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KEY STATS:
Weight: 295g
Drop: 8mm
Midsole stack: 39mm(heel)/31(forefoot)
Tech: Lightstrike/Lightstrike PRO dual midsole/Glass fibre infused energy rods
Price: £130
adidas boston 10 review
Over the last few years, I have put well over 1,000 miles into various versions of the Boston from the 7 (which may be my favourite shoe of all time) to the most recently released 10th iteration.

It’s easy to see why the Boston name was held in such high regard and proved a prominent cult classic running shoe silhouette adored by many. For me, it was lightweight yet stable, snappy and smooth, unbelievably versatile and damn near indestructible. It was a shoe I could lace up and use for anything from a 30-minute easy shakeout, to a 10 mile tempo and everything in between. 
adidas boston 10 review

When images of the boldly redesigned Boston 10 began to emerge from the depths of Instagram, I, along with many other adizero faithfuls held their breath in nervous anticipation. In truth, the Boston 10 is almost unrecognisable and visually at least, a complete departure from what it’s always represented.

Did adidas’ radical new team of adizero designers successfully reinvent the wheel? Or have they tarnished the reputation of a true classic? Keep reading to find out! 

FIRST IMPRESSIONS

Upon initial unboxing, I was struck by the weight of the Boston 10 in hand. I am not one of those runners to reach for the kitchen scales and immediately judge a shoe based off an arbitrary number. However, for a shoe that was previously acclaimed in part for its lightweight construction, 295g in my UK 9 was… intriguing.

adidas boston 10 review
adidas boston 10 review

More intriguing still, was the decision to implement a thin layer of top tier Lightstrike PRO foam in the dual layered midsole, accompanied by regular Lightstrike EVA. If you’re typically a Nike enthusiast, in swoosh language, that’s the equivalent of Zoom X and React. In addition, the Boston 10 shares similar DNA to the record breaking Adios Pro with the utilisation of partially exposed glass fibre infused (in contrast to the carbon found in the Adios Pro) energy rods in the forefoot to mimic the five metatarsals. These rods resembling the three stripes synonymous with adidas as a brand is a particularly nice touch and the kind of attention to detail I appreciate!

adidas boston 10 review
adidas boston 10 review
Drawing attention to the rear of the shoe, the heel of the Boston 10 features a carbon plate along with a heavily accentuated lateral bevel, which in my experience makes for an incredibly stable underfoot experience but more on that later. 

Aside from all the bells and whistles, what did seem immediately apparent is this was a shoe built to last. From the luxurious suede like overlays on the upper, the fully gusseted and pleasantly plush tongue, to the generous coverage of tried-and-true continental rubber found on the outsole. 

adidas boston 10 review
adidas boston 10 review
With all being said, the most important part of any running shoe is how it feels on the run. This is where things get interesting and very much a story of two halves, so buckle up. 

ON THE RUN 

I’ll lay it right out there, my first run in the Boston 10 was uninspiring. I’ve previously loved shoes like the SL20 which featured a full Lightsrike EVA midsole and very much enjoy the ride and energy return from the mysterious Lightsrike PRO compound in both the adios pro and adios pro 2.  

In the Boston 10, the ride initially felt firm, stiff and disconnected from the road. Heavy and cumbersome for anything faster than steady running, too engineered for easy recovery paced plodding.  

I returned home feeling a bit flat and disenfranchised with what adidas had done to my beloved Boston and reached out to global manager of adizero footwear, Nick Roche, to voice my feedback. After some back and forth, his overriding message was to give the shoe time and to his credit, I’m so glad I did.
adidas boston 10 review
To get to the root of my initial dissatisfaction, I had to strip back all preconceptions of what I wanted the Boston 10 to be. I anticipated a package like the Endorphin Speed from Saucony. Something light, fast, versatile and similar underfoot to the Adios Pro 2 but with a more durable and overall, more robust construction to serve as the ultimate training companion. 
adidas boston 10 review
I’ve now got well over 200km in the Boston 10 and its gradually grown to be a shoe I’m reaching for more and more. With some perseverance, the midsole began to open up somewhere around the 50km mark and every run in the shoe from thereafter has been enjoyable. I’ve used it for steady long runs up to 25km and progression runs starting at around 4:30/km working down to 3:30ish/km in a variety of situations including torrential downpours and along hard packed canal towpaths. Durability wise, the outsole is showing almost zero signs of wear and the midsole continues to age like Pharrell Williams.
adidas boston 10 review
adidas boston 10 review

As touched on above, the significant lateral bevel means that despite a monstrous 39mm of stack in the heel, the Boston 10 remains incredibly stable through the gait cycle. This coupled with the inherently firmer ride may lend itself fondly to those who need a little help with pronation motion control without going to a full-blown stability shoe. On the topic of fat midsole stacks, the pavement pounding protective properties of so much foam underfoot has resulted in my legs feeling less beaten up during a recent marathon block and there’s definitely a case to be made for the efficiency gains as a result of the energy rods. 

 

I did find that the Boston 10 almost wants you to run a certain way. As a midfoot/forefoot runner, I enjoy the subtle yet noticeable slither of Lightstrike PRO in the forefoot which becomes more present as the pace picks up. However, I’m not sure I’d like the ride so much as a heel striker due to the lack of a strong rockered midsole geometry and firmer ground contact courtesy of regular Lighstrike foam.

 

CONCLUSION

To sum it all up, the Boston 10 has taken me on a journey through the mist of perplexity to a place where despite its quirks, I can see it for what it is with crystal clarity. A durable, stable, somewhat versatile, damn good-looking daily trainer with a solid spot amongst the other shoes in my current crop. It isn’t the shoe I wanted but it may well be the shoe I needed and one I’d have no hesitation in recommending.

adidas boston 10 review

As always, the adidas Adizero Boston 10 is available right now at Pro:Direct Running!

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Tom Folan

My names 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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