Puma Ignite Power Cool – 50 Mile Review

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It has taken me awhile to get to the 50 mile review on these shoes and it has been a sort of convoluted journey to get here.

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I have been pretty much running in nothing but Puma’s lately, not for any particular reason, other than I can and for the most part are working well for me. The price points over the Holidays were pretty amazing, plus I got one of those wild hairs across something and so far I am having fun with it.

The Ignite P/C’s here were probably released in the summer of 2015 and they are Version 1 of the Ignite line with a different upper than the original Ignite. I think that is about the only difference that I can tell. However, due to the complex way Puma identifies or doesn’t identify their shoes, it makes it difficult at best to know when they were actually released or what the differences are between their models.

Disclosure: I purchased these with my own money and although I was selected to be a Puma wear-tester in 2015, my feet are the wrong size and I will never be used as such and have not been asked to be one since. I have no material connection to Puma or any other entity regarding this post or my running in Puma running shoes. All comments in this post are my own observations and experience.

So what do I think of the Puma Ignite Power Cool’s?

That is a tough question to answer, over the past month I have really liked them, completely disliked the fussiness of the tongue and getting the heel to feel right, attempted three lacing combinations to see if I could make it reasonable and finally figured out that – “it is what it is” and went back to lacing combo #2.

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Then there was getting used to the feel on the road, the best way for me to describe it was initially they felt squishy at slower speeds, a lot like when I used to run in Sorbothane inserts back in the 80’s, except the entire midsole felt like that. When I ran faster it firmed up nicely, so it did take some adjustment for that feeling.

Today I took them on a 6+ mile run (the first one in a couple of weeks) and remembered all the things that I really, really liked about the Ignite P/C’s.

What do I like?

I run well in them – that is the most important thing.

  • They are quiet, I would rank them right up there with the Skechers GoRun Ride 2’s for quietness – that in my world is a huge compliment.
  • They are made for those of us who are in heel strikers anonymous. Yeah, they have a 12mm drop and the Ignite midsole eats up the heel strike quite well.

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  • They are at the top of what I prefer my trainers to weigh at 10.3. Yes, they gained .2 ounce when I changed laces, but that isn’t a big deal.
  • So far on runs up to 7 miles they haven’t bothered my right foot and now that I have adjusted to the way Ignite feels underfoot, I like the ride.
  • The outsole was surprisingly grippy in a variety of winter running situations and today’s run even included some, wet, slushy, salt melt ice, muddy stuff on the side of the Bog Road.

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  • They don’t bother my right foot, even though the toe box looks pretty tapered.

What don’t I like?

  • It all starts and ends with the tongue – it sucks.

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What I don’t like is that it is not padded all the way to the top. The cushioning stops about an inch from the end of the shoe’s tongue, which causes a variety of problems for me.

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That last part of the tongue is thin material that flops around and is fussy to get the damn thing flat against the top of my foot. I have to frig fart around to make sure there are no crinkles, creases or folded spots that could cause hot spots, blisters or just simple discomfort during a run.

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I cannot use the last two lace holes and comfortably cinch down and lock in my heel, without the laces pressing uncomfortably into the top of my feet (yeah both feet). Also if I use either of the last two lace holes, it then becomes an even more frustrating exercise to get the top of the tongue flat against my foot.

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Which means that I have learned to live with stopping the lacing at the top of the padded tongue and living with the looser than I like feeling in the heel. A compromise, which I am not a huge fan of.

  • They are a bit chilly for running in winter, but I think the Power Cool sort of gives that part away.
  • The only other thing is a common whine for me, I don’t like the flat laces most shoes come with and got rid of them pretty quickly.

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  • When the laces were still giving me problems (see tongue problems above) on which lace holes I could comfortably use, I tried LockLaces, that didn’t work all that great, so I went back to the round laces and have pretty much accepted that is about as good as it is going to get.

Going forward

Other than my issue with the tongue, heel lock and lacing, which is all interconnected and comes back to the poor tongue design for me and how I prefer my running shoes to fit, I still like the Puma Ignite Power Cool’s. I will keep them in my rotation and use them

They are a comfortable, quiet running shoe that I run well in.

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Unfortunately, the way that the tongue is designed does not work for me. While it is not a fatal flaw that prevents me from running in the Ignite series running shoes. It is bothersome enough that I will not purchase more shoes from Puma with that particular design.

Puma has other running shoes that I am running in that do not share that tongue design and are working quite well for me.

Unfortunately, the Ignite 3 was released recently and unless I am mistaken the photos on the website show a tongue design very similar to the one I have been running in. Which means that I will not be moving to the Ignite 3.

Which is too bad, because now that I have gotten used to the feel and ride of the Ignite shoes, I am finding that I do like it.

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