Saucony Zealot ReviewApril 6, 2015
- Responsive ride
- Good stability
- 4mm offset
- Outsole collected road debris
- Excess upper fabric
The Saucony Zealot is a fast, comfortable, and well cushioned trainer. In testing, this shoe was a favorite due to its versatility. The Zealot is best for the efficient runner looking for a do-it-all shoe or for those who want cushioning and speed.
The Zealot is Saucony’s new lightweight, neutral trainer with the ISOFIT system (Saucony’s proprietary external caging system overlaying a sock liner). The Zealot also includes Saucony’s cushioned outsole, making it a great everyday trainer. High abrasion rubber covers the outsole along with deep, flex grooves that run longitudinally—some testers found that the grooves attracted road debris. Our testers appreciated the Zealot’s cushioned and efficient ride.
The Isofit system proved stable and comfortable. The tongue and heel collar add just enough padding for comfort and the toe box is an average size. In testing, I found fabric bunching in the upper when tightly cinching the laces, but not all testers reported this issue.
This shoe targets the runner looking for comfort and speed. At only 8.3 oz the Zealot provided rapid turn over and fast times. It favors a mid- to forefoot strike. In testing, the shoe set some of the fastest pacing and speed times in its category.
The flexible midsole had a fair amount of energy return. This shoe expertly blended cushioning and bounce and performs better the faster you run.
Heeluxe, our shoe testing laboratory partner, tests the responsiveness of a shoe by measuring how thick a running shoe is and multiplying it by how much pressure the forefoot foot feels while running. The softer or thicker the midsole, the less responsive a shoe will feel, but the more comfortable the shoe will generally feel. The thinner or firmer a midsole is, the more power you’ll feel at toe-off.
This shoe is priced on par with its competitors (New Balance Boracay, Hoka Huaka, and Altra Paradigm), and performs well during speed work and on longer runs.