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Finlay McAndrew  •  Running Gear •  07.04.2023 •  6 min read

adidas Adizero Boston 11 Review

So much more than an everyday running shoe

Ever since Haile Gebrselassie broke the world record, at the Berlin Marathon in 2008, in a pair of Adizero Adios prototypes, the running world has come to recognise the Adizero franchise as being about speed. One running shoe that’s synonymous with this franchise is the Adizero Boston. Over the last decade, the Adizero Boston has been associated with running fast. However, with the evolution of supershoes, lower profile racing shoes have become less desirable. 

This led to the Adizero Boston 10 being put through a radical overhaul. In a bid to serve a greater purpose, the Boston was reinvented. Not to become another supershoe. But a running shoe that can co-exist in the world of supershoes and can benefit more runners. An ultra thick midsole, part of which includes adidas’ superfoam, and Energy Rods was completely different from what had come before. This transformed the Boston from a shoe that suited a relatively small proportion of the running world, to a running shoe that helped a greater number of runners move faster more easily. 

 adidas Adizero Boston 11 running shoes in Pulse Mint colourway

 I was lucky enough to be given a pair of adidas Adizero Boston 11 to try out. The 11th edition features the same midsole design as the 10, but has some minor tweaks to the upper.

Shop the adidas Adizero Boston 11

First Impressions

The adidas Adizero Boston 11 looks a bit like a supershoe, but still appears closer to an everyday running shoe. The giveaway is that it doesn’t feel overly light. Weighing 271g and 233g for men’s and women’s respectively, this is fair to say. It also has a very structured upper with lots of overlays. This isn’t bad news, we’ll come back to these points later. 

 Upper of adidas Adizero Boston 11 running shoe in Pulse Mint colourway

Looking at the thick midsole (39.5mm to 31mm stack - 8.5mm drop), you would expect them to feel pretty soft and cushioned underfoot. Particularly with the inclusion of adidas’ superfoam, Lightstrike Pro. However, this is not the case. The first sensation was that of firmness. It was going to be interesting to see how this felt to run in. To save you checking, the Boston 11 is race legal and conforms to World Athletics standards. 

What I Liked

As the Adizero Boston 11 is designed to bring propulsion to everyday training, I tested them out at a range of paces: easy recovery run (~5.00min/km pace), steady base (4.40-5.00min/km pace) and some quicker efforts (3.30-4.10min/km pace). 

The midsole is called Lightstrike Pro+. If you’re wondering what this is, it’s a combination of two foams. The upper section is made from Lightstrike Pro, adidas ultra resilient superfoam. The bottom layer is made from Lightstrike, a firmer compound that delivers great energy return, but is more durable. Glass infused Energy Rods run through the midsole. As mentioned, this doesn’t feel soft, but my word does it feel protective. It can seem contradictory, but soft isn’t always better when it comes to cushioning. What’s so good about the Boston, is that it propels you forward, at whatever speed you’re running at. 

Outsole of adidas Adizero Boston 11 running shoes

I was impressed with how grippy the outsole was. Continental rubber offers amazing traction and durability. Going back to the earlier point about weight, the extra rubber adds some more weight, but means they’ll last longer than running shoes with less outsole rubber. The supportive upper also looks like it will stand up to a lot of miles. If durability is high up your list of priorities, the Boston 11 is a great choice. 

Fit and Feel

At slower speeds, while the cushioning doesn’t feel soft, the pace feels easier. The combination of the Lightstrike Pro+ and Energy Rods feels incredibly propulsive and protective. As you move up the gears and put more effort in, the midsole responds. While it lacks the trampoline like sensation you get from a supershoe, it definitely gives you back great levels of energy return. Meaning the faster paces feel easier to hit.

Heel of adidas Adizero Boston 11 running shoe in Pulse Mint colourway

If you’re wondering about stability, the high stack midsole feels very stable. The firmer Lightstrike foam provides a good level of support. Making it easy to navigate corners at pace. 

From a fit perspective, adidas normally fits about half size small in UK sizing. I jumped up half a size, in comparison to my normal running shoe size, and this fits perfectly. The fully gusseted tongue doesn’t make it the easiest shoe to get on. However, once your foot is in, it feels very comfortable. The benefit of the gusseted tongue is that it can’t slip around your foot. Meaning you simply forget about the upper when you’re out on a run. I have a fairly broad forefoot, and found the upper more than accommodating. 

How can the Adizero Boston 11 improve your run?

The Adizero Boston 11 is not a supershoe, but it's so much more than an everyday running shoe. The clear USP being that it genuinely feels great at a range of paces. If you’re looking for a running shoe that works well for slow, steady and faster paced runs, this is one of the best options. If the midsole was ever so slightly softer, it would probably feel even better for lower effort runs. 

While it lacks that ultra bouncy sensation, that you get from a supershoe, it's £140. Making it considerably cheaper than that style of shoe. It's also going to be considerably more durable than supershoes, and some popular everyday options too. Lighter isn't always better. The features that add weight to the Boston, such as the outsole rubber and upper overlays, are what make them last longer. If you'd like your shoes to cope with a lot of miles, you can’t expect them to be the lightest option.

Pair of adidas Adizero Boston 11 running shoes in Pulse Mint colourway propped on bridge

For those who would like the best possible advantage on race day, the record breaking Adizero Adios Pro 3 is the obvious choice. In saying that, this isn't for everyone. The Boston 11 could easily be used exclusively for your faster sessions and racing. Alternating it with softer running shoes, such as the neutral Solar Glide or stability Solar Control, would be a great set-up. 

Shop adidas Solar Glide
Shop adidas Solar Control


In summary, the adidas Adizero Boston 11 is a highly propulsive daily running shoe that feels great at a wide range of speeds.

The clear USP being that it genuinely feels great at a range of paces. If you’re looking for a running shoe that works well for slow, steady and faster paced runs, this is one of the best options.

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