Home > Reviews > Standing Out – A Kinvara Review

Standing Out – A Kinvara Review

Recently I started running in the Saucony Kinvaras.  This is a significant change since, for the past year, I have run in nothing but my vibram five fingers.  The change was borne of two events: (1) being on a bike for 6-7 hours and then running a marathon leaves your feet pretty sore; and (2) being sprayed by hoses every .5 miles (in Chicago) left me with the two BIGGEST blisters of my life (and the first legitimate blisters I’ve had in the year of running in my five fingers).  For those reasons, I will be running in my kinvaras for the longer distance races.

I have to say I love the Kinvaras.  I read many reviews before purchasing them because I believe in the natural/barefoot running research and the benefit I’ve seen in my own running, and I wanted to minimize the change in my gait going from the Vibrams to the Kinvaras.  Other barefoot runners highly recommended these shoes, so I thought I would take the chance.

In addition to the shoes running like a dream, I love the feel and the weight.  Obviously they are heavier than the vibrams, but it isn’t a noticeable difference.  I ran the Monster Tri in them and have done several other runs as well, and they have lived up to the reviews.  At this point I have put probably 50 miles on them and have been very happy.  While I’m considering one of the Zoot tri shoes for the spring, I have a feeling that the Kinvaras will be a permanent addition to the shoe collection.

Here’s the thing though, while the performance of the Kinvara is a huge selling point, there is something I love even more about them: the color!  I bought the vizi-pro orange kinvaras and I love it.  I tweeted the other day that I get almost as many comments about these shoes as my five fingers because of it and I love it.  The most recent story was while I was at lunch the other day and heard two hispanic ladies talking about them in Spanish!  Now I know just enough Spanish to be dangerous, but I almost laughed out loud when I heard “zapatos,” “rojas,” and laughter coming from my right.  I caught their eye and smiled and it was a great moment.

I got to thinking about why people make so many comments about both the five fingers and the kinvaras. Obviously the vibrams are something startlingly unique, but other than the color the Kinvaras aren’t noticeably different than millions of other shoes.  The conclusion I’ve come to is that the comments some from people being willing to stand out.  We live in a world of blacks, whites, blues, grays . . . muted or understated colors.

It seems like we are afraid to stand out.  We are content with anonymity and maybe the mediocrity that comes with it.  We are afraid of calling too much attention to ourselves for fear of failing and looking the fool.  This can be something as simple as not wearing something we might think would be fun or as complex as starting our own business.  I think this is one of the greatest strengths of the triathlon and endurance community.  We aren’t afraid to stand out.  We certainly aren’t afraid to fail.  We embrace our idiosyncrasies and aren’t afraid for others to see them as well.  We are proud to wear our crazy colors, our strange outfits, and our absolutely distinct tan lines.  We are who we are, and you’re going to see us coming.

Not to beat you over the head with the metaphor, but why not wear crazy colors?  Why not stand out?  Why not take that risk?  Go out and buy those bright orange shoes/shirt/pants/hat. Start that business.  Stand out!

*I am willing to admit that people might wear the darker colors because they are really ninjas and don’t want to be seen.  In that case, please disregard all the above and please don’t kill me 🙂

  1. November 19, 2010 at 8:26 am

    Saucony’s ViZi-PRO is my new favorite color. Nearly half my running wardrobe is bright orange and I’m proud of it. The way I see it, if I stand out while I’m running down the road, it keeps me safe. Same goes for running in the woods. Hunters shouldn’t be shooting at a bright orange deer.

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