Jenny Sometimes it’s a mistake to mess with a good thing but Saucony went out on a limb and tweaked one of their best selling shoes. There’s kind of a lot of hype surrounding the launch of this Guide 7 and for good reason. I decided that I’d wear the shoe around for a couple days before really running in it. I’m always leery of putting on a stability shoe, since I’m a neutral runner and even more especially because I have a marathon this weekend. I found them to be extremely comfortable, however. Despite looking a little bulky, they’re relatively lightweight–especially compared to similar shoes within different brands. I have also tried the Guide 6 and immediately saw an improvement in this newer version. The 6 looked a little sloppy on the upper and didn’t quite hug my midfoot like I would have hoped. The 7 definitely has better seam placement and structurally more sound. It hugs but doesn’t squeeze. I work on my feet and have a tough time finding a shoe that will last all day and doesn’t leave them aching. It’s usually a shoe I wouldn’t run in that I choose for work but after taking them out for some road miles, I found that they cross over to both. I run mostly in the Kinvara and Virrata so this was more shoe than I was used to but the cushioning felt amazing. Saucony has upgraded from ProGrid to PowerGrid which is lighter, softer and more durable. They seem to be doing that for most of their shoes in varying degrees. The midsole isn’t on a slant, so I didn’t feel like I was being pushed one way or the other–the medial stability posting was very subtle and natural. From foot strike to toe off, there was a fluidity that I look for in a good shoe. There’s enough carbon on the outsole that they’ll last a good amount of miles. The problem with a minimal shoe is that you can’t get as many miles as a traditional trainer. The Guide 7 has some life in it. I also appreciate that Saucony is the only company (that I know of) that has given all their flagship shoes an 8mm heel to toe drop, making it easier to stay on that midfoot. I’m still a fan of flat lacing, which these shoes have. I feel like they don’t slip and stay tied better. I have to say that the HiViz version is HAWT, not just safe. Fluorescent coral, hints of bright yellow, on a grey platform, it’s delicious. The overlays are all fully reflective and even in the daylight, they’re noticeable.
Meaghan After a recent injury, I found myself gravitating towards more shoe – higher drop, more cushioning, just generally more support. The Guide 7 falls nicely into this category. They’re built with an 8mm drop, plenty of cushioning and work well for recovery runs. They’re super comfortable right out of the box. The interior lining around the collar and tongue provides a nice plush feel. The fit is near perfect – snug through the mid-foot with plenty of room in the toebox. I was strangely happy with the lacing. They make the shoes really hug your feet. When I first tried them on, I was worried at how stiff they felt. The rubber outsole felt sturdy, but not as responsive as I was hoping. This was not an issue out on the road. A few miles in they seemed to loosen up. The outsole even has a nice bounce to it.
Thomas This is more of a traditional trainer than I am used to running in. It turned out to be a surprisingly good experience. I am a neutral runner and was concerned I might feel too much of posting and support in the Guide 7. While the Guide 7 does have a firm, less flexible ride than I am accustomed to, I found the shoe enjoyable to run in. I tried long slow runs and also did some tempo runs in the Guide. The shoe performed well for both. You get a lot of features in the Guide which is surprising at the scant 10 oz. weight. The Power Grid cushioning runs the length of the footbed and provides terrific protection and cushioning no matter what your foot strike is. The 8 mm offset gives the shoe a slight forward lean but does not interfere with your natural stride. There is solid durable rubber on the outsole, this shoe is going to last you the 300-500 miles you expect from a trainer. The Guide 7 is the shoe I wish the Saucony Cortana was. For me this is a good recovery day shoe.
Jenny I don’t have anything bad to say about the Guide 7. If I was nitpicking, I could say it’s a little clunky but a lot of runners want a more substantial shoe. It’s only a personal preference of mine to have the lightest thing out there!
Meaghan I wanted to like the look of these shoes – they’re bright, fun. But, I just couldn’t. Saucony lost me with the marble-esk coloring on the outsole. What is that!? And something about them reminds me of Lisa Frank. Or Barbie. Or a glitter explosion. My only other complaint is the weight. These shoes felt heavier than 8.6oz. If I had to guess, I would have said 10, or something closer to the New Balance 880v3 we reviewed earlier this year. It’s a lot of shoe.
Thomas The things I don’t like about the Saucony Guide 7 are mainly just my preferences and are not really what the shoe is designed for. I would like to see the overlays on the shoe look less plastic like and maybe use more of the Saucony Flex-Film. With all of the stability features the Guide 7 is not as flexible a shoe as I typically lean towards. The flexibility does not affect the ride in the shoe.
Jenny This was a solid update to the Guide 6 and I think that loyal Guide wearers will be pleased with it. No need to stock up on discontinued models when the new one is even better than the last.
Meaghan Overall, I think the Guide 7 is a good stability trainer. I haven’t had the chance to log over 10 miles in one outing, but I am sure they would fare well long distances. They’re comfortable, supportive and a great option for some casual running any day of the week.
Thomas I like the Guide 7, I would recommend the Guide for the runner that wants a stability trainer that feels fast. It is light for a traditional trainer, it fits well, and I like the way it looks. Saucony’s 8mm drop feels right to me, a little lean forward without creating a breaking sensation for my midfoot strike. I was not expecting to like the Guide 7 as much as I do. I did not review the 6, but I am guessing if you liked the 6 you will love the Saucony Guide 7.