JohnB3JohnB3 ✭✭
Hello everyone

Sadly I'm having some issues with my shoes ...

I'm a recreational runner, I run more for fun/training, my sports are football (soccer), tennis

[B][U]Vital stats[/U][/B]
Age: 27
Height: 6'1"
Weight: 85kg, 190lbs approx (athletic body type, slightly more heavy set)
Injury history: herniated lumbar disc, but generally pain free
Run style: midfoot to forefoot strike
Shoe size/type: UK10, looks like a cross between Roman/Greek toes
Shoe preference: light stability, 4mm - 8mm drop, 300g or less, normal or narrow are fine

The proportion of my off-road to road running is probably about 2:1 (I live right next to woods/park, so I run the trails, also I do laps on the bowling greens, soft and flat)

Currently I am running in [B]Merrell All Out Charge[/B] for trails and I LOVE them. They're lightweight and fairly responsive, but I find they still give good cushioning and support. They've been great since day 1. My only complaint would be that for longer distances/roads the cushioning is slightly lacking, at least at my weight. The grippy sole is best suited for trails, less so for roads (so it's less of a hybrid than some other options...). The 6mm drop feels just right.

Now, for roads, I was running in the [B]Asics Gel Kayano[/B]. It's an insanely cushy shoe but I disliked the overly built up feel, especially in the heel. A bit too heavy. The squishiness reduces responsiveness when going faster. Feels more geared towards heel strike.

So I decided to look for something different.

I discovered the All Out Charge on which rates shoes, and some New Balance models are very highly rated there. In the end I picked up a pair of the New Balance [B]Fresh Foam Vongo[/B] and [B]Vazee Prism[/B] on sale (4mm and 8mm drop respectively). The specs seemed right for me as light stability shoes.

Out of the box the shoes feel and look great. You can tell the difference immediately from the Kayanos, being a more streamlined, lighter feel.

However the problems begin when I actually start running in them. The problem I am getting is discomfort and even numbness in the toes and forefoot.

I've ran twice in the Vazee so far. In the first run, I did a gentle 5-6 miles. The first 3 miles or so felt great. I really liked the quick feel. They felt cushioned and responsive enough. However after that distance the toes started to feel a little uncomfortable, even numb. I had to loosen the shoe. Once the run is finished, I want to get the shoes off.

Second run today, I up the pace and challenge. For the first mile they feel great. 6.40 minute mile (which includes a large incline). Second mile not too bad (averaging out around 7 minute mile). Third mile, the discomfort starts to set in. The toes just feel a little uncomfortable. It's like there is too much tightness which is restricting bloodflow or something, but I haven't added tension further down the eyelets.

Fourth mile, I'm averaging 7.30 mile, my toes feel uncomfortable, but it's mainly in my right foot. I'm feeling very noticeable discomfort under my big right toe (and the big pad just under it, is that metatarsal?). I have to stop/slow down. As I jog home, I'm trying to strike more on the outer side of the right foot to avoid contact on the inside.

I ran once in the Vongo. I had similar discomfort. The main problem was my toes went pretty damn numb. But I'm sure I really overtightened these shoes all the way down to the bottom eyelet, so I think more testing is needed.

However it's funny that I'm getting similar issues with both shoes, and I definitely feel as though I didn't over tighten the Vazee.

[B]So, what do I do?[/B] I'm not sure what the issue is. Has anybody had this problem with New Balance shoes before? I don't know if its a case of:

1. Over-tightening
2. Lack of cushioning
3. Just not right for my foot type (is it designed for an American foot-type?)
4. Or do they just need more breaking in?

I don't see how it could be 1 or 2. In terms of cushioning, my Merrell's are quite low to the ground and I don't get forefoot pain even when doing stretches of running on roads. So I'm thinking it could be more 3 or 4.

Sorry for the long post, any insight or help is greatly appreciated, THANK YOU!


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