Run-of-mine adj : 1: UNGRADED, UNSORTED, CRUDE, UNREFINED: not ground or treated 2: ORDINARY, MEDIOCRE, RUN-OF-THE-MILL <run-of-mine college graduate> 3. Ore or coal as it comes from the mine without grading or sorting for size or quality

4. That last run, the one that keeps you going back for more – it’s yours and yours alone.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Skechers Go Run3 Initial Review

I’ve had my eye on the new update of my beloved Go Run2s from Skechers.  It was a serendipitous combination of gift money from Christmas, a nice coupon code for, and 400+ miles on the ol’ GR2s that gave me the go-ahead to get a new pair of shoes.  Okay, I’ll be honest.  I didn’t really need a go-ahead.  I’d get a new pair of running shoes if the sun comes up.  Or it sets.  Or if the water goes down the drain clockwise (counter-clockwise if I’m traveling south of the Equator).  You get the picture.  At any rate, it seems like the universe aligned for me to get myself a new pair of kicks.

But I digress… I ordered myself a pair of the new Go Run3s (GR3s).  Here are some initial thoughts, before I put some miles on these bad boys.

To be honest, I wasn’t crazy about the colorways for the new models.  There are five, and they are pretty dark.  I’m not really one for black shoes – the only black things in my wardrobe are my wedding/funeral suit, my running pants (from Sporthill – review coming soon) and my old lacrosse uniform from college (still fits – AWWW YEAH!).   Long story longer, the colors really didn’t do it for me.  I liked the colors of the GR2s – bright and obnoxious.  These are not them. 

I initially ordered the black and reds, thinking that they were the most badass of the bunch.  I ordered up a size 13, thinking that the 12.5s that work so well in the GR2s could use a bit of an upsize.  When I got them, they were definitely too big.  I returned them to the Skechers store near my house (I’m lucky to have one about 10 minutes from chez moi).  I traded them for a size 12 in the blue/green style, which I still wasn’t thrilled with, but was an upgrade from the red/black.  I think that they are growing on me – the neon laces help.

One thing that I really like in a running shoe is a lack of a stiff heel counter.  The GR2 has basically no heel counter – it more of a integrated ‘strap’ that functions like a sandal strap on the back, if that makes any sense.  

The GR3 has a bit more structure to it, but not so much that it’s by any means rigid.  The Skechers logo gives it more form, but it’s still pretty flexible and giving.  Jury is still out whether this is an upgrade.  Stay tuned.

Another interesting addition is the pleather that is all around the toe box.  Not sure how I feel about it – the stiff, ribbon-y kind of edging in the GR2 was good, I thought.  Maybe the pleather is supposed to dress the GR3 up a bit, but for me it seems a bit unnecessary.  I wonder if it will be to stiff in the cold, cold temps here in Minnesota.  I guess I’ll have about 4 months to find out…

The toe box has been changed as well – the GR2 has a simple stretchy mesh that I really liked – it gave my toes plenty of rom to play out and move around, without feeling sloppy.  The new toe box is a mesh with an overlay, that kind of makes me think of the Altra Instinct.  Again, not sure what purpose it serves, other than to spiff up the aesthetics of the shoe.

A couple of other thoughts – there are an additional pair of liners in the box, but it’s not super clear why there are two sets.  After poking around on the Internets, I discovered that the insole makes the shoe an 8mm drop.  Not sure why Skechers would want to make their shoes into an 8mm drop – maybe they are courting the non-minimalish crowd, or maybe trying to make th3 GR3 more attractive to higher distance runners, who might like a little higher drop for a marathon maybe?

The tongue is also a change from the GR2s - the tongue in the 2s was a more padded, traditional looking and feeling tongue.  The tongue in the 3 is more of an thin ultra-suede fabric tongue, without much padding.  It, like the tongue on the 2s, is attached on both sides, under the eyelets, which I really like.  No tongue slippage. (Ooh - that sounded a bit dirty somehow.  Who knew that a review of the Go Run3 would get a bit racy?)

Finally, I really like the fact that Skechers kept this iteration of the Go Run shoe vegetarian (not that any shoes eat meat – although some do shred feet, which is kinda the same thing…).  I try, as much as possible, to use as few animal-based products as I can, and I appreciate that Skechers has continued this in their Performance line.

Now I’ve got to go out and get some miles on these babies.  I’ll post a more in-depth review after I’ve had a chance to put some miles on them.

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