Life in the Fast Lane


A Somewhat Review: Newton Energy NR

By 8:12 AM , , , , , ,

It all started when I walked into Toby's Sports/RUNNR in Shangri-la around November of last year. I passed by the display of Newtons. (Confession: nowadays, I tend to window shop for sports gear before anything else.)

Some of the Newtons that greeted me when I visited the store.

Then I chanced upon the new Energy NRs in all their colorful glory. I had not heard of this new line of Newtons prior to this (I was always seeing the likes of Gravity, Motion, Lady/Sir Isaac, MV's, etc.) so my curiosity was piqued.

At this point, they had labeled different shoes as the "Perfect Gift for ___________" in time for Christmas. Upon seeing that I looked interested, a salesman asked if I wanted to give the Energy NR a try.

Naturally, the size 9 women's didn't fit me (oh, the perils of having big feet in Asia), so I tried out a size 9 men's. I ran on the treadmill, around the store, and noticed a significant difference every time I landed: the five lugs on the metatarsal area vs. their usual four lugs.

Notice the five "finger-like" things towards the middle part of the shoe?
(Photo from Run Magazine Asia.)

Most Newton shoes have only four lugs.
My Distance S's look exactly like this.
(Photo from

What makes Newton different from other brands is, in fact, these actuator lugs which promote a more neutral, midfoot to forefoot strike. One ends up landing on the lugs instead of heel-striking, which makes him/her less prone to injury.

Anyway, going back to my Energy NR story!

It was weeks after trying out the Energy NR's in the store that the Newton Running Instagram account posted a new colorway. I found them so cute (hey, I am a girl after all) and annoyed at the same time because they didn't have those here in the Philippines.

Yes, I just had to screengrab their post.

At this point, I was already starting to wonder if I should get a third pair of Newtons (I was already happy alternating between two models), lest I be deemed a shoe hoarder. 

But another blessing happened: a longtime family friend from the US, who worked in a company that organized races and triathlons, was able to send me a pair in this colorway — and they had a women's size 10! *throws confetti*

The box arrived while I was in Ilocos, so it felt like Christmas all over again.

Fresh from the USA, and fresh out of the box.

I have since done somewhere between 30 to 40 kilometers with these babies (alternating between this pair and my Lady Isaacs; my Distance S's will now be used just for races and not for regular runs) and here are my thoughts:
  1. They are incredibly comfortable. The sole gives decent cushioning, the lugs don't protrude too much (unlike their other models), and the mesh upper lets my feet breathe to the point where I can probably run without socks.

  2. They feel significantly lighter — at least when I compare them to the Lady Isaacs.

  3. They're light but comfortable enough to do 10K and up with them; but for sprinting or shorter distance races, you'd still want a lighter pair (with less of a heel-toe drop).

  4. I could wear them all day, even for walking. The shoes just conform to the shape of my feet and their movements.

  5. The five-lug system makes it much easier to land evenly, compared to their usual four-lug system.

  6. If you were going to transition to midfoot striking from heel striking (or the Newton kind of running, for that matter), this would be the best Newton model for the job.

  7. I would probably recommend this for first-time Newton wearers, come to think of it.

  8. Those used to Newtons would likely appreciate the Energy NR's more "sneaker/running shoe-like" feel versus their usual pair.
On second thought, the shoes are so comfortable that they're worth wearing anywhere and anytime. I've actually worn them to work (thank God we don't have a dress code of any kind; creative environment FTW).

From work to a workout afterwards.

Some minor wear-and-tear already seen on the actuator lugs.

Yet again, Newton has done it — at least for this overpronated but high-arched runner. I'm a happy camper.

Can't wait to do my first race of the year in these shoes, and to see the 2014 line of Newton!

(Disclaimer: Newton Running or Toby's Sports/RUNNR didn't pay or ask me to write this blog entry, nor was I sent any samples. The shoes here are mine and I voluntarily wrote this pseudo-review. But of course, I would never say no if I were sent some shoes in the future, or asked to make a review. Teehee!)

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