Mizuno Wave Rider 16 review

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Dear Izzy, Max, and Kate,

I went surfing a few times when I lived in South Carolina. One day in particular stands out in my mind.

It wasn’t one of the quiet days when I’d tote my borrowed surf board on my bike, under my arm, to North Beach and catch small waves. Mostly paddling around on my stomach, waiting for something to happen.

The day that stands out to me was the day my buddy Tommy called me to let me know there were hurricane remnant waves rolling into Folly Beach. A few of his friends from Florida were making the trip up for the swell. They wanted me to come and take pictures from the water while they surfed.

It didn’t take long before I was tired of floating, ducking the massive waves and snapping photos of Tommy and his friends. I found myself with a board, floating beyond the breakers. Taking advice from guys who travelled the globe for days like this. These were guys accustomed to taking risks. They cautioned me to be careful, but to go for it. I was suddenly scared by the enormity of the swell. And in awe of the rushing power towards the hard packed beach. I rose on a wave. Too big. But as it rose beneath me I felt alive.

Triathlon provides that rush for me now. Running, in particular, is an easy way for me to feel the enormity and beauty of my surroundings, a distance too far – until I step over the line to find out.

I had a chance to marry those worlds recently when I tried out the classic Mizuno Wave Rider. It’s on it’s 16th edition. That makes it a classic. The men’s 16 comes in three colors: blazing yellow/imperial blue, white/chinese red, and dress blue/surf the web.

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I received the Dress blue/surf the web option. When I opened the box I immediately thought of Bodhi and Johnny Utah night surfing in Point Break. Radical! The Wave Rider 16 is a great looking shoe from top to bottom, utilizing Mizuno’s unique wave construction.

Although the shoe is contructed for “neutral” runners I’ve found it to be perfectly comfortable for my slight over pronation.

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From Mizuno.com:

The Wave Rider delivers a harmonious balance of lightweight feel, sculpted fit and exquisitely smooth ride. By maximizing the responsive action of Mizuno’s innovative Wave plate technology, the Wave Rider continues to define and create the brilliant run experience.

After the appearance itself the next thing I noticed was how light the Wave Rider 16 felt. The Wave Rider 16 came with a few improvements over it’s predecessors, including a new even more breathable mesh upper. I assume this new construction contributes to the light weight feel.

The fit is a bit narrow, but for me that wasn’t a problem, as Mizuno’s Dynamotion technology allows your foot to seamlessly flow without friction inside of the shoe.

So far I’ve used this shoe for mid-distance of 5 miles and for one longer 8 miler. The Wave Rider delivers a traditional ride and the sort of comfort that makes you not notice your shoes. It’s like the first time you stand up on a board and forget there’s anything between you and the wave.

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When I put on the Wave Rider 16 I think back to those days in South Carolina. And as I set forth on each adventure in my running shoes I realize I’m still chasing the waves. Riding them towards shore. Enjoying life rather than watching from the beach.

I love you,

– Daddy

ps. Learn more about Mizuno’s Mezamashii run project

* I was given this product for purposes of this review. My opinion is my own and I was under no obligation to provide a favorable review.