Inov-8 brand themselves as the natural outdoor company, so it seemed only right that I headed to the trails kitted out head-to-toe to see how it faired on a test run.
Starting with my feet and sporting the Trailroc 226's, the shoes instantly felt light and comfortable. Designed to be as responsive as racing footwear with the durable benefits of trail shoes, they offer zero drop and an ultra flexible sole made of a mix of rubbers both hard and soft, which they refer to as their Tri-C outsole. The traction was good on the wet, hard packed mud and suitably grippy but as these are minimalist shoe, the absence of cushioning combined with unsteady terrain means that lower leg strength is a must.
Next up, are the Race Elite 3/4 leggings. I can safely say these are one of if not the best leggings I've ever had the pleasure of running in. From their snug but comfortable fit (a flat elasticated waistband helps here), to their brilliant flexibility, (I'd happily practice yoga in these), I can't really fault them. They would insulate through colder months and are far from flimsy, but also have efficient moisture control. A final plus is their slightly muted black colour, they manage to avoid the brazen shine of a lot of running kit.
Finally is the Base Elite LSZ long sleeved jersey top. Not only is the top incredibly practical, but also offers a flattering fit due to the black detailing of the mesh cooling zones both on the waist and sleeves. It will make a great single layer as the weather gets a bit cooler before the need for a jacket as it's light but will still block out a chilly wind.
My only complaint with the female specific Inov-8 products would be the limited variety in apparel choices, especially in comparisons to men's range, yet what they lack in styling options, Inov-8 clearly make up for in quality.
To see their full range visit their website