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Crafted for race-day performance, the Endorphin Speed 4 has proven itself beyond expectation by showing off its incredible versatility. It excels in both sprints to the finish and keeping up the pace in those long runs. This is attributed to its optimal blend of a winged nylon-plate, SPEEDROLL technology, and PWWRUN PB foam, which together offer ideal support, energy return, and cushioning.
Weight: 8.2 oz / 233 g (men), 7.2 oz / 206 g (women)
Stack Height: 36 mm in the heel, 28 mm in the forefoot
Midsole Drop: 8 mm
Cushion Level: Mid
Keith: In the 40th year of my running journey, I sometimes need an extra kick to match the youthful energy of the mostly 20-somethings that make up my running crew. Cue the Endorphin Speed, my ever-reliable MVP of do-it-all training shoes. I'd be downplaying it if I said I was excited to give the Speed 4 a spin. I was giddy!! So, I didn't wait for the January weather in Michigan to break. I threw them on and blasted my way through my slush filled neighborhood in total euphoria. The days of being awestruck by the allure of plated, feather-light, super-foam running shoes are in the past. Now it takes something truly special to make my jaw drop. The Endorphin Speed 4 did it by being better than it's predecessor in every aspect. The outsole's traction upgrade is remarkable, and performed like winter tires on the slick streets. The embrace of the midsole's plush cushion and the bounce of its high-energy spirit have been enhanced by a more aggressively shaped plate, which acts as a supportive bridge under the arch upon landing and creates a more profound flex and launch feeling upon toe off. Zooming through four miles felt like a breeze, leaving me with a delightful blend of satisfaction and excitement that still hasn't dimmed during any of my subsequent runs!
Joe: After reviewing the Kinvara Pro, I was slightly apprehensive to wear test another shoe from Saucony, but the moment I cracked open the box, all hesitances ran away quicker than Jahymir Gibbs from Antoine Winfield Jr. in the Lions divisional championship game. I felt fast, and I hadn’t even put the shoe on my foot yet. I quickly slipped it on, sprinted to the treadmill in the front of our store (no customers were harmed in the process thanks to a wintry day in Michigan), cranked it up, and fell in love all over again with arguably my favorite series from one of my favorite brands.
Admittedly, the wheels were a little rusty when receiving this shoe, taking a few weeks off for a minor injury, but my first run in them brought me up to speed (yes…pun intended) when my regular training partners without feeling like I skipped a beat. To date, I’ve put in four runs at various effort levels, logging just over 21 miles on the shoes, and they respond to everything I’ve thrown at them - track work, interval work, easy miles, and pushing the stroller to a local bakery.
Keith: Sleek, snug, and locked in, the Endorphin Speed 4 fits like a well tailored suit; if that suit was made from your favorite sweats. No need for concern about irritating rub spots or race-ruining blisters; this shoe is dialed in, keeping your journey smooth and slip-free from heel to mid-foot to toes. Sizing is a breeze! Stick to the script unless your feet are on the wider side.
Joe: The Saucony Endorphin Speed 4 fits true-to-size for my men’s 12.5. The PWRRUN PB midsole, paired with the nylon plate and Saucony’s beloved Speedroll geometry, delivers an exceptional performance. Complementing these elements is an improved, incredibly responsive sock liner that seamlessly blends with the sidewalls and slightly more rounded heel counter, providing a secure and stable fit for your foot that wasn’t true in previous editions of the Endorphin Speed.
Adding to the overall comfort is the engineered mesh, which, despite its lightweight nature, surprises with its plush feel. The well-tailored fit dimensions contribute to the shoe's appeal, and the gusseted tongue, while thin, offers unexpected plushness and breathability. The internal heel counter with mild padding ensures a secure hold on the foot, something I have long wanted in the Endorphin Speed after my experiences running in the Endorphin Speed 1 & 2 (note: I did not run in the Endorphin Speed 3). The shoe's design allows for a smooth transition from easy miles to speedy intervals and just about everything in-between, providing a comfortable experience throughout.
Keith: PWRRUNpb has been and remains a great mix of lightweight, soft bounce. It performs perfectly in tandem with the nylon plate of the Speed 4 to make each run fun and faster. With its reimagined plate and increased support in the heel I can say for the first time ever that, yes, this shoe does feel stable, yet still very sleek and speedy.
Joe: If I could use one word to describe the cushioned feel of the Endorphin Speed 4 it would be oobleck. Hear me out on this.
Standing around, moseying about in the shoes, you definitely feel the cushion, you begin to sink into the squish of the heel, but…this shoe was not meant to be stood in, it was meant for movement!
As soon as you begin to apply force the the PWNRUN PB, you are no longer sinking, now you are springing forth, tackling miles on the way to establishing new PRs. As you apply force, you notice the flexion and increased responsiveness of the re-engineered, winged nylon plate under foot, with it pushing back on your foot, lifting it off the ground, and propelling you down whatever path you’ve desired to explore for the day.
Keith: The Endorphin Speed 4 is a running companion that fearlessly conquers every mile. Beyond being just a reliable partner, this powerhouse is a fusion of comfort and speed. It lets you effortlessly glide through long runs, cradled by its plush cushioning, yet when you decide to unleash your inner speed demon, it responds with a powerful bounce that transforms intense workouts and races into an exhilarating endeavor. If you've been a fan of the Endorphin Speed up to this point you'll have your mind pleasantly blown; the Endorphin Speed 4 takes the game to an entirely new echelon. Maintaining the iconic 8mm drop platform and the magic of PWRRUNpb cushioning, it now boasts a revamped nylon plate, elevating support and launching capabilities. Watch out, competitors—Brooks Hyperion Max, New Balance Supercomp Trainer, Asics Novablast, Hoka Mach X, Altra Vanish Tempo, Topo Specter, Nike Zoom Fly (Sorry if I'm forgetting anyone!)—you've got big shoes to fill, and I'm eagerly anticipating the spectacle as you try to keep up!
Joe: Personally, I view the Endorphin Speed 4 as primarily a workout or racing shoe. I know plenty of others who love to use their Endorphin Speeds as daily trainers, but my personal preference is to step out of a plated shoe for my easy miles. The beauty of the Endorphin Speed 4 is that it, contrasted to previous editions of the Endorphin Speed, can handle just about any pace you throw at it.
To put the Endorphin Speed 4 to the test, I conducted a highly scientific “experiment” comparing it against my other favorite in the Endorphin Speed line, the Endorphin Speed 2. (Ok, so I was trying to fill some time while one of my kids was in dance class, but I still consider it an official experiment.) I took both pairs to a local track for a short workout (400m-800m-400m w/ 400m rec) in both pairs. I warmed up in the Endorphin Speed 4 and wore it for the first set and the Endorphin Speed 2 for the second set.
Comparatively at those distances, my times were more or less the same, only differing 1-2 seconds per interval, but the feel of the shoes couldn’t have been more different. The Endorphin Speed 4 felt smooth & supportive and as soon as I hit the 800m in the Endorphin Speed 2, I was wanting to switch back to the Endorphin Speed 4, which I quickly did for my cool down.
Keith: Anytime a fan favorite like this gets an update I hold my breath for the result. In so many instances, the product just doesn't live up to the hype. In this instance, however, I would say there isn't enough hype!! One of the best running shoes on the planet just became the best version of itself! For most of us that takes years, a lot of therapy, and tons of self help books. For the Endorphin Speed 4, it just took some imagination and masterful tweaks from the team at Saucony. Bravo!
Joe: I know I shouldn’t have been surprised by this (I seriously has some P-KP-SD to overcome from the Kinvara Pro), but the Endorphin Speed 4 has quickly found itself as a regular player in my shoe rotation. This is going to be an active workout shoe for me, with maybe a couple races sprinkled in just to see how it’ll compare when the XT-900 lattice outsole truly hits the road. The Endorphin Speed 4 stands out as the pinnacle of the Endorphin Speed line, showcasing Saucony's excellence in integrating the finest features from its predecessors into this latest edition.
Get yourself a pair HERE!
COMING FEBRUARY 29th 2024!
Running trails, training for races and leading a group to PRs is just his side-gig. A dog Dad with an everlasting love for soccer, he is one active man with an affinity for GOOD shoes. He can be quoted saying ' you only get one pair of feet, you should probably be wearing good shoes'
All time favorite shoe: Altra Torin 4 (specifically gray & yellow colorway)