An admitted shoe geek waxes philosophical about running, triathlon, and life in general.
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Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Meb's shoes...

Much was made of the fact that Meb Keflezighi was wearing Skechers GoRun shoes in the New York Marathon just a week ago, where he placed 6th in a personal best time.

Then in the next breath, the nay-sayers would opine freely that these were custom Skechers, not the shoes that you and I can (and in my case, did) buy in the stores.

Hey, the guy is one of... two? sponsored pro runners, and likely their paid guinea pig for every prototype. Of course he's wearing custom shoes!

But what is different about Meb's shoe from what we have access to on the street?

Well, I watched a post-race interview that was posted on RunBlogger, and in it he flashes the shoes he wore in the race past the camera a few times, as well as talks about them a little bit.

First, he SAYS that reason the shoes he wears are custom is because he has narrow feet. I'll be the first to admit that the Skechers GoRun is a kind of wide shoe. And that's a good thing. I like a wide forefoot and toe box. But if some one's foot were narrow? That could be a lot of slop for 26.2 miles at a 5:00 per mile clip (or faster).

Next, there's some obvious differences in the sole pattern. More "wear plugs" along the outer edge of the forefoot, and a large pod under the metatarsal heads rather than the small posts.

It's difficult to tell from the video, but it appears that there isn't as much build-up under the midfoot as the the GoRuns on the market. The heel looks to be undercut just as much, so it may just be an illusion from the perspective.

Lastly, it looks from this third video shot that Meb's shoes have a heel counter. My GoRuns have none, much like the Nike Free line. I like this feature, but I can't say that it's more comfortable than other shoes I've had with a heel counter. Maybe this is in answer to pressure from Nike, and maybe Meb just likes to have heel counters in his shoes.

Pundits will say that it's interesting how he took OFF his GoRuns right after the race, and isn't wearing them during the interview. Well, I gotta say I side with Meb on this one -- the GoRuns are great for running, but they're hideous for walking. Every heel strike in a walking gait feels like it's bottoming out. I take mine off as soon as I'm done running as well. And no, those aren't wheels on the bottom of his shoe...
The fact that Meb has some custom GoRuns on, and did as well as he did, speaks volumes to me about both him and the Skechers company. They're serious about the line, and plan to make some modifications for future models. And they're going to the right people for advice.

Note: Photos of stock Skechers GoRuns were taken from a Competitor Magazine article.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Go-Run 2.0?