout on roads or trails. The idea is to feel fast when trying to run fast. For that it’s the Vapor Fly 4% Flyknit.


The right combination of shoes for you should be of great help to you running more miles. There isn’t one shoe that is going to do it. You are not the same runner day in a day out and if you are doing any structure your pacing is not the same day in and day out.

Dave Jewell
Free Run Speed
Running Shoe Insight

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Re: High cushion shoes: am I being a stubborn idiot? [SDJ] [ In reply to ]
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Thanks for chiming in Dave. I always appreciate seeing your shoe comments and insights on the forum.

After my last race this season I've picked up and tested out a bunch of different shoes, I think at least 9 different pairs in total (thank god for free shipping and returns!). My race day shoe, which also happened to be my everyday training shoe most of last season, is/was the Skechers Razor3. I still really like that shoe but wanted to add more variety to the rotation. After trying out a bunch of different shoes from several different brands with different drops and levels of cushioning I've currently settled on this as my rotation:

Cushioned daily trainers –
Nike Epic React 2 flyknit: highest drop of the bunch, I really like the fit and while they're cushioned I suspect they'll also do well for some tempo days (also tried the Peg Turbo 2 but did not like the fit)
New Balance FuelCell Propel: probably the most cushy shoe I've ever tried, also very comfortable, likely for easy aerobic base runs, and I got a pair for $44!

More minimal shoe –
Inov-8 Trailtalon 235: I still really like the fit of most Inov-8 shoes I've tried, great for trails, very flexible, great road feel

Race day shoe –
Razor3: very comfortable, I can run long in them, I can run easy in them, I can do track workouts and race in them

I also hope to finally try out the Vaporfly and the Endorphin Speed once they're out. I don't have any races for a while so I'm saving my $$ for now.

That said, I've been dealing with an Achilles problem for the past 7 weeks which has sidelined me from running. My hope is that, once I'm back, rotating through different shoes at different paces will help me build more miles and run fitness.
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Re: High cushion shoes: am I being a stubborn idiot? [SDJ] [ In reply to ]
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SDJ wrote:
First rule of thumb is every runner is different. It was inevitable the pendulum was going to swing off minimalism. Hoka One One came out at the exact right time when guys like Monty were struggling to actually be able to run and others were coming off the minimalism bandwagon with nagging injuries. It doesn’t sound like you are either one of those. Well there is only one Monty.

More cushion doesn’t not lead to more miles. It can of course but so can any shoe. Ideally you own more than one shoe. I suggest 3.

1. General Go To shoe - One you know will work. When you feel like crap and don’t want to run, you reach for this shoe because you know it’s the difference maker. Personally that shoe right now for me is the Pegasus Turbo 2 from Nike.

2. Long Run Shoe - Any run 90 minutes or longer. You want a shoe that is going to continue to feel good through the entire run. Some runners do go to more shoe here but it’s not always the case. Personally for me it depends on the terrain. If I happen to be on the roads I use the Carbon X from Hoka One One. Rarely am I on the roads so it’s usually a trail shoe from Nike or On.

3. Race day shoe - This one you bring out for races and any time you are on the track or doing a track like workout on roads or trails. The idea is to feel fast when trying to run fast. For that it’s the Vapor Fly 4% Flyknit.


The right combination of shoes for you should be of great help to you running more miles. There isn’t one shoe that is going to do it. You are not the same runner day in a day out and if you are doing any structure your pacing is not the same day in and day out.

Dave
Would you recommend a Race day shoe or Long run shoe for an IM run. Usually around a 4:45 IM runner so not winning any awards here. Would the Long run shoe be better to help save my legs?
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Re: High cushion shoes: am I being a stubborn idiot? [mattr] [ In reply to ]
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The current trend if you are racing which could mean racing for age group, racing yourself or racing the clock is to put on the Nike Vapor Fly. I don’t subscribe to that but I understand it. I don’t think you need a different shoe from your long run shoe but what I suggest is a fresh pair. One that has some running but still feels new. That change from an old pair to a new pair is always inspiring and you should be inspired to run.

Dave Jewell
Free Run Speed
Running Shoe Insight

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