Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Ode To The Adidas Boston

If you have run long enough, you probably have one type of shoe that stands out above all the rest. A "go to" shoe that you have either been wearing for the last 10 years and have gone through a bunch of pairs, or a discontinued model that you look back on and remember fondly and wish that somehow you could scrounge up a pair for one more go-around.

I was reminded of my all-time favorite shoe last night when I was out shoe shopping for Matt as he was looking for a new pair of trainers for the upcoming Benedictine University track season. While perusing the shoes I came across a pair of Adidas called the "Boston Boost", and for a second I got kind of excited because the Adidas Boston Classic will forever be my "go to" shoe, and was it possible they were bringing it back?

Of course, my excitement didn't last all that long, because when I asked the guy who was fitting Matt for his shoes -- he also happens to be Matt's coach -- if they were bringing back the Boston, he told me they weren't, it was a new shoe with an old name.

Boo.

Naturally, I was highly disappointed. Since Adidas discontinued the Boston Classic a few years ago, I've been kind of a shoe nomad. I've worn other Adidas models as well as Brooks, Nike and Asics. I have liked them all -- especially the Asics Nimbus, my current shoe -- but none of them have made me say "that's the shoe for me!" and excitedly picked up another pair when that time came around.

The Boston and I have a special history. When I started running in January, 2000, my first pair of running shoes were the Reebok DMX, a pretty decent shoe that I picked up at a Foot Locker. When it came time later that summer to get new shoes, I went to a local running store, and they fit me into a pair of Asics.

That pair was a disaster! I started having serious IT band pain after about 10 miles in the shoe, and eventually took two weeks off from running. I took them back to the store and told them what was wrong, and they fit me into a new model.

The Boston. From the first run I went on in the shoes I was hooked. They were lightweight and comfortable, and, most importantly for a guy who had two young kids, relatively inexpensive. Two months after buying those shoes, they took me through a great day at the Chicago Marathon, my first.

Over the next few years, I kept buying Bostons, running fairly injury-free and logging five more marathons and several half marathons in them. They were a well cushioned, neutral, no-bells-or-whistles shoe that just worked for me. Even after I took them out of my running rotation I would keep them as everyday shoes just because they were so comfortable. Occasionally I would try a different, "newer" model shoe, but eventually go back to the Bostons because I couldn't find anything better.

But then in 2008-09 I got some bad news...they were retiring the shoe! Lord knows why Adidas would retire a shoe that was universally loved and so perfect, but it was going away. If I'd been smart (or had the money) I would've bought a dozen pairs but instead I just watched them go so quietly in the night.

For me, the shoe is perfect proof that not everything has to be bigger and better. Maybe someday I'll find a shoe that I'll love as much as the Boston, but for now I guess I'll just keep on wandering.


24 comments:

  1. I hate when that happens! So far that hasn't happened to me with running shoes, just with my favorite lipstick or other makeup. :)
    I understand how you can get attached to them, and nothing else can take their place. Have you looked on Ebay?

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  2. I've tried a couple of places, but Ebay sounds like a great idea. :--)

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  3. Asics did that with me. I loved one of their lines, but then they changed the name and changed too much of the model. They never really fit like the previous models and I moved to a different brand.

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    1. My last two pair have been Asics and they just feel the same to me, nothing really spectacular. I may move to a different brand next time.

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  4. I've been wearing the Asics Kayano for years and although they update it every year I've been pleased with it and keep buying it. I have had my favorite Nike shorts be discontinued and wasn't happy about that. #growyourblog

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    1. I've heard those are really good, reliable shoes too. Those might be what I move up to later in the spring.

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  5. Ugh, I hate when companies discontinue something you love! I'm sorry :( I started running in Asics and really liked them until I moved over to Brooks a few years ago and I love the Ghost model and bought 5 pairs of the 5's because I am a creature of habit and don't like to upgrade to the newest model every year, the little tweaks they sometimes make to the shoes make a difference in the feel. I hope you find a shoe you LOVE soon!!

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  6. I hate when this happens. It happened with my Mizuno Wave Riders. They changed the design slightly and I hated them. I ended up going to Asics. Now I've found a new love with my Asics Cumulus and Nimbus and Mizuno lost my business. Why would you mess with something that already works? So frustrating that shoe companies do this!

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    1. I think the Boston was just an "old" technology, you know? There was a point where they tried an upgraded Boston and no one liked them -- me included. But as Adidas (especially) moved into some new shoe models and tech I think they thought the Boston was too old school to keep.

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  7. I too hate it when good product is discontinued for one reason or another. Some things can never be replaced/substituted!

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    1. Absolutely! Some things just have a "feel" to them that can't be duplicated.

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  8. Luckily this has never happened to me, but I know I would be super bummed if they stopped making Brooks Ghost. I have pretty much stuck with those since I started running, but I have had to switch it around every now and again. Having tiny feet can make it hard to always the model and/or brand you want!

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    1. I've heard good things about that shoe. Has it been around a long time?

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  9. Oh man! That is such a bummer! I'm wearing a pair of Nike's right now. They work ok, but I haven't found the greatest shoe ever yet!

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  10. yuck- that stinks! that is as bad when they stopped making my favorite sports bra!!! :) I am a Asics girl so I hope I am in good shape with my shoes! #growyourblog

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    1. Ha! Thankfully that's one thing I don't have to worry about! :--) Kind of funny that I'm not really all that partial to what I wear but am so stingy about my shoes!

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  11. Bummer that is the worst, when you find a shoe you love and they retire it. I'm a Newton gal! Good luck finding your next perfect shoe.

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  12. As I read this I kept saying to myself, I totally hear ya! The worst is when you find a great shoe and then they change the model. Years ago Saucony made a shoe I loved, I went out and bought 3 more pairs and they lasted several years rotating them. But then when it was time to switch of course they changed the model. The new model sucked, and I brought them back faster than I bought them:)
    Mizuno is a brand I am liking right now, but it's probably only a matter of time before they switch. I have 3 pairs right now, so I am good for this year, hopefully:)

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    1. Oh trust me, if I find a shoe I like I'm clearing space in my garage to store several pair! :--)

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  13. I was running Nike Lunarglides for a couple of years, but then I thought I'd try something different. First, I tried the Nike Pegasus - apparently, a staple shoe, but they just didn't work for me. Then a Mizuno rep came to the store and a tried the WaveRiders - loved them! However, after training in them for months and running the Honolulu Marathon in them, I developed severe pain on the side of my right foot. Stopped wearing them, and the pain went away. I think I'm going to try going back to Nike Lunarglides again!!

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  14. I bought many many pairs, as many as I could find in my size years ago. I am on my last pair. I have one more marathon with them and that's it. No more running for me.

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