New minimalist Inov8 set for mid 2010

Check out these new Inov8’s set to hit the market mid 2010. Weighing in at 6.7 ounces, low-profile, and Inov8’s 1 arrow midsole thickness. Looks like they have a similar upper to the F-lite 230, but with a slightly thinner midsole (1 arrow vs. the F-lite 230’s 2 arrow midsole)…and the X-talon 212 lugged outsole. These look VERY promising. I like the orange too. I found out about these from another Oregon ultrarunner, Joe Grant, who runs in minimalist shoes.

My minimalist transition update…

I just ran the Bad Ass 50k (our local Fat Ass Fun Run in Central Oregon) in the New Balance MT 100s and my body/feet held up great in the minimalist set up. I think I’m fully transitioned now. However, I’ve found one aspect to be troublesome with the MT100s, now that I have 150+ miles logged in them, (including today’s 50k)—sloppy upper on the downs. Trying to stay true to the “slow-progression” to minimalist footwear, I’ve been pretty conservative on technical downhills in training until today’s 50k. Today, I ran down pretty aggro and they proved a little sloppy in the midfoot upper on technical, rocky downhills. My foot slides side to side in them too much and they actually hang off the midsole almost a 1/2 inch at times and I banged my pinkie toe on sharp lava rocks while hammering down at 5:45-6:15 pace coming off the Cinder Butte descent in the Bad Ass 50k today.

This got me into a conversation, post race, with Joe (who told me about the X-Talon 190 coming out). He ran Mont Blanc in the Inov8 X-talon 212 last summer and loved them. I also raced against him at White River 50 miler where he was sporting the F-lite 230s. He has a wider forefoot like mine and we talked about the narrow forefoot fit of fell racing shoes, specifically Inov8s. He mentioned that they stretch a bit after some break-in and that it’s not bad to have a forefoot upper that is snug (read not restrictive, just snug) so it holds your foot over the midsole when having to make those quick hard “mini” cuts and “quick dancing steps” on technical downhills, preventing the side to side sloppiness I was experiencing in the NB MT100’s upper. The NB is fine on other mellower terrain, but it was just too sloppy for my liking on the technical downs. I broke out my blue Invo8 F-lite 230’s tonight and decided it was time to give them another shot. I messed with some unique lacing in the midfoot to loosen up across my instep and put a slightly thinner insole in them. They actually felt good around the house. I’m going to run in them quite a bit this week and report back. Giddyup!

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