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KEY STATS AND FEATURES 

  • Price: £120 
  • Weight: 320g 
  • Drop: 6mm 
  • Stable neutral 
  • Rocker geometry, dual density REPETITOR midsole 
SHOE SUMMARY 

The adidas Adistar reignites a classic silo with a modern twist, representing a drastically new type of running shoe in the ever-growing comprehensive adidas running line up. Packing some serious junk in its trunk and being released without so much as a whisper, in this article I’ll be giving you a run-down of what Adistar is, who it’s for and most importantly, how it’s fared on my initial runs!  

Those of us who are used to banking miles in the Solar range, be it the more maximally cushioned Solar Boost or slightly lighter (and cheaper) Solar Glide, may have been tempted to leave their three-stripe loyalty by the wayside and jump ship to something boasting more aggressive innovation. The Solar series have always got the job done and been reliable and impressively durable options for a variety of runners but similar to the recent success adidas have enjoyed with the revamp of the adizero franchise, at least to me, it seems the overriding consensus is their daily mileage offerings could do with a comparative makeover.  
FIRST IMPRESSIONS

When I first lay eyes on images and tech specs for the Adistar, it’s fair to say I was suitably intrigued. Upon initial unboxing, that level of intrigue was amplified tenfold.  

To me, visually, the Adistar almost resembles a caricature of a running shoe. With a tongue so plush you could use it as a pillow coupled with a dramatic rockered midsole geometry, it’s standout features seem deliberately exaggerated and most notably, it’s like no other adidas running shoe I’ve ever seen.
adidas adistar review
adidas state the Adistar’s primary function as being best suited for LSD. That’s Long Slow Distance, not the other kind. Although, the Blue Rush/Turbo/Legacy Indigo colourway I received does err on the psychedelic end of the spectrum.. Anyway, to that effect, the Adistar was never going to be a lightweight racer. I’m not going to sit here and tell you that 320g isn’t heavy for a daily trainer in this day and age but in hand, I found them to feel surprisingly well balanced.  

My overriding initial impression was that this is a shoe built to last. Everything from the dual layered, strategically reinforced upper made from at least 50% Parley Ocean Plastic and 50% recycled polyester, the subtle suede detailing on the heel counter, to the healthy serving of trusty Continental rubber coverage on the outsole exudes comfort and premium build quality.
adidas adistar review
adidas adistar review
FIT 

I’ll cut straight to the chase here, the Adistar may be the most comfortable initial step in experience of any shoe I’ve ever worn. That includes my favourite pair of slippers my Nan got me last Christmas.  

The fit was true to size for me in my standard UK 8.5 and I experienced nothing in the way of hot spots. I’m a traditionalist when it comes to laces and always sceptical of lacing systems outside the norm, however the Adistar absolutely nails this. Sometimes it can take a handful of attempts for me to feel as though adequate lockdown is achieved without excessive pressure on the top of the foot being a trade-off. However, with the Adistar it was a one and done type job. 
adidas adistar review
Everyone knows the ultimate initial test of a new running shoe is via the medium of a flamboyant jog across your kitchen floor and anyone who says otherwise is a liar. But as a result of this highly scientific test, the forefoot rocker geometry was immediately present.  

The dual layered midsole features a new compound for adidas. REPETITOR foam (the white bit) extends the full length of the mid to forefoot and is pleasantly soft to the touch, whilst REPETITOR+ made from 15% recycled material, cradles the heel in a bid to provide additional stability through the gait cycle. Personally, this was the only aspect of the shoe I was apprehensive about prior to lacing up for my first run so let’s get to the juicy part...
adidas adistar review

PERFORMANCE 

I’ve completed two runs in the adidas Adistar at the time of writing this. One of which, was a fairly standard 90 minute easy to steady Sunday long run in an attempt to give the shoe a thorough test for its intended purpose.  

The run itself just exceeded the half marathon distance starting nice and easy at around 5:00/km, finishing in the region of 3:30/km, for a 4:09/km average over 21.5km. Despite not necessarily being catered towards speed, I was still interested to see how they felt at a variety of paces and found the sweet spot to be the 4:20 – 4:05/km range (6:30ish per mile, if you like that kinda thing).  

adidas adistar review
adidas adistar review
I should state, I’ve not spoken to, or seen anyone else’s opinions on this shoe, so what you’re getting in this review is my 100% unbiased opinion. But I must say, I dig it. When landing midfoot, the rocker was instantly present and the transition through the stride was effortlessly smooth. The REPETITOR foam up front was both soft and forgiving whilst providing excellent protection from the road with a hint of responsiveness, meaning picking up the pace came fairly naturally despite the weight.  

Lockdown in the heel and midfoot remained consistent and void of unwelcome pressure or friction for the duration of the 90 minute run and although I’m currently on the return from injury and slightly lacking in strength, I was pleased with how fresh my legs felt over a tough undulating route. 
adidas adistar review
My main and really only criticism of the ride and overall on the run experience of the Adistar has to be that REPETITOR+ foam in the heel. I understand it’s inclusion to provide stability for heel strikers, but it is without question the densest compound I’ve seen used in this quantity in a running shoe. Almost like a traditional medial post from an old school stability offering, but for the entire rear portion of the shoe. I’d like to see that refined in future iterations. In fact, I’ve recently moved house and wouldn’t hesitate to use REPETITOR + as a pretty competent hammer when reluctantly constructing IKEA furniture.

CONCLUSION 

With all that said, the Adistar is a shoe I had high hopes for. I wanted it to be addias’ first true modern day max cushioned cruiser and on that front, to me it does a grand job. Would I like to see the weight come down and a refinement of the dual density midsole in future iterations? Absolutely. But I for one feel optimistic about the direction adidas are heading and with some tweaks, the REPETITOR midsole compound could be a winner.  

The Adistar has already cemented a spot in my overcrowded running shoe rotation and I have no doubts I’ll be gravitating towards it for many easy days and long runs to come.  

If you enjoyed this article, make sure to check out the rest of our comprehensive in-depth running shoe reviews here! As always, you can check out the full adidas running line up now at Pro:Direct Running.  

 

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Tom Folan

My name's Tom, former professional football freestyler turned long distance runner. As a self-proclaimed running shoe aficionado, I love keeping up with the latest performance innovation and product releases almost as much as I enjoy running in them. With a running specialty retail background, I hope to provide some valuable insight and aid you in finding your next favourite item of running kit!
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