SNEWS Review: Pearl Izumi Synchro Fuel Rd II

Review of Pearl Izumi's Synchro Fuel Rd II running shoes.
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We will tell you right off the bat that we loved the lime-green detailing on the women’s Pearl Izumi Synchro Fuel Rd II shoes that we’ve been testing since early February 2012. First off, the neon color was highly visible during morning winter runs and night runs when it was dark; and second, they were quite flashy. And we love flashy.

We’d been running in minimal shoes for a little more than a year when we first got these shoes in the mail, so on our first run with them they felt a little heavy. But once we got used to the added weight, and added cushion, it was smooth sailing. It took us about three runs to fully get used to them, but once we did it was easy to get in a good run without worrying about a wayward rock or nail or any sort of hazard that could completely destroy a run in minimalist shoes.

One of the great things about these shoes is that even though they are designed for use on the road, they have ample cushion and support to transition to the trails. We took these shoes on several trail runs in the San Luis Valley in Colorado during winter and they handled nicely on all types of terrain from mud to rocks; in creek water and on snow.

Plus, weak ankles have made for many a run where we’ve had to ward off falls due to ruts and uneven ground, but the Synchro Fuel Rd II’s had great stability and ankle support for a road running shoe, making this less of a problem than it’s been in years. Plus, our toes felt super-comfortable up top thanks to an especially wide toe box.

We put more than 600 miles on these shoes, including Denver’s Colfax Marathon in May, and were surprised by their resilience, as we generally have to replace running shoes every 300-400 miles.

This would be a great product to recommend to your female customers who have a bit of a wider foot, who run high mileage, who may not want to replace their running shoes very often and who run a mixture of both trails and road.

The one thing is that Pearl Izumi’s shoe sizes seem to run small, so recommend your customer try on both her regular size and a half-size up to make sure she gets a perfect fit as this shoe will remain a versatile staple in a running shoe closet.

Suggested Retail: MSRP $125

SNEWS® Rating: 4.5 sets of hands clapping (1 to 5 sets of hands clapping possible, with 5 sets of clapping hands representing functional and desi

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