Monday, September 23, 2013

REVIEW: INOV-8 Roclite 312 GTX Trail Running Shoes

David and I use a lot of equipment in the course of training and competing and thus I thought I'd take an opportunity over the next few weeks to publish some reviews on a few of my favorites. Today comes review #1: trail running shoes.

Since May, I've been running with a pair of Inov-8 Roclite 312 GTX shoes which I purchased from Wiggle. I've probably put a bit more than 100 kms on these shoes since then, including the run up and down Åre Skuten during HÅEC 2013, and so far, I can only say good things about these boots. I am a heel striker so I was a bit concerned about the level of cushioning for my feet. After all, if you look on the Inov-8 site, you'll discover that they believe in a very minimalist approach to running. Fortunately, I've found that they are more than adequate--perhaps a bit less than the Nike Dual Fusion soles that I run on asphalt--but 100% comfortable for 15+ km runs on gravel, trails, mud and even short stretches of pavement. The treads are very grippy and cling to everything from loose packed gravel to roots. I've climbed steep stretches without any slippage and successfully leapt through fields of blueberry bushes trying to get around slower runners during competitions.. Fit wise, they are true to form. I wear a US 10.5/EU 44 shoe and the UK 9.5 model fits perfectly, with a snug grip on the heel and a toe box which leaves plenty of room up front. (The footbed is narrow--this is one aspect of these shoes that has taken some getting used to--and as such these are probably not the shoes for people prone to ankle twists.) Cleanability has proven good as well--after HÅEC the shoes were totally caked with mud, but a good hosing from the inside out and a half a day in the torkskåp left them looking good again.

Swedes looking to try a pair of Inov-8 shoes can find retailers here. Feel free to post questions in the comments section if I can be of help.


  1. Thanks for a good review that I found because you kindly mentioned it on Wiggle.

    I was very close to order the Inov8 Roclite, since it just won a test in a Danish magasine, and I am lokking for something like them, and especiallt with the GTX that I understand as if the upper part of the shoe is good for winter running (like if it was with Goretex?)...

    ... BUT your review makes me think twice, since what I actually do fear is that the shoe is not wide enough for my rather wide foot. Can you confirm that this is what you have experienced and is what you mean with what you mention in your review?

    The: "...(The footbed is narrow--this is one aspect of these shoes that has taken some getting used to--and as such these are probably not the shoes for people prone to ankle twists.)"

    I do also need some kind of moderate compensation for over pronation (or what ever it is called in English) - sp perhaps also regd. that the shou is not the right one??

    Would be very happ to hear what you mean - I can be reached at

    BR Thomas

    PS: Heya Sverige - I did tThe Sweedish Calssic in 2012 - was really great and I was very proud!!!

    1. Thomas:

      First, congratulations on completing the Swedish Classic. How was the swimming part? That's what scares me the most about that challenge...

      Regarding the footbed. I mean that the bottom of the shoe is narrower than I am used to. I actually measured this today & compared against a pair of NIKE shoes that I use when running on the street. The Roclite's are actually about 1 cm narrower in the heel (8 cm vs 9 cm) and 1 cm shorter in the heel due to the fact that the NIKE's sole flares out from the back of the shoe providing a thicker cushion for heel strikers. My experience is that this makes the shoe less stable than I am used to.

      I do not think that the Inov-8's are narrow in the toebox. I have pretty wide feet (I wear an E width dress shoe) and I've not felt cramped. Again, the narrow area is apparently the heel.

      Finally, I am not an over-pronator, so I don't know if these will provide any compensation. However the inner sole is removable. (It is not glued in which makes the shoe easy to clean.) I think if you need some additional compensation for over-pronation you could always add an orthopedic insole.