Louis Garneau’s TRI X-LITE II shoes. Photo Cam Mitchell

Louis Garneau’s new X-Lite II triathlon shoe is flashy, comfortable and fast. Designed with the high-performance needs of a triathlete in mind, the X-Lite II will get you out of T1 and on to the road faster. While on the road you’ll also feel comfortable pushing the watts as you motor back into T2.

It’s been a pleasure testing these shoes. Instantly when I put them on I was pleasantly surprised by the toe box. I had enough space without feeling cramped, and it made for a comfortable ride. So much so, I don’t plan on going back to my old triathlon shoes.

In T1, I noticed how easy and quick getting into these shoes are. Running out of T1 barefoot and hopping onto the bike can be a risk depending on your skill level and shoes. With the heel puller, loop strap and retention hook, I got my lead foot in quickly (faster than usual), and my back foot was in a pedal stroke later. In three revolutions I was strapped in and off to the races. It was so fast I spent the next 100 metres thinking, “That was fast, must be the shoes (because I have never done that in training).”

After I tightened the straps, I was impressed with the comfort. Usually 10K into the bike I’ll notice some pressure points, but this wasn’t the case with the X-Lite II in training or racing. The insole of this shoe is made with COOLMAX technology – providing comfort and moisture wicking features, important when hopping on the bike after a swim. Included with the shoes are interchangeable Ergo Air insoles.

The seamless outer sole PU leather and mesh provides comfort and breathability when training and racing. An important feature in the heat of the summer and the triathlon season.

Just as important as comfort is performance. While settling into a rhythm on the road, the arches of my feet were well supported. Louis Garneau calls this their “Power Zone.” The zone has been designed to keep your feet and the rest of your leg aligned for greater power output.

Heel positioning can be a problem with some triathlon shoes. Most cycling shoes do a good job of positioning and retaining the heel so the cyclist can effectively pedal without a loss of power. Louis Garneau, also a cycling brand, has applied this heel positioning and retention technology into their triathlon shoes and it’s noticeable in comparison to other triathlon shoes. The X-Lite II is reinforced with HRS-100 technology and a 0.6mm membrane – these features hold the heel in place.

These shoes don’t fail to stand out either. With the flashy neon yellow colour selection or a white and red one, the Tri X-Lite II has a colour for everyone. Weighing just 8.3 ounces or 250 grams with Louis Garneau’s patented Carbon Air-Lite outsole, these shoes are priced at $ 259.99 and available online at louisgarneau.ca or select retailers across Canada.

Louis Garneau’s TRI X-LITE II shoes. Photo Cam Mitchell

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