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Saturday, August 2, 2014

Hoka Clifton Review

They're going crazy for the new Clifton was the header in the email I received on the 31st.  Hype Hoopla or marketing?  I peeked their new line up for the fall and its the business.  Hoka's are definitely making some noise in the running industry and in the streets.

According to Jeff Dengate -(Runner's World Senior Editor) "The Clifton was the big surprise among this season's new models.  It's impossibly lightweight, even though it looks like it should be heavy, and it offers an amazing level of protection underfoot."  

Brian Metzler-(Competitor's editor-in-chief) said "We really think the Clifton is a game-changing shoe because it combines lightweight cushioning with a design that encourages a natural ride."  At first I was like really.  

There's no way a shoe that big is going to be light, but what if were true it would be an awesome marriage.  The Hoka Clifton One One has a 5mm offset 29mm/24mm stack heights.  The men's shoe weighs in at 7.7oz and the women's 6.6oz which is insane.  

At this point in my research I'm intrigued so I've got to at least put my feet in a pair.  I start making a few calls to see who has the Clifton.  Two calls deep and I tracked a pair down in Old Saybrook at Sound Runner which is about 45min away from my house.  Prior to taking the hike I wanted to make sure they had my size.  Affirmative let's ride, wait a minute.  What color do you have? Green.  The pea green wouldn't have been my first choice, but I can work with that.

Right out the box you feel the weight difference immediately, I thought I was holding a Kinvara.  Before I put the Clifton on I twisted and turned it looking to see where the put the shoe.  How could they save on the weight and yet the shoe still looks bulky?  Hoka stripped down the upper on their speedster removing any extraneous material.  I had visions of the shoe in a garage as if it was a car during production being transformed into race car and the crew was tossing out backseats, speakers, doorknobs radio antenna etc.  When they finished they had created a runners custom dream.

I normally rock a size 12 but had to come down a 1/2 size.  Once I put feet in I was hooked, it could be the sneakerholic in me just wanting to go for a ride.  My foot seemed to disappear in the shoe, I didn't notice the upper.  but I couldn't help but realize there was functional sole underfoot.

The Clifton's were at least worthy of a test drive.  After Saturday morning's Spin Class 4miles were on deck.  Initially I intended to do it on the treadmill at the gym because it was raining outside, but rain doesn't deter runner's we make it happen!  I threw on my rain jacket and hit the pavement.

4 Miles with hills was easy with an avg pace 8:36 in 34:27.  The run was effortless.  There wasn't anytime wasted trying to figure out how to adjust my stride to the shoe, simply plug and play. 

The Clifton lives up to the reviews.  Light weight cushioned responsive ride.  Unless another shoe comes along before October I'll be rocking The Clifton for my fall marathon in October.  Do your feet a favor check out the new Clifton!!

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