Lems Mariner Boat Barefoot Shoes Review

Lems Mariner is a new "barefoot casual shoe" that favors the "boat shoe" design ported to a minimalist/barefoot style and function—zero drop, huge toe box, low stack height sole, and no arch support.  On the left above you can see a the Mariner in the cam
Lems Mariner is a new "barefoot casual shoe" that favors the "boat shoe" design ported to a minimalist/barefoot style and function—zero drop, huge toe box, low stack height sole, and no arch support. On the left above you can see a the Mariner in the camel colorway; on the right you see the Mariner in sand. Note the colors are a bit saturated/stylized in this photo.

Lems Shoes continues to churn out new styles (or reboots)—the Lems Boulder boot came a few months back as well as the Primal 2. Most recently, Lems released their "boat shoe" (Boat shoes are also known as "deck shoes" or topsiders per wikipedia), which Lems aptly named the Mariner.

The Lems Mariner features the most classic "boat shoe" style—the ridge that runs the upper at the toe box really giving it that topsider look. They are also almost entirely clad in leather and meant to be worn sockless.

Andrew shot me over a couple pairs of the Mariner—one, each, in the darker brown "camel" colorway and the lighter/khaki "sand" colorway—to review. As a huge fan of the Vivo Barefoot Oak (The Oak is fashioned after the similar-to-boat-shoes wallaby shoe style), I was eager to get the Mariners on my feet.

And while I was optimistic the Mariners were going to be a great offering from Lems, it turns out that I'm liking them so much they may end up being one of the rare minimalist shoes that earn a full-time place in my closet.

In other words, I really like them. Why? Read on for my full review!

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Running the Zion 100 Mile Ultramarathon — My First 100 Miler

Running the Zion 100 Mile Ultramarathon — My First 100 Miler

Why would you want to run that?

The first step to any adventure is even knowing that the adventure exists. I first intersected this world of endurance running while I was hiking Handies Peak in July 2007 with my parents and fiancé. There were little flags along the trail that said Hardrock 100. I probably thought it was a bike race, but then we met a grey hair and his son as they came "running" up the other side of the summit. The man explained that he would be running Hardrock, that his son was pacing him, and he would be on the trail for about 48 hours. At the time, even the concept of adults running for enjoyment was foreign to me. That encounter planted a seed, but it wasn't until moving to Huntsville that the idea began to grow.

The runners of Huntsville opened a whole new world of potential adventures. I saw that real people (Ex: Rob Youngren) participate in amazing events, all kinds of people. You don't have to be fast, eat the perfect diet, or live in the mountains. You just have to want it. It doesn't matter why you want it, just that you want it so much that success is the only option.

After unexpectedly gaining entrance from the wait list and having a great run at the Lookout Mountain 50 Mile race in December 2012, I decided it was time to commit to the Zion 100. When I finished Lookout Mountain, my feet were shredded, my quads were dead, and I was on the verge of crying tears of exhaustion. A week after that, I committed to running the Zion 100.

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Daddy & Daughter Project—Xero Shoes FTW!

Daddy & Daughter Project—Xero Shoes FTW!

Want a fun, hour-long activity to do with your daughter (or son) that will leave them with their own custom, super-functional and healthy footwear? All you need is a kid's sized Xero Shoes huaraches kit, some colorful beads, and a little DIY huaraches step-by-step assistance.

A few weeks back on Father's Day, I let my oldest daughter pick out a sole (had a pair each of Xero's blue or pink soles) and her choice of lace colors to start and we got right to making her new pair of huaraches (she's outgrown her last pair).

Holes punched and initial lacing complete, Avi got right to the most fun part of the project. Picking the right beads!

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Topo Athletic "Two-Toed" Shoes Launched!

Topo Athletic "Two-Toed" Shoes Launched!

If you haven't heard, Tony Post's new company—Topo Athletic—has started selling their tabi-inspired footwear "two-toed" shoes at retailers everywhere.

We've already done a first look at the Topo M-RR and a review is forthcoming. But if you just can't wait and want to know first-foot about Topos, CitySports has them for sale and is offering readers Free Ground Shipping with promotion/coupon code BIRTHDAY.

Topo Athletic shoes come in three varietals — the M-RT ($100, thickest soles with a total stack height of 15mm, heaviest), the M-RX ($110, has extra strap over middle for snugger fit, lighter than RT, 13mm stack height), and the M-RR ($130 gets you the fancy BOA lacing system, the lightest Topo, and a 12mm stack height sole). All of them are zero-drop. More on the three (and some sole photos) here.

Anyone out there itching to go full-ninja?

Skora Core & Phase Minimalist Running Shoes Review

Skora Core & Phase Minimalist Running Shoes Review

It’s been over a year since I got my hands on Skora’s first entries in the minimalist market, the Base and Form. In that time the Portland based company has been hard at work updating and revising their lineup and has come out with the new Core and Phase models. (Core in the grey and Phase in the black) A lot has stayed the same, but a lot has been updated as well. Read on to see what’s new and how these more minimalist shoes perform.

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Barefoot B.E.R.B.S. Minimalist Golf Shoes Review

Barefoot B.E.R.B.S. Minimalist Golf Shoes Review

More and more companies are releasing barefoot style shoes, and it should come as no surprise to see more being offered to golfers. We've previously reviewed barefoot golf shoes by TRUE linkswear and Vivobarefoot. Another option in this minimal golf category is called Barefoot B.E.R.B.S. designed by owner Jeremy Berbert. According to their website, they've "created the world's most comfortable golf shoe." Do they stand up to that praise? Read on for the full review.

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