Zero drop / minimalist trainers durability.

Hi Gurus 

I am on the verge of buying some Saucony Hattori LC trainers which are zero drop but would you recommend using them for races or long distance runs? I am currently still on my first pair of running trainers some standard new balance but i am planning on introducing the saucony slowly. The reviews have been great for saucony hattori but i am confused about the durability. 

Overall would you say the minimalist trainers are suitable for running a marathon? If not what light weight trainers are? Do people have a preferance for a training shoe and a race shoe?



5 weeks to go untill malta marathon


  • Marc.SMarc.S ✭✭✭

    im confused what you mean by duribility, if you mean can you run distance races in them, then yes, i regularly run 20+ miles in barefoot shoes, a blog i read is written by a man who runs ultra's upto 100miles and wears barefoot shoes only.

    by how long they last? depends on the shoe, the hattori to me felt like they wouldnt last long, a few 100 miles at most, but ive never ran in them so i dont know, but something like the vbram soled merrell barefoot range will last 1000 miles (from experience) 

  • Thank you for your answer. I feel I have a better understanding on barefoot trainers now. Do you recommend a make that will last after 500 plus miles and that are not going to make me bankrupt. Thanks matt
  • Marc.SMarc.S ✭✭✭

    merrell's trail gloves are on sale now in some places for £50 right now, dont be put off by the trail word, thats more about the duribiliy of the uppers, they are very good on the road, 

    my current pair have close to double that on mine and the soles are showing very little signs of wear.

  • ditto for the merrell trail gloves, very durable. my last pair lasted a year but i only had to replace them as i had managed to shrink them by washing too often! They didnt wear out.


  • Also remember to buy ones that fit -your- feet. I have wide feet and love the VivoBarefoot Neos, and I've found them to have good durability. Internet searching can usually produce them at under £50. As for distance, I've run a 50-miler in the trail version (with the chevron-shaped lugs on the bottom) and about 20 miles or so in the standard Neos (the ones where the soles are lots of little hexagons).

  • I've got some trail gloves, they're fine on road (or the treadmill) but the minimal padding isn't ideal on rocky/stony trails - any recommendations for a zero drop shoe that will survive road + easy(ish) trail use?

  • MillsyMillsy ✭✭✭
    New balance minimums trail. New balance mt110 but I'm not sure these are a zero drop.
  • Marc.SMarc.S ✭✭✭

    the mt110 are 4mm drop i believe.

  • Something like the Newton Issac (4mm) Gravity or Motion (both 3mm) would be more than fine for a marathon. 

  • Jim, I have found the merrells to be fine on most trails, even if they are stony, but if you are looking at a more technical trail, you might like to look at the inov8's.

    I have a pair of trailroc 245's i use on muddy, steep, or rocky trails.
    they have lugs on the bottom so are grippier than the merrells but are not too bad on tarmac as long as theres not lots of it. They are a 3mm drop so have a minimalist feel.

  • Trailroc 235 is zero-drop, less padding than 245 and no rock plate (so less protection), but I've found them great on Lakeland trails - a bit more protection and padding than my Vivobarefoot Neo Trail; I intend to wear them for Lakeland 50. The Neo Trails have been fine for me on e.g. North Downs Way. I wouldn't want to wear either for a long period on road, but only because I wouldn't want to wear them down - I have worn the Neo Trails on road for a few miles at a time. Of course, I normally wear the road Neos on road, so I'm used to minimal padding etc.

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