Hello Fit Nation! My name is Kimmi and I consider myself a regular ol’ runner. I’m not elite. I don’t take myself too seriously. If you asked me 7 years ago at over 315 pounds where I might be now, I certainly couldn’t imagine that I’d be here writing about running footwear for Fit Nation Magazine. But after finding the sport of running as a fantastic outlet, stress reliever and social opportunity, my journey has taken me through countless local 5ks and 10ks, 13 half marathons, and just this past January, my first full marathon. With all this running, it only makes sense that I am OBSESSED with shoes! And therefore, my career as Store Manager at the recently opened Fit2Run in Coconut Point in Estero makes my life, well, awesome. I want to share that awesomeness with you, ladies and gentlemen, with footwear reviews from a regular gal who simply wants one thing: everyone to be in the perfect shoe for them as an individual. I hope that you find my monthly column meaningful and informational, and if you happen to giggle occasionally, well I’d be okay with that also.

Happy Running,

Kimmi van der Veen – Store Manager
Fit2Run Ft Myers/Estero – Coconut Point

Asics Nimbus 15

$145 Retail $130.50 Fit2Run Club Member Price
Specs: 10 mm offset, weighs 11.5 oz, neutral

This newest version of the highly revered Asics GEL-Nimbus offers runners a fast pass to cloud 9 and is only available to Specialty Running stores until its official release on June.  With its latest technology at work, this edition includes the new FluidFit upper, which features 4-way stretch mesh that allows for the ultimate in flexibility. The FluidRide midsole features the dual-layered composition of SpEVA for a lightweight and responsive reaction from the ground. Think BOUNCY!  The best part: Asics combined their famous Heel Clutch System with PHF: Personal Heel Fit featuring memory foam AND the ComforDry sockliner to have your feet floating. This is a perfect shoe for beginners and those interested in marathon training as well!

Nike Free 5.0+

$100 Retail $90 Fit2RunClub Member Price
Specs:  8mm offset, weighs 8.9 oz, minimal

For the runner who is interested in natural running, but may not want to sacrifice the cushion generally left behind in minimal style shoes, the Nike Free 5.0+ provides the foot strengthening benefits associated with barefoot style running while also providing the cushioning, traction and underfoot support. With an upper constructed out of textured sandwich mesh, ergonomically designed lacing, and Dynamic Fit technology featuring Flywire, feet are secure from the midfoot to the arch, while also extremely flexible thanks to the Flex groove design on sole. Available in a rainbow of colors, the Nike Free 5.0+ wears as comfortably cool as it looks.

New Balance 860v3

$114.95 Retail $103.45 Fit2Run Club Price
Specs: 12 mm offset, weighs 9.4 oz, stability

So you’ve just had a gait analysis and discovered you mildly overpronate. You are thinking “oh no! What does that mean?!” It means not to worry, New Balance has a stylish and highly cushioned running shoe designed just for you. With the comfort of a NuFoam saddle, ABZORB Crash Pad for enhanced motion control and stability within the heel, you can feel supported and stable while cushioned and comfy, all at the same time.

Saucony Ride 5

$110 Retail $ 99 Fit2Run Club Price
Specs: 8 mm offset, 9.8 oz, Neutral

Saucony calls their 5th edition of the Ride the “most responsive” version of this shoe to date. Engineered with its signature ProGrid technology throughout the shoe’s entirety this time around, allowing for a more balanced landing zone and follow-through during the toe-off.  If you like things round, you are in luck: the heel edge is beveled for a smooth transition. Economically priced and ready to run!!

Brooks Pure Cadence 2

$120 Retail $ 108 Fit2Run Club Price
Specs: 4 mm offset,  weighs 9.3 oz, Minimal w/ Support

Nothing like a Pure Project shoe by Brooks to catch your eye and give you exactly what you need fucntionally: BioMoGo DNA Midsole, IDEAL Heel, Toe Flex, Nav Band and an anatomical last that will leave you wondering whether you are wearing shoes at all as you “feel the road.” May I introduce to you the recently released Brooks Pure Cadence 2. New this time around is the ergonomically designed upper featuring the half sewn tongue, allowing for no tongue slippage; it’s almost reason enough to throw a party!!