Categories
Reviews

ASICS NIMBUS 22 REVIEW

 

ASICS NIMBUS 22 – SHOE REVIEW

by BRIAN METZLER | SEPTEMBER, 2019

ASICS GEL Nimbus speaks comfort and bounce.  Now in it's 22nd edition, it is safe to say this perennial high-mileage running shoe is well-established amongst runners, and for a reason.  

Running shoe guru Brian Metzler declares the last two reiterations of the ASICS GEL Nimbus are the best yet and encourages runners looking for a comfort in a high-mileage shoe to jump on board the Nimbus and run on! 

THE BUZZ

The ASICS GEL Nimbus is a premium, high-mileage neutral training shoe is all about cushy comfort. It is known for it's plush, step-in feel that cradles the foot and has loads of soft, cushioning from heel to toe.

The Nimbus is one of ASICS legacy models that has generally improved through the years, but the past two editions are truly the best two ever made.

WHAT'S NEW: ASICS NIMBUS 22

The GEL Nimbus 22 is a softer, more flexible and more accommodating shoe than the previous version.

This new edition of the GEL Nimbus features a thicker version of ASICS’ softest and most resilient midsole foam package, larger, wrap-around GEL cushioning in the heel, more effectively shaped GEL inserts in the forefoot, additional flex grooves in the bottom of the shoe and an upgraded engineered mesh upper.

All this adds up to a better-fitting running shoe with a smoother, softer and more flexible ride.
 

 

 

FIT-FEEL-RIDE

Like most ASICS running shoes, the GEL Nimbus 22 has a true-to-size fit that fits securely in the heel and midfoot with just a little wiggle room in the forefoot. The premium molded EVA sockliner is a big difference maker, allowing the show to wrap around a variety of foot shapes.

The new mesh monofilament mesh upper provides greater comfort and breathability across the top of the foot while also helping cinch it down to the chassis of the shoe. As you as you step into the Nimbus 22, your foot feels luxurious pampered by the softly padded interior, tongue and heel collar. The ride is soft, smooth, supple and flowy without any inhibition.

The Nimbus 22 features ASICS silicone-based GEL cushioning packets for responsive shock absorption. The wrap-around GEL inserts in the heel provide impact protection no matter how the foot strikes the ground, while the sleek, low-profile inserts in the forefoot work in concert with the foam layers and newly grooved outsole to provide a silky, seamless transition from foot strike to toe-off. 

Most running shoes have flex grooves through the outsole rubber, but they’re exceptionally deep and wide in the ASICS GEL Nimbus 22. The eight curvy flex grooves (five in the forefoot, three in the rearfoot) cut deep into the midsole that allow the show to uniformly move, bend and stretch with each foot. 

This edition of the GEL Nimbus retains that classic vibe, but somehow ASICS has found a way to make it feel even better.

WHO'S IT BEST FOR?

The attraction of the ASICS GEL Nimbus 22 is it's appeal to a wider range of runners. Those who run with neutral gait patterns—especially heel strikers—will love this shoe, no matter if you run 15-20 miles a week, 30-50 or more.

It’s decidedly best for slower to moderate paces, but its wheelhouse can extend from short runs to long runs which makes it perfect for a runner on their journey to longer distances.  

PROS AND CONS OF THE ASICS NIMBUS 22

ASICS Nimbus 22 - Pros

Pros:ASICS Nimbus 22 

Pro: One of the key components of the Nimbus 22 is a layer of proprietary Flytefoam Propel foam, which offers a soft feel with an energetic, bouncy return. The layer of Flytefoam is 2mm thicker than the previous edition. And more is definitely better!

Pro: Because of the flex grooves in the bottom of the foot, the outsole of the Nimbus 22 has an outsole made of small segments of rubber. That keeps the weight of the shoe in check, but it also provides dynamic traction. 

Pro: The GEL Nimbus is not a fast shoe for all-out racing, but if your goal is to finish a half marathon or marathon comfortably, this could be a good race-day option for you—especially if you wear it for your long runs in training.

ASICS Nimbus 22 - Cons

Cons: ASICS Nimbus 22

Cons: The Nimbus has never been a lightweight trainer and spec weights of the Nimbus 22 means it tips the scale slightly higher than some of its contemporaries in the premium training category.

It’s definitely not a deal breaker if you’re looking for a cushy, high-mileage trainer, but it doesn’t have the pep or versatility of lighter shoes.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: BRIAN METZLER

Brian Metzler has run races at every distance from 50 meters to 100 miles, wear-tested more than 1,500 pairs of shoes, is a three-time Ironman finisher and occasionally participates in the quirky sport of pack burro racing in Colorado. 

He's the founding editor of Trail Runner magazine, is a former senior editor at Running Times and editor in chief at Competitor Magazine. He's the author of “Running Colorado's Front Range” and the co-author of “Natural Running: The Simple Path to Stronger Healthier Running” and “Run Like a Champion: An Olympian's Approach for Every Runner.”

 

 
Categories
Running Gear

8 SIGNS YOU PROBABLY NEED NEW RUNNING SHOES

WHEN DO YOU NEED NEW RUNNING SHOES?

| by BRIAN METZLER |

8 SIGNS YOU PROBABLY NEED NEW RUNNING SHOES

BY BRIAN METZLER

JackRabbit running shoe reviewer Brian Metzler knows his stuff when it comes to running shoes; he's reviewed most offerings from every running brand on the planet over the course of his running and writing career.

When
it comes to knowing when you need a new pair of running shoes, the list runs from the most obvious – your shoes literally have holes in them –  to more subtle reasons like the noticeable mental boost from the simple act of slipping
on a new pair of kicks.  

It's a more complex question that just 'how long do running shoes last'!  Read on to learn Brian's wisdom on the signs to look out for that tell it might be time to retire the
old and introduce the new! 

1. Your shoes look worn.
Running shoes wear down after a few hundred miles of running and generally speaking have an optimal lifespan of about 400-500 miles. There’s not exact science to that, but visual signs
of wear and tear—on the outsole, around the heel collar, at the toe box—are a good indication that your shoes ready for retirement.

It’s one thing to have an old sweater or pair of jeans that you’ll love until they
become threadbare, but not so much for running shoes. If your running shoes just look dingy and broken down like you’ve left them in your garage, closet or trunk for years, well, it probably means you need to invest in a new pair. 

2. Your feet ache.
Remember how good your feet felt when you tried on your running shoes for the first time? Went on those first long runs? Did that first tempo or fartlek workout? Well, do your
feet still feel that good when you laced ‘em up yesterday and went for a run? Or do they ache when you run?

If your feet are sore later in the day when you’re wearing other shoes, it’s a good sign you need new running
shoes. And if you’ve experienced sore or painful feet or aches and pains in your lower legs, knees, hips or lower back lately, it means your gait might be compromised from running in older shoes. 

3. You can’t keep up.
When you first start running in a new pair of shoes, you typically have a pep in your step, right? You feel good about running, mentally and physically, and that translates to great long runs, effective workouts and improved
fitness. But if you find yourself slowing down, not inspired to go the distance of your long runs, not meeting your workout splits, falling off the pace of your casual running group or just feeling bad about your running, it could
mean you need new shoes.

After several months of running, your shoes will feel heavier and less energetic as foam materials start to break down and lose resiliency. Want to put a spring back in your step? Consider buying
a new pair of running shoes. 

4. Your running has become uninspired.
We can all get into a mental running rut. You know the feeling—it’s when your daily runs feel like a burden, slow and methodical
but without a purposeful vibe. You wind up running the same routes you’ve been running for a while, only slower and with less interest.

It doesn’t necessarily mean you need new shoes; you might just need a motivational
spark to change your ways. The best way to spark a change is to get a new pair of shoes, pick a new goal, start a new training plan, find some new places to run and reinvigorate yourself.

5. You’d rather do other things.
We all have a lot of interests, especially when it comes to exercising. Aside from running, we ride bikes, swim, hike, climb, and go to yoga, CrossFit and Orange Theory sessions.

Running is still the easiest and most efficient way to get in a good workout, but if you find yourself veering away from running to those other activities more often—or skipping exercise entirely—you might need to consider
a new pair of shoes.

6. You wear your running shoes too often.
We all love wearing running shoes because they feel good. Running shoes have long been the comfort shoe of choice for Americans. Go to an airport,
shopping mall or the movies and you’ll see that the majority of people are wearing running shoes. But if you’re wearing your shoes for more than just running—mowing the lawn, going to the grocery store, doing errands—you’re speeding up
the shelf life of your kicks and also changing the wear patterns.

Wearing running shoes to walk around in everyday life can change the shape and wear down the foam of your shoes in ways that aren’t conducive for running. Naturally,
running in them after hundreds of miles of walking around wont’ feel inspiring.

7. Your shoes don’t fit any more.
Go back to that luxurious feeling of how your feet felt in your shoes the day you got them.
Chances are they don’t feel that way now. When you laced them up for your most recent run, they might have felt looser, heavier and more clumsy. You might find it harder to cinch up the laces and get them properly snug in the heel, saddle
or forefoot. You might feel irritation on your heel or your big toe. You might feel your socks bunching up under your arch. Why? Because all the miles you have run in them (and perhaps walked in them) have changed the way your shoes fit.

The materials have stretched, worn down and become harder to bring together the way they did when they were new, and nothing will bring that new shoe feeling back. Except, of course, new shoes. 

8. You just need new shoes.
I tell people often that “Happiness is a new pair of running shoes,” because buying a new pair of kicks is an investment in your health, and it comes with loads of built-in inspiration and motivation.

On the contrary, if
you lace up your current shoes and don’t feel that—because they lack energetic pop or just that inspiring vibe—it’s a good indication that you might need new shoes. 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: BRIAN METZLER

Brian Metzler has run races at every distance from 50 meters to 100 miles, wear-tested more than 1,500 pairs of shoes, is a three-time Ironman finisher and occasionally participates in the quirky sport of pack burro racing in Colorado. 

He's the founding editor of Trail Runner magazine, is a former senior editor at Running Times and editor in chief at Competitor Magazine. He's the author of “Running Colorado's Front Range” and
the co-author of “Natural Running: The Simple Path to Stronger Healthier Running” and “Run Like a Champion: An Olympian's Approach for Every Runner.”  
His new book, “Kicksology: The Hype, Science, Culture and Cool of Running Shoes” is now available.

Categories
Running Gear Training

GETTING THE MOST OUT OF YOUR RUNNING SHOES

 

RUNNING SHOE ESSENTIALS

| by BRIAN METZLER |

 

 

GETTING THE MOST OUT OF YOUR RUNNING SHOES

10 TIPS FOR RUNNERS BY BRIAN METZLER

I’m crazy about running shoes, but there are worse obsessions to have, right? At least this one is grounded in a healthy activity. My fascination with running shoes started when I was a young kid and has grown ever since. 

Since that time and in my capacity as a running shoe reviewer and writer for various publications, I have run in a lot of shoes —probably more than 1,500, but I’ve honestly lost count — and racked up more than 75,000 miles of running in my lifetime. 

Here are some sage wisdom I’ve learned about how to choose running shoes through the years and how to care for them to get the most out of every pair.

1. Get the right size
The most important aspect of choosing a new pair of running shoes is getting a pair that matches the relative size of your foot. But understand that not all size 9s are the same for every brand. Shoes vary in size and shape based on the “last” that was used to make the shoe. Some are longer, some are shorter, some are wider, some are narrower, and all have a different interior shape and volume.

2. Get the right shape
Once you’ve picked out a running shoe that is the right length, the next key is ensuring that the shoe matches the shape and volume of your foot. A shoe mismatched to your foot’s volume could fit too loosely or too tightly in the heel, arch, or toe box, especially when your foot is in motion during a run.

3. Understand your gait
How a shoe fits and feels when you try it on is only part of the process. How it fits and feels when your foot is in motion might be an entirely different situation, depending on how your foot moves and flexes when it runs. It’s likely that your gait pattern varies between your left and right side based on how each foot hits the ground, rotates, and flexes. Those changes lead to differences in how your ankle, knee, and hip joints move as you’re running. All JackRabbit stores offer video gait analyses, and in-depth examinations are available from sports medicine clinics and physical therapy facilities. If you need help in a pinch, the Stride Lab app is a useful resource.

4. Get stronger
Whether you’re a longtime runner or just getting started, you should always be working on your form-specific strength. Doing form and strength drills and exercises to bolster your foot, lower leg, and core strength helps reduce the chance of repetitive overuse injuries.

Every runner has a stronger and weaker side, so it’s important to work on weaknesses to approach equilibrium. Good exercises for runners include box jumps and walking lunges for leg power and hip extension; burpees and planks for core strength; clam shells for hip strength; and single-leg squats, one-legged heel raises, pistol squats, and pedestal poses for developing balance and agility.

5. Heel-toe drop matters
The minimalism movement stressed having a low heel-to-toe height offset (or heel drop). While only a few brands offer “zero-drop,” or level, platforms, heel heights are generally lower than they were in the past. While the standard heel-toe offset of 12 mm still exists in a few models, most modern running shoes fall into the 4 mm to 10 mm offset range.

Wearing a shoe with a significantly different offset will change how your feet connect to the ground and alter your gait, so transition wisely and slowly. If you can’t find the heel-drop figure printed on the shoe’s insole or hang tag at a retailer, look for it on the brand’s website. 

 

6. Develop a quiver of shoes
Don’t run in the same pair of shoes every day; instead, rotate between different models depending on the type of running you’re doing and the surface you’re running on. For example, you might wear a cushier pair of shoes for longer runs or recovery runs and a lighter, firmer shoe for faster workouts such as tempo runs, fartlek runs, and intervals.

Rotating shoes during the week will not only extend the life of each pair but also engage the micro-muscles in your feet and lower legs differently and help you avoid overuse injuries. 

7. Wear your running shoes only for running
You might be tempted to wear your running shoes as casual wear. Don’t do it. Wearing your running shoes as everyday shoes or for walking the dog or mowing the lawn will soon change the wear patterns of your shoes, reduce the life of the shoes, and ultimately alter your gait.

8. Untie and retie your shoes
Don’t take off your running shoes by stepping on the back of one shoe with the other and pulling your foot out without untying the shoe. Not only does it strain muscles in your feet, but it stretches aspects of the shoe. The only thing worse than removing your shoes without untying them is putting them back on without untying them. It may seem like a time-saver, but if you put them on with the laces still tied, you’ll strain your foot to squeeze it back in and impair the shoe’s shape. 

9. Care for your shoes
Running shoes are only as good as you treat them. Keep your shoes indoors but not in your car or garage, where extreme hot or cold temperatures can have a temporary or permanent effect on how the shoe performs.

Cleaning your shoes by hand after running through mud will ensure that the shoe’s traction and flex pattern are optimal the next time you wear them. Speed the process of drying wet shoes by stuffing them with newspapers or dry washcloths or briefly setting them in the sun, but never put shoes in a dryer. 

10. Retire your shoes
Most running shoes will hold up for 300 to 500 miles of running before they need to be retired. But the foam midsoles, synthetic fabrics, and rubber outsoles can start to break down after about 200 miles, which can create problems.

Running too long in a pair of shoes can lead to changes in your gait, less protection for your feet, and general discomfort or overuse injuries.

 
 
 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: BRIAN METZLER

Brian Metzler has run races at every distance from 50 meters to 100 miles, wear-tested more than 1,500 pairs of shoes, is a three-time Ironman finisher and occasionally participates in the quirky sport of pack burro racing in Colorado. 

He's the founding editor of Trail Runner magazine, is a former senior editor at Running Times and editor in chief at Competitor Magazine. He's the author of “Running Colorado's Front Range” and the co-author of “Natural Running: The Simple Path to Stronger Healthier Running” and “Run Like a Champion: An Olympian's Approach for Every Runner.”  
His new book, “Kicksology: The Hype, Science, Culture and Cool of Running Shoes” is now available.

 
 

 
 

 
Categories
Reviews

ASICS GLIDERIDE REVIEW

 

ASICS GLIDERIDE – SHOE REVIEW

by BRIAN METZLER | SEPTEMBER, 2019

We can always rely on running shoe brands to cause a wave when it comes to launching a new shoe. ASICS blew it out the water (or would that be 'out of the salt') when they launched the new GlideRide.

Taking journalists and runners to the famous Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah ASICS had a goal not of breaking land speed records, but to put the runners onto a flat, smooth surface so they could remove all other stimuli and focus on their rhythm of running. They gathered everyone from occasional runners to world champions. and each was assigned a pace to run and then off they went, in different directions on the salt flats.

Guest review Brian Metzler was handed a pair of ASICS GlideRide that morning and set out on a run to see what they (and he) are made of.

THE BUZZ

After a few years without a truly innovative shoe in the marketplace, ASICS has announced its presence with authority this fall with the release of the uniquely designed GlideRide.

This brand new style from ASICS is a well-cushioned, stable and very energetic shoe built on a distinctly curved (or “rockered”) and decidedly firm midsole/outsole chassis that creates a rolling sensation with each stride.

Ultimately, the aim of the GlideRide is to help runners run longer with less effort.  ASICS plans to use the technology in additional shoes.

WHAT'S NEW: ASICS GLIDERIDE

While the ASICS GlideRide is a brand new shoe, its design genesis comes from the Metaride model ASICS released earlier in the year.

The MetaRide also featured an efficiency-enhancing curved Glidesole chassis, but it was a little heavier and a lot stiffer and therefore much less forgiving than the soft and easy flowing nature of the aptly named GlideRide.

With that in mind, the Metaride was a more of a concept car that only a small percentage of the running population could find entirely agreeable, whereas the GlideRide can smoothly accommodate heel-striking and midfoot running gait patterns while reducing energy loss in the ankle joint by about 19 percent, according to ASICS research.

ASICS Ride Glide - Salt Flats Utah

FIT-FEEL-RIDE

The ASICS GlideRide fits true to size (especially with just a little wiggle room in the forefoot. The multi-directional engineered mesh upper looks and feels great, offering a bit of stretch and plenty of support along with sufficient breathability.

The upper of the running shoe has no restrictive overlays, but it is supported by two interior underlays on the medial side and lightly reinforced at the toe bumper. The step-in feel of the GlideRide is moderately soft and very comfortable, and it immediately gives way to the curvy sensation of the Glidesole. 

Once in motion, the GlideRide gives off a decidedly rolling ride that creates forward momentum, no matter how your foot hits the ground. That forward propulsion is created by the stiff, curved midsole by keeping the angle of the ankle dorsiflexion and forefoot plantar flexion minimal through each stride cycle.

In doing so, the shoe helps keep a runner’s center of mass farther back than normal to reduce the pendulum at the rear leg and thus the effort needed to swing the rear leg forward to next stride. While it takes a little getting used to compared to other shoes, most runners will find the sweet spot within the first half mile or so.

From then on, it’s all about getting into a rhythm and allowing the GlideRide to guide the stride from foot strike to toe off.  Enjoy the ride! 

WHO'S IT BEST FOR?

Just about anyone who runs can appreciate the functionality, cushioning and smooth ride of this shoe, but especially for those run with a heel-striking gait.

The ASICS GlideRide is ideal for moderately long to very long runs. Although it’s not a speedster, it could also be used for races from 10K to the marathon when all-out racing isn’t the goal and smooth-riding efficiency is preferred. Cue the long run! 
 

 

PROS AND CONS OF THE ASICS GLIDERIDE

ASICS GlideRide - Pros

Pros: ASICS GlideRide 

Plus: The Glideride is built on a three-layer midsole construction that combine. One layer is a very firm and nearly inflexible slab of EVA that helps streamline all downward energy of a foot strike into forward propulsion. Below that is a layer of soft and very responsive Flytefoam Propel that helps cushion and energize every stride. Buried in the middle of those two layers in the heel is a newfangled version of ASICS proprietary GEL cushioning technology.

Plus: Overall, this is a well-constructed without many glaring drawbacks, one of the best high-mileage trainers available this fall. The GlideRide is plushly cushioned on all sides. It sports a thickly cushioned tongue and copious amounts of padding around the heel collar.

Plus: The bottom of the shoe features a long, wide decoupling groove that adds to the shoe’s stability, no matter which way a runner’s gait might be tracking. The thin, perforated outsole serves up reliable traction and durability without adding too much bulk.

Plus: While this shoe sports a high stack height (31mm in the heel) and a 5mm heel-toe offset, those numbers are largely irrelevant because of the extreme rocker geometry and toe spring. While it feels high off the ground at the initial impact with the ground, it feels much closer to the ground as the foot rolls through to the toe-off phase.

ASICS RideGlide - Cons

Cons: ASICS GlideRide

Minus: The GlideRide is slightly heavier than some of its contemporaries, especially when trying to run very fast. However, the weight doesn’t seem to be a negative factor because the shoe is well balanced from heel to toe. 

We cannot wait to see how the GlideRide develops over time; it's an interesting addition to the ASICS line up for 2019 and beyond. 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: BRIAN METZLER

Brian Metzler has run races at every distance from 50 meters to 100 miles, wear-tested more than 1,500 pairs of shoes, is a three-time Ironman finisher and occasionally participates in the quirky sport of pack burro racing in Colorado. 

He's the founding editor of Trail Runner magazine, is a former senior editor at Running Times and editor in chief at Competitor Magazine. He's the author of “Running Colorado's Front Range” and the co-author of “Natural Running: The Simple Path to Stronger Healthier Running” and “Run Like a Champion: An Olympian's Approach for Every Runner.”

 

 
Categories
Reviews

NEW BALANCE FRESH FOAM 101

 

NEW BALANCE – THE FRESH FOAM MIDSOLE REVOLUTION

by BRIAN METZLER  | SEPTEMBER 2019

 

 

THE NEW BALANCE FRESH FOAM MIDSOLE

If you have run in a few pairs of running shoes over the last few years, you’ll know that not all midsole foams are made the same. But that’s not how it used to be. From the mid-1970s (when running shoes were first built with layers of cushioning between the outsole and the footbed) until about 2010, most running shoes featured a standard form of ethylene vinyl acetate, aka, EVA, which offered a moderate level of softness but not much resiliency, no matter what size the runner was or how their feet landed on the ground. Yes, some shoes used air and gel packets and others had polyurethane inserts, but the main cushioning compound was typically EVA foam.

But then a midsole revolution started in 2010-2014 with several new types of foam—including Fresh Foam from New Balance, Boost from Adidas and RMAT from Hoka, among others—that offered both plush cushioning and energetic rebound. 

What set the New Balance Fresh Foam midsole apart from the start is that it’s a modern version of EVA, a uniquely formulated compound that is injection molded in a heat press.  This can be morphed to create single-layer midsole platforms that are either more or less supportive. The Fresh Foam is lighter, livelier and can flex more dynamically than traditional EVA, so it can match or counteract the natural flex patterns of a runner’s feet.

New Balanced used data recorded from thousands of runners, and their engineers and designers created concave and convex sidewall patterns and implemented laser engraving to alter levels of compression and resistance under impact as needed for either neutral or stability shoes. 

THE NEW BALANCE FRESH FOAM COLLECTION

There are a whole range of running shoe styles from New Balance featuring the Fresh Foam midsole. From the neutral style the classic 1080, the stability Vongo, the bestselling Beacon, the newly released More, and the lightest of the Fresh Foam collection, the Zante Pursuit. 

Read on to learn which style in the New Balance Fresh Foam Collection is right for you. 

 

NEW BALANCE FRESH FOAM 1080 v9

Weights: 10.0 ounces (men’s size 9.0); 8.4 oz. (women’s size 7.0)
Heel-Toe Offset: 8mm (30mm heel, 22mm forefoot)

The Buzz: The luxuriously appointed, neutral-oriented New Balance 1080 trainer is built for high-mileage training. This year’s edition has a new upper and a completely renovated midsole design. The double jacquard mesh upper is softer than the previous edition and has fewer overlays, but it secures the foot better than previous editions.

The midsole of the New Balance 1080 features thicker and much softer foam, giving it a smoother, more flowy ride than previous versions. The full-length blown rubber outsole offers reliable traction, but it’s been improved this year with new flex grooves give it more agility and handling. The heel collar of the latest edition of the 1080 has also been enhanced to keep feet in place, while a new Ortholite insole further ups the comfort factor.

The bottom line is the New Balance 1080 fits better, feels better and runs better.

NEW BALANCE FRESH FOAM VONGO v4

Weights: 10.3 ounces (men’s size 9.0); 8.4 oz. (women’s size 7.0)
Heel-Toe Offset: 4mm (29mm heel, 25mm forefoot)

The Buzz: It might seem contrary that New Balance would create a stability shoe with its Fresh Foam technology, but it makes perfect sense due how the variability of the single-layer midsole compound can be created to have either soft and rigid characteristics in different places.

The New Balance Vongo doesn’t have a traditional medial post, but it uses strategic geometries (a Varus wedge midsole that slopes from the medial to the lateral side and a two-piece rubber outsole with a softer lateral side) to slow pronation and force momentum to the lateral side of the shoe.

Although the support is significant, the smooth ride, sleek design and easy-flexing demeanor of the Vongo v4, it feels more like a neutral shoe. The new, stretchy upper and knit collar provides a comfortable, secure fit and adds a new modern style to the Vongo. 

NEW BALANCE FRESH FOAM MORE

Weights: 10.2 ounces (men’s size 9.0); 8.3 oz. (women’s size 7.0)
Heel-Toe Offset: 4mm (34mm heel, 30mm forefoot)

The Buzz: The New Balance Fresh Foam More is first true maximally cushioned shoe from New Balance, and wow, what exquisite cushioning it is! Only a few road running shoes have ever had this much plush cushioning under foot. (The Hoka Bondi and Altra Duo are a few comparably cushioned shoes.) But unlike some high off-the-ground maximally cushioned shoes, the Fresh Foam More serves up a secure and stable ride without any side-to-side wobbling.

The foam on the New Balance More is soft but not marshmallowy soft. Although the Fresh Foam More is a neutral shoe, the midsole foam has been engineered to be slightly firmer on the medial side and slightly more pliable on the lateral side to over a bit of stability for runners who mildly overpronate.

NEW BALANCE FRESH FOAM BEACON v2

Weights: 7.4 ounces (men’s size 9.0); 6.6 oz. (women’s size 7.0)
Heel-Toe Offset: 6mm (29mm heel, 23mm forefoot)

The Buzz: The New Balance Fresh Foam Beacon made a huge splash when the original version was released in 2018, both because it was a lightweight, softly cushioned and very comfortable shoe able to run at all speeds, but also because it had aesthetic appeal with an athleisure/lifestyle vibe to it. Same goes for the equally fresh and light second edition, which is built on the same outsole/midsole construction.

What makes the New Balance Beacon unique is that it’s built on a single piece of Fresh Foam without anything to inhibit the natural flex pattern of the runner’s foot. To keep the weight to a minimum, the outsole is mostly exposed foam with small, strategically placed rubber pods for a touch of durability.

The new engineered knit upper on the Beacon v2 enhances the fit, softness and breathability in the forefoot, while a redesigned heel section helps keep the foot in place without slipping.  

NEW BALANCE FRESH FOAM ZANTE PURSUIT

Weights: 7.4 ounces (men’s size 9.0); 6.1 oz. (women’s size 7.0)
Heel-Toe Offset: 6mm (24mm heel, 18mm forefoot)

The Buzz: The lightest and fastest of the Fresh Foam collection, the New Balance Zante Pursuit is a lightweight, performance-oriented speedster that can be used for up-tempo workouts or races from 5K to the marathon.

New Balance used data-driven design based on the gait patterns of fast runners to create a shoe with a sleek geometry, athletic fit and peppy demeanor. The soft, engineered mesh upper snugly wraps the top of the foot, providing a secure fit while allow the foot to move and flex uninhibitedly at high speeds.

Yes, you can run slower in the Zante Pursuit, but the moment you slip it on you’ll find this style inspires speed!

SHOP THE FRESH FOAM COLLECTION

JackRabbit has curated the Fresh Foam collection in our stores and online.  Click on over to see all the color collections and styles featuring in the New Balance Fresh Foam collection.

 

SHOP NEW BALANCE FRESH FOAM

 
 

 

FOLLOW JACKRABBIT AND OUR RUNNING CREW

Follow JackRabbit and our running lives on Facebook where we share training tips, interviews and gear guides for every runner's lifestyle.