We have all been waiting for it and the time has arrived, Adidas’ answer to Nike for the best performing carbon racer. We are happy to present the Adizero Adios Pro. Boasting a huge stack and lightweights, this is a direct challenge to the Alphalfy and the 4% and everyone else out there and honestly, it is a totally different run experience. If you are expecting a stride for stride competitor, then what you will find instead is a shoe that is entirely different. It makes use of some of their existing midsole tech and then combines that with some new design elements all with an eye to performance at distance, but can it dethrone the king…?
Quick Details, Specs, and Availability
- Adidas jumps into the carbon fray in a big way (and by that we mean stack height).
- Expect a firmer ride and a really minimally supportive upper.
- Weighs in at 7.9oz or 224g for a US Men’s 9.
- Features 39mm of cushion and has an 8.5mm heel/toe drop.
- Retails at $200.00 USD and comes in 2 colors for Men and Women.
We were very excited to get a look at the Adierzo Adios Pro given it is Adidas’ first attempt at a true carbon plated marathon distance racing competitor to everything else we have been looking at. Visually, the shoe is really striking probably due to the launch color option, but more than anything we respected it because it still feels like an Adidas shoe.
A quick note that as we go into this, we should comment as always that these are really designed to be racing shoes. Too many people are wearing them as their everyday runners and while you can definitely use them on your speed days, running in a carbon racer over time puts significant additional strain on your legs and the only way to work through that is with proper cross-training. There are reasons why we have different segments of shoes so make sure you’re using each in its proper place. We are simply seeing too many injuries from shoes like this and note that it is even hard for us to avoid it given how many we test.
First, note that getting the shoe on the foot is not necessarily a great experience so don’t judge it too quickly. The internal gusset is stitched just a little too high on the lateral side of the foot and then connects under the insole to lock it down. This forces you to really open it up with your hands before slipping your foot into place. People with a bit larger feet might actually struggle to get into the opening. Once in however, you are locked into place and that gusset holds you really well. What does not seem to hold you well is the heel because there is basically no real heel counter on this shoe. Adidas did include a vertical post right down the heel seam, but it is almost unnoticeable in terms of support. The rocker on the shoe is also very noticeable in a good way I’m almost wants to throw you over your toes and get you running from day one which is kind of fun feeling.
While you are running, that consistent feeling of going over your toes is the rocker that helps with created forward motion and keeps you in that sort of pseudo forward lean. The real trick with all these shoes is cadence. More often than not we see people running in carbon shoes with very slow long strides or even slow short strides, but to get the most out of them inevitably cadence has to increase. The lighter weight of a shoe like the Adios Pro makes it easier to increase cadence, but maintaining it can be a challenge because these things just want to fly. The bottom line is can your legs handle it.
Note these are a little less forgiving than some other carbon shoes because there isn’t a lot of mid-foot support or stability from a side-to-side perspective. So if you have any sort of pronation or supination issues it is very easy to roll out one way or the other. We would have loved to see them create more of a cradle for the foot at the top of the midsole as other shoes have done. The midsole is also straight up and down whereas some shoes have gone to more of an angled design to give you a broader landing surface.
All this being said, the shoe just wants to fly and those who love Adidas will probably really enjoy it, but you should expect something that is on the firmer side and is not going to be as forgiving on your legs as some other options in the market.
The upper on the Adios Pro is made of what Adidas calls CELERMESH. This engineered mesh material is designed to be both breathable and lightweight while still allowing for maximum foot flexibility. The tongue is rubberized and stitched to form what feels like a gusset, but it does connect a little high so getting your foot in and out can be a bit of a chore. Once your foot is in there, it holds you firmly in place. Collar padding is very light and the heel counter is very odd in that it runs vertically down the heel seam and does not wrap around your actual heel.
The midsole performance comes from a few key areas. First, Adidas is using their Lightstrike Pro super lightweight foam which we have seen on their other shoes. It tends to run a bit firmer so that should set an expectation on how it feels. Additionally, they have added carbon-infused rods that extend through the forefoot and that should help with that acceleration and maintenance of speed over distance. Lastly, there is a carbon plate in the heel which should help rear foot strikers to accelerate into those carbon rods more quickly allowing for a quicker foot transition.
The outsole on the Adios Pro is a very very thin film of lightweight rubber which extends across the entire forefoot and then there are individual strips down the heel. The mid-section is just exposed Lightstrike midsole material. It holds decently well but lacks any sort of treads or striations for additional grip.
Style & Aesthetics
Visually, this looks like and feels like an Adidas shoe, and in fact, it looks a lot like the Adizero Pro just with a bit more midsole. By this, we mean they didn’t go the whole Nike route and create something totally out of the ordinary when they designed the shoe. The hot pink is striking and we expect to see several new colors by the time holiday rolls around.
The Adidas Adizero Pro is a solid carbon racer however it definitely has a few drawbacks that keep it from being one of our first choices in the category. The ride is firm which some people will love, but as a marathon racer, we would love to see a little more foot comfort. 39mm of stack height should feel a little better than this. The other area we don’t love is the heel counter and the upper in general feels like it could use some love just to be a bit more comfortable. It does run really fast though so if a lot of these areas we’re complaining about don’t bother you, then inevitably you will like this shoe. It also breaks in fairly well and when it activates in a run, some of these annoyances disappear. As a first real foray into this carbon plated world, the Adizero Pro is a highly competitive attempt.
Check Out Other Reviewers Thoughts
As always, we gather together some of our favorite reviewers so you can get a well-rounded view of the shoe. Here are our favorites.