Disclaimer: I received a free pair of Mizuno Wave Rider 18s to review as a BibRave Pro. Check out BibRave.com to learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador) and also to find and write race reviews!
As a runner, I've found that it's a never-ending search for the perfect shoe. Once you do find that shoe, the manufacturer changes styles or discontinues it. Since every person is different, it's hard to have that Cinderella moment with your sneaker.
Through the years, I've run in shoes from the major brands - Adidas, Nike, Brooks, and Saucony. When I learned from BibRave that I would be receiving a pair of shoes from Mizuno, I was both excited and nervous. It's no secret that I'm a very injury-prone runner. I'm a firm believer that the right shoe makes all the difference, and I was hopeful that the Wave Rider would be that shoe.
First thing's first - the details. You can find out more about the Wave Rider at Mizuno's site, but for specifics, the shoe weighs 7.8 ounces. It fits 99% true to size - I wear a size 11, and it fits me just fine. I would usually never purchase a shoe unless I had tried it on first, but since Mizuno was awesome enough to send them over, I just went with my usual size. The shoes arrived pretty quickly, and I was on my way.
An important disclaimer - while I did run in these shoes several times, I'm still coming back from injury. Many of my workouts were cross training, but I think that's an important feature to every shoe. I usually use my old running shoes for things like the elliptical, bike, stair climber, etc. The only difference this time is that the shoes are new.
For my first run in these, I did 2 miles with my friend Rebecca. She used to work for a running store, so she was able to give me a little bit more of a background on them. Since I typically run in a stability shoe, she didn't think it would make that much of a difference if I switched to the Wave Riders, which are neutral. We both weren't sure how it would feel to run longer distances in them.
During the first time out, I noticed that it felt a lot easier to run in these. Because the Wave Rider is a neutral shoe, it weighs less than the stability shoes I'm used to running in. If you're a fan of lighter shoes (for races or speed workouts especially), you'll love these. I used to run in the Nike Free, but I was very happy to see that the Mizunos have a lot more stability to them. I got through all of my runs without pain, including a 4.5 mile run over the bridges in Downtown Jacksonville.
Other than running, I used the Wave Rider for cross training. They are perfect to train in due to how light they are. Instead of feeling like I was doing things with bricks on my feet, it felt a lot more comfortable and natural.
My final verdict on the Wave Rider is that it's a great shoe, but the lack of more stability may deter me from using them as my permanent distance shoe. They're very comfortable to run in, and they're really pretty too (this totally matters, right?!) I definitely recommend at least trying them on at your running store.
I'm Jenn! I'm a baker, blogger, sorta-runner, and writer living in Jacksonville, Florida!