Tuesday, 9 April 2013

His and Her's @Saucony Virrata Reviews - HERS


CHEESEBALL ALERT: The Hubby and I spent the past month prepping for our first race of the season and testing out Saucony's new Virrata. So we have a His and Her's Review for you!

The Virratta Stats: 
  • The Virrata is a Neutral Shoe
  • It is Saucony's lightest and most flexible shoe. Men's 6.5oz and Women's 6.0 oz.
  • 0mm Offset - Heel 18mm and Forefoot 18mm
  • The Upper is constructed with Breathable Mono Mesh and HydraMAX Collar Lining
  • Midsole is High Abrasion EVA (EVA+) Foam
For more information about the tech involved in the Virrata check out the Saucony Virrata Tech sheet

Hers:
So being the Run Nerd that I am, I have obviously read Born to Run. And regularly daydream of setting off barefoot as I run through a pastoral scene of mountains, rivers, flowers, and bliss. And since then I have tried several different shoes on the "minimalist" spectrum, all in hopes of making my running daydream a reality. I also have not had much luck. I always ended my run with sore feet, blisters, and very tight calves. Leaving me thinking that perhaps this whole barefoot thing isn't all it is cracked up to be...

So when the Virrata arrived I was skeptical. But excited to try them.




PROS:
  • I immediately loved the colours! Hello Pink! 
  • They fit like a glove. The upper was snug and well suited for my narrow feet - an issue I often struggle with 
  • The cushioning the Virratta offered set them ahead of the other "minimalist" shoes I have tried in the past. The offset is 0mm, but there is still a good amount of cushioning to keep my feet happy and protected.
CONS:
  • I normally wear a 12mm heel drop, so I knew that I needed to transition slowly when trying to jump down to 0mm. I could only use them on short runs and during speed work. 
  •  My stride and running style is not at a place yet where I think I can wear a 0mm drop shoe full-time. I know I lead with my heel. And because I have yet to perfect that forefoot strike I did experience tight calves after a longer run in the Virratta.

Overall:
They were comfortable, light, and felt fast. I cannot say enough about The  EVA+ foam based cushioning - the Virrata is probably one of the most comfortable shoes I own. The cushioning kept my feet protected and happy while slugging it out during my Hill Repeats, Track Workouts, as well as on Race Day. And I am confident that any of the calve pain I experienced is more a comment on my running style than the shoes themselves. If you are a minimalist runner or looking to start transitioning into a 0mm shoe, I think you would be hard pressed to find a better option. I would definitely recommend trying the Virrata.

Have your tried Barefoot Running? Do you wear a Minimalist Shoe?

Love Your Favourite Darwinian Fail,
Krysten

Disclaimer: Saucony sent me a pair of Virrata's to try and review as part of a Fitfluential Campaign. All opinions expressed here are my own.