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Hokas again... (Read 241 times)

    I tried the Bondi's but they aggravated my achilles. Returned to my minimals (NB Minimus) and all is well. Not a fan as they were not for me. Couldn't feel the road.

     

    I know others love and swear by them. Just like others love Vibrams and Newtons and so on and so on. Different courses for different horses.

     

    Both concerns of mine mentioned here.   1)  How do you "feel the terrain" when your heel is 2 inches off of it...  Seems increased risk for twisting an ankle on those rooty kind of long trail runs and races?  Also,

     

    2)  I remember 2 years ago, everyone was wearing Vibrams.   Folks who were running with their toes 1/8th inch off the pavement swore Vibrams were the way to go.  But now, a couple of folks I know who used to wear Vibrams are now swearing by Hokas!   IE.  Is it just a "trend", the "in" thing to wear?  Are they just follosing the latest crowd?  Or is there any real benefit?  I wonder if it is placebo effect for most...

     

    --  I wear my "JFK 50" shirt when I run in a race sometimes, and the big sponsor on the back in big letters this year is "Hoka".  --- Every time I run a race and wear that shirt, other Hoka fans see it and say to me "Where are your Hokas?"  "You aren't wearing Hokas!"?!"  Well, because of #1 and #2 above I don't have a pair yet. (And add #3, they run $150.00'ish a pair).   But I really don't know how to respond to those folks except to say that "Hoka was merely the sponsor for the JFK 50, it isn't a Hoka shirt." ---  

    The Plan '15 (big parts)→  Feb:  Va Beach Distance Series 50K (Set a PR)     /// April:  Hampton, VA 24 Hour Run for Cancer  (Goal: >80.1+Miles for a PR)  ///    "Run Hard, Live Easy."   ∞

      Hokas are my shoe of choice these days. That said, I can't wear Mafates to save my life. All the others models work great for me.I'd say wear the shoe that works for you. There are plenty out there to choose from.

      Live the Adventure. Enjoy the Journey. Be Kind. Have Faith!

         

        Both concerns of mine mentioned here.   1)  How do you "feel the terrain" when your heel is 2 inches off of it...  Seems increased risk for twisting an ankle on those rooty kind of long trail runs and races?  Also,

         

        2)  I remember 2 years ago, everyone was wearing Vibrams.   Folks who were running with their toes 1/8th inch off the pavement swore Vibrams were the way to go.  But now, a couple of folks I know who used to wear Vibrams are now swearing by Hokas!   IE.  Is it just a "trend", the "in" thing to wear?  Are they just follosing the latest crowd?  Or is there any real benefit?  I wonder if it is placebo effect for most..

        ...

        The shoes roll over the terrain like fat tires on a bike. Most roots and rocks are absorbed into the marshmallow. Because the foot sits in the shoe like a bucket seat, they're not quite as high as they seem.

         

        That said, my Mafate 2's were sent back because the shoe was too rigid, and my heels popped out of shoes on uphills. My understanding is the 3's would have more ankle padding to improve the heel pocket fit. What the Hoka people suggested to me last spring was to try the Stinson Evo Trail because the Mafate 2's obviously weren't working, partly because of their design. I've had the Stinson Evos since last spring, and have put about 100 miles on them (vs the 1000+ miles I've put on my Saucony Xodus 3s).

         

        The sizing of the Evos is such that my feet bounce around a bit (up/down) in them and also slide a little because the upper is firm enough that I can't snug the shoe down around the instep. Instability - for me - is the inability for snug fit and heel sliding off the edge. My Xodus and some other shoes are 9.5. Evos are 8.5. When I tried them on, I was going to try an 8 to see if they might fit better, but the speed lacing in them had ends that were too short to allow my high volume foot to get in. IF I'd bought them, I could have cut the speed lacing and used the regular, but I wasn't willing to bet on them fitting. The internal bounciness didn't cause blisters but it did cause some rubbing, like my Montrail Badrocks did, but more so.

         

        So for me, the Xodus work for running (wide forefoot, rock plate, reasonable flexibility, although not known for good traction) and just hanging around (more so than any of my other shoes). If the Xodus hadn't worked out, I'd probably try dealing with the Hokas more.

         

        However, in the last about 9 mi in my hybrid marathon with about 1800ft vertical drop (whole loop course has 3500ft up and same down), much of it on rough asphalt (pebbles sticking up through asphalt),  I would have loved to have tried changing into my Hokas. The Xodus have no cushion for that type thing. I've done much more drop in a day on dirt trail in my Xodus without having that problem. But my Xodus worked better than whatever I was wearing a few years ago on that course - before I realized how much asphalt, esp. the rough asphalt, was there. This is why I'm wondering about the Kailua.

         

        I've got several friends who have used Hokas for at least several years. She's using a model that was out of production before I was even aware of them. She won the women's foot division of the Iditarod Trail Invitational last year in her HOkas (waterproof Mafates, iirc) - that's a 350 mi winter race. The height of the HOka actually results in better insulation. Wink When I've asked my friends about them, they say they work for them, but they don't work for many people.

         

        MTA: When I first tried a pair (not my size but just for feel)  on in store, the cushioning was like nothing else I'd ever had on my feet - heavenly. Which is why I pursued trying to find a pair that worked. When I was first using them, there was a lot of stress on shin - where I never had any problems. I'm usually a midfoot lander, but with the spaciousness of the shoe and the marshmallow cushioning, it was really a strengthening exercise for stability. I finally ended up running more on heel, so I just hit and roll forward with the rocker, and generally don't have problems other than the bounciness. I use them mostly on paved bike trail because there's not enough control in them for trails - or at least I haven't felt comfortable enough in them to try them much there.

         

        That said, I'm considering something different from Xodus for the last 9 miles of that one marathon. But the marshmallow effect of the Hoka absorbs a lot of energy on the up.

        "So many people get stuck in the routine of life that their dreams waste away. This is about living the dream." - Cave Dog
        So_Im_a_Runner


        Go figure

          I ran in a pair of Stinson Tarmac for 600+ miles and was really pleased with them. For me, it took about 30 miles to adjust to the different feel of the Hoka. They're a lot more mobile and agile than they look. I've run from 6 minute pace to 15 minute pace in them and found them comfortable. That said, I generally chose them for recovery days or long, slow distance days. I did feel like my legs felt less beat up over longer efforts than had I been in a different shoe. In particular, I'm thinking about the 50 miles I did pacing a friend where my feet felt no discomfort the whole time.

           

          That said, I haven't purchased a second pair yet, although I don't know that it's the Hoka's fault. I have a Haglund's bump going and the cushion seems to aggravate it. I'm also focusing on shorter and faster this year, so I don't know that the need is there. When I get back to serious, high mileage training I'll probably consider another pair.

          PRs:  Marathon (2:49xx; '13)  Half (1:25xx; '12) 10k (40:26; '11) 5mi (29:23; '13) 5k (17:33; '13)

          fimmx


            I'm getting closer to giving the Hokas a good try. Did a trail half on Saturday in Altra Intuition. It's the first time I tried a trail half in these, my usual shoes are Vivo Barefoot Breatho, Altra Eves or Nike Free 3. What a difference this shoe made! Either that, or the shoe is just that good, or the shoe is good for trails, I do not know what exactly, but my legs felt great when I was done. When I was running downhill, I could totally feel the cushioning and instead of feeling wobbly, the shoe actually seemed to contribute to some stability. I was not scared to step on stones, I let the shoe do it's job. If this is the type of feeling to be expected from the Hokas, I'll give 'em a try.

             

            Now in rereading what I wrote here, this sounds more like a plug for the Altra Intuition 1.5 than a reason to try Hokas! Smile


            Still kicking

              I put 1200 miles on my first pair of Hokas, the Stinson Tarmacs. I put 400 miles on a pair of Bondi 2's before giving them to a friend who couldn't afford shoes. I've got 700 miles on my current Hokas, the Mafate 3's, and they still look and feel new. Even though the Mafate 3's are full blown trail shoes, I run 100% on asphalt. I got them for the cushion, and really can't tell the difference in the trail tread on the street. Some people see moon boots, but I see a saved running career. I have meniscus trouble and an arthritic knee, and the Hokas are the difference between training for marathons, or training for bicycle fundraisers

                I put 400 miles on a pair of Bondi 2's before giving them to a friend who couldn't afford shoes.

                 

                That's awesome :-)

                Live the Adventure. Enjoy the Journey. Be Kind. Have Faith!

                NHLA


                  Just got a pair.  Three runs so far.  No problems except the weird pain on the bottoms of my toes.

                  Ran mountain to sea trail and did not bust my butt.  This is a tough trail.  Part of the Shut IN trail race,

                  Ran forest service rd 5000. 3000' up and down Laurel Mt.. Cut 5 min off downhill time.

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