Engineered for comfortable and good support for long runs, the Saucony Guide 7 is the latest version of the Guide series in the market.
An improvement from the previous version of Guide, the PowerGrid replaces the ProGrid midsole technology helps to absorb most of the impact of your runs but retains its 8mm offset of the older model. The Guide 7, which boasts of being highly responsive, has deeper flex grooves and improved toe-spring. It has a flared forefoot design to provide greater support for runners with slight to moderate pronation needs.
Un-boxing Time! My First Impression
Being a runner for about 8 years and counting, I have experimented with different kinds of brands and designs of shoes. As I competed more, I tend to favour neutral shoes which had thin soles and lining with minimal cushioning that allowed me to feel airy and light while running.
Hence, I felt a little skeptical while un-boxing this as I wondered how this shoes could benefit me in my runs. Nevertheless, it was good to stay open-minded and I was indeed amazed at how light it felt despite of its size and the pretty colours it came in!
Another plus point was that it fitted me well, neither too snug nor loose and provided me enough room for my toes.
Running with the GUIDE
In order to give a fair assessment of the shoes, I tried the Saucony Guide 7 for my various run workouts on different terrains in place of the normal running shoes I wore for these sessions. The first run with the Guide 7 was a speed workout on the track as I was curious to know how different running in stability shoes affect my speed.
My first step on the track felt stiff with the shoes but it also felt rather bouncy as I warmed up by doing a short run. Despite the bouncy while striding, the efficiency of the shoes to increase my speed was offset by the shoes’ bulkiness.
For my next run, I brought the shoes out for a 15km mixed road/trail run down Lower Pierce Reservoir Road and later, hitting the trails in Macritchie Reservoir. I was expecting to have some blisters or abrasions but there was none with their sockliner.
The shoes felt better on the road and trail than the track as I did feel a difference in the impact of my feet on the ground compared to wearing neutral shoes with little stability and cushioning. Surprisingly, the shoes also had really good traction on the Macritchie Forest Trail and provided me with a good grip while running over the loose stones and tree trunks.
Last Words from a Neutral-Shoe Wearer
Honestly, this pair of Guide 7 needs a little more time for me, a neutral running shoes wearer, to get used to. It was really comfortable with all the cushioning and I did not feel my legs thumping on the ground while running, which meets the shoes’ objective of providing maximum comfort and cushioning.
However, for the minimalist or neutral runner, it does feel a little strange when your feet do not strike the ground as it used to. It does also feel a lot chunkier despite being lightweight. While running, my shoes rubbed against one another, which can be rather annoying, but I think this is due to personal running gait than anything else.
Although I am not entirely convinced I need stability shoes, I did enjoy my longer runs with it as it softened all the impact of my strides on the ground and I do see myself enjoying it more as I break into the shoes!
- Comes in several fun and attractive colours for you to take your pick – this pair happened to come in my favourite purple laces
- Good for runners with broad feet, such as myself – I did not feel that my toes were squished together when I ran.
- Suitable for long distance running as it is comfortable with full cushioning of your entire feet
- Feels “springy” and helps in the propulsion movement when running
- Good traction, even on bumpy terrains
- Not recommended for people who perspire a lot or would be running on wet terrains as this pair of shoes does not dry easily with the extra cushioning at the sides, feels heavier when wet.
- Lightweight at 8.6/10oz but rather bulky with the extra cushioning all around the shoe
- Neutral wearers and minimalists will feel too much cushioning