Newton Running Distance III Shoe Review

Newton Running Distance III

Newton Distance III

Right at the end of 2013, Newton Running announced significant technological advancements would be present in their Spring 2014 product line – the main one being the addition of a fifth lug in their unique Action/Reaction forefoot technology. Going back a few years I ran in Newtons a lot; I liked their shoes but always felt them a tad unstable and just a fraction too narrow. Their December press release, however, caught my attention and I made a mental note of the planned mid-February release date of their updated shoes.

Online reviews of the updated models were few and far between, so somewhat on a whim I decided to take the plunge and pre order a pair of the 2014 Distance III. The shoes are light (7.7oz for my size 9.5), colorful, feature a 2mm heel-to-toe drop and are built on the all-new POP 1 Platform. “POP” is an acronym for “Point of Power”; the latest version of which is said to offer

a more dynamic and aggressive ride via lugs that are accentuated more in the toe-off region.

Sounds intriguing.

My first outing in the Distance III was an easy 8 miler right at 7:00/mile pace. Forefoot width was excellent, and the 5th lug provided a nice stable feel exactly as Newton describe. For some strange reason though, the lugs on the right shoe seemed a little stiffer than those on the left. The left shoe really did seem to “pop” on each stride, but the right shoe lugs felt almost as if they were stuck. I’m wondering if it had anything to do with the extremely cold outside temperature.

Run number two was far more promising. Both sets of lugs popped nicely and after a brisk 2 mile warm up, I proceeded to knock off 5 x 1000m intervals at a fraction slower than 5K pace. I’d found the sweet-spot, and the shoes were working their magic.

I took something of a gamble with the third run in the Distance III. With the Shamrock Marathon fast approaching, I decided to try a long run in the new shoes with the possibility of wearing them on race day bouncing around in my mind. The gamble turned out to be a good one, as I managed to log my fastest ever 20 mile training run at just under 6:30/mile pace. For the last 5 miles I averaged 6:14/mile and it really felt like I was flying.

Due to sickness on race day, my 2014 Shamrock Marathon didn’t happen, but I’m confident the Distance III will make a great race shoe one day soon.

Newton Running Distance III

Newton Running Distance III

So, what do I like about the Distance III? First off the bat, the fit is excellent. As mentioned previously, the forefoot width is just about perfect for me and the semi-flat lacing and breathable, mesh panels keeps everything locked in nicely. In some shoes the heel cup is a trouble spot for me, but not so in the case of the Distance III – in this shoe it’s soft, lightly cushioned, flexible and the perfect height for zero irritation.

If you like bright colors, then you won’t be disappointed either – the Men’s Distance III is available in a vibrant orange upper with 360 degree reflectivity for low-light running and a red overlaid Newton Running logo. The Women’s Distance III come in a unique yellow/blue/red colorway.

I’ve since purchased the latest Gravity III model for daily training, but the Newton Running Distance III will be my go to shoe for mid-distance racing and weekly speed workouts.

From the Newton Running website:
Retail Price: $155
Weight: 7oz
Heel-to-Toe Drop: 2mm



The 2014 Distance III are available for purchase at and

Road Runner Sports


Excellent review mate. Makes me want to try on the distance and gravity and see how they feel on my feet. May just do that!!!

[…] Newton Running Distance III Shoe Review […]

Thanks for the review. I’m curious to hear about your experience in the Gravity III and how it compares to the Distance III.

Hi Tom. Just posted a review of the Gravity III if you’re interested…

[…] on from my recent Newton Running Distance III Review, I figured now would be a good time to pass on my thoughts regarding the Newton Running Gravity III […]

[…] 8.5oz, weight is pretty good for my size 9.5, although it is almost an ounce heavier than the Newton Distance III and a fraction heavier than another of my favorite shoes, the Saucony Kinvara. No big deal though […]

[…] Steve Speirs’ review of the Distance III […]

I’m having the same issue with my Newton Distance as the Right lugs were stiff and the left shoe gave more of the pleasant ride. Hoping, like yourself, the next run seems to take care of that issue.

Leave a comment