New Balance Fresh Foam Zante

New Balance Fresh Foam Zante Shoe Review

Boy is that a long shoe name?

New Balance is one of the few brands I don’t have much experience with running.  I’ve walked around in both the 880 and the 1080 but never run in either. To be honest, the Fresh Foam Zante caught my eye when it came out in Rose Gold. I finally decided to give New Balance a fair shot in my rotation.

New Balance is not paying me, and I purchased these shoes.  Remember what works for me might not work for you.

Related Shoe Posts:
Why Running Shoe Reviews Are Mostly Worthless
Five Secrets to Buying Running Shoes
How to Find the Perfect Pair of Running Shoes
The Importance of Rotating Running Shoes

The Fit:  These days, I have been favoring a size ten wide.  Many people associate New Balance with wider shoes. However, many of their current styles are no wider than other brands.


The New Balance Fresh Foam Zante fits more narrow than many current New Balance models.  I typically wear a size ten wide, and I found 10.5 to be the best fit.  

The Ride: The Fresh Foam Zante uses the newest material from New Balance…you guessed it, Fresh Foam…

The New Balance Fresh Foam is lightweight but soft.  It’s a softer brand and also a lot less cushion than I’m used too.   The technology in the foam makes this one of the softer shoes I’ve tried.

The sole of the shoe is flat.  This allows the shoe to be useful for speed or racing because you are lower to the ground. Even with more contact, your feet are supported.

New Balance Fresh Foam Zante Shoe Review

For me, I’m using the Zante for speed work and shorter runs.  It doesn’t have enough cushion that I would be comfortable doing a long run in.

Summary: I like the shoe, and it’s a great lightweight or racing option.  It’s not a shoe that I would train heavy miles in but it’s ideal for racing or speed work.

Similar Models: Brooks Launch, Saucony Kinvara, Nike Pegasus

My Current Rotation:
Saucony Zealot ISO 2
Saucony Triumph ISO 2
Nike LunarGlide 8
Brooks Launch

Questions for you:
What is your favorite running shoe?
Do you have different shoes for different runs? (You should)


  1. I ordered these on a whim, and love them! I love how lightweight they are, they and fit like a glove to my feet. They are great for speed workouts like you said, and I may also use them for 5k/10k races.

  2. I love this shoe. I am on my fourth pair. I have lots of different shoes for different (at last count I think I owned 19 pairs.) I reckon I must have every eventuality covered!

  3. Honestly I’ve always wanted to try New Balance simply because I love the look of their shoes. Right now I think they have some of the best looking running clothes too. I’ve never worn a pair before and I appreciate you mention this style runs narrow. I adore narrow shoes without too much cushioning so will check these out.

  4. I have never tried New Balance shoes. I’ve been running in Newton shoes for a while now, and I do have several pairs and models that I rotate. Foam is a great advancement in technology for shoes – those people at Crocs were really on to something! Similarly, I think we will see a ton of reflective clothes this season because they are showing up at Old Navy and JCPenney already – so you know that technology (or maybe fashion trend?) has hit mainstream!

  5. Brooks Ghost is my go to shoe. I am trying out the New Balance Vazee 2090 though. Hopefully, it’ll be a good fit for me. 🙂

  6. Do you mean that you got a 10.5 in standard width? I don’t see Wide available on the site for the Zante. I love the look of these! And I love the New Balance clothes and the athletes they sponsor.

  7. I always appreciate your shoe reviews, Hollie. I was in the store yesterday trying on all the new Hokas and I’m still looking for an alternate shoe to my Wave Riders. I might have to give these a try, because they are gorgeous!

  8. I have 4 pairs of the Zante’s (1 retired, 2 in rotation, 1 in box ready to go soon). I love them and they are my shoe of choice for 5K races as well as track workouts. They are also a great treadmill shoe… and one of my favorite running shoes.

    I have not seen this color so that is interesting… I will say, the colors of the NB Zante are slightly more conservative than some (Asics Gel Noosa, I’m thinking of you). And the other shoes you listed are also in my rotation, minus the Pegasus (although I’ve looked at buying those).

    The soles of these are super FLAT! Last year i saw someone at the start of a trail race wearing them and immediately felt bad for that person because they could definitely slip and fall. I also get more miles out of them than my previous short distance shoes (MIzuno Wave HItogami), and I’ve run half marathons in the Zante. I wouldn’t have used them for a marathon, though.

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