The past three years have seen me running in almost nothing but Skechers Performance shoes. No, I'm not sponsored by them or anything of that sort. I'm not elite enough to go down that path but I do get the opportunity to test and review their newer models for them.
So far, Skechers Performance shoes have all been really good for me. They simply work and I've achieved numerous PR's and reached various milestones in them. I'm not saying that just cos I get free shoes to try out. I do actually go out and buy new ones once the review pairs wear out, that's how much I like their shoes. They're still one of my favourite brands out there.
But being a shoe addict, I've also always got my eye out on what other brands produce out there. In the past 3 years, I've dabbled a little with Reebok that proved traditional running shoes weren't for me, tried out the Adidas Boston Boost, though it received rave and good reviews from other shoe addicts out there, it just didn't work for me. And recently, I went out and bought myself a pair of SpeedForm® RC Vent from Under Armour.
There are some shoes, that you look at and know that they're just not for you and then there are some that just looking at them makes you want to simply beg, borrow or steal to get a pair. The UA SpeedForm® RC Vent was one of them. The moment I laid my eyes on them in an article I read on Runblogger's blog, I simply had to get one. It helped that they came in my favourite colorway of lime green though officially its colorway is labelled as High-Vis Yellow.
I haven't felt this way about a shoe since I first laid my eyes on the original Skechers GOrun. The SpeedForm RC Vent had that same effect on me. Pricey as hell but I simply had to get it. The wife knew better than to dissuade me from purchasing it cos she knows once I set my mind on wanting to buy something, I will not stop till I get it. It was a decision I absolutely don't regret one bit. The only painful part is the huge hole it burnt in my wallet.
The UA SpeedForm® RC Vent from the originators of performance apparel is a running shoe that is created to fit your feet like a ... urrmmm ... bra, so to speak. The result is an anatomically designed shoe that wraps your feet in seamless, fitted comfort, providing as much flexibility as possible with a very fast feel to it. Built for lightweight performance, the UA SpeedForm® RC Vent falls in the racing shoe category.
And I for one simply love racing shoes. Though not a racing flat, with a stack height of 22mm heel and 19mm forefoot, giving it a 6mm heel to toe drop, the low profile construction still offers a stable feel and excellent ground contact during runs. The shoe boasts of the introduction of the ArmourVent™ technology, originally used for apparels providing lightweight, durable breathability with quick drying properties, though I haven't tried them out in the wet yet. The breathability on the other hand is excellent.
Speaking of lightweight, they weigh in at an incredible 6 oz for the men's size 9, a whole 0.9 oz lighter in comparison to my other favourite racer, the Skechers GOmeb Speed 3. A moulded seamless heel cup with silicon grips keeps the heel nicely locked in place. I really like this feature. The smooth, ultrasonic welded seams with Bemis tape provides adequate support and comfort.
The moulded 4D foam sockliner simply conforms to your feet so fluidly that you would be forgiven for thinking you were slipping on a pair of socks and it considerably reduces slippage during your runs. It gripped and kept my feet in place nicely. Another feature which I simply loved.
The SpeedForm® RC Vent comes with a lace-up front that offers a comfortable and adjustable fit with a non gusseted tongue which did a good job of keeping out debris. In fact, the entire construction of the shoe kept out debris so well that I didn't feel a single debris in the shoe and my neighbourhood can be littered with tiny pebbles that oftentimes find its way into my shoes. It can be irritating having to stop mid run just to remove debris from your shoes.
The midsole is constructed of something UA calls Micro G® foam. It does a good job of absorbing the landings and rebounding the impact into an efficient forward momentum for faster takeoffs. It has great responsiveness without being too overly firm. The TPU curve in the midfoot added extra support and stability to the shoe. I found the ride of the SpeedForm® RC Vent very similar to that of the GOmeb Speed 3. Even the cut and shape of it is somewhat similar to the GOmeb.
The blown rubber on the outsole seems durable, responsive and flexible enough to go the distance and the anatomically constructed outsole also consists of UA's Light Speed Grip strategically placed for optimum, ultra-lightweight traction. The outsole looks solid enough to provide traction in wet conditions but up to the time of this post I haven't had the chance to take it out for a wet run seeing as how we're in the midst of some searing weather over here. Will update this aspect of the shoe when I get the chance to run in the rain.
Being in the racing shoe category, the SpeedForm® RC Vent fits like a racing flat. I wear a UK 8 and found it to be nice and snug but if you're on the cusp between two sizes, I'd say opt for a slightly larger size when trying them out.
I've done a couple of runs in them and have no issue at all. I find them a great option for days when I'm in the need for some speed or tempo workouts. The Under Armour SpeedForm® RC Vent is a cushioned and responsive 6mm drop shoe, yet still provides the responsiveness you'd expect from a racing flat. Simply perfect for a runner looking for a feather light ride.
The UA SpeedForm® RC Vent now alternates between the Skechers GOmeb Speed 3 for days when I need the speed. I'm keen to see how they perform for a marathon distance but I guess they'll work just fine seeing as how Nick Arciniaga ran the New York marathon in them last year.
The Under Armour SpeedForm® RC Vent is priced at RM539.00, which I paid full price for and is available locally. Of course purchasing a minimum amount of RM200 (or was it RM300?) entitles you to automatic membership of 10% but please do note that the membership is only active after 7 days, hence the full price for my shoe. It currently comes in the colorway of only High-Vis yellow.