SKECHERS GORun 4 Review: Awesome mid foot running shoe with QuickFit Portal

SKECHERS GORun 4 - my 3rd pair of GORun series

What can I say? I'm a sucker for SKECHERS GOrun shoes since I decided to change from heel striker to mid foot landing in order to have an injury-free running life in 2013.

SKECHERS GORun 4 is my 3rd pair of GORun series. I bought my first pair of red hot SKECHERS GOrun 1 (U.S. Size 9.0) in Kuala Lumpur in early 2013. 

And in December 2013 same year, I couldn't resist myself from buying my 2nd pair in Taipei - classy black SKECHERS GORun 3. This round it's half size bigger (U.S. size 9.5) since I have learned from other runners to have half size bigger due to foot expansion after running long distance which might cause black bruised toe nail.


And earlier this year (2015), I bought my 3rd pair in Hong Kong - the greenish SKECHERS GORun 4 as you see in the picture here along with my 1st pair of SKECHERS GOMeb Speed 3. Unfortunately, the promoters at the largest Skechers Outlet in Central Hong Kong informed me that SKECHERS no longer produce half size shoe for GORun series, resulting in me settling for U.S. Size 9.0 out of desperation. It was a bad decision at my end to have settled for U.S. size 9.0 knowing that I have had problems before with size 9.0.




True enough - the problems surface not so much of the shoe but more of the unfitting shoe size. 

Therefore, I would like to make a fair review for SKECHERS GORun 4 here based on my experience.


Specifications

I have found my GORun 4 to be slightly heavier compared to my 2 other pairs, but it's still pretty light weight and weighing at 7.8 oz. I have learned to be accustomed to light weight shoes with the barefoot feel instead of the cushioned shoes I used to wear before.

The midsole thickness is 18 mm heel, 14 mm forefoot and 4 mm drop. But as with GORun 3, GORun 4 comes with sock liner. The sock liner thickness is  7mm heel, 3mm forefoot and 4mm drop. If adding both up, this would make GORun 4's thickness to be 25 mm heel, 17mm forefoot and 8mm drop. 

The sock liner is removable and there is a finished foot bed underneath.  


Running without sock liner

I have been used to wearing GORun 1 and GORun 3 without the sock liner. And I am doing the same with GORun 4 for 2 reasons:

  • To have 4 mm drop for that "barefoot', closer-to-ground feel
  • To make it roomier and lighter (even more so with this half-size smaller GORun 4)
Unfortunately, I face some problems running without sock liner with GORun 4. It has given me pain at bottom of my foot (sole)  when I run further than 15 km. Below 15 km, my feet feels ok though. And I don't find the same problems with previous SKECHERS GORun 1 and GORun 3.


Sole area where it turned reddish and painful 
after running longer than 15 km

I then took a closer look at the footbed of GORun 4 compared to footbed of GORun 1 and GORun 3. I have found GORun 4's finished footbed to be slight narrower at forefoot area. When I used my fingers to feel the edge of footbed and the edge of the shoe outsole, I could feel that there is a big gap. The mesh is thinner than the footbed, which makes the situation worse. I could feel a "drop" at the edge of the footbed. 
Gap between chushioned footbed and the edge of shoe outsole



Furthermore, the edge of the shoe outsole feels harder than GORun 1's and GORun 3's. I believe it's due to the change of the upper material of GORun 4, which makes the "padding" that can be found at GORun 1 and GoRun 3 to be no longer there.

I believe with my landing during run, it adds pressure and creates friction - thus resulting in the redness and swell on my sole. This is rather disturbing indeed!

You might say that I should then run with the sock liner. :)

But with half-size smaller, my feet would be very tight with the sock liner. Besides, I have been wearing my GORun 1 and GORun 3 without sockliner and I feel very comfortable.


Upper Material

The upper of the GORun 4 is composed of an outer layer made of woven mesh over an inner layer of more woven mesh. The fabric is quite stretchy but it feels a little hard. This is a major change from previous versions which has the soft, cloth-feel. And I personally prefer the upper materials of GORun 1 and GORun 3.



Color

As for the color, it's "shouting"! :)

What I mean is that the color is bright and vibrant with the mixed tones of colors. I believe this is the latest trend in the running shoes nowadays. And many runner love the bring and vibrant colors! It's also for safety especially running in the dark!

But I'm more of a conservative runner and  I prefer my shoes to have one-color tone if possible. I don't mind bright, but one color tone (just like GORun 1 and GORun 3). :) It's just my personal preference I guess.


Tongue

The tongue nicely padded and I have not had any issues with it slipping. Very nice!





"QuickFit" Portal



2 holes - "QuickFit" portal
I would say that the major change, be it cosmetic or functional change, is the addition of QuickFit Portal. What is it for? It's actually a hole in the back of the sole that is to be used a a finger-loop to help pull the shoe out quickly. 



After several runs. I didn't feel any abrasion against my skins from the margins of the portal. In fact, I didn't even feel its existence - which means that it's a good design.



After running, I can simply put my finger into the loop and pull my shoes out. Very fast and nice!! 


The only thing is that it looks weird though. haha! And I am not sure whether when run during rain with shoes soaking wet, would it create abrasion due to more friction with skin?

If I am given a choice, I would choose without QuickFit portal. Keep it simple and functional! 


Sole 


There is very little outsole coverage on SKECHERS GORun 4. 

Since it's a mid foot running shoe, there are more rubber pods around the mid foot areas. The location of the rubber pods at mid foot area is different from previous versions. I believe it's good and more durable. However, the "bump" feeling which helped me to switch from heel striker to mid foot running has become less and less noticeable. I really hope the "bump" feeling is back in next version though.


Wear and Tear

There are only a few rubber pods around the margins of forefoot area. As for the heel area, there is no rubber pod at all. 

And as you can see from the pictures above, I'm still not 100% switched to mid foot running yet. And with my unintentional landing on my heel, the wear and tear there is so obvious!! It is really fast for the outsole to be worn off! 


Cushioning


SKECHERS GORun 4 definitely has less cushioning compared to Saucony Kinvara 6. I am quite comfortable with less cushioning as I like the "bare foot" natural running feel. I feel that it gives me more control of my stride knowing exactly the surface that I land so that I can adjust my landing weight accordingly to minimize injury.

In fact, it's very hard to "pound" on the ground especially on asphalt. I usually become more sensitive to my landing and adjust my landing weight accordingly.

This is something I love very much about GORun 4.


Toe Box : Importance of choosing the right shoe size

I love SKECHERS GORun series so much that when I couldn't get my right shoe size in Hong Kong, I opted for half-size smaller instead. And it's my mistake!

My decision has resulted in me not being able to wear GORun 4 for more than 15 km for each run. Otherwise, my 4th toe (ring toe) would get red and my long toe (2nd toe) would end up having a blister due to the tightness in forefoot area.

The condition becomes worse when I run downhill. 

I have tried to tie my shoe lace tighter at ankle area so that my toes don't slide forward when running downhill. However, I still feel my toe box area to be very tight.

Therefore, I can only use this pair for training on weekend or in the gym for up to maximum 20 km. I will never be able to use it to race competitively in full marathons. It might affect my performance and end up with blisters after full marathon. What a waste! :) Well, I have learned my lesson!


Reddish at my ring toe (4th toe) after 20 km run
Pressure against the upper causing blister on my 2nd toe
 (long toe). This is also the toe I usually get black 
bruised toe nail occasionally.



Summary and Recommendation



When I searched for shoes with mid foot running in 2013, I could only find Skechers. Therefore, if you want to learn mid foot running, I strongly recommend Skechers GORun 4 as it's the best with its Resalyte midsole. 



It takes a while to get used to it but it's all worth it. Mid foot running will definitely minimize injuries in running.



And if you are used to wearing cushioned shoes, please be mindful that SKECHERS GORun 4 doesn't have much cushion compared to more conventional shoes. However, the cushioning is still there - enough to give you the feel of the ground at your feet when you run. So it's a bit like natural barefoot running with some cushioning! :)



Having said that, wear and tear is a concern. But its price is much cheaper than some other branded shoes. So buy it during sale. I'm sure you won't regret!




vincent

2 comments:

  1. Lovely green. I love green color haahaa

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hehe. Didn't know u love green. Nice color yeah

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