by Megan Vigue, Marathon Sports Boston assistant manager
Despite always wishing that I could run in a lightweight and flexible shoe, experience has taught me that I really do need a shoe with some stability built into it. However, I’ve had a hard time finding a shoe that offers enough support without being too heavy or clunky. I was interested to see if the Mizuno Wave Inspire 12 could provide me that elusive middle ground between stability and lightness that I’ve been looking for in an everyday trainer.
When I first put on the Inspire, I noted that there was plenty of room in the toebox but the heel and midfoot still felt snug and secure. This fit is pretty typical for Mizuno running shoes, so runners who loved previous versions of the shoe will be happy with this familiar feel. I also immediately noticed how firm the Inspire felt compared to my current shoes (Saucony Guide 8) and I wondered when – and if – I would get used to that.
Taking the Inspires out for a run the next morning, that firmer ride felt totally natural after about a mile. The combination of the secure fit and responsive cushioning made me feel grounded, and I felt like the shoe was stable enough to keep me from overpronating. I especially appreciated how light this shoe was while still giving me a solid amount of support. In terms of finding that balance between a lightweight shoe that’s stable enough to work as an everyday trainer, I think the new Inspire fits the bill perfectly. I wore them on my long run without any problems, and I’m even considering wearing them for the B.A.A. Half-Marathon this Sunday!
For those currently in the Inspire 11, the biggest changes you’ll notice are:
- An improved upper fit. This one seems to wrap the foot a little more nicely than the last version. It feels softer and more forgiving, which accommodates for slightly wider foot shapes.
- A significantly softer first feel and heel strike. I know I said that the shoe is firm – it’s firmer than I am used to in a Saucony or Nike. Version 12, however, feels significantly softer than its predecessor.
Coming in at 8.9oz on the women’s side and 10.6oz for men, the Mizuno Wave Inspire 12 is a great update to an already popular stability shoe.