Team..I don't have a lot of trails to run on where I live so I am stuck on roads :( I would like to try and find a minimalist pair of sneakers. Any suggestions? 


Would love to hear your feedback

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Barbara, I love the Nike Free 5.0's, though I am told 3.0's are better, I don't have the money for them.  Just go to your local running store and try on different pairs until you find one you like.  :-)

No minimalist shoes in that arsenal of shoes in your video?? :) I would say to wait for Eric's shoe, don't know if it is available yet, but it is so worth the wait!

I'll jump on Richard's bandwagon.  You just have to try different shoes to see which brand works for you.  I've gone through many minimalist type shoes (I love to tinker).  I'll mention some that have worked for me.

Any racing flats will work on the road.  Racing flats are normally very light with little upper structure, no support and minimal sole.  Issue is the sole is normally rather soft and they'll wear out pretty fast.  I normally buy these online and go for the couple of year old closeouts (the price is normally greater than 50% off).  I find myself running most of my road miles in various brands of flats.  This leads me to explain I don't run in one pair of shoes.  I rotate shoes just about daily, running in 3-5 pairs depending on what I'm working on and how I feel.

I think the Saucony Kinvara is a good transition shoe.  Minimal heel-to-toe drop with little cushioning (buying the older versions online will save a couple bucks).

Both the New Balance road (MR10) and trail (MT10) minimus are good.  The MR10 has very little heel-to-toe drop and less cushioning than the Kinvara.  The MT10 are basically nothing.  I've run very little road using the MT10s.  I've done a couple 50K trail races with the MT10.  Be careful with 'new' minimalist feet.  MT10 (or other very minimalist shoes) should only be used on rocky surfaces with tough feet.  Learned that during a 30 miles fun run on the rocky trails and C&O canal towpath around Harpers Ferry, WV.

While not exactly minimalist, but I'm currently trying out the Brooks Green Silence and I think they have a great minimalist feel with cushioning.

The Running Warehouse is one of the best websites for shoe information and reviews.  They also have a great try it out policy and have awesome closeout deals.

To close I'll jump on Meg's bandwagon...I'm waiting patiently for Eric's new shoes...well, trying to be patient...

Good luck!

Thanks Rich, Meg and Dente. This is very helpful. 

Dente you mentioned something very key in your post..."transition". I'm going to take that advice seriously. 27 years in very padded sneakers.. ugh.

Meg I had to laugh, but when I saw your post I went to the shoe pile and sure enough..there were a pair of saucony kinvara's. I couldn't believe my eyes. Then I remembered when I got them. I bought them when they first came out ran 5 miles in them and put them away. My Plantar F. flared up and I thought they were junk. BUT....i probably should of slowly gotten used to them..like normal people. 

So I dug them out and just took them for a very short 15 min run. We'll see how I do! 

Dente..thanks for the running warehouse tip..I never heard of that site, I will definitely try them out!

I am making the transition to more minimal shoes as well.  My strategy so far has been: I have one pair of NB 1080 v2 (8mm drop) and a pair of Newtons (4mm drop) and I alternate them, using the NB for longer runs.  My plan is to move down slowly, so the next step will be to alternate 4mm and 0mm drop shoes until I'm comfortable with 0mm.  These shoes I'm running with now are pretty cushioned so are probably not strictly speaking minimalist, but I'm going to decide as I go what level of cushioning I need.  I think that's pretty individual.  

Just echoing what others have said here. Find out what works for you. I started transitioning with the Nike Free.  I found it felt too unstable underfoot and my knee would really hurt when I wore them. I'd been running in a very neutral shoe before that so I just decided to go rogue and jump right into the Saucony Hattori. If you read some of my posts on the forum from that era, you'll see that was a very painful transition! Can you say "shredded calves?"

Eventually, it all worked out it's all good now.

While the Hattori is a nice shoe for the road, it's got some quirks that led me away from it. I'm now a huge fan of the Merrells Minimalist line. I have the Pace Glove for everyday and the Lithe Glove for rainy days. My 7 year old loves his Merrells too. As a mom, pleases me greatly that they gave kids an option. 

Ask my hubby and you'll get a whole other set of recos though. You'd have to pry his 5 fingers from his cold, dead feet.

Enjoy the journey to finding your "sole" mate, har har...

How are you finding the Merrell stuff for trail running?  I'm basically doing all my running on the roads at the moment and don't really know where to start for trail stuff...

I use both shoes on trails but warning: They don't have much in the way of toe protection. I stubbed the hell out of my toe on a root and ended up losing the nail. My fault for not lifting my knees but a bit more substance up front would have helped me in that situation.

I currently run most of my miles on suburban roads and grass because I'm training for a road race this Spring. I'll be back on the nice shady trails this summer. Hopefully Eric's shoes will be out by then, hint hint...

+1 for Merrells, my wife and I both a big fans. 

Omg... I'm so discouraged. I've been using my saucony kinvaras and my lower calves are killing me! And they are HUGE now... I hate it! What is happening??? I'm only doing 3-6 miles in theses shoes at a time. I did 6 miles the other day and could barely walk after... I'm trying to forefront foot strike or mid foot... I'm reading barefoot running step by step but gez... Between the awkward running form now and these shoes... I can't run right! :( HELP. I GUESS THE GOOD NEWS IS I went to put my old running shoes on... ASIC Kayanos 16 and I couldn't feel the ground... It felt so weird I took them off and threw them on the shoe pile...

I did a 4 mile run in some Inov-8's (right off the bat, was probably not the best idea) and my calves were *really* sore for a few days.  That was when I decided to ease into it and alternate shoes, haha.  Anytime you change something, even if it's for the better, things might suck for a while as you adjust.  Hang in there! 

Please tell me the calves shrink back to normal size.... I've always had great calves but now my lower ones coupled with my upper ones make me look like I have two thighs on a leg now... Gosh I hope they're just super swollen!! Lol,,

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