I won the Mizuno lottery from the Team Running Free season kick-off, which was $110 to spend on Mizuno gear after the pro discount. Sweet! I saved it until late in September before going and trying the different Mizuno products since I knew I was going to be in the market for either a racing flat or a shoe to push the pace.
I have raced in the Mizuno Wave Musha 2 and 3 in the past and have always loved those shoes. I knew I wasn’t going to pick up shoes to use right away, rather, I was looking for a pair to do a few training runs in this year and something to race in next year. Having run 5 marathons this year and an Ironman, I’m looking to stick solely on 10K and half-marathon distance races next year. I want to gain some speed! I will likely race in these shoes next season, and I’m looking forward to it.
Out of the box, I weighed the shoe and it came in right around 8.3 ounces with the laces. I used to care about the aesthetic design of a shoe, but I’ve found that the more serious I have gotten into running, the less I cared about what a shoe looked like. With that being said, I am lukewarm on the design of this shoe. The fit however, was fantastic. There is a nice amount of space in the toe box and the mesh material kept my feet cool after about 6 miles into a run. The material used also feels high quality.
I am naturally a mid-foot, neutral runner, so I didn’t get the benefit of Mizuno’s wave design, which encourages runners to feel the full heel-to-toe “wave”. I’ve tried heel-striking for a few hundred yards and the shoe felt fantastic. However, I just can’t run like that, and I felt that the mid-foot landing transition to the forefoot was very comfortable and responsive. Especially when performing speed work. These shoes feel amazing running hard and fast. I equally felt that they provided very good support for longer distances at tempo paces. Of course, this all depends on what a “tempo” pace is for you. My pacing is average.
This shoe felt perfect in every way, especially for a heavier athlete such as myself. I’m hoping to run with these to reach my goal next year, a sub 1:30 half marathon, so we shall see!
For the female version of this shoe, please see this review by fellow Running Free team member: http://www.teamrunningfree.com/blog/2014/11/27/mizuno-wave-sayonara-2/