The Saucony Endorphin Pro 3 is even bouncier and springier than its predecessor, with an S-shaped carbon plate and masses of soft foam making it huge fun at speed. It's incredibly light and breathable too (the breeziest feeling shoe I've ever tested) and just begs for you to pick up the pace,
Springy and responsive
Sole may wear quickly
Sizes come up small
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Saucony Endorphin Pro 3 first impressions
Before I start, I should mention that the Saucony Endorphin Pro 3 I tested was a pre-production model, so there may be some very slight differences between this and the one on sale.
The Endorphin Pro 3 is built for speed – light, responsive, and very enjoyable to run in. It has even thicker cushioning than the Endorphin Pro 2, with masses of Saucony's PWRRUNPB foam making the shoe extra springy.
Nestled in all this foam is an S-shaped carbon plate, which you can actually see and touch through two cutaways in the center of the sole Saucony has really trimmed away any unnecessary materials, and the Endorphin Pro 2 is by far the lightest running shoe I've ever worn; when I first removed one from the box, I was so surprised that I immediately put it on my digital scale, and found it weighed a mere 210g (7.4oz).
• List price: $225 / £210
• Weight (per shoe): 210g / 7.4oz (US women's 11)
• Drop: 8mm
• Materials: PWRRUNPB foam, carbon plate, some recycled materials
• Colors: Prospect quartz (hot pink), black, white
• Compatibility: Races and speedwork
It's an attention-grabber, too. The hot pink version I tested has iridescent accents around the eyelets, and the upper itself is slightly sparkly, with metallic fibers under the topmost layer of mesh. It's also available in a more subtle black or white colorway, but even these have gold accents, and this shoe is going to attract envious glances either way.
Bear in mind, however, that they do seem to come up a little small. If you're not used to Saucony road shoes, I'd recommend going up half a size.
Saucony Endorphin Pro 3 on the road
The Saucony Endorphin Pro 3 is a pricey racing shoe, but you're getting a lot of fun for your money. Like most heavily cushioned shoes, it feels a tad wobbly at slow speeds, but really comes into its own when you pick up the pace. The carbon plate is seriously stiff, and I particularly enjoyed it on hills; lift onto your forefoot and the energy is directed exactly where you want it.
The Saucony Endorphin Pro 3 isn't just the lightest running shoe I've ever worn, it;s also the most breathable. The upper is made entirely from mesh, and air blows straight through. I even felt air movement on the arch of my foot, which was unusual, but very pleasant in summer (and even airier than the Endorphin Speed 3).
It's not fragile, though; I've put lots of long miles into the Endorphin Pro 3, and the upper is none the worse for wear.
That upper hugs the foot nicely, and the shoe's flat laces hold it firmly in place with virtually no stretch and ample length for creating a heel lock.
I was surprised to find that there's a decent amount of padding in the collar as well. Saucony has pared weight back wherever it can (the tongue is perforated with three huge holes to keep things light and breezy), but it's not compromised on comfort where it matters most.
Wearing of the foam is a concern for me, though. The XT-900 outsole has only minimal rubber, and as you can see from my photos, the foam itself makes contact with the ground, particularly along the instep. This is definitely a shoe to keep for race days when you want to fly fast and free, with your eye on a new personal best.
Overall the Saucony Endorphin Pro 3 is just fantastic fun, and I'm seriously considering investing in a pair myself once I've returned the ones I've been reviewing – just half a size up.
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Cat is the editor of Advnture, She’s been a journalist for 15 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), usually wearing at least two sports watches.