Running Gear, Thoughts from the Road, Wine and Beer (some other things too...)

Running Gear, Thoughts from the Road, Wine and Beer (some other things too...)

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Final Word: Skechers GoRun 2

I have now run 50 miles at different speeds, and I'm ready to give my 'final' verdict regarding the Skechers GoRun 2.  (If you missed my initial reaction regarding the GoRun 2, visit it here.) In a few words, I found them to be a pleasant surprise, very fast, and very responsive.  The final piece of the puzzle was a nice, long run to really get a feel for the ride.

After a handful of easy miles this past Friday, I went out for a worthy test on Saturday.  I had a 19 miler slated for my marathon training regiment and, given how they performed on the Wednesday previous, I decided to take them out.  My training buddy, Brian, declared the choice to be 'brassy', but I was feeling confident.  I picked up Brian about 5.5 miles in to the run leaving a solid 13.5 miles to finish up.

My goal wasn't speed for this run.  I wanted to fully experience the ride, and have a negative split for the run.  Missions accomplished. (Thoughts on the ride are below - 2:30" negative split from the first 9.5 miles to the 2nd.)  The first hunk of the run aligned exactly with my previous experience - a quick, somewhat liberating ride that I felt in control of the entire time.  I waited and waited for the front half of my foot (especially the ball) to get that worn, tired feeling, and it never did.

Right about mile 8, I started to notice a strange ache in the top of my foot.  At the time we were maintaining an 8:30 pace, and I had to run down my mental checklist:  Form? Check.  Crown of the road?  Not an issue.  I did notice that my right foot, as I experienced on an earlier run, was running out of the shoe.  We kept going and took a quick, proactive gel shot at mile 10; I noticed that the ache was growing from dull to a bit more sharp.  I could have kept going, but, to me, it made more sense to take 30 seconds and check the lacing to be safe.

Good thing too, because it was evident that I was running out of the left shoe as well, and while the tongue in the GoRun 2 is primarily sewn in, there is a small flap of the tongue that had folded under on the outside of my foot.  A quick fix and a re-tying job and we were off again.  While I wasn't 100% comfortable, we kept on going.  I started to hypothesize that since I've found these shoes to be tough to walk in because of the mid-foot bulge, perhaps I would find a bit more comfort if I picked up the pace.  So, we quickened from 8:30 to 8:10 (by the last 3 miles, we were at sub 8's).

By the time we were done, there was no discernible discomfort that I could categorize as anything more than what you could expect by doing a 20 miler.  We arrived at our destination (I had planted my car the night before), loaded up, and headed back to town.

Final thoughts:
  • The GoRun 2 is a great shoe for going fast.  Not really a mileage base or recovery shoe for me.  For me to get the most out of the shoe, I've got to be at about a 7:55 pace or I risk a foot strike that doesn't really jive with the shoe.
  • In my opinion, there are a couple of flaws with the upper of the shoe.  First, the collar around the ankle is pretty low in comparison to the other shoes in my stable, and it doesn't really grab the foot as much as other shoes such as the Newton Distance and Saucony Mirage.  I think it contributed to my 'running out of the shoe'  That issue could be handled by lacing the shoe differently, but, I wasn't able to figure it out after 4 runs in the shoe at different distances/speeds/paces.
  • At 50 miles, there was no visible wear to the sole of the shoe.  Seems to me that the out sole durability is capable.  Admittedly, I expected the high-density pods (the orange dots in the picture below) to be pretty resilient, and the others to be less so, but everything looked great.  All of the pods allow the out sole of the shoe to remain flexible and responsive for the instances that you need it to be. See the pod arrangement below:

  • Maybe the biggest surprise to me was how comfortable the entire bottom of my foot was after nearly 20 miles.  No soreness after the run to report.  I can't say the same thing after running half-marathon distance or further in my Newtons.  The balls of my feet felt tired and a little beat up after a longer Newton run.  Skechers get high marks from me for overall comfort even if the ride was a little inconsistent at times.
Overall, I could probably run my upcoming marathon in these taking into account all of the data I've gathered  over my first 50 miles in them.  They are a remarkably quick and responsive shoe that I would think for most runners would be a nice choice for quicker runs of 10 miles or less.  Intermediate or advanced runners that have a firm grasp of their form and efficiency could reasonably expect to do well in this shoe for runs of 10+ miles - perhaps even a longer distance racing shoe.  The GoRun 2 offers a reasonable amount of protection, and, at the same time, really is a fun shoe in which to log miles.

**This pair of Skechers GoRun 2's were provided by Pete Larson from as a media sample direct from the manufacturer.  

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