New Kicks

by Meghann on September 17, 2014

Remember a couple of months ago when I toured Brooks headquarters in Seattle?

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Two things stood out to me on that trip:

1) The new Brooks NightLife Footwear

2) The new Brooks Heritage Collection

First, let’s talk about Brooks NightLife Footwear.

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Brooks NightLife collection uses strategically placed contrasting fabrics, retroreflective detail and active lighting to not only increase runner’s visibility, but also recognition. This is important for runners who don’t just want to be seen- but want to be recognized as a person vs. a traffic cone! I enjoy the collection because it typically comes in bright colors that are fun to wear and allow you to really stand out in a crowd. Plus, I run early in the morning, when it’s typically dark and a teeny bit scary. The NightLife gear allows me to feel a little bit safer on the road.

Brooks recently released their NightLife footwear collection (featuring the Glycerin 12s, PureFlow 3s, and Ravenna 5s) in August. Of course, I immediately became obsessed with the bright pinkness of the shoes.

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Awesome, right?

Just like the rest of the NightLife gear, the shoes are designed so runners can be recognized, not just seen. Basically, feet light up like a Christmas tree every time a car drives by. Of course I immediately jumped at a chance to review the new NightLife edition of Brooks Glycerin 12.

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Lately I’ve been running exclusively in shoes from the PureProject line (PureConnect and most recently the PureFlow), but before I switched to the PureProject line, I was a devoted Glycerins runner. Over the course of 3 years I went through numerous pairs, starting with the Glycerin 7s  in 2010 and eventually ending in the Glycerin 10s. I’m a huge fan of the extra cushion of the Glycerins and the soft ride they provide, but felt the lightness and grippiness from the PureProject shoes were more suitable for triathlon training. It’s been a couple of years since I’ve worn Glycerins and, when they arrived, I was worried I wasn’t going to enjoy them as much as I used to.

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The shoes actually arrived right before my post-surgery running hiatus. As cute as the shoes were – and as much as I wanted to wear them – the shoes were kept out of sight, sealed in their box, until I got the go ahead to run again. When I did get the green light, it was comforting to have the new Glycerin 12s to start fresh in. New shoes, new outlook on running.

I’m not sure if it was just because I was happy to run again, but the Glycerin 12s felt great. It was that same cushioned ride I always remembered, but these were a little lighter and freer in a way thanks to the Super DNA technology that Brooks developed during the creation of the Transcends. I loved them.

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My only complaint is the reflective shoe laces. They do NOT like to stay tied. I’m tempted to replace the shoe laces, but I’m torn with losing the reflectiveness of them.

I’m currently maxing out at 3 miles – with a lot of walking – but I’m excited to see where these new shoes will take me. If anything the bright pink makes me smile and for now, that’s enough for me.

On to the Brooks Heritage Footwear Collection:

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I know, pretty awesome, right?

The Brooks Heritage Footwear Collection launched in March 2014 as a casual, lifestyle footwear line for men and women curated to honor and celebrate the history, heritage, and spirit of the run. Featuring famed shoe designs, the Brooks Heritage Collection fuses fashion-forward aesthetics with classic running silhouettes to create sleek street-style shoes. Basically, what was once old, is new again, and they’re pretty awesome.

I was sent a pair of the Brooks Chariot, which are modeled after the original 1982 Brooks Chariot design.

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Capturing the essence of the original model, the reborn Chariot features the same tech qualities pioneered during the decade including a Diagonal Rollbar which was a breakthrough in motion control technology, molded tri-layer insole for cushioning, solid rubber outsole for sock absorption, and reflective hits for visibility.

Fusing the past with the present, this reborn classic has been updated with modern details such as an opulent pebbled leather chevron and rich varsity colorways that pay homage to the leading schools and teams of the 80s while also adhering to current fashion trends.

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As both a fan of history and a shoe geek, I’m a big fan of the Brooks Heritage Collection. Not only are they cute, but they represent a piece of Brooks history and each shoe has a story that comes with it. There are the famous faces that once wore the shoe, the technological advances that made the shoe the shoe of its time, the awards the shoe took home, and what was going on in American history when that shoe was designed. For instance, my parents graduated high school in 1982 and were married that fall. 1982 was a big year for them, so it’s fun to have a shoe that was originally designed around the same time.

The Brooks Heritage Collection is still very young and continues to grow and evolve. I’m hoping they’ll add apparel to the mix soon!

What do you think of the old school look of the Brooks Heritage Collection? 

I was sent both pair of shoes as part of the Brooks run Happy Ambassador program. As always, all opinions are my own. 

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