Newton Fate Review

Posted by iRunLocal | Uncategorized

When the Newton Fate was released it was met with a great deal of skepticism. The shoe was a replacement for the venerable Sir Isaac which had a very large and loyal following. The Fate marked a fairly drastic departure from the Sir Isaac by shaving over 2 oz. per shoe and adopting the new 5 lug system with the POP 2 lugs. People wondered if the Fate would be able to maintain the silky smooth feel and long haul comfort of the Sir Isaac in a much more performance orientated package? Well, I have put about 40 miles on a pair of Fate’s now so I can answer some of these questions!

I first tried on the Fate as one of the Newton rep’s samples during the iRun LOCAL scavenger hunt. I had previously run in the Energy NR and did not like it, the toe box was too narrow and the upper didn’t have enough stretch which caused all sorts of discomfort; so I ended up returning the shoes. But upon slipping on the Fate things felt immediately different! The newer upper material was much thinner and more pliable with a much wider toe box. The new lugs were also very prevalent, they felt much wider which gave me a more comfortable base and very springy, almost like they push you forward. The rep told me to run in them for the scavenger hunt and I was honestly surprised by how good they felt right out of the box.

Once the shoes were finally released I picked up a pair mainly to use for my faster tempo and interval type runs. My thinking was that would be happiest at a little bit faster pace and would fit in between some lighter racing flats and super cushioned longer run shoes. I did some initial Tempo runs in them and they felt amazing, but I noticed something interesting. Compared to non-Newton runs these were all just a little faster pace wise with a slightly higher cadence! One of the main selling points of Newton shoes is that the lugs will help you develop a more “natural” stride that has you landing on your mid-foot. The benefit is that studies have shown this type of stride lowers incidents of injury and is slightly more efficient. The part that was so surprising is that even being a mid-foot striker before, I was running more efficiently without actually having to do anything, it just happened!!!

I now knew these shoes were amazing going fast, but how would they be for longer and slower recovery/base building mileage? I took the Fate’s on a 13 mile long run one Sunday and was pleasantly surprised. They were quite comfortable and I didn’t suffer any discomfort from doing this type of run in a more performance based shoe. I have also been dealing with a little Achilles Tendonitis this year on longer runs and noticed that it didn’t flare up when I did these runs in the Newton’s! So far I have been pleasantly surprised with just how versatile the Fate actually is.

Things I liked:

  • The Upper; it’s roomy without being sloppy and overall lends the shoe an excellent fit.
  • 5 Lugs; The new 5 lug configuration with a wider forefoot platform makes for a very comfortable shoe that truly disappears on your feet
  • Light; The Fate replaced the Sir Isaac and shed almost 3 oz. per shoe all while retaining the same level of comfort

Things I didn’t like:

  • This isn’t a shoe for everyone; Newton’s are designed to promote a forefoot strike and faster cadence. If you’re a runner who is very set in their ways and doesn’t want to adapt then these just won’t work for you
  • Transition period; as with any Newton you start off rotating these into your runs slowly and building up your mileage over time. Because of the lugs and the change in gate, most people do suffer some calf or shin soreness especially if they don’t transition slowly enough.

Final Thoughts: Overall I have been pleasantly surprised with the Fate. Going in I had thought they would be a one trick pony. But in the end they seem suited for a wide range of distances from 5k to full marathon and would make an excellent race shoe. More and more when I head out the door I find that these end up on my feet over a LOT of other options I have, this has to be about the highest praise any shoe can receive. Stop in and give them a try, you may end up really loving them as I did!!!

I’m an independent runner who is a self-professed “shoe geek” that loves trying out the latest offerings from the industry. I am 32 years old, 5’9”and about 160lbs with a Neutral Mid-foot strike. I have been a runner since middle school but never a fast one; a good day for me is being In the middle of the pack. I became friends with Jamie and Anthony shortly after they opened the shop and they recently asked if I would like to write about some of the shoes I have experience running in. I purchased my pair of Fate’s from the store at full price with my own money.

Mark Kapitan