What You Should Know.
- weighs 7 oz. (198 g) for US M9.0 / 5.8 oz (164 g) for US W7.5
- Carbon race car with the new Flytefoam Blast Turbo sole (uh, that’s nice)
- Excellent grip outsole modeled after the ASICStrack line.
- Ok, actually Assyx is playing Jaime Lannister Kingslayerhere .
ROBBE : Let’s get the elephant out of the room: Nike has dominated the day running scene with the Vaporfly and Alphafly NEXT%, and everyone knows it. They know it, top athletes sponsored in darkened Nikes know it, and every company that compresses a piece of carbon into the midsole knows it. Sure, there have been some solid competitors, and some prefer them, but nothing has matched the initial surge of galvanic ZoomX.
So far. Enter the ASICS METASPEDATION.
MEGAN: While we were all busy working in 2020, the Assex were learning the speed of instinctive movement. As a result of this research and the results, two new super shoes were created: METASPEED Sky and METASPEED Edge. Science simplified to the extreme is exactly that: METASPEED Sky is for the runner who increases stride length by running faster, and METASPEED Edge is for the runner who increases stride length and stride speed by running faster. Most runners probably fall into the first camp (we all know how bad our cadence is). Either way, both METASPEED shoes are destined to become worthy competitors to the NEXT% and/or any other running shoe.
We tested the METASPEED Sky (the shoe Sarah Hall wore for the London Marathon and Marathon Project), so this review will focus on that model. Let’s get down to business.
TOMAS: While other running brands are working on the second or third version of their super Nike hunting bag, Asex seems to be lagging behind. Their last running shoe was the ill-fated ASICS Metaracer, which was a great shoe, but was closer to the traditional flat running shoe than the magical, bouncy feel of today’s running shoes. But like Mike Tyson, Assix apparently had no desire to compete. No, they want to be like Mike and take you out in one fell swoop. METASPEED Sky is Azix’s jump on the left corner, good….. You know who.
ROBBE : Well, to tell you the truth, I haven’t run for president yet. This sounds crazy as a shoe reviewer and BITR team member, but for the most part I’m cheaper than Widefoot Jarrett, and I had plenty of other running options, so I just kept pushing back. So I’m not going to compare it to NEXT%. However, I’ve run in almost every other running shoe, and I have to say that so far this is by far my favorite.
The silver FLYTEFOAM BLAST TURBO sole is durable, but with a wider base, it bypasses the instability of the NovaBlast. (Note that this is the first appearance of FF Turbo, so rejoice because it is real).
For slow steps, the shoe is fine, but let’s face it, it’s not designed for slow steps. When you get a hold of it, it gets better and better. You don’t realize you’re stealing. And all goes well throughout the pass. I’ll be honest – I’m not a big fan of the soft foam and monumental stacking in many shoes (the Saucony Endorphin Pro is my favorite racer, for example), but this shoe fits perfectly into that best of both worlds range. Each toe has a sheen that Orville Redenbacher would envy. Seriously, it feels like we’re being hurled forward. The carbon fiber plate gives it a touch of ruggedness, while the FF turbo stack and durometer provide the perfect balance of rebound. In the meantime, the swing just rolls on the set.
The fit of the 100% redesigned upper is not perfect for me, but the heel fits snugly, something I’ve had issues with some running shoes in the past. Then there’s the ASICSGRIP outsole, which is probably the most exciting outsole I’ve ever seen in a running shoe (very similar to the PUMAGRIP outsole in Puma’s new line). Despite its height, the shoe is surprisingly agile in turns, thanks in part to the Asax grip sole. In short, this shoe is fun to deal with.
MOYAGAN : METASPECTED Heaven is pretentious, to say the least. The mesh upper is bright orange and flows into the midsole for a really bright and bold look. I like it. The upper is a lightweight, highly breathable one-piece mesh made from 100% recycled polyester. It fits almost perfectly. With a wider forefoot and thinner heel, this shoe encloses your foot in all the right places. It also fits my wide feet, which is not the case with all running shoes.
The pedaling sensation gave me a Nike Vaporfly NEXT% feeling, and that feeling continued on the road. The midsole, FF BLAST TURBO, is a nylon-based foam (it’s not Pebax, but it is) that is light and resilient, offering a smooth transition from one landing to the next. The midsole sandwich consists of a full-length carbon fiber plate, which adds more punch. Thanks to the resilient foam midsole, hard carbon plate, and curved rocker construction, it’s hard not to get knocked out by this shoe. I have returned from several races with this shoe only to find that my times were much faster than I thought. Sometimes it’s almost a minute per mile longer. I feel pretty good.
Talking about feeling good, I ran 14 km with it and felt good during and after. It will do wonders for the marathon.
The outsole is also remarkable; designed with ASICSGRIP, a rubber that made its debut on the ASICS scene, it’s one of the dirtiest rubbers I’ve ever felt. I have trained in the pouring rain with these shoes and have not slipped once.
While the stack height is not as high as the Alphafly or RC Elite 2, the cushioning is there. Women’s shoes with 31 mm heel, 26 mm forefoot and 5 mm heel height. Moreover, they are soft and light. My W7.5 weighed 5.8 oz.
TOMAS : The top breath feels like my first breath after wearing a face mask all day at an amusement park in the Florida humidity (which I had to do last weekend). This thing is airy. This is important because the colder the body, the lower the heart rate. A lower heart rate, in turn, corresponds to lower energy consumption by the athlete.
By now, you should be used to the subtle tabs on your running shoes. Not surprisingly, this language is minimal. The ankle collar and heel are lightly padded for comfort. Overall, the fit worked well for my thin, low volume legs. I have a half size smaller than many Asecs, but the Sky works exactly as it should. I tried both size 10 and 10.5 and stayed with my normal American size 10.5.
Meg said FLYTEFOAM Blast Turbo is a nylon-based foam, which is actually a generic term for Pebax. If we stop talking in code for a moment, it means the Nike ZoomX feels like it.
The shape of the midsole and carbon plate changes the feel of this shoe, making it feel more aggressive than the other models we tested. The midsole’s flash at the lateral edge is designed for compression and rebound, allowing the palate to move forward more from the forefoot. This means that not only do you feel the plate working, but the exaggerated bounce of the toes in the plate causes you to feel the final phase of your stride powerfully. The extra wide forefoot is stable and provides just the right amount of cushioning for long miles. Although the heel becomes narrower, the shoe remains stable.
The ASICSGRIP rubber outsole is a sticky rubber that can withstand all road conditions. During the test I did a hill workout followed by 400m reps in extremely wet conditions. I never doubted my ability, even through countless puddles.
ASICS Men’s Shop
ASICS Women’s Shop
ROBBE : I had a little problem with the laces. My first run was too tight and my foot fell asleep at the top, so I had to find a solution. I also think there might be too much room in the toe box? Take this with a grain of salt, because my perfect top is the Falconi Endorphin line, which feels like it’s attached to a rocket stick from a bottle. People with slightly wider feet will appreciate the extra space in the METASPEED Sky.
It’s not necessarily bad either, but it’s something. These shoes make a lot of noise. Those who have run in Nike Tempo NEXT% know what I mean. That’s probably what T. Rex sounded like when he was chasing Ford Explorers at a 1990s amusement park.
MOYAGAN : According to Asex, this shoe only has a stack height of 31mm, but if you include the sole and socks (as World Athletics measures stack height), you come up with almost 40mm. I was actually going to complain about how the pillow would look, but it turns out it already is.
TOMAS : Adjusting the laces in the mouth can be tricky. Light lace at the top of the collar too tight. I usually complain that asexuality gives you too much tongue. The palate would need an extra inch of tongue. The laces and the top of the tongue meet in the same place when you use the Runner’s Loop lacing system.
ASICS Men’s Shop
ASICS Women’s Shop
METASPECIAL ASICS Skywalker
ROBBE : It’s simple: This shoe costs $250. And apparently we’re not alone, as three of Azix’s top athletes have won major PR awards with prototype shoes.
This shoe is a dream for me, and I can’t wait to crush it like I’ve crushed every other dream in my life. * uncontrollable sobs * GIF
MEAGHAN: There is no distorted novelty: The ASICS METASPEED Sky is the closest thing to a Nike Vaporfly NEXT% that I have ever experienced. The feeling you want on race day is a slight springy pressure forward. Comfortable. It’s nice. And that explains why Sarah Hall is flying these days. If you want the Nike Vaporfly experience (with a more appropriate upper) without having to buy Nike shoes, the ASICS METASPEED Sky is your answer.
THOMAS: I really liked the last pair of running shoes we tested. The two heavyweights for me were the new Balance RC Elite v2 and the METASPEED Sky. It’s all about a decision, not a knockout. For me, the METASPIED paradise wins.
But here’s the thing: There used to be only one marker per race day. There are a few good options now for athletes. Each of them has its own characteristics, so you need to find the one that suits you best. Shoes like the New Balance RC Elite v2 have a great upper and a very smooth ride. For me, the Asex wins because of its weight and the way the midsole adapts to my terrain. I also think it would be suitable for 80% of riders.
Honestly, I’m leaning towards the Sky for my marathon in May because it feels softer on my hamstrings than my favorite AlphaFly Next%. If my training continues at the same pace, METASPEED Sky will cross the finish line with me.
You can buy the ASICS METASPEED Sky (and Edge) from 1. April for a $250 shot (METASPEED Edge is coming in June).
ASICS Men’s Shop
ASICS Women’s Shop
Thomas is the founder of Big Run Media, Believe in Running and Fast Bastards. His mission is to make sure everyone is operational. Life is better when you run, and running is always better when you have the right equipment.
Robbe is a senior writer/editor for BITR. He lives in Baltimore with his wife and two sons and runs hard with the Fast Bastards when he’s not at CRG training. His favorite distance is a marathon, and his favorite beer is anything but Blue Moon.
Meaghan is the co-founder of Big Run Media and . She is often found puking on the Baltimore waterfront in the early morning.
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