A major part of my day and a very important aspect here at RMK is keeping active and staying in shape. I not only do this through hiking/rucking but I put in many hours at the gym each week and in doing so I need gear that can keep up. While I was at Outdoor Retailer last month I managed to stop by the LALO booth, a new name to me. The booth along with the people managing it were great, super into the rucking and Goruck scene and shared the views RMK is based on. I was lucky enough to get my hands on a pair of their Bloodbird workout shoes and I wanted to get a quick review out on them explaining why they will be my new gym shoes.
LALO is a tactical based footwear company that produces top of the line athletic shoes, and tactical boots. I normally will do a quick summary of the company before a review however for LALO, I will let their bio fill you guys in.
At LALO Tactical, we honor those who choose a path of purpose, a path of hard work, grit and determination.
Our company was founded to serve the needs of Special Operations Forces and NSW Operators. Our award-winning designers and developers have been creating innovative footwear for some of the world’s most popular brands for over 30 years.
We use top tier materials to create some of the best and hardest working tactical boots and athletic footwear for those that rise to the toughest occasions.
We believe that a professional athlete and a SpecOps member have much in common, both extraordinary individuals who never ring the bell.
Companies have been collaborating with professional athletes for years in an effort to make specialized performance footwear. At LALO, we not only listen carefully to our professional athletes, we listen to our Operators on the front lines.
If that doesn't convince you to back a company I don't know what will. Not only does LALO have hardcore athletes testing their gear but military personal as well. Now that you have an idea the grade of company LALO is we can get to the Bloodbird.
The Bloodbird is one of 3 offerings by LALO in their athletic line along with the Zodiac Recon running shoe and the Grinder, their cross trainer. The Bloodbird is the beefier of the 3 options by LALO and serves primarily as the ironworker of the bunch. The BB is geared more towards workouts with less dynamic movement such as weight lifting. The fact LALO gives 3 completely different options for every aspect of training is great. Many companies claim their shoe can "do it all" and falls short in almost every aspect. I would rather have a shoe dedicated to whatever workout I am doing for the day and have an excuse to bring one of my many packs to the gym with me for holding the others!
The Bloodbird comes in at only 9.9oz which is extremely light for a weight training shoe. The Bloodbird could be compared to the Reebok Nano 4.0 which I used up until the Bloodbird and the Nano comes in right at 10.9oz. The Bloodbird I received was the "Jungle" color and also comes in Black, Grey, and Coyote.
"Side Overlays Allow For The Perfect Fit"
Right away one can notice the Bloodbird is a unique looking shoe with features unlike any other. The first being the stability wrap around the middle of the foot to ensure great support and the right fit. The stability wrap is not part of the main mesh shoe but another separate layer that can be adjusted to the user's needs. I have extremely wide feet and this feature lets me tighten just enough so my foot was not uncomfortable.
"Lightweight and Low Drop Outsole"
The bottom of the Bloodbird is definitely a different material than what I am used to in a workout shoe. The outsole is constructed of soft and hard plated materials. The soft parts almost feel like a military grade foam while the harder sections are a lightweight rubber. I have noticed more wear on the softer sections of the outsole and feel that the lightweight rubber they used on half would be better of covering the entire outsole.
The shoe also features a 5mm drop to keep the foot as level as possible when doing heavy lifts like squats, deadlift, and cleans. On the inside of the shoe connected to the outsole there is a spiked section to aid in rope climbs which is an awesome feature.
On the top of the Bloodbird you have the extremely light weight and thin tongue and laces. The tongue has a small circle to aid in pulling and ensures the right fit. The laces on the Bloodbird match the color you choose and are almost a small paracord. They do a great job at getting the shoe tight on your foot however without a double knot they will come loose due to the shape.
"Wide and Protected Toe Box"
The toe-box on the Bloodbird is one of my personal favorite features. I have a tough time finding shoes that fit my wide feet and give my toes room to move, this is especially important on shoes I will be either running, rucking, or workout out in. The BB toebox is huge and gives plenty of room and also aids in full foot balance when lifting. On the front of the toe-box there is LALO's "Super Fabric" which has an overlay of that resist abrasion and protect the foot while staying lightweight.
The heel of the Bloodbird comes with a re-enforced lightweight rubber heel for support and protecting. Above there is a mesh section to aid with flexibility throughout the heel and to protect against blisters.
- 4 Great Colors
- Flat sole for Olympic style lifts
- Wide toebox
- Protected Toe
- Side wraps for middle foot support
- Made by a company built around a military mindset
- Soft spots on outsole can show wear
- Laces can come loose without the right knot
Overall, the Bloodbird by LALO is the complete package when it comes to a built to last a feature rich weight lifting shoe. The Bloodbird comes in 4 great tactical colors and is built the above average person in mind. At $130 the Bloodbird is not cheap but I feel it is well worth the price. If you are looking for a lightweight lifter and want to support a company with a great direction look no further then the Bloodbird by LALO.