I'm a big fan of Saucony's carbon plate road running shoes. The Endorphin Pro 3 and Endorphin Elite are fantastic run to run in, putting so much spring in your step you can't help but pick up the pace. They're fantastic on hills too, giving you maximum energy with each toe-off.
In fact, I loved testing them so much, I put my money where my mouth is and invested in my own pair of Endorphin Pro 3s (albeit in a more restrained colorway than the hot pink pair I reviewed). I love them dearly, and I confess that I've been unable to resist using them for everyday training runs, which is probably dramatically reducing their lifespan. They're delicate shoes, with uppers so thin you can see whether your socks are clean and only a minimum of rubber on the outsole.
I was therefore intrigued in early July when Saucony announced the Kinvara Pro – an everyday road shoe with a 3/4 carbon plate and a build robust enough to tolerate the sheer mileage of regular training. Could it be as fun as the Endorphins?
In short, yes. The Kinvara Pro isn't as feather-light as its race-day counterparts, so you won't feel the breeze between your toes (always a strange sensation), but it has the same great energy transfer, with a shape that helps your foot roll naturally with each step.
My colleague Julia Clarke agrees, noting in her review that "the rocker sole propels you forward with each step without feeling wobbly, and the carbon plate soaks up impact and returns energy to you with each step, so you bound down the road like a gazelle."
They're much more robust than their Endorphin siblings, with a more substantial woven upper, well padded heel collar. Perhaps most importantly, none of the delicate PWRRUN PB Superfoam (the one with a bubbly texture) is going to come into contact with the road. There's a layer of this exceptionally squashy substance in the midsole, but it's protected with a thick slab of Saucony's denser PWRRUN foam, which is much tougher.
If your regular zone two runs are starting to feel like a chore and you're due a new pair of shoes, I'd highly recommend taking a pair of Kinvara Pros for a test run. They might just give you the boost you need to enjoy training again – and I think I'll be investing in my own once I wear my Endorphin 3s into the ground.
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Cat is the editor of Advnture, She’s been a journalist for 13 years, and was fitness and wellbeing editor on TechRadar before joining the Advnture team in 2022. She’s a UK Athletics qualified run leader, and in her spare time enjoys nothing more than lacing up her shoes and hitting the roads and trails (the muddier, the better).