This past year, Nike dropped the bomb on working out world that was the FreeXMetcon’s – I couldn’t overcome how good these shoes were. Til today, I still don’t know where you can put them in the Metcon line-up, I simply know that these were the best. They’re obviously geared a bit towards running as Nike stiffened up the Flyknit series, however in my view were still more stable than those as a result of the better fit and practically as dense midsole. For me personally, the FreeXMetcon’s finished up being among the finest shoes of the entire year – a genuine Swiss army knife of training shoes.

Construction/Fit:
How Nike could improve after the formula was beyond me because I didn’t have problems with fit that some persons complained about. The initial FreeXMetcon’s garnered so much praise because of their looks, so early shots of the brand new upper design were just a little alarming showing the TPU “strap” moved/extended right down to the midfoot of the shoe rather than around the ankle anymore. I’ll say that I don’t just like the look up to the first ones, however the 2’s do look better personally compared to the stock pictures make sure they are out to look. Which honestly if you ask me is fine, given that they work better compared to the originals, that they do – sort of?

Among the major complaints about the first shoe was that the ankle area wasn’t as “locked down” as some want. I never really had that feeling but I assume it was endemic enough in order that the largest change to the upper was made there. Now at the trunk section of the shoe, there’s a “heel cup” design that runs from the trunk of the shoe to where in fact the TPU strap comes out in the center of the shoe. The foam upper around your Achilles is stiffer, turned in more, but continues to be padded and comfortable for me personally. The ones that complained the originals rubbed the trunk of their foot raw should probably worry. The brand new heel cup design provides me a far more locked down fit than before, but with just a little break-in for the reason that sides of the “cup” will rub on the inside/outside elements of your foot. It becomes less prominent but hasn’t gone away within the last 14 days I’ve been wearing the shoes. It’s more noticeable on my right foot that includes a slightly more collapsed arch than my left.

The toebox construction remains the same with the flexible TPU “yarn” over mesh making it’s in the past on the 2’s. There’s a subtle swoosh along with the toe box for all those missing one giant swoosh along the medial side of the shoe; now you have two. Because the TPU straps have already been moved down, Flywire lacing is fully gone and the TPU strap takes it’s place; there are just a complete of 3 lace inlets instead of the 5 from before, however the lack of a couple doesn’t make the shoe feel any less locked down. However, the strap does rub externally of my right foot’s outside toe joint (pinky toe?); it’s not too bothersome when I’m training but it’s definitely red when I remove my shoes.

So for me personally, the fit is slightly improved around the ankle but when you have wide feet, you might like to stick with the initial shoes. The 2’s will be more narrow overall.

There are several minor changes to the look of the rubber pods on the outsole, but nothing too notable apart from they’re bigger in the forefoot. The midsole is said to get a firmer foam compared to the originals, but I believe they just lessened the volume of midsole foam on the 2’s. I noticed right away that the 2’s felt more low to the bottom compared to the original shoes did. To touch, both midsoles feel relatively the same density, but in the event that you gauge the “Free lines” (i.e. the cuts in the midsole to permit for flexibility), the originals measured about 10mm and the 2’s measured 7mm at their longest points. Furthermore, in the event that you check out the tristar cutout’s in the bottom of the shoe, the 2’s are a lot more shallow compared to the first model’s. Stacking the shoes up hand and hand yields similar results as the 2’s are simply shorter compared to the 1’s. In any event, that’s a welcome change if you ask me because my main complaint with the first shoes was that they did feel just a little tall.

The drop of the shoe remains the same at 5mm from heel to toe, slotting among the Metcon 4/Sport’s 4mm and Flyknit 3’s 6mm drop.

Gone may be the TPU clip used for HSPU, but I’m not likely to miss it because I never felt enjoy it did much to begin with.

Sizing:
I went with my typical training shoe size of a men’s 10/EU44 and length wise, the 2’s fit just about i’m all over this to the first ones; perhaps a tiny bit shorter as a result of the added volume at the heel of the shoe but it’s negligible. I already went over the way the FreeXMetcon 2’s could possibly be a bad choice for wide feet, but I’ll reiterate that because the new models include a heel cup design, they do feel more narrow compared to the first. With a small amount of break-in, it fit will improve however the shoes are usually more narrow regardless. If you felt the originals were snug or you were just worried that your wide feet may have issues, I would suggest sizing up by half. Otherwise normal to narrow feet will fit well in to the FreeXMetcon 2’s in your typical training shoe size.

My sizes for reference:

Metcon 4 – 10
Flyknit 3 – 10 (snug, could size up)
FreeXMetcon – 10
Metcon Sport – 10 (10.5 fits okay aswell)
Nano 8 – 10
RF1 – 10
Converse – 9.5
Romaleos 3XD – 10

Running/Plyometric Performance:
What made the FreeXMetcon’s do damn good was how comfortable these were, while still retaining stability for lifting. The 2’s trade a small amount of that comfort for stability, but nonetheless remain very flexible and so are still among the finest training shoes you could also double up for running.

Flexibility still remains at the forefront of the shoe, literally and figuratively. Like all “Free” shoes, there are slits all through the entire midsole of the shoe, which again like other “Free” shoes may be the outsole as well. Almost all the overall flexibility slits are in the forefoot of the shoe and so are also along with the tri-star cutout’s on underneath of the shoe that expand when the foot strikes the bottom. These are in no way a barefoot shoe, however the design feels minimal, a lot more so compared to the first model’s because they’re lower to the bottom.

Running and jumping feel the easiest in the FreeXMetcon’s in comparison to almost all of the other shoes out there as the forefoot moves together with your feet so well. However, these shoes favor a forefoot strike, in comparison to a heel strike. There is good heel cushioning however the transition to forefoot doesn’t feel as natural as a result of the midfoot plate; which was created to protect/aid with rope climbs and present you a far more stable platform. Still, heel striking isn’t the worst, nevertheless, you won’t be reaping the benefits associated with the forefoot overall flexibility as much.

I don’t think many persons are going to spot the slight reduction in overall cushioning from reducing the midsole cushioning, these shoes remain very comfortable overall, just slightly less than the originals. Apart from them feeling a bit more near to the bottom, I came across the cushioning to feel almost identical until I put both first and second on concurrently. Even then you can certainly hardly tell, apart from having the capacity to feel the toe cap rubber pod more prominently in the 2’s. Jumping and landing for things such as box jumps, double unders and burpees remain as comfortable as ever while still making certain footed.

The FreeXMetcon 2’s remain among the finest shoes to use for running and plyometric movements, but if you wanted a slightly softer ride, the originals are better for the reason that area.

Stability/Lifting:
By the end of your day FreeXMetcon’s remain training shoes, and an exercise shoe wouldn’t be worth much without it’s stability. With my original FxM’s, I felt like I possibly could lift just about anything I could/would be lifting in my own Metcon 4’s. Because the 2’s have a platform more intended for lifting, are they that a lot more stable than their predecessor?

Regardless of the slight change to the platform, what sort of FreeXMetcon 2’s change from the original with regards to stability is just how much better they can fit around the ankle. This isn’t something you’re really likely to notice if you’re squatting or conventional deadlifting, but it’s noticeable when doing almost any dynamic movement, such as for example Olympic weightlifting. Lateral stability is improved, making your landings feel a bit more reliable when compared to previous generation. Most likely the only area the originals lacked was in Oly lifting as a result of the “Free” midsole design coupled with a not totally secure ankle collar. The midsole design now isn’t as tall and combined with better fit, the FreeXMetcon 2’s are improved this season for Oly movements.