When you think of workout shoes, you probably think of Nike, Adidas, Reebok, and the like, but these days there is a growing group of boutique athletic shoe companies shaking up the industry. Companies like APL, York Athletics, and, now, TIEM.
Founded in 2016, TIEM’s first shoe, the Slipstream, was designed specifically for indoor cycling classes — combining the functionality of a traditional spinning shoe with the comfort and general styling of a sneaker. Now the brand is launching their first off-the-bike shoe, the Latus, designed to support the wearer when they are executing the specific movements commonly found in boutique studio classes, such as skaters, box jumps, and other agility drills. The Daily caught up with TIEM’s founder, Tracey McLeod, to find out more about the new shoe and this boutique brand on the rise.
What niche do you fill in the athletic shoe market?
Athletes need footwear that is not only fashionable but also functional, and as this space evolves, there is a greater need for products specifically designed to meet the needs of the various movements featured in their classes.
Why should or would someone choose this shoe over something from Nike or Adidas?
Our new LATUS shoe features a custom-engineered, low-compression gel layer that runs the entire length of the footbed. It’s not just placed in the shoe, it is part of the shoe, providing adaptive support to conform to the wearer’s every movement. The forefoot-stabilizing strap system also keeps the foot in place during lateral movements, resulting in a supportive and energized workout without sacrificing style.
What were you doing before you founded TIEM and what lead you to start this company?
I’ve been in the footwear industry for more than 20 years. After graduating from FIT with a major in industrial and product design, I began my career as a designer in children’s and athletic footwear. Later on, I became a partner at BBC International, a leading full-service footwear company that specializes in design, development and sourcing with global distribution, working with brands like Reebok, Ralph Lauren, and Sam Edelman.
What is the craziest thing you have ever done in the name of fitness, health, and wellness?
Nine years ago, I signed up for the Pan Mass Challenge, a two day bike ride, 90 miles each day. The PMC is the largest athletic fundraiser for cancer research in the United States. After that first ride, I was hooked, and have continued to ride year after year. I’m super passionate about that ride, and my enthusiasm has infected quite a few friends and family members, so now, every Spring, I’ve become the “head trainer” for an ever-growing group of cyclists.
What fitness trend are you completely obsessed with right now?
I like a lot of variety in my workout routine, so I love checking out new boutique fitness classes and trying new things. I’d say right now, I’m still obsessed with a good high energy spin class. Of course, I love to mix that up with different HIIT classes, and throw in some yoga. I love it all.
What’s your best piece of fitness advice?
I find that my workouts are more consistent when I have a “squad.” I have a group of pals, and we keep each other accountable and work out regularly as a group. It’s way more fun to sweat with your friends. I also make a lot of social plans around workout dates — meeting for a walk or workout, and then dinner or drinks after!