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Disclosure: The Atlas was provided to me by UnPause for the purpose of review, they are not paying me or compensating me for writing this article/review. UnPause does not have any editorial rights or preview of this article prior to public release. All opinions and views solely belong to Daily Running Co.

UnPause, a Raising Asia Brand?

UnPause is a Thai running shoes brand that has recently launched their first model, the Atlas. As someone based in the Asia Pacific, I could not resist to get in touch with UnPause and find out more. UnPause markets the Atlas as a lightweight and highly cushioned daily trainer combined with a carbon fiber shank in the mid-foot area.

In my size US 11, the Atlas comes in at 254 grams or 8.95 oz. This is indeed a lightweight option as it is only about 10 grams or 0.3 oz heavier than my ASICS Tartheredge 3. Additionally, the it has a stack height of 38mm and 28mm in the forefoot, inclusive of the insole, giving it a 10mm drop. Here are the official stats of the UnPause Altas:

  • Weight: 225 grams (for US 8.5) 
  • Heel Stack:  35 mm 
  • Forefoot Stack: 27 mm
  • Drop: 8 mm
  • Carbon Fiber Shank: 1.3 mm thick, about 8 cm long.

Runner’s Profile

Prior to the review, it is important to establish my runner profile to better gauge my opinions on the shoes. For example, a lighter runner will experience differently the effects of midsole compared to a heavier runner. I am on the heavy side for a runner (75kg – 80kg) range and stands at 1.75m tall. My average weekly mileage ranges from 25km to 35km. I am a mid-foot/fore-foot strike with a neutral foot. I am normally a US size 11 although it varies depending on brands.

First Impression

I took the Altas out for a 12KM run doing different workouts before writing this first impression article. A mixture of speed workout, threshold run, and easy runs was done over two sessions. Here are my first impression pointers for the UnPause’s Atlas.

A Very Breathable Upper w/ Secured Fit

Unpause used an expanded Nylon mesh for the Atlas’s upper which ensured high level of breathability. The breathability is one of the best I tried among different shoes. However, due the comfort is a factor which has been compromised. The Atlas also spots a reasonable sized gusseted tongue which provide a secured fit for the shoes.

UnPause Atlas – Gusseted Tongue (Credit: Daily Running Co)

Fit Well Even for my Wide Feet

The fit of the shoes is perfect even for my wide feet, I went true to size for the Atlas. This is a plus for wide feet runners but something to take note for those with narrower feet.

Slippery Over Wet Surfaces, but Grips Well on Dry.

The Atlas was very grippy on dry surfaces which was impressive as it is a very affordable pair of shoes. However, when I encountered wet surfaces (w/o water puddle) along my running route the grip reduced. What I felt during the run had me slowed down to ensure I didn’t slip and fall. As the rubber wears, perhaps the grip will improve.

Outsole of Atlas with exposed carbon fiber shank (Credit: Daily Running Co)

Amazing Midsole w/ Crucial Carbon Fiber Shank

The midsole of the Atlas is what UnPause calls it ENL foam, a type of pebax foam. The foam felt springy and cushioning yet unstable if not for the carbon fiber shank. The carbon fiber shank helped to stabilize the pair of shoes and allowed the midsole to perform. The Atlas felt great for my threshold run my half marathon pace.

Conclusion

My overall first impression of the Atlas is positive, aside from the upper and the grip. Coming in at below US$100 for a quality performance trainer, there are design elements which UnPause has to grapple with to ensure affordability. I will continue to test Atlas over different workouts to understand how the upper, midsole, and outsole holds up over time.

Till next time, just keep running.

For a first look at the UnPause Altas, head over to your Youtube Channel! Link is below

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