Shoe Review: Skechers ‘Keflezighi’ Go Run

Backgrounder:

Lightweight Minimalist Running Shoe:

  • For efficient runners, mid-foot and forefoot strikers, minimalist runners seeking a light, responsive ride
  • Specifically designed to promote a mid-foot strike
  • Geared for fast-paced training or all-out racing
  • Height differential of 4mm between heel and forefoot to closely replicate barefoot running
  • Weight: 7.4 Oz (size 10)

Okay, forgive me for adding the name “Keflezighi” on Skechers’ new innovative running shoe, Go Run but this shoe could just as easily have been named after Meb Keflezighi, the American runner who finished 1st place in the recent 2012 U.S. Olympic Trials in Texas wearing this particular shoe.

Skechers has struggled to develop a successful running shoe for the serious, hard-core runner as many of its prior efforts have been weighted down with gizmos. The Skechers Pro-Speed isn’t a bad shoe but wasn’t that much sold-out to runners because of its weak aesthetics and plain look.

Making a good running shoe is a matter of putting components together a certain way and the Go Run was put together with one thing in mind. A mid-foot strike. Although the Go Run isn’t as visually interesting as other traditional running shoes, it takes minimalist running and racing one step further.

My initial reactions to this shoe were positive. See part 1 review (here). Since then i have logged more mileage on it on various terrains.

CONSTRUCTION:

The uppers are soft, light and made of weightless synthetic/mesh fabric although there is very little ventilation inside, a bane for hot weather running. The sock liner is built-in, stitched on its sides and the toe-box is roomy and comfortable enough for the toes to set in.

The midsole is made of Rasalyte, an injection-molded compound which gives it a resilient feel and just enough ground absorption. Like its direct ascendants, the LIV, Pro-speed and SRR models, the GO RUN has still that curved bottom although it is less-pronounced than those of the latter ones. The outsole is made of soft rounded lugs with high abrasion rubber at strike points for extra traction control and stability.

Another nice feature of the shoe is its flexibility: because of its lightness, you can twist and flex it upwards or down wards although you will have to be very careful when running on technical trails as it does not have much support and stability.

FIT and FEEL:

My shoe size is a size 10 and this particular shoe came in standard width. The toe-box however is roomy enough that you’d think that this came in a 2E width, wider than the standard which is great! I was able to put an extra sock-liner on top of the built-in one to protect my plantar fascia and add more cushioning to it. Its just a personal thing i do to avoid recurrence of previous Plantar Fasciitis ailment.

As i reported earlier, you feel an elevated lump in the mid-foot which kind of stretches the arch a little bit when you run. I’m still feeling the lump every time i put on the shoe but disappears as soon as you have warmed up for about 15 to 20 minutes into the run.

As the outsole is designed in a semi-rocker form, you will be consciously landing on your mid-foot for most of the time which takes a little getting used to specially if you are a heel striker. But once you get to the motions of the shoe, the feel is one of quickness and responsiveness.

PERFORMANCE:

You’ll probably get the feeling why Meb Keflezighi has liked this shoe very much after winning the 2012 US Olympic Trials for his stint with the USA Team to the London Olympics this year and setting various PRs in the recent New York City Marathon wearing this shoe. It definitely bodes well with his fast and efficient style of running. The feel is snug, there was no sliding towards the forefoot and you can feel the receptiveness as you hit the ground upon toe-off.

The one and still complaint as was last time is that it overheats under the ball of the foot and if you forgot to apply some form of petroleum jelly before your run, it tends to create minor blisters on this area. The ventilation needs to be improved.

BEST RECOMMENDED FOR:

For fast-paced training or racing, for developing mid-foot running and a good transition shoe for minimalist running.

CONCLUSION:

Skechers should be given credit for trying to break out of its mold of making heavy, toning shoes because that’s what it does best. However, it really comes as a surprise that Skechers is expanding its market by making a lightweight shoe this wild and this good!

Looking forward to more converts of the Go Run!