Yet another marathon shoe decision thread :)

Yes...adding yet another marathon shoe decision thread,  but narrowing down my shoe choices for NYC in 26 days. My current rotation is the Mizuno Cursoris, Brooks Pure Flow and Saucony Virrata. Was wondering if  anyone has an opinion if Cursoris is a worthy 26.2 shoe or too flat/not cushioned enough? These are all pretty similar shoes, but my experience is different in them. I'm considering throwing out the Virrata because they are a bit too narrow in the toe box (for me) and although similar thickness/cush as the others, they feel a little firmer and my feet a little more achy after long (18+) runs. Maybe it's the difference in the midsole material compared to the others? The Flows have been my marathon go-to the last two marathons. They aren't the lightest or fastest, but just get out of my way. Also considering the Flow 2 and looking for comparisons over the 26.2 distance for those that have used them. I'm intrigued by the Cursoris since I'm on my 3rd pair and they fit the best out of any shoe I've ever owned (and lighter than the flows). I'm just concerned about that extra 6-7 miles I haven't taken them past in distance. Any advice based on experiences with the same shoes? Thanks! 


  • A couple of things to note:  The Pure Flow "get out of my way."  That's a check mark in that column.  And that might be all you need.  Ultimately, I believe, you want your shoe to disappear on your foot.  That's pretty much it right there!

    If the Cursoris are almost, but not quite, on par with the Flow, and are a bit lighter and fit the best ever (!) that is a pretty solid vote for that.  That it is untested over the full distance is, I think, less of a concern.  Perhaps at one point the Flow was untested too.  Some things you just can't know. 

    So then ask yourself, which one will I think about less?

    Buona fortuna.  Good luck!  Enjoy!
  • If you've done 18-20 in the Cursoris without issue I think you'd probably be fine in those. Ran my Spring marathon in the Virrata and they were fine, but a bit narrow as you point out. I've done double-digit mileage in the Cursoris without a problem, but haven't gone over 15 in them I don't think. Trust your gut, if the Cursoris feels best so far, go with it, if you ave doubts go with the Flow.
  • Thanks for the replies and some helpful advice. Here is what I'll probably do (if anyone cares!):

    I threw out the Virrata from contention because they just don't fit my foot as well (same problem with the Kinvara). They are too narrow in the toe box and caused me to go a 1/2 size bigger than I usually go. That didn't do much as they only became longer and not wider. Too bad because they are light as can be, while still cushioned, but the little toe in my right foot presses up to the side and the feel a little too firm after 15 miles or so (for my taste). I wish they'd either widen the toe box in future versions or offer wide sizes. Also the tread is wearing down earlier than any shoe I've owned. 

    That leaves the Brooks Pure Flow 2 and the Mizuno Cursoris. I went ahead an ordered a new pair of each since both are on sale (Cursoris at Running Warehouse and Flow 2 at Dick's) and will still be part of my ongoing rotation. I'll wear the Cursoris for this weekend's 18 miler and the Flows for next weekend's 16 miler and I'll compare. IF it needs to go to overtime, then I have a 12 mile (2 loop) long run the week before the marathon and I'll wear each for a loop in a final showdown :) Each pair will have about 50 miles on them before the race so can go either way. 

    I'm betting I'm asking a lot of questions about the Cursoris as a worthy contender (like the Mizuno Precision 13 last year) and will ultimately go the safe/tried-true route and run in the Flows (like last year). The Cursoris pros: light, best upper I've ever felt, my 5k and 10K PR shoe, form feels great in them, and have the best wear pattern of any of my current rotation. This last one is strange because I am mid-footer who is prone to scraping/scuffing the lateral outside heel as I get lazy/long and that's the first part that goes in ANY shoe. The Cursoris has NO treads in the back half of the sole...all soft/sponge material except for that one spot (lateral heel) they put some super material in the same color, which seems to wear, but half as quicky as my other shoes. I also have nice worn spot under the ball of my foot that makes me happy to see. Cursoris cons: the laces are tough to nail down...too tight and the upper foot can feel cramped and have to loosen...too loose and the whole shoe can get slappy. And of course... the feeling that they might not have long run/marathon distance cushioning (which I'll test out). 

    The Pure Flows...again not overly light or overly fast, but get out of my way. They went into both my previous marathons as 2nd choices and ended up on top because they were the safe bet and went the 26.2 without note. Here is one reason I like them that will probably be pretty hard to explain or borderline "runner OCD" sounding :) If I strike in them perfectly midfoot then they don't make any sound whatsoever...which I always thought was cool. To make it more interesting, I often actively try to run with good form to land in that exact sweet spot where they continue to float along soundless on footstrike. I am a little more put at ease that there is 22mm of heel cushioning for late in a long race when my strike might get more lazy and heel scuff. It tears these shoes up, but getting through the race with happy feet is more important. 

    So...Virrata out, leaning to Flows, but damn... the Cursoris sure are comfy!

    Thanks again for the help!
  • I'll say that I briefly contemplated the Cursoris for my Spring marathon, but just felt the Virrata provided better forefoot cushion even though the fit wasn't quite as good and I have a strong history of success with the Kinvara at marathon distance. Not sure why, but the Cursoris just didn't feel like a marathon shoe to me even though I enjoyed every mile I ran in them.
  • I ran my last marathon in the Pure Flow 2 and was very happy.  Your description of the shoe "getting out of the way" is very apt. It is a bit heavier than most of the shoes I run in regularly but I opted for a little extra comfort and protection.  No problems at all and was back in my normal training routine the day after the marathon. I have done quite a bit of running in the Cursoris and really like the shoe a lot.  It is a very comfortable shoe!  I personally feel that the Cursoris loses a bit of responsiveness toward the end of longer runs but that may just be my experience.  Good luck with your choice and your marathon!
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