Saucony Endorphin Pro 3: First Thoughts | A Dazzling Gem
It’s super shoe season and that means saying “f*ck you” to inflation (and your 401k) and going all-in on the latest and greatest in race day drip.
And while we’ve already seen the Adidas Adizero Adios Pro 3, Asics Metaspeed Sky+ and Edge+, and the Nike Alphafly Next% 2, none of them quite bedazzle the way the all-new Saucony Endorphin Pro 3 does.
Part fishnet stocking, part actual fish (scales, eyes, and all), this is a shoe that can go toe-to-toe with Sha’Carri on the race day runway. But looks aren’t everything, of course. Lipstick looks good on a pig, but if that pig don’t squeal (especially at $225), then it’s a no-deal.
Luckily, the Endorphin Pro 3 is authentically badass and is worth its weight (even at a mere 7.2 oz/204g) in sequined, sparkly gold.
Past versions of the Endorphin Pro were fast, no doubt, but over the long haul left the legs a little beat up. The turnover was ultra-quick but it felt like an ice skate riding a tight rope. The improved upper on the Endorphin Pro+ made it shine like a bright white diamond and wrapped the foot as good as one could ask for, but the thing we always wanted was a bit– just a teensy, little bit– of additional cushion for those distances over the marathon.
Well, we got it.
Around the foot, the upper wraps as good as any racing shoe out there, featuring a mesh net with a translucent “skin” underneath for some structure. The gusseted tongue also has large holes punched down the center of it to save weight and offer breathability.
The Endorphin Pro now has an even thicker stack of PWRRUN PB cushioning, which you may as well call PWRRUN DD because it comes in just below the legal limit for racing, blowing a 39.5 stack height in the heel (31.5 in the forefoot).
Not sure what was done differently with the plate, but the s-curve carbon fiber just seems sturdier and ready to send you to the moon. Combined with the Speedroll rocker technology that we loved in last year’s version, this thing is a rocket ready to go.
Outsole is much improved with far more coverage and an updated XT-900 rubber formulation, something that was needed over last year’s model.
Weight stays pretty much the same at the aforementioned 7.2 oz./204 g.
So far we have a couple of runs in the shoe, and we have to say that this is an excellent update. The extra cushion was much needed over the Endorphin 1 and 2 for any runners wanting to go the marathon distance without a proper leg thrashing. We finally have that here in the Endorphin Pro 3.
The design/color/strategy of the upper is pretty bold and wild so we’re interested to see how that plays out in the long run. The fish-eye tongue (in that it looks like a row of large fish eyes) is an interesting concept for sure, and the fishnet style should surely provide breathability. However, we’re very interested to see how it fares in the durability department.
Speaking of durability, the generous outsole coverage is much appreciated. The lack of rubber on past Endorphins was one of the most common complaints we heard (and we had) with the shoe. Excellent update on that.
Nevertheless, the combination of all these things has elevated the Pro into the top-tier status as a marathon shoe (it resided in the “fast-and-snappy-but-firm, great for that half marathon” category over the last two versions). And at $225, it cuts off every other racing shoe by a good margin, which is a feat to behold in 2022.
We’ve seen some great Saucony shoes already this year and the Endorphin Pro 3 (not to mention the Endorphin Speed 3 and Endorphin Edge on the trail side) is taking it to the next level.
The Saucony Endorphin Pro 3 releases on August 16 for $225.Shop Saucony Racing – Men Shop Saucony Racing – Women
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Great job Robby … excellent review . Your humor is on point .
Really good to see plenty of rubber on the bottom. Really getting tired of shoes with “strategic” placement of rubber on the bottom of shoes, as if everybody lands the same way.
You guys are killing me. I’ve been eagerly awaiting the new Endorphin lineup and then you tempt me with the ASICS GlideRide 3. It’s amazing. So now I don’t know whether to upgrade my dying Pro with the Pro 3 or try the Edge + and whether to double up on the GlideRide3 or get the new Speed while I wear out my current 2s. The cushioning and my elderly feet are having quite the love affair.