Category Archives: shoes

The Shoe Situation (part 2)

I posted the story of choosing my shoes and the shoe situation after a run.

Well, I did another run in them the following day, and decided that my feet weren’t feeling quite how I’d like. There was less pain, but they’re SHOES. There shouldn’t be any pain.

I decided to suck it up and take them back to the store and try something else. They were great about returning them – asked lots of questions about what the pain felt like, how it started and watched me walk in different shoes.

The sales assistant suggested the 860v2s.

New Balance are currently selling v3, but because I got these at an outlet store, they only had v2. Frankly, considering I got them for $160 (well, actually free, because I just exchanged them for the other ones that didn’t fit right) when they usually retail for $240, I don’t mind.

The colour is great (I’ve always wanted cool, bright shoes!), and so far, they’re really comfortable. I’ve worn then for a couple of hours and they’ve been pain free. They don’t feel like they need breaking in – in fact, they feel exactly how I think running shoes should feel.

I don’t want to get too excited too soon, but I’ll run in them tomorrow and see how they feel after a run.

I’m really hoping for good things from these shoes!

The shoe situation

I posted the story of how I chose my new shoes the other day.

They’re so pretty, and felt super comfy in the store.

Then I went for a walk in them.

I panicked almost all day, and decided I was going to return them and pick another pair of shoes.

Marcus convinced me to try them out for a run. I have 2 weeks to return them so I can try a couple of runs and see how they go.

So, off to the gym for a treadmill run.

shoes

The first km and a bit was sore. Not as sore as my walk to the dairy the day before, but sore all the same.

After the bathroom stop, the pain eased off. I started feeling really good, and I really appreciated the extra bounce in the forefoot.

I’ve decided to give the shoes another go. Everything I read says shoes should be comfy from day 1, and while they need a little breaking in, they should never be painful. In saying that, maybe the ouchy while I was walking was something else. I’ll give it 1 more run, and if that doen’t work out, I’ll return them on the weekend and pick something else.

I’m not 100% sure what to pick, but I think I’ll look at doing some research!

New Balance and their whacky shoe numbering

If you don’t know about how the New Balance shoe numbers work, you really should. Especially if you wear New Balance.

If you look inside the tongue of your shoes, you’ll see a code.

My shoes say: WR1223ST.

WR1223ST

WR = Women’s running

1223 = model code

ST = stability

Now, just to add some confusion in the mix, sometimes those last two letters relate to colour, not the type of shoe.

You can see all of the types of codes used here.

Generally speaking, the higher the model number, the more is in the shoe. For example, the 1260s are stability shoes. They’ve got lots of stuff in them to make them rigid and cushiony, and are generally more expensive than more minimal shoes. For example, they’re significantly more expensive that 890v3, which are lightweight, marathon distance type shoes.

Another thing about stability shoes – while they’re more expensive, they also generally wear better than more lightweight shoes. Stability shoes are often good for 1000km, whereas more lightweight shoes are closer to 400-500km.

The good news is that 1 pair of stability shoes should get you through a marathon cycle, whereas you would need 2 pairs of 890s for the same cycle. Of course, the flipside is the 890s are cheaper, and you’ll probably need 2 pairs anyway (so they can dry between runs), so you might not be better off at all!

On model codes, in the past, NB has started with a number and increased that number by 1 when they released a new model. For example, the 1200 became the 1210, 1221, 1223, 1224, 1225, 1226. Then it got to 1260, which started on the new model codes. New Shoes will be labelled with versions. So the 1260 became the 1260v2. This is much easier for my brain to handle. Yay!

For a full look at NB shoe codes, check this out (check this out? WHO AM I?)

The other cool thing about NB is they’re great for people with wide feet.

They offer the following widths:

Men: 2A (extra narrow), B, D (normal), 2E, 3E, 4E, 6E (super wide)

Women: 4A (extra narrow), 2A, B (normal), D, 2E, 4E (super wide)

The great thing is that usually you can pick what size and width you are, then choose new shoes based on that. However, some shoes fit differently – for example, my 1223s have a narrower fit than the 1260v1, so I went from a D to a B in these shoes, but stayed the same side. Looking back though, I pull my laces really tight in my 1223s, so it’s possible that I didn’t need the wide fit after all.

Sometimes the different widths can be hard to find online, but usually you can find the various sizes more easily online (and NB has free shipping for every order over $200!). I’m also pretty sure that they don’t make every shoe in every width, but don’t quote me on that.

The story of how I chose my new shoes

I’ve been thinking about getting new running shoes for a few weeks now, but I couldn’t decide what to get.

My current shoes are NB 1223s. They’re an old model stability shoe that was recommended for me when I was fitted and they’ve served me well.

Since the 1223s, there have been 1224s, 1225s, 1226, 1260v1 and 1260v2 (you can read about NB shoe numbering here)

When I was choosing shoes, I wasn’t sure if I actually needed stability shoes. Maybe I should change to more lightweight shoes? I did lots and lots of research, and decided a couple of things.

First, I didn’t want to get fitted again. I know it’s maybe silly, but I feel bad doing to Shoe Clinic or whatever and getting a recommendation, then going somewhere else to buy the shoes cheaper.

Second, I didn’t want to spend an extraordinary amount on shoes (the shoes I ended up getting were $100 cheaper from the New Balance store that I bought them in as compared to Shoe Clinic.

Third, I think you should go on how they actually feel on your feet. I’ve been wrongly fitted before, and didn’t want to drop all that money if I wasn’t happy with them. I know you can usually take them back if they’re not right, but again, I’d feel pretty weird doing that.

So, after spending a very long time looking at the bottom of all my shoes, I realised that I have non-even wear on all my casual shoes (mostly wear on the outside and heel), but perfectly even wear on my 1223s, and no major evidence of heel striking. So obviously, they are doing their job stopping pronation.

Based on that, I decided stability shoes were the way to go. I decided to get 1 pair of either New Balance stability shoes or Brooks stability shoes. I also decided that I’m going to get a pair of cheaper, more lightweight shoes (probably the 890v3 or Brooks PureFlow 2, MAYBE I’ll even branch out to Mizunos) to see how I go with them. I imagine that I’ll use the lightweight shoes initially on short runs only, then stick with my stability shoes for longer runs as I tend to get a bit lazy with my footing when I’m tired. I guess we’ll see though.

I tried on both the NB 1260v1 and Brooks version, Ariels. The NB felt AMAZING on my feet – full arch support (I have high arches) and awesome forefoot cushioning. They were also pretty, which, of course, is a major consideration. The Ariels on the other hand were bulky, ugly, and the heel sat really low on my foot. I felt like my foot would slip out as soon as I started running. That’s not ideal.

So, I decided to go with the NB 1260v1s. The store didn’t have v2 in yet (they get it in June), and the biggest change between the 1260v1 and v2 is more cushioning, so v2 lasts a bit longer. I’ve decided that the savings I make now to get the v1 cheaply is worth not paying the extra $100 to get them somewhere else, and I really need replacement shoes as soon as I can. I don’t mind replacing them in June when the V2 comes out, then I can decide what the difference is for myself.

I bought them from the New Balance store in DressSmart, Tawa. They have pretty good savings, and lots of super cheap old models.

So, that’s my very long story of how I chose my new shoes. Tomorrow I go on my first run in my new shoes. Are you excited? I’m excited!