Recently, I have had to take a step back form my Zero…
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $110
Recently, I have had to take a step back form my Zero Drop comfort zone and explore some other options. the Merrell All Out Fuse is so lightweight, breathable, and yet somehow sturdy and forgiving at the same time. I can see this shoe being a great door-to-trail option and a good entry shoe into the minimal running world.
- Good ground feel
- Wide toe box
- Versatile on different surfaces
- Too much midsole for the minimal enthusiast
**Disclaimer: I own a running store that sells these shoes. The shoe in this review was purchased by me for review purposes.**
With a recent Achilles injury, I have had to take a step back form my Zero Drop comfort zone and explore some other options. Saints be praised for this shoe. It is so light weight, breathable, and yet somehow sturdy and forgiving at the same time.
I’ll start with the mid-sole because it’s the part of the shoe that is getting the most updates across the industry. Like other brands Merrell has added some squish to their midsole with this model. However, they have really kept the integrity of their barefoot design by not going all HOKA and Altra Olympus on it.
They’ve added just a bit of the soft good stuff in the forefoot and a wee bit more in the heel giving a nice 6mm drop. As someone who is really paying attention to form and foot strike right now the cushion in the back is wonderful. This padding and lift in the heel will also make for a great walking shoe when you can use a little more junk in the trunk.
Next we’ll chat about the tread on this guy. The tread is something pretty cool. While is doesn’t look like much those little pinwheels provide some pretty good grippiness on the trail yet a smooth transition on the road. I will say that I didn’t take these out on some epic singletrack adventure, but on semi-groomed trails, they worked well. With this unique tread I can see this being a go-to road shoe for some but a really nice Door-To-Trail hybrid. In other words, versatile as the day is long.
Finally the upper. These shoes have lots of ROOM for your feet to party. The toe is rounded quite well which provides an awesomely wide toebox. I’m talking Altra Toe Box Wide. The heel has some nice padding around it to help it stay put on your ankle and reduce chaffing. While I don’t recommend running without socks ever, you might be able to get away with these. The upper is a mix of both synthetic mesh and good ol leather that provides some good protection for your foot from rocks, acorns, etc.