New Kicks

I recently had to unwillingly buy new running shoes (first world problems?).

new running shoes hoka one one bondi 4
The new shoes.

Here’s the backstory….

When I first switched to Hoka’s I ran in the Stinson model and loved them. So naturally, after about a month I bought a second pair and stuck them in my closet to be worn when the first pair were done. In the midst of marathon training for the Marine Corps Marathon, I acquired another pair during a sale. Since they were a different color, I started running in them with plans to use them for the marathon. Then there was that whole ‘my shoe broke’ crisis right before the race.

shoe surgery

Luckily, we were able to glue to heel back on and the shoe held up for the race. Afterward, Hoka One One replaced the shoes, but with the newer model since they weren’t making that version anymore. So I started running in those last November, which was fine.

new shoes

Due to lots of time on trails this spring, and not a lot of use of my road shoes, I didn’t need to replace them until recently. After two weeks of unexplained calf and Achilles pain I realized my shoes were probably worn out, and broke out the pair I had stashed in the closet.


They didn’t feel quite right, but I figured I just needed to break them in a bit. When they continued to feel funky, I put my old insoles in them, which seemed to help. But after about 40 miles I realized something was just off. They were giving me hot spots on the balls of my feet, and pinching my toes. I knew I needed to find some new shoes, with the Hokie Half looming in 2 weeks. So I hit up the nearby running specialty shop. (side note – after some research I found that the issue with these shoes was likely due to factory and/or material changes as the company grew)

The version of the Stinsons I love don’t exist anymore, so I tried on a few different Hoka models. I didn’t really want to range out of that brand since I’ve been happy with them for the past couple of years (fyi – I don’t have any sort of partnership with them, I just like their shoes). I ended up settling on the Bondi 4’s.


I wasn’t crazy about the color scheme, but I had to set that aside when they felt so good on my feet. I’m really happy with them so far. I guess I’ve found a new favorite shoe. The color has kind of grown on me, too, although I do miss my pink and purple ones! At least my trail shoes are still purple 🙂 The Hokie Half is this Sunday, and although my longest run in these shoes has only been six miles, I think they’ll be fine on race day!

Have you ever had a shoe not work for you anymore? I don’t know why these shoes, which were the same size and model as a previous pair that I loved, didn’t work for me. Must have been some kind of variation in this individual pair of shoes.
Do you ever get hung up on the color/appearance of running shoes?

17 thoughts on “New Kicks”

  1. It’s no fun when our favorite shoes change, but somehow I always find a good replacement – at least eventually. I just ran in some new Mizuno Kazans I found for $50 at Runners Roost in Ft. Collins. They handled the downhill and trail in Capitol Reef just fine. : )

    1. The same is true for me, I just hate having to change from what had become my new favorite 🙂 Such is life! I’m glad you like your new shoes so far.

  2. I had to part with Asics while they figured out their GT-2000 line, then I went back to their 3rd version of them. The first iteration never felt like a good fit, even though they replaced the series I was wearing before. The shoes I had in between never felt right either, which is why I’m back in the GT-2000s, and the 3rd iteration feels so much better.

    1. I used to run in Asics GT-2140’s and went all the way up to 2170’s but unfortunately, they lost me with all of their changes. It’s weird how you can like the original, then not like the next generation, but then they make a few more small changes and you like them again in the third generation.

  3. You have tiny feet!!

    Sorry, just had to say it. Thank you for this post, as it has reminded me that I likely need to get a new pair of shoes before my full next month. I do get a little hung up on the color of my shoes. I ordered a pair on clearance that were NEON yellow. It was a great price, but I just couldn’t handle the brightness so I sent them back. I don’t need to be blinded by my shoes!

    1. Haha, I know! They’re not really that small (I typically wear a 6 or 6.5), but they do look small when I’m in anything other than flip flops. I’m glad I provided you with a reminder! Gotta get those shoes broken in before your race.

  4. The shoe manufacturers like to change something with each generation I just wish they would leave well enough alone. My latest Mizuno Inspires and more narrow in the toe box. Now, why did they go and do that?

  5. I’ve been curious about the Hokas. I’m a die hard Mizuno fan. Have been for years. I think it would take an awful lot for me to want to switch. I’ve fallen in love with their Wave Prophecy 4s. And I’m due for a new pair. **oh hubby, it’s almost my birthday** I swear they make me faster 😉

    1. Well I hope he somehow sees your comment so he gets the birthday hint! 🙂 I switched to Hokas because I was having so many issues with my shins and was willing to give anything a try. They felt very weird at first, but now I’m used to them and I haven’t had any shin issues like I used to. But I’d say if you’re happy with what you’re in, why mess with it?

  6. I get hung up on shoe appearance all the time. I’ve definitely been known to buy/not buy shoes because of that. That being said, I like the color of your new shoes! Glad you found some you like.

  7. Glad you found new Hoka’s you like! Don’t accidentally wear them to the VT vs UNC game! 😉

    Back when I wore Asics, a new model came out with a smaller toe box and I had to switch for that season to a different Asics shoe. Once they fixed the problem on the next model, I went back to that model and it was fine.

  8. Wish that companies wouldn’t change up a good thing. Heard too many stories of loyal customers turning away because of a slight change.

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