This is going to be a first on my blog, a gear review for something that you do not actually use during a run. I was on vacation this past week with my wife’s family, and my mother-in-law could not say enough good things about her new Montrail flip-flops. She was turned onto them by a friend of hers that routinely runs ultra marathons and other insane distance races. This woman told my mother-in-law that most runners that see knows where these flip-flops when they are not in their running shoes. In fact, she said that most of them bring the Montrails with them to races and change into them immediately upon completing the race. This type of review definitely had me intrigued, and I was prepped to investigate these flip-flops when I returned home. My mother-in-law is such a fan that she could not stand me not having a pair so she ordered a pair for Susan and me from the beach in Mexico! I will never turn down some free gear, especially some with such a positive review. And it is always great to come home to a present waiting for you, courtesy of the free overnight shipping on Zappos.
The exact flip-flop that I got is the Molokai, which is a thermo-moldable flip-flop. What makes these flip-flops so great (or so I have been told) is that the sandals mold to your specific foot shape and gait. This is not an easy feat to accomplish in flip-flops. The way this is achieved is through a somewhat unorthodox manner. You use the oven! That is correct, you put your flip-flops in the oven at 225 degrees for three minutes, then immediately put them on your feet so that they will mold to your specific foot. You stand in the warm flip-flops for two minutes with your normal, even weight distribution then you walk around for a few minutes in the flip-flops. This helps the shoe provide you more surface area contact between your foot and the flip-flop, this helping create a more comfortable experience. This is perfect for a supinator like myself.
These are not leather flip-flops like my current pair of Rainbows, but they certainly are not a cheap plastic like the flip-flops that you get at Old Navy or Wal-Mart. The look and feel of these flip-flops will be suitable for everyday wear, lake use, lounging, poolside, and any other manner that you now wear traditional flip-flops. From the looks of the bottom of these, I think that they will hold up for the long haul, and even on a trail or two!
Obviously, I have not had these flip-flops long enough to provide an in-depth review, but I can tell you that I have had no complaints over the past four hours or so. I will update on how these flip-flops perform through the summer. I will say that during my small sample size, these have been extremely comfortable and I wish I had these for the last week in Mexico. If you are like me, you wear flip-flops almost exclusively during the summer months, so there should be plenty of data at my disposal soon. Plus, I do imagine that I will be taking these with me to most of my races from now on.