Thursday, May 12, 2016

Vibram Spyridon LS/MR - Trail running - Mudrun shoes Review with UPDATE

Initial review from 2012 (Update below):

Before you judge your purchase on my first week review, note the following. These shoes are specifically being broken-in faster than usual because the Tough Mudder is this Saturday. That's 4 days from today.
My wear and tear is from intense Red Rocks workouts at least 4 times a week. Along with running, drumming and outdoor activities.
When I first tried these on I wanted to go a size lower than my usual Vibram size. I didn't want water to seep in while running in mud runs.
I immediately noticed that the white curves on the shoe were not part of the fabric but seemed more like a screen print.
The nature of my Vibram Spyridon LS purchase was to beat these up. Yes, I figured the nice white details would eventually fade and crack but these are meant to be used on trails.
After getting over the shiny new look I decided to start breaking them in by wearing them everywhere I went, including the house, and bending them back and forth to stretch a little.
They have already been through various washes and "wet runs".
Now for the pics.

The first one shows a slight crack on the pinky toe of the left foot.

This next one shows the slight wear already on the tread of the shoe.

This last one shows the cracking on the curves of the right foot.
Like I said before, I expected the cracking. So, how do they feel? Although they are not completely worn in yet, they do feel a little harder than my KSOs. Not surprising. The Spyridon's have a thicker sole. They feel pretty great when wet and when I'm doing running or plyometric exercises.

To give you an idea of the harsh conditions these shoes go through I'll give you an example of my old KSOs.
These have gone through 2 years of Red Rocks training sessions, Tough Mudder, Warrior Dash, Rugged Maniac, etc.

As you can see, they are pretty beat up.
I'll update the pictures after the Tough Mudder but the real test will be the rest of my intense training season, which should last until October.
Alas, so far so good. These are doing their job. A little disappointed the white details are cracking so quickly. I suggest purchasing these if you are going to beat them up. Hiking, biking, running, mud runs, anything dirty. These could be replacements for hiking boots.
If you are new to Vibram's I suggest the KSO model. My next purchase will hopefully be a pair of the Bikila LS or the Speed.
However, these little buggers are definitely an investment.
Happy trails!

So, after almost 4 years of running various mud runs including The Spartan Race, Tough Mudder, Rugged Maniac and Warrior Dash, I still hold the Vibram Spyridon LS and the Spyridon MR high in the class of hiking, mud run, and running shoes. Below are pictures of the more recent pairs I bought. The Spyridon LS has survived at least 2 years or running, hiking, trail running, mud runs and working out at Red Rocks Amphitheater which always takes a toll on shoes. The Spyridon MR seems to have held up even longer with minimal wear and tear. I especially liked this blue Spyridon MR since there was no screen printing detail that would flake off. As great as Vibrams are, I do have a suggestion. Do not get obsessed and make all of your shoes Vibrams. Your legs, feet and knees need the "regular" shoes too. Before using Vibrams I had knee pains but once I began using Vibrams my knee pain went away unless I did very long runs. After doing the same training in later years but also casually wearing five fingers year-round I began to feel my calves cramp up more frequently. As soon as I balanced my Vibrams with other shoes my calves seemed fine again. Everything can be overdone. Last year I ran my last mud run for a long while. I feel like I need a new challenge. Alas, I still have my trusty Spyridons to fall back on if I ever get the yearning for another challenge in mud runs. In the following week I will review the Inov-8 Trailroc 245 that I switched over for a "regular show". But for now, happy running.

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