Tuesday, February 22, 2011

GoLite Micro Lite Review

GoLite Footwear is different from other outdoor shoes due to its proprietary "Soft Against the Ground" technology, which effectively turns traditional shoe construction upside down to provide greater stability and traction, while enhancing overall protection and performance. Even though they are both named GoLite,  along with the gear company from Colorado, they are actually two separate companies. The GoLite brand's footwear license was issued to The Timberland Company some years ago. In 2008, New England Footwear purchased the license from Timberland and is currently manufacturing shoes under the GoLite Footwear brand name. Although they maintain ongoing dialog with the GoLite gear team, the two companies are unrelated and do not represent each other's products.

New England Footwear was kind enough to send a pair of the Micro Lites for me and a pair of Flash Lites in Windchime/Black for Kovas (see his review at Endurance Gear Reviews).   The Micro Lite is their lightest race day trail runner for women of all skill levels.  It is light (a size 7 weighs 9 oz.), has a lightweight mesh and TPE upper and offers a 3mm posting medial to lateral.

The Micro Lites also feature SAT G technology, Precise Fit, Internal Lace System, Grip Stick Rubber, Debris Shield, CrossOver, Class I Outdoors, and GoLite Baretech.
  • SAT G: Soft Against The Ground - the soft part of the sole is close to the ground with the firm platform against the foot - the outsole thus absorbs the shock of the trail instead of your body.
  • Precise Fit - no two feet are alike, so by adding to or removing a pad from the insole, you can modify the forefoot volume to accommodate a narrow, medium, or wide foot.
  • Internal Lace System - adjusts across the arch, securing your foot and heel in place, designed to prevent foot from sliding forward on descents and eliminate heel lift and "toe bang". 
  • Debris Shield - lightweight abrasion resistant toe and heel materials; shoes will take you wherever you need to go, last longer and keep on looking great.
  • Grip Stick Rubber - GoLite's exclusive high-grip compound that provides superior traction on slick surfaces such as wet rocks, snow, and ice.
  • CrossOver - the super lightweight Crossover sole is made with two densities of EVA and can transition from the road to a single track trail with ease.
  • Class 1 Outdoors - state-of-the-art footwear, highest performing, most protective, durable and lightest outdoor products in the industry. 
  • GoLite Baretech - offers all the benefits of barefoot running with the practical protection of traditional shoes.

Testing Conditions
The shoes were worn on the treadmill, cement, asphalt, grass, snow and over slippery ice.

Overall Impressions

Although the shoes look small, as stated in their FAQ, the shoe fit true-to-size (good if you’re self conscious of having big feet).  In addition the Precise Fit technology allows you to modify the fit of the forefoot area depending on how many pads (or none) one wears. This is a nice feature if your left and right foot are slightly different.  I have a medium to wide foot, and the medium insoles fit great.  I also wore the shoe with my custom orthotics.

When I first put the Micro Lites on, they were pretty stiff and not as cushioned as the running shoes I am used to wearing.  Once I began running, the stiffness disappeared (or at least was no longer noticeable).  
The shoes had great traction on snow and ice.   I want to say they performed better/felt better outside than on the treadmill, but that could be a general preference of running outside vs treadmill.

Final Thoughts
These are well-made, comfortable shoes.  They performed well outside on snow and ice and on the treadmill.  The ability to customize the fit is a great idea.    

Despite the presence of the Internal Lace System, I would still prefer additional eyelets for a greater heel-lock.  The heel fit was somewhat loose, and in my opinion the option to use heel-lock lacing would improve the shoes.


  1. Woohoo, first review! Looks great, can't wait to read many more.

  2. They sound great, although the inability to heel lock would concern me, too, since I almost always have to lace my shoes like that.


Have you tried this gear? Something similar you like better? Something I should try? Let me know by leaving a comment!

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