Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Skechers GoMeb Speed3 review

Ever since Skechers came out with their GoRun Speed series, they've become my choice of gear for almost all road races and triathlon. I started with the first edition of GoRun Speed (fell in love with it!), then the ultra light weight GoRun Speed2. Just three days ago, I received the latest GoMeb Speed3. My 2ndskin team mates participated in the recent Shape Run which was flagged off in a rainy night. The race was an unintended gathering for the team with Eugene came back from Melbourne, so we decided that we would run together. The cutting is somewhat similar to GoRun Speed2, but the material used is a bit different. Without having second thoughts, I changed my GoRun Speed2 to the newly unboxed GoMeb Speed3 just two hours before flag off. 

Normally Skechers shoes come with two sets of laces of different colour, but the newly launched GoMeb Speed 3 has two laces of different material. The red lace given is much stiffer, slimmer and lighter than the blue. The blue lace is much stretchy and slightly thicker. The choice is yours. If weight is your big concern, go for the red one =)

The upper seamless mesh fabric has better breathability than the earlier version probably due to more “vents” underneath the mesh. The mesh is less stretchy (in my opinion) for better stability. Due to the narrower fore section, I prefer taking a size bigger than my other Skechers shoes. For instance, GoRunUltra2 I’m wearing size US 7 while the Speed series I am wearing US 8. If you have tested it and feel like you’re in between US7 and US8, you might opt to change your lacing style. 

7 eyelets on each side, I’m used to criss-cross the lace up to the 6th eyelet leaving some freedom of movement when my ankle flexes. Triathletes can upgrade the lacing system to elastic lock laces if they wish to save a few seconds at the transition area.

The tongue has a little sleeve for the lace to cross underneath so that the tongue remains intact with the lace. Runners hate shoes tongue “trapped” inside =p During my run, the tongue did not slip sideways even a bit. 

Here comes the highlight of Skechers GoMeb Speed3. I believe Skechers really put weight as their priority in designing their performance range of shoes. The GoMeb Speed3 has super thin tongue with “see through” kind of material, similar to the upper mesh. The material used is very minimal to make it light and better ventilated. My first run with GoMeb Speed3 was in a wet rainy race, along the course I've inevitably stepped on water and the rain prior to the race has wet my shoes. Shouldn’t I expect I drag an extra kilo on my feet and finish the race with blisters? However, GoMeb Speed3 did not soak even a bit. Water drains out speedily every stride I made, my feet was really comfortable and well ventilated (especially the fore section). The rain stopped during the race; Eugene, Deo, Roy and I crossed the finishing line together. My GoMeb Speed3 was already dry by then, no blisters at all although it is a new pair of shoes. This pair of fast racing shoes weigh 6.9oz for men's size9.

I compared the rocky bottom of the Speed series and based on my observation, the heel section of GoMeb Speed3 is more elevated than GoRun Speed2. GoMeb Speed3 feels a bit like “heel-less” to encourage more midfoot strike and also smoother transition between foot strike and toe off. Heel strike less and you will run faster. Due to the rockered bottom, some runners feel stiffness at the Achilles tendon area after running especially runners who ran in thick heeled shoes and now changing to Skechers Speed series. Not to worry about it, it’ll recover with some foam rolling or massage. Thick cushion actually elevated the heel so the Achilles tendon become less elastic and "shorten" over the years. For runners who are still in their transition period, alternate your new shoes with your old pair.

The heel collar is pretty rigid and stable with the Skechers’ logo proudly stitched at the back. The colour that was given to me has a lot of red, blue and silver. It gives me a bit of the “superman” feel. Cushion around the collar are well padded and snug. 
Soft interior lining for sockless running. 

The Resalyte compound midsole of GoRun Speed2 and GoMeb Speed3 are very much alike, same impact absorption ability. The carbon design DuPont Delrin (previously DuPont Hytrel) plate is one of the winning factors that give the Speed series its responsiveness and stability. DuPont Delrin has high stiffness and strength offering higher tensile strength, creep resistance and surely outperforms on impact resistance allowing for thinner and lighter part design. As your foot strikes the ground, it flexes to absorb the energy and bounces back to propel you forward. It is a very brilliant design. Comparatively, GoMeb Speed3 exposes more of the plate compared to the earlier version, maybe it allows more flex as the foot strikes. Some runners suggest that this pair of shoes is only suitable for 10km race, but I feel it perfectly fine to race Ironman distance in it =) Subject to personal preference, listen to your body instead of listening to other people's advice because different body works differently.

The little pods are like the “feedback” system. The pods are harder than the outsole of the shoes so whenever it strikes the ground, I feel it’s existence. I always utilize this to correct my running gait and pronate less. At the fore area, the pods located at similar place. As it goes to the midfoot area, I see the difference. GoMeb Speed3 has its two midfoot pods nearer to the carbon plate. However, the final two pods near the heel area changes how the shoes feel. It is located nearer to the heel area, so the pods “signal” you as you start to heel strike. I could immediately feel the final two pods when I put on GoMeb Speed3 for the first time. The outsole has a more protruded triangular shape, probably for better traction and durability.

More closed up photos here.

I’ve completed 25km in this pair of awesome lightweight shoes. Skechers just keep improving to make shoes faster for runners. I have no complaint at all, and I will definitely recommend it to my friends. This pair of Skechers GoMeb Speed3 is sponsored by Skechers Malaysia via collaboration with Team 2ndskin.

No comments: