Sunday, October 28, 2012

New Shoes!! New Balance M730s - Is this Lust or Love?

I love barefoot running. I really do. But I love it because it allows me to run. I don't get injured. Now, I do like shoes as tools too. Not something I rely on, but something I use when appropriate. For a long time I have tried several options for a good running shoe for when I want some protection but not something that will force me into a heel strike. I used to love Five Fingers, but my toes have changed since becoming a barefoot runner and I can't get my toes in them very well any more. I love my Merrell Trail Gloves, but the Road Gloves just are not the same. I really liked my Pure Connects... but at anything over 2 miles I get severe blisters due to the restrictive toe box. I tried some New Balance Minimus a while back but they did not come in widths, so they pinched my toes so bad I was losing feeling when I stood still and blistering when I ran...

Recently when walking around Sports Authority, I had seen that they now had the Minimus in D width (I am actually an E) and started to really think about them... and today had given in to temptation. I went in to buy some - but all they had was trails... and they felt a bit stiffer than I had remembered... but next to the $99 Minimus, which were prominently displayed, was a lonely little $54 shoe that had little fanfare around it... New Balance M730s. They pretty much look like a Minimus with a slightly thicker bottom, wider toe box, and no Vibram logos. When I picked them up and gave them the bend test... I noticed they are actually more flexible than the Minimus as well.



They felt extremely breathable and I could feel the ground under my forefoot instantly. Best of all... the toebox was wide enough for me to flex my toes!!!!!!!!!! I decided at that point I would get them... when the store salesman, who I do not think is a runner... came over and told me how I needed the Minimus and not these and this and that... but I will be nice and skip over the details of that conversation. He was trying to do his job... it just shows the dangers of a new runner going to a sports store and buying shoes...

I am going to give a detailed review later. I am hoping these are a shoe that I can run 2 road marathons in 2 days... I will give a review once I have 50 or so miles in them. If you need more now, check out http://www.runblogger.com/2012/02/new-balance-730-preview-minimalist.html.

For now, I can say that I ran 5 miles in them today and it was great. Enough protection for a lot of miles, but when I stepped on a rock I could perfectly feel it. I was able to run on my forefoot perfectly. My toes had a lot of room and the shoe was super breathable.

More to come, but they are great so far.


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