I recently received the new Saucony Virrata from the manufacturer for a wear and review and was excited to get them in the mail and give them a test run. Since I was currently in training for the first 70.3 of 2013, and was facing a weekend training camp, I felt it was a good time to give them a test run and see how they felt.
Let me start by saying that the shoes are well made, designed, and putting them on the first time felt
like pillows on my feet. The problem is that I am a heavy (still) runner, tipping the scales at 243 pounds. This, in itself, should have told me that these shows would not work for me, but I had decided to give the zero drop a try, so I slipped them on and off I ran. They felt GREAT when starting off. The change from my normal “heavy support” shoes was noticeable, but something that started off comfortable. The run course in Ocala starts off with a 3.5 mile loop through a trail, and this proved to be the downfall. As most runners know, trail running is especially tough on the ankles, but even more so when you weigh what I do, so the change to a zero drop, from a 4mm drop, was noticeable by the time I came out of the woods. I want to be clear, though, that this is not a fault of the shoe. Others that I know that wear these SWEAR by them.
The ride was comfortable when I started, which was surprising for a light shoe. Once I am in a longer training zone I will try them again without getting “off road” to see how they feel without the added issue of the trail. I will add that I wear them still to walk in and love them for that, so it is not a total loss.
From Saucony’s site, the Virrata is described as such:
Stripped down to strong. The Virrata is our lightest and most flexible training shoe and allows your foot to move naturally. We removed everything that isn’t helping your run improve. What remains is a feather-light, ultra flexible shoe with advanced cushioning that promotes a powerful stride and allows your foot to move the way it was meant to. Built on a 0mm offset, this shoe lets your feet do the work while providing plenty of protection from the road. The breathable mesh upper makes the shoe incredible lightweight and quick-drying to run in wet weather conditions.
With all that being said, the shoe is great for lighter runners, or runners with a lot of “time in the saddle”. I cant recommend them for a heavy runner, such as myself, but it is so comfortable that it gives me a goal to shoot for … because I would love to wear them some day.
Visit them at www.saucony.com and try them for yourself …