Inov 8 Shoes

30 Aug

One of the trendiest bits of foot wear to be recommended by the Crossfit movement has to be the minimal running range offered by Inov8. We like them. A lot.  Hence we always have one of their banners up in the gym. ( that said, note stevens comments about olympic lifting shoes)

Never the less, we are always on the look for alternatives, so of late I slopped around in some Converses (thankfully only £40) then some new balance shoes, then some non toed vibram trainers. I didn’t like any of them, and secretly hankered for my beloved Inov8s back.

But then I remembered that part of the reason why I drifted off Inov 8 was that the edges of my toes broke out of the sides of every pair . I owned 5 pairs, all with my toes sticking through the sides: actually,  they were all blue, so everyone thought I owned only one pair and was, in effect,  a skank.

So what was wrong with me, why did my feet burst out of Inov 8’s like a delinquent Hobbit: and actually, how come Toms did the same: perhaps he too was a hobbit? Any way I got onto Andrew Burton from Inov 8 and raised this  very issue and he  suggested

“Could be that you should look at the Inov-8 road-x shoes – they are built on a wider last. The f-lite range is currently only available in our narrowest last.

In terms of sizing – make sure you are putting all of your weight through the foot and get someone to check for half to full thumbs width between the end of the big toe and the end of the shoe.

Another option is to run the f-lites without their footbeds in – this will give more volume in the shoe. Or if you find yourself buying a size larger than normal, you could add in either one of our 3mm or 6mm footbeds to improve the fit.”

Rather than risk another on line purchase, I went down to Ellis Brigham in Covent Garden and had some fantastic help from Magdalene ( a Runner and Inov 8 fan). Very helpful, full of insight and I bought a pair of each, the F-lite range and  road-x shoes ( both in different colours so people know  I own at least 2 pairs). Obviously, now I know the right sizes, the next few pairs ill buy online, but, I really can, hand on heart say, for your 1st pair, get down to Ellis Brigham and get the right type for you. ( and dont just try them on and nip off and buy on line: have the decency to reward the expertise and buy your 1st pair there. Its probably only £10 more than an online supplier: and you get to hangout in Covent Garden!!).

For more insight, check out Kates “new Shoooooes” article.

One of  the better online retailers is Wiggle

5 thoughts on “Inov 8 Shoes

  1. I have Inov8 Bare-XF 210’s. I got them off Amazon originally and got my usual running shoe size of 5.5. They felt quite roomy in the toes and I contemplated getting a smaller size, but according to some reviews it was better to keep the roomy size. I really like the space at the front – I hardly feel the shoes when I wear them. It takes a bit of getting used to running in them for longer distances though, but after a while it does feel good.

  2. My toes have started poking out as well, although in my case I think it’s a simple matter of me loving them so much I wear them all the time…

  3. Toe room is really important in a running shoe I think, particularly if you’re converting to a more minimal style. your toes “splay” naturally when you walk or run barefoot and play a big part in maintinaing balance – figures that you should give them as much space as possible to do so.
    Merrell do an excellent barefoot range which are extra roomy at the front if anyone finds Inov8s too narrow…

  4. I would agree with Chris. Innov8s are excellent but i personally found them a bit narrow for my feet.

    For an alternative, Nike Free 3.0 are probably a less well made shoe but are good if your have wider feet and they are a bit lighter which is great if you are running a fair amount of weekly miles.

  5. Purchased the Reebok nano 2.0 in New York and after 22 boxes in 30 days I can say I rate them the best overall shoe I have. Wide toe box vs the Inov8as well, plus you can customise them if you want to look more awesome…

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