SAUCONY ENDORPHIN SPEED REVIEW
BRIAN METZLER | July 20, 2020
One of the best new shoes to hit the market in 2020, the Saucony Endorphin Speed is a lightweight, resilient and cushy everyday training shoe with a very speedy vibe.
The Endorphin Speed is built on a platform of a highly responsive foam and rigid nylon plate. The style combines a soft, comfortable feeling with a pop of energy in every stride.
Truly, it’s an amazing shoe for long runs, recovery runs, tempo runs and all types of speed workouts.
The Endorphin Speed is an entirely new shoe, an offshoot of Saucony’s top-tier Endorphin Pro racing shoe with a carbon-fiber plate.
Although the Endorphin Speed doesn’t have a carbon-fiber plate, it does have the same PWRRUN PB foam and a similar SpeedRoll geometry that propel a runner’s feet forward as a new stride begins.
This midsole is the secret sauce of this shoe. Saucony’s PWRRUN PB is an ultralight, PeBa-based foam. This provides a bouncy and propulsive feeling in every stride and at every pace. This foam is found in other Saucony shoes, but the semi-rigid nylon plate makes it really come to life in the Endorphin Speed.
The outsole features sections of exposed foam and high-abrasion carbon rubber to keep the weight down, ensure optimal traction and maintain consistent durability.
FIT, FEEL, RIDE
The Saucony Endorphin Speed fits true to size with a medium interior from heel to toe. Likewise, it feels soft and comfortable when you step into it and lace it up and noticeably pliable and bouncy when you start running.
On longer and slower runs, the cushioning and nylon plate provide a cozy but peppy sensation, but on faster paced runs the Endorphin Speed feels almost effortless.
The fit of the Endorphin Speed is enhanced by Saucony’s FormFit mesh upper, inspired by the upper material of elite track spikes. This upper moves and stretches while still keeping feet locked down to the chassis below the foot. It creates a lightweight but reliably secure connection that contributes to precise, efficient strides.
Interval workouts on the track and tempo runs are hard, but they feel a heck of a lot better wearing this shoe. There aren’t many shoes that fit, feel and ride like this one.
WHO'S IT BEST FOR?
Runners who appreciate a lightweight, well-cushioned shoe with a lively demeanor will love the Endorphin Speed. It’s agile and versatile enough to run at any pace and tackle any kind of workout with ease.
Equally, it can also be an ideal shoe for racing any distance from the mile to the marathon. It's also especially inviting for 10K and half-marathon races.
PROS: Saucony Endorphin Speed
It’s rare that a shoe capable of doing everything well — long runs, recovery runs, speed work, tempo runs, intervals — offers so much high-performance zest.
Typically shoes with that much energy are found in the racing category and are limited only to fast running. The Endorphin Speed truly can do it all, no matter how fast or slow you run in them.
CONS: Saucony Endorphin Speed
Our wear-testers didn’t really find any drawbacks to the Endorphin Speed, but to be fair it has a higher price tag than a lot of everyday training shoes.
Sure, $160 might crimp your budget, but it’s $40 less than the top-tier Endorphin Pro race rocket and it’s much more versatile and quite a bit more comfortable. You’ll definitely get your money’s worth if you opt for the Endorphin Speed.
SHOP SAUCONY ENDORPHIN SPEED
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Brian Metzler has run races at every distance from 50 meters to 100 miles. He has wear-tested more than 1,500 pairs of shoes, is a three-time Ironman finisher and occasionally participates in the quirky sport of pack burro racing in Colorado.
He's the founding editor of Trail Runner magazine is a former senior editor at Running Times and editor in chief at Competitor Magazine. He's the author of "Kicksology", "Running Colorado's Front Range" and the co-author of "Natural Running: The Simple Path to Stronger Healthier Running" and "Run Like a Champion: An Olympian's Approach for Every Runner."