“Training, running and planning properly requires hard and easy days and hard and easy weeks – shoes for each of these type of days help too.”
My old runningdad feet seem to need more care and love than when they were younger. I have in the past few years moved a bit away from more minimal training shoes and more towards cushion for easy runs and long runs. My feet get more tired (and the body) and a grumpy first joint on right foot – take some care now.
In March 2015 I got hold of a pair of HOKA Cliftons to test out. I had seen these thick, well cushioned running shoes and wondered what they were about. I liked the shoe for easy runs and was surprisingly light. The fit was a bit boxy but it was a very different shoe from anything I had run in a long time.
Now a review of the updated version.
HOKA ONE ONE Clifton 3
Think of this shoe as a beefy betty of a shoe that weighs very little. You sit a little higher up and land on a lot of cushioning that is not too mushy or too firm. The shoe is not over responsive nor too clunky. It comes in 4 colour options.
- Medium (a little boxier than Clayton but snugger than old Clifton)
- Decent heel fit, good toe room but not boxy
- Good laces
- Road (or tame trail, careful as raised off ground)
- Category: Neutral: Lightweight Training
- Preferred Ride: Plush (feels like but WELL-padded)
- 8.60 oz Weight is based on a US size 9 (feels like but alot of shoe)
- Pretty light for big cushioned shoe
- Offset: 5 mm
- Forefoot: 24 mm
- Heel: 29 mm
- Ultra-Lightweight No Sew SpeedFrame Construction
- Early Stage Meta-Rocker Geometry (ok toe-off but liked for easy slow runs)
- Full-Length Compression Molded EVA Midsole (soft but not too marshmallowy)
- Full Ground Contact Design
WHAT I THOUGHT
I liked this shoe and it fits and feels better than its predecessor. I would still like it to roll of the toe a bit better – but great for easy runs or slow long runs. It laces up well and does not feel heavy despite taking up some real estate. I liked the fit of the heel cup and seems wide enough for my foot and put no pressure on my sometimes cranky first joint. However if I did lace or pull too tight the upper would get tight on my foot just behind little toe (otherwise roomy). This shoe feels good right outside the box but I like it even better after a few runs and seems to have a nicer feel once I have worked it in 1-2 runs.
For those making a move from something really light or minimal i would try the Clayton first.
The Clifton 3 retails for around $130 – go check it out on the HOKA site.
Big thanks to my HOKA friends Tyler and Jen!
Check out my other HOKA reviews:
I am training for a fall marathon and thinking the HOKA Tracer might make a great race shoe —let you know!
See you out on the roads running friends – catch me on Twitter at @NoelPaine