This is my amateur runner shoe review. I bought these shoes myself and am reviewing them since there aren’t a whole lot of reviews on the Skechers Performance line. The opinions and observations are purely my own.
I’m a pretty devout Newton shoe runner, but I always have this thought that there might be other shoes that would made me super fast and efficient. Although I’ve tried many different brands and styles, I always end up back with the Newtons.
However, Newton recently released new versions of some of my favorite shoes, including the Distance III. Unfortunately, this new version has been giving me trouble, primarily in causing pain in my inner calf muscles. The last time I ran in them, I had one of the worst runs I’ve had since I started running. I thought it might be a fluke, but I tried the Distance III again on Friday after a few weeks break, and I had some pretty unhappy calves Friday night.
Fortunately, I’d brought my Go Meb sneakers on this trip as well. I hadn’t run anything further than 8 miles to date in them, but Saturday I had 14 miles to run and I figured they’d be better than wearing the Newtons. I laced up, crossed my fingers and went for a run.
Let’s start with the looks. I really love the color and streamlined shape of these shoes. I think some reviewers found the toebox to be a little narrow, but they were fine on my feet. As suggested, I ordered the shoes half a size larger than my normal shoe size. I feel like I might’ve been ok with my regular shoe size, as my right foot felt a little like it was floating in the shoe. I don’t like tying my laces too tight over my feet, so a good shoe fit is pretty important. If I buy these again, I’d like to try them on in a half size smaller. I bought these marked down online, so I didn’t have that opportunity. I’ve also not seen these shoes sold in my local running shops.
The women’s version of this shoe comes in silver, gold and black. I think Skechers might be coming out with the next iteration soon (hence the deal I got on the shoes), but that’s speculation on my part. I purchased them in silver (size 6.5) for about 40% off. I also noticed that the Skechers website has limited availability of the sneakers. I don’t know if this is due to popularity or that they are making room for a new version.
Moving on to performance. Below is a description from the Skechers website:
Women’s Skechers GOmeb Speed 2 Running Shoes
The next generation of Skechers GOmeb Speed is the official shoe of Meb, winner Boston 2014. The Skechers GOmeb Speed 2 shoe is built for competitive racing and designed for speed using our most advanced innovative performance technologies.
* Congratulations to Meb on his Boston 2014 win!
* Skechers GOmeb 2 shoe is similar to the shoes worn by Meb
* Independent circular GOimpulse sensors for a more responsive running experience
* M-Strike Technology™ promotes a midfoot strike
* Lightweight – No extra material, no extra weight, nothing to slow you down
* 4mm heel drop keeps foot in a nearly neutral position
* New printed nearly seamless mesh fabric upper
* Resalyte™ Midsole – Proprietary lightweight injection-molded compound with memory retention helps absorb impact
* Dupont Hytrel™ Stability plate in midfoot for a supportive and secure run
* Seamless interior with microfiber lining maximizes comfort
* Nearly weightless printed mesh fabric and synthetic upper
* Bold side S logo detail
* Lace up front
Weight: Radically lightweight 5.6 oz. per shoe based on a women’s size 7
I always test out my new running shoes on the treadmill in the event that they cause me problems. I can just hop off and end the run and not be miles from my car. I’d put about 45 miles on the Skechers prior to Saturday, and I’ve been pleased with the ride. I have not “graduated” them to the road yet. I’ve been doing a lot of treadmill miles as I rehab my hip, so I’m mostly sticking to my tried-and-true Newtons for road running.
I’m a mid foot striker, so the Newton lug system works really well for my feet. The lug disperses the pounding on the forefoot in addition to returning some of the energy with their “pop” technology. I also use neutral shoes with lower heel drop. The less shoe I feel on my foot, the happier my legs and feet. With the GoMeb shoes, I definitely felt more pressure on the ball of my foot. However, the shoes have nice cushioning inside and felt softer on my feet on the inside of the shoe than in my Newtons.
The shoes are extremely lightweight. Another bonus is that they are good as crosstraining shoes so that I don’t need to swap out shoes if I run on the treadmill then do some strength work. The lugs on the Newton are kind of awkward for anything other than running and not the most stable feeling shoes for balance purposes.
From the first MebGo run, I felt really buoyant in these shoes and quickly forgot I was testing out a new style. I did feel that the longer the run, the more tired/compressed my forefeet became. I typically used them for easy runs, the longest being 8 miles. But would they work for my marathon in October? The true test came with Saturday’s long run.
My left calf was especially sore after the 8.5 miles I ran the day before in the Newton Distance III. I ran outdoors on a very flat course at a very easy pace. Nothing crazy. I was worried I was en route to another injury given that I woke up in middle of the night with cramping in that calf. By morning, a little Advil and overnight Icy Hot patches seemed to have alleviated the pain.
Almost immediately, I knew my run in the Skechers was going to be a good one. I’ve been struggling with alternating mediocre and decent runs this training cycle. I still haven’t had a terrific run in awhile, but I’ve been edging — slowly — towards more consistent, ok runs. The miles began rolling by quickly, and my legs felt good. My calf had no indication of soreness and I forgot about it.
Around mile 8, I could feel blisters forming on my right foot on the side of my big toe, the ball of my foot and also on the padding of a few of my toes. It didn’t hurt, but I wasn’t thrilled. I wore Smartwool PhD socks, which are supposed to be blister-proofers, but I’m not sure about the socks. I think wool bothers me no matter how “soft” the company claims it it. It feels vaguely itchy to me. I think the combination of wool not being the best sock for me and not having the Newton lugs contributed to the added pressure on my foot. Also, the aforementioned right shoe maybe being a tad looser than it should be.
Other than the blisters, everything else felt good about this run. I averaged an 8:42 pace and my legs never felt tired. This is consistent with all my previous runs in the MebGo Speed 2 shoes.
I’m a little sad that this run seemed to confirm that the Newton Distance III’s don’t work for me. I ordered up an extra pair of the previous incarnation because these have been my go-to race shoes. Newton recently introduced a whole bunch of new shoes, so maybe one of those will be a suitable replacement.
Meanwhile, the Skechers MebGo Speed 2 shoes are big winners to me, enough such that they are coming with me to England and getting a coveted spot in my limited luggage space. I will also be bringing a pair of Newtons, either the earlier Distance version or the Distance Elite shoes. Because of the particulars of my feet and foot strike, I think the Skechers are best suited for distances under 8 miles for me, but I think other runners might do well with them for longer distances if they don’t strike as hard on their forefoot.
I’m very excited to keep these shoes in my running shoe rotation and hope more runners discover the Skechers Performance line.