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Have you heard of Influenster before?  It’s kinda like Klout.  Still not quite sure what I’m mumbling about?  Well, they are websites that track and determine your level of influence online based on your activities on social media outlets and such.  Based on your level and areas of high influence you may become eligible for some free perks from related participating companies, and all they ask is that you review their product.

This installment of Odds & Ends is one of those product reviews.  I was recently awarded an Influenster Voxbox (their term for their swag).  The product in this voxbox was a Dr. Scholl’s Active Series insole.  Let me start by saying that I haven’t been wearing traditional shoes very much recently.  Most of the time I’ve been wearing my Vibram Five-Fingers, but there are times where I will throw on a regular pair of shoes.  Hiking is one of these occasions.  My hiking shoes are a pair of New Balance trail running shoes.  Since I first bought them about two years ago I’ve used the stock insole, and then after last years marathon I switched my running shoe insoles into them.  I don’t recall the brand, but they were pretty pricey insoles specifically for long distance running.  After I received the Dr. Scholl’s I switched them again to try test them out.

Right off the bat, they made my two-year-old trail runners feel new.  This would probably happen with any new set of insoles, but it was definitely more comfortable than stock insoles, but didn’t provide quite as much support as my other running shoe insoles.  I’ve only been able to test them out so far walking and jogging relatively short distances, and I will be taking them on the trail this weekend to see how they hold up to some off-road action.

Would I recommend them?  Sure!  As long as you’re not intending to use them for an intense long distance run, like a marathon, and the training that goes along with it.  For more recreational purposes, and shorter workouts, they are a great balance of comfort, support, and affordability at just under $20.