Asics Novablast 3 Initial Review

I've been battling with some chronic health issues for the past 7 weeks and have only just started on my road to recovery (hopefully) but through all this I've managed to give the Asics Novablast 3 some mileage and come up with an initial review of the shoe.

Now, I'm not one who loves bulky and heavy shoes. My running friends can attest to that. I have the original Asics Novablast and I thoroughly disliked that shoe. It was totally unstable, chunky and just about too cushy for me. Some may like very cushioned shoes but not me. 

But when I was given the Novablast 3 for trial purposes, I was a little skeptical. But being someone who don't judge shoes and make all kinds of assumptions until I actually try them, I decided to give them a try. Lo and behold, I was actually surprised when I took them out of the box, for one thing, while the Novablast 3 still had that chunky physical look, it definitely lost quite a bit of weight from its predecessor (I'm basing my review on the original as I've not had the luxury of trying the V2), that much I could tell right away.  

The Asics Novablast 3 is a much more polished and cushioned daily trainer that is best suited for those easy and long run days. In fact, while I haven't done any long runs in them yet, I'd say they're even good as a race day shoe. The new Flytefoam Blast+ midsole takes away a lot of the weight and provides a higher level of cushioning with a much more lighter and softer return but with less of the unstable bounce of its predecessor.

Asics also added some new sidewalls (which addresses the instability of its predecessor) with a much better upper lockdown to give it a much more secure ride with a lower heel drop which provides a little more guidance during your runs. The other thing that caught my eye right out of the box was the new redesigned upper that provides a nice snug and secure fit. The knit upper is actually fantastic and extremely breathable in the forefoot though the slightly thicker parts in the midfoot and heel are less so but overall very comfortable. The partially gusseted tongue with a notched top sit around the ankle nicely and is lightly padded and feels soft on the foot. The stiffer heel counter with a larger amount of heel collar padding gives the heel a nice solid hold.

My Asics Novablast 3 which is a US9 fit true to size though it does look a tad huge on me. Like I mentioned earlier, the shoe lost a lot of weight coming in at 253g for my US9 with a stack height of 38mm / 30mm making it an 8mm drop shoe as opposed to the earlier version which had a 10mm drop. While it's not as light as most of my other shoes but it is definitely light enough that has endeared me to it.

Overall, the Asics Novablast 3 was a pleasant surprised to me. I disliked the original due to it's weight, instability and chunkiness but this third iteration is a lot more structured and stable. The sidewalls keeps you a little more centred and the Flytefoam Blast+ has a lot more resilience upon landing. The Novablast 3 still maintains a nice amount of bounce but has a lot more rigidity and firmness to it. The outsole seems to look very similar to the V2 but with a flatter profile making transitions a lot smoother. The grip was pretty good though I haven't tested it on wet roads just yet. The high wear areas has thicker rubber coverage so I'm guessing the durability should be pretty good.

From what little mileage in them, I'd have to say the Asics Novablast 3 is a shoe with a bouncy structure ride for those looking for a soft, snug daily trainer for those daily easy and long miles. While it does seem to bottom out a little at much faster paces, it can still work pretty good for those controlled up-tempo sessions.

And with my health slowly coming back, I'm looking forward to a lot longer miles in them soon as I haven't really put the shoe to its potential just yet. With the Asics Hyper Speed 2, that's reserved for my speed/interval days, the Asics Novablast 3 as my daily trainer and my Asics Metaspeed Edge+ as part of my rotation, I think I've got all aspects of my upcoming training all covered.

The Asics Novablast 3 was kindly provided for review purposes by Asics Malaysia at no cost but this review is of my own personal opinion and is in no way influenced by Asics Malaysia whatsoever. The Asics Novablast 3 is now available in Asics Retail Store and at RM529.00.