It’s not hard to see why the Adidas UltraBoost is such a popular shoe. It combines Adidas’s impressive Boost cushioning with a fashionable and comfortable knitted upper to create a shoe that’s a pleasure to wear, whether you’re running or not.

Adidas’s claim that the UltraBoost will deliver “your greatest run ever” is hard to prove, but I will say this: after a few runs in the UltraBoost, it became my go-to shoe for long distances.

The Boost cushioning delivers a responsive and comfortable ride and returns energy to help you bounce merrily through whatever distance you take on. I found it particularly good for helping to maintain my pace over long runs.

It pairs this impressive midsole with a glove-like knitted upper. There’s no tongue on the upper – you simply slip your foot in like a sock. Pick the right size (you’ll probably want one size up on your normal shoes) and the laces become somewhat superfluous, such is the snug fit.

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There’s a plastic cage that wraps around the mid-foot section of the UltraBoost, which can be uncomfortable if you tighten the laces too much. Apparently some people started modifying the shoes by cutting off the cage – an action that seemingly resulted in Adidas releasing the UltraBoost Uncaged, which dispenses with the cage entirely.

When the laces aren’t too tight, however, I preferred the snugger fit and extra support of the cage on a longer run compared with the looseness you get with an entirely fabric liner, such as with the Uncaged or Adidas PureBoost.

Aside from the cage the overall fit of the upper is stretchy, with the fabric allowing your toes to splay agreeably. The fabric seems thick but even during long runs in warm weather my feet didn’t overheat at all.

The Continental rubber on the outsole provides excellent grip in all conditions, although the knitted upper is less suited to wet weather and will do nothing to stop your foot getting drenched if the heavens open.

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It’s probably too cushioned and heavy for short track sessions, but the UltraBoost is good for pretty much everything on the road and is at its best on longer runs where the bouncy cushioning comes into its own. I happily wore it for every run over a couple of weeks of my marathon training plan – from 5km tempo sessions to a 33.5km long run.

In fact, I wore it for pretty much the entire time during the first week I had it: for runs, work and social occasions. (But then I never go anywhere fancy.)

If you’re after a versatile running shoe, definitely consider the UltraBoost. If you’re after a versatile running shoe that you can wear with your civvies without people casting pitiful glances at your hideous footwear, it’s unbeatable.

£129.95, buy on


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