DISCLAIMER: I am not saying that I depend on all these items, gadgets, formulas and stuff when I run. I can run without them. But I do believe that each run should be a quality run. I run because I want to push my limits and be better each time I hit the pavement. I run to excel, I do not jog to go sightseeing. My enjoyment is beating my time, challenging myself. That’s why I take advantage of the studies and new technology that is available, to make each run–the most perfect run it can be. Hence, these REVIEWS

Runner's World Editors Choice 2011 and Best Shoe in The World 2011 Award

My friends know that I over-pronate when I run. Pronation is the inward rolling of the foot as you lift it from the ground upon impact. This weird gait also helps in achieving fast acceleration. But over-pronators are more susceptible to injury. Stability shoes or motion-control running shoes are built for over-pronators with a rock-solid heel support and ankle cushioning that helps avoid injuries during running. Among the best in these class of running shoes is Asics. Specifically the GT-Series. I will describe the technology and features of this world famous shoe and my personal experience trying them out at the Marikina track.

Asics is famous for the IGS technology

Impact Guidance System (IGS): The Impact Guidance System is a propriety technical design of Asics that makes the heel area rigid, ankles locked yet comfortable. The philosophy is to allow the foot to perform in a more natural manner when running. I found this very effective. My foot was not rolling out of control inward and I was more confident in changing lanes or sprinting from a slow pace without worrying that I might get a sprained ankle.

Who would've thought that the whole inside is high-grade memory foam?

P.H.F (Personal Heel Fit System) : Out of the box, I was a bit concerned that the shoe appeared to be quite slim. I was accustomed to New Balance offering width sizes with their shoes. Loosening the laces and putting the shoe on felt amazing. It hugged my foot securely without being uncomfortably tight, it just molded with the contours of my foot. After removing the shoe, I noticed that it still retained the curves of my foot while expanding. I put the shoe back on and true enough, it still hugs my foot snugly. The ComfortDry sock liner does its job as well. My foot still felt cool after completing a few laps.

See the Gel? Colored black to compliment the design

GEL® Cushioning System: The repetitive impact of running can damage your knees without proper cushioning. The ASICS GEL cushioning system is probably the most famous among all of Asic’s Technology. The propriety GEL-units are engineered in the midsole of the shoe. According to Asics, the GEL-unit contains mix of silicone based porous foam, a silicone GEL and a semi-solid silicone substance encapsulated in polyurethane. This offers a performance level shock absorption.  I was accustomed to New Balance’s ABZORB foam based technology and running for the first time with Gel, as my running friend Apple describes it, it’s like stepping on a marshmallowy-soft substance. The bounce was awesome, no energy is wasted as each stride was so easy. I only stopped running from being out of breath not from any pain.

so light

Solyte™ – Running shoes are always engineered to be light to lessen the energy needed to lift one’s foot. Although I would say that New Balance “mastered” the art of lightness in running shoes, Asics is a very near second place with Solyte. It used to be EVA and SpEVA but this is a new “secret” material from Asics that makes up most of the underside of the shoe. This is a mixture of durability and lightness. The shoe feels really solid and built like a trail shoe but amazingly light. As light as my 778 or felt even lighter.

AHAR® (ASICS High Abrasion Rubber) – This is the  tough rubber compound used at the heavy-contact areas of the outer sole.  You can see it noticeably as it appears with a different texture, this is really meant for durability than anything else. Underneath you would also notice the Guidance Line present in all 2011 Asics shoes, this encourages a more efficient gait to give a smoother ride experience. The “bounce” that Jodan and I notice that we runners achieve upon completing a perfect lap? That “bounce” was achieved even before I completed a lap, my foot was almost moving on it’s own without much effort.

Design wise, I love that almost the whole shoe is wrapped in a breathable mesh material. The high abrasive/tension areas like the lacing holes are made with leather. Some areas are accented by suede material and 3M reflectors are also found all over the shoe for night visibility. Every detail is so precisely engineered, no wonder this won Runner’s World’s Editor Choice as Best Shoe of 2011. Since I chose the black/black color option, it is a bit hard to see the intricate details and different materials used on the shoe. The blue/white color accents all the details, you can see it by clicking here.

I almost, almost wished for a Gel-Kayano 17 (motion-control shoe) but upon seeing all the reviews, awards and citations of both professional runners and experts on this shoe, I am glad I chose the GT-2160. The GT-2170 will soon be released, but nonetheless, I will enjoy and have the best run of my life with this baby.

Since I like to focus on my runs, I don't bring cameras while running to take photos. This is the only chance for a photo-op, post-run, sweaty and all =)

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6 responses »

  1. Jodan Valle says:

    Itsura palang mukang deadly na… 🙂

  2. rah says:

    Gusto ko yung snug fit ng asics at yung material ng mesh nila. Pati yung grip ng rubber nila compared sa NBs. And you’re right on their heel wrap, sakto talaga.

    But I have a problem with the gel, at least doon sa cumulus 10. I think I can’t feel the ground. It’s so soft, it’s absorbing the energy return. It’s a bit heavy din.

    But I know GT-2160 is lighter and built for lighter people, so i think it’s more responsive. And hindi OA yung presyo unlike yung brand new na Cumulus o Nimbus (over rated sila I think).

    One small detail I like about Asics that’s so important to me is the their reflector at the back of the shoes. It’s so important that it can mean the difference between life and death at night.

    • C.Seamus says:

      The memory foam really blew me away, the 2011 lineup all have this feature where it really molds to your heel and ankle.

      The GT series have a long tradition of winning Runner’s World’s Best Shoe award, and are quite light, not as light as NB’s, but lighter than Mizuno’s and Reeboks and even lighter than their flagship stability shoe, Kayano.

      You could go for their neutral line, Nimbus, if you find Cumulus too soft, I haven’t noticed kung Under Pronator ka, since Cumulus is for Under Pronators kaya really meant to be a cushioning rather than stability and ground response.

      I was amazed at the level of detail Asics put into their shoes, it can’t be seen from the black though, but you could see different materials, leather, suede, etc all rolled into a high-tech performance shoe. The reflectors really are a must.

      Thanks for visiting =)

  3. Reizyl says:

    Hi, I’m planning to buy a pair of running shoes and I’m glad I chanced upon your review on the Asics GT-2160. Where exactly can I purchase said shoes? I live in Davao, by the way. Thanks.

    • C.Seamus says:

      Wow. Davao.
      My GT-2160 was actually a gift from the U.S., bought from the Navy Exchange in San Diego. In Manila, you can check out R.O.X. , Second Wind and RUNNR.

      I thing Run Club in Davao carries Asics as well. Thanks for visiting =)

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