I was lucky enough to try out and review the Flash Lite running shoes from GoLite (for a woman’s perspective, check out Women’s Endurance Gear), and they followed up by sending me their newest trail shoe, the Tara Lite.
The next evolution in Class 1 trail running is inspired by the Tarahumara tribes of Mexico, whose name means “those who run fast”. These amazing athletes are best known for their superior running abilities while wearing minimal thong style sandals. The Tara Lite for men takes the best aspects of the Tarahumara sandal and adds the protection, stability and traction benefits of our Class I trail runners.
Built on the BareTech platform with a zero drop heel, runners can enjoy all the benefits of a natural gait with the exceptional stability and protection of our Soft Against the Ground technology on all terrain. The “second skin” upper provides comfort and lightweight protection from the elements.
The internal “sandal” thong and our unique closure system provides adjustable fit, security. And energy efficiency by preventing excessive foot movement.
GoLite Footwear’s newest outsole, the Sticky Gecko, is inspired by the gravity-defying “traction” of geckos. The 350 small GripstickTM rubber lugs replicate the tiny hairs on a gecko’s feet that create surface contact and friction.
While some might think this as a minimalist shoe, GoLite does not want runners to approach it with that thought in mind:
“First, and most importantly, we want to be clear that the Tara Lite is not intended to be defined as a minimalist shoe. As part of our BareTech series, the Tara Lite represents what we believe to be the perfect balance between minimalist footwear and traditional trail running shoes. The design intent was to combine the features and benefits of barefoot/minimal shoes (zero drop heel, wider toe box, light weight materials) with the practical protection of traditional trail running shoes (traction, stability and cushioning along with removable arch support).
Please consider this distinction when testing these shoes to determine whether they deliver on the promise of a ‘natural ride with full protection’.”
Though nominally a trail shoe, I felt comfortable in these shoes on all surfaces, including the treadmill. With their slip-on entry and ability to cinch tightly with the 2 straps, these shoes should be appropriate for rocky runs even without gaiters. Though not in any way waterproof, even completely soaked the shoes remained comfortable and retained their insulation, so my feet were not unhappy. As with the Flash Lites, these shoes are quite roomy, so think about ordering a half size down for optimal comfort.
The women’s version will be available from GoLite in July – look for an upcoming review over at Women’s Endurance Gear.
GoLite Footwear is a forward-thinking company well worth checking out; for more info and to keep up with new products, check out their website, like them on Facebook, and follow them on Twitter.