I went to Aardvark Sports in Bethlehem on Friday. They’re such an amazing shop for runners. My old shoes had seen more than their fair share of miles, and I desperately needed new running shoes. They looked at my gait, and apparently, I’m a mild overpronator. This surprised me, as I feel like I put more weight on the outside of my feet, and the wear pattern on my old shoes seems to indicate this, but perhaps pregnancy had changed my gait. I put my faith in the experts.
The nice guy at Aardvark looked at my gait, and I explained to him the pain I’ve been having, and my running goals. He examined my old running shoes and measured my feet. He brought out 2 pairs of Brooks (both really stylistically pretty), a pair of Saucony (also lovely and muted), and a pair of New Balance (garishly bright turquoise and WAY out of my shoe style comfort zone.)
Now you know I’m a Brooks girl. I really love their shoes. But my husband advised me to open myself to any shoes they suggested, not just Brooks. So I did, but I tried on the Brooks first, because, well, I’ll a Brooks girl. They felt quite nice, but I was still feeling that pull across the inner tops of my feet. So I tried on the Saucony. They definitely felt better. There was more cushion. I was surprised. I then tried the New Balance, because I said I would. Now here’s my caveat. I have always hated New Balance shoes. I have always always always found them to be overpriced, heavy, clunky, and poorly constructed/designed. And while I love the color blue, I’m not a “kicks girl.” I like my shoes to be muted, quiet. But I tried them on, these bright turquoise running monstrosities, and they were light, cushioned, supportive, and they seemed to fit perfectly. It was like walking on air. *heavy sigh* They didn’t have them in any other colors.
I tried on the Brooks again. I tried on the Saucony again. I tried to like the other ones more. But in the end, I went home with neon New Balance Vazee Prism V2 running shoes.
I tried them out at the gym last night. They really are comfortable. I’m still experiencing a bit of the stiffness across the tops of my insteps, but it’s not debilitating, and the recovery seems quicker. I did about 5 miles last night, and what a difference a new pair of shoes makes. I still think I’m going to save up for a second pair of running shoes, but aside from their aesthetics, they’re a solid shoe. I like them. I’m impressed. I even expressed my reservations about NB to the guy at Aardvark, and he said that they had been working hard with a lot of redesigns, and they were experiencing a bit of a renaissance now.
I still feel like a Brooks girl in my heart, but these NB are a solid, cushioned, supportive running shoe. I’m impressed. They’re just so….bright and blue and loud. And I don’t like loud shoes.