Ultra Raptor La Sportiva review 2013: Lasting long and going over heavy terrain

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I’m a first time user or runner so to say. And i must admit this is a shoe that last long and get you over heavy terrain. It is much more build for longer distances than the helios or the crosslite. Though the crosslite is already good protection for rocky terrain, the raptor saves you even more. For long endurance trails it is just the right choice.

It has a very breathable upper air-mesh and that’s very good for the shoe to be able to dry again, when it is wet. And that is not always the case for all trail shoes, but it should.



OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe sole has a very good profile that give good and solid ground support.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe sole construction is hi-tech. Take a look at the la sportiva homepage for this to get a picture. They give very good traction and give very good grip on the trail.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe heel is enhanced also and gives good protection against scrub injuries or stone. Also the ankle is suited well into, with enough height to not get any little stone into.


OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAProtection for the heel, but also still flexible and soft and smooth and with durable material.


Conclusion: For longer trails, where you might need more support for you foot, this shoe would be the right choice. It has a very good firm sole and many features, that support your foot. I recommend this shoe over rocky and long trails, when your foot does need more support than on other occasion.

The shoes are slightly heavier (350gr) but that is the compromise to a more stable footbed and protection.


Tech specifications from the webpage:

Tech Info

WEIGHT: 12.28 oz/ 348 g

LAST: Tempo 2

FIT: Medium/Wide

UPPER: AirMesh/ Synthetic Leather/ TPU Lacing Harness/ TPU Transkinetic Heel Stabilizer

LINING: Mesh (back half and tongue only)

MIDSOLE: MeMlex/ Nylon Molded Flex Transfer shank

DROP(mm):  12mm

SOLE: FriXion®XF/ Impact Brake System™ X-Axis™

SIZES: 36 – 47.5 (half sizes)

COLORS: Red/Grey or Black/Yellow





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Salt Sticks

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As always i had some problems with my water balance, the results had been thick legs. I could not get the best or right amount of salt during races. I do sweat a lot. I have measured 1 to 1,5 liters of lost body weight during a one hour run in summer. So for two hours this could be about 3 liters of sweat. This is a substantial loss of minerals also. So i always did not know how to compensate this in an adequate manner. Most of the iso drinks have include natrium also. But i felt that this might not be enough.

Salt you can not store in your body. If you take to much or there is an imbalance, this can be dangerous.

If you are drinking to much of warter during the race and “lose” all your minerals through drinking (washing out) and sweating, then you are in great danger. The body needs natrium for the water balanance. If he is losing to much water, the symptoms can for example be headache and confusion. It is called Hyponatremia then.

Taking to much can also be a drawback. The body does save to much. Also afterwards, taking to much salt after a race, you might end up at michelin man.

I tested “Schweden” tablets (contains 250mg NaCl per tablet only) and took them during races. But this is only natrium.

I found salt sticks a good component for races to compensate the extreme loss of minerals. During a 15 hours race i take about 7 capsules. That is about every 2 hours one capsule. Cause i also consume natrium included with iso drinks during the race.

Salt capsules contains minerals and a vitamin: 215 mg sodium, 63 mg potassium, 22 mg calcium, 11 mg magnesium, 100 IU Vitamin D

Said the ingrediants are derived from real sweat. For me it helped a lot to keep the balance during a race, sweating a lot and loosening a lot of fluids and minerals.

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Helios, La Sportiva review spring 2013: Going like barefoot with the new Helios

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As there are many vendors around for trail running shoes in the meantime. La Sportive is one among these, that are having a long history already in designing and producing shoes. La Sportiva has a new mountain running homepage. There you could find many new infos on their new shoes and appearals.This is the La Sportiva Homepage for Trail Running:



Go to http://www.lasportiva.com/index.php?id=1611&L=2#.UX0lbEmOVP0



for the trail running section and more infos on available shoes.

These are the new Helios for men. These shoes are also available for woman. And there are many other different colors available.


But i think i have a new favorite shoe for my short distance trails. Helios, La SportivaAlso they are perfect for just daily running over rough terrain normaly around 20 km but also will support you until maybe 30-50 km very good. La Sportiva set this shoe on their homepage for short distances.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I use normally size 45 in saucony for example and these are just half size bigger (45 1/2) and they fit just fine.

As mentioned the Helios you can get in many different color combinations. I got mine in Grey / Orange. They look just very good. Feeling very light, but also look of high quality.

Check out the La Sportiva Homepage for the Techsheet. Here are the details from there:


Tech Info (from the Homepage)

Upper: Soft EVA laminated to a breathable mesh with abrasion resistant “Poly-Cap” at the toe and heel. The external high frequency frame is applied to a nylon net.

Lining: Air-Mesh only at the back

Midsole: shock absorbing, injected EVA with MorphoDynamic technology and 2mm anti-shock insert.

Sole: MD Extra Light FriXion AT with VA lugs

Ramp-angle: 4mm, similar to 5 mm heel drop

Weight: 460g (pair size 42)

Size: 36 – 47,5 (including half sizes


As you can see, the have a very little drop. That is the difference between heel height and toe height. This allows for a more natural foot position, than normal running shoes. It’s more orientated into the barefoot direction. Normally in running shoes you would have a drop of above 8mm. With only 231 gr. it’s quite light.

As you are maybe using barefoot shoes. Or want to move from your normal shoe to a more natural way of running, then helios is a good step into it. With a minimalistic running shoe like merrells trail glove or minumus new balance, your you are missing probably some cushioning for longer races. With the helios you get a well cushioned and but also highly breathable trail running shoe. For breathabilty you have the thin mesh in the upper.Helios, La Sportiva


Facts in short

  • Look: colors are:  grey-orange, grey-blue, grey-red (all men), green-pink, green, light-blue (all woman)
  • Feel: comfortable, durable (probably, still testing), light, easy, sensitive
  • Grip: gives good grip on all grounds
  • Durability: I will update this section, as soon they have more miles on the speedo.
  • Pros: light, sensitive, great for short distances, nice feeling, good grip, water drains well, dries fast, for warm weather ideal, foot can breath well (maximum ventilation)
  • Cons: depending on your foot, maybe not good for longer distances on rough terrain, cause your foot will need more support from your sole. Maybe not good for muddy ground
  • Comfort: gives a very light and comfort feeling inside while running
  • Testing environment: Road, single trail, going through rivers
  • Consulsion: I have been using the new Helios model now for over two weeks at distances around 20-50 km and they are great. The are very light and i can feel the ground i ran on. The sole is not that tick and they are sensitive. I can hardly feel the weight of that shoe and they give good grip on any ground. A great shoe, also for longer distances, but keep in mind that you might need some stabilty support from more stable shoes like the Crosslite or Ultra Raptor, when going for longer races and your foot is not uses to go these distances, without. But anyway, i can really recommend the new Helios.


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Review #new CrossLite 2.0, La Sportiva

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I have been using them now for several races and i want to write shortly some things about the CrossLite 2.0 (c-lite) from La Sportiva.

GOPR0090-1I used them once in a race, where they saved my knee with their stable and good footbed support. My old shoes had been quite worn out and after changing them, at the middle of the race against the new crosslite, the foot and my knee got stabilized again and i could finish the race.


Anyway, it’s not a bad idea to change shoes in a race anyway. The same applies for training. I now have about 10 shoes, where i can choose from the best, that fits best to my current needs and trail it is going to.

Shiny red color. But for trail running, this shiny state does not last long. 🙂


They give good grip, like the raptor, they have a solid and stable sole with enough knobs to give very good support and muddy and slippery ground.

GOPR0095-2Also they are quite light. DCIM100GOPRO GOPR1033 DCIM100GOPRO



The have been proven as a solid shoe for long ultra races. I have been using them for even more than 100 km races. They stabilize the foot very good. Also the sole is excellent for all terrains. On mud, snow and rocky grounds they work out very good.

They give enough space to the fore foot and have a enhanced cap. That saves your toes from pushing against the race. Some might it feel it a little bit to stiff while running downwards. Since this is an Italian model, you have to try them. Someone that has a bigger forefoot, might feel it as to narrow at the front.


Tech Specs:

WEIGHT: 10.7oz /     300g

LAST: Tempo 2

FIT: Medium/Wide

UPPER: AirMesh/ Uretech

LINING: Mesh (back half and tongue only)

MIDSOLE: MEMlex/ TPU stabilizer

DROP(mm):   8mm


SOLE: FriXion® AT/ Impact Brake System V-Groove

SIZES: 38-47.5  (half sizes)

COLOR: Black



size 45,5 (UK11) Red


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