The running shoe debate

Published 29th September 2020 by mymo

Running is a simple sport, right? It’s one foot in front of another, as fast, steady or slow as you like. That’s true, as is the fact that good physiology and consistent training will lead you to get fitter and faster. But with running shoe manufacturers adding more and more technology to our favourite trainers, we know it can get confusing.

In recent years, records have fallen and often this has led to discussion about what the super fast athletes are wearing on their feet. More importantly, we have asked where we can get them. We’ve seen trends ranging from barefoot to low profile, zero drop to chunky soles, any and every type of foam in the midsole you can find to the ongoing debate around whether a carbon plate in a shoe can make so much difference.

(Often yes, it can)

Here are a few stand-out shoes using the most up to date shoe technology.


Hoka One One Carbon X

Hoka One One Carbon X brings together the recognisable chunky Hoka cushion with the much sought-after carbon plate. They have been refined in the last 12 months to what has become the SPE model spotted recently on the feet of Welsh athletics star Jenny Nesbitt. What was once recognised as a chunky trail running shoe, Hoka pulled off an impossibly light and slick racer with this one to keep up with the trend.

New Balance FuelCell TC

New Balance found themselves having to keep up with the demands of their increasingly speedy athletes and updated a few versions of their FuelCell racer with the fantastic FuelCell TC combining bright, fresh colours with their recognisable sneaker look and not forgetting the carbon plate which runs through the midsole. British all-time number three marathoner Callum Hawkins has been running in these in his build up to the Tokyo Olympics.

Nike Alpha Fly

Nike Alphafly is without doubt the most discussed shoe of them all, with the prototype version worn by Eliud Kipchoge in his breakthrough sub-2 exhibition event in 2019. The Alphafly is the most recent version of the Nike carbon technology that started with the 4%. It combines the Nike air pod technology, a carbon plate and Nike’s own version of foam for comfort right up to marathon distance.

Adidas Adizero Pro

The new Adizero Pro recently launched showing off a new internal grid system that promises to lock in a great fit. A little less garish than their Nike counterparts, the Adizero Pro also carries a less hefty price tag, Lightstrike cushioning and, you’ve guessed it, a carbon plate. They are already being championed by super speedy marathon star Lily Partridge.

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