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New Balance 880v9 Shoe Review

New Balance 880v9 Shoe Review

It’s funny; I thought I had written a review of the New Balance 880v9. I’ve been running in the shoe for a few months now, but when I looked back at previous blog posts, I realized I have not.

Before last year, I didn’t run a lot in New Balance. For whatever reason, New Balance didn’t feel that comfortable to me. Recently, however, I’ve found myself enjoying a lot of New Balance shoes, including the New Balance 1080v9 and the New Balance Fuel Cell Rebel.

The New Balance 880 is one of the most popular neutral shoes out there. The updated New Balance 880v9 is equally as good.

The New Balance 880v8 got a big update with looks and feel so the NB 880v9 didn’t get a drastic of an update. If you like version 8, chances are version 9 will feel similar.

New Balance 880v9 Shoe Review

New Balance 880v9 Quick Stats:

Weight: 8.9 ounces

Heel-to-Toe Drop: 10 mm

New Balance 880v9 Fit

If you’ve never worn the New Balance 880, it fits true to size. There is plenty of room to spread your toes. Typically I wear between a women’s 10-11 wide, and the 10.5 fits well.  The upper is seamless so that if you have bunions or wider forefront, it fits well.

The New Balance 880v9 continues to use the engineered mesh upper, which allows your feet room to breath. This year, the 880 has less structure in the toe box, so your feet have more room. You always want your toes to have plenty of space.  The general rule of running shoes is you want a secure fit in the midfoot and heel, but plenty of space in the toe box.

New Balance 880v9 Shoe Review

New Balance 880v9 Ride:

The Ride of the New Balance  880v9 hasn’t changed much since the New Balance 880v8. If you like the New Balance 880 series, you will probably appreciate the v9. New Balance still uses their “TRUFUSE foam midsole” The “TRUFUSE” combines or fuses the New Balance foams: “Abzorb” and “Acteva.”

The bottom layer, Abzorb, is thicker with a higher compression resistance. It’s designed to absorb shock better. The top layer, Acteva, is 12% lighter than EVA and provides cushion without weight. Throughout the last few years, New Balance shoes, especially the New Balance 880, has gotten lighter and “less clunky.”

What does this mean?

The New Balance 880 is a lightweight and responsive shoe. You’re able to do easy runs or faster runs. For me, it fits well into a daily run shoe. I like the New Balance Fuelcell Rebel for speed work, and a bit more cushion like the New Balance 1080v9 for recovery runs.

New Balance 880v9 Conclusion:

The New Balance 880 has remained similar from v8 to v9. If you’ve liked previous versions, you’re likely to appreciate the 9th version too. It reminds me of the staple running shoe; you know won’t change much. You can rely on it.

Current Rotation:

Easy/Daily Runs: Hoka Bondi 6,  Hoka Mach 2,

Speed Work: New Balance FuelCell Rebel, Reebok Float Ride Runfast ProNike Streak Lt,

Long Runs: New Balance FuelCell Rebel, Mizuno R2Hoka Cavu 2

Races:  Reebok Run fast Pro

You can see all current shoe reviews here.

Finally, have you subscribed to the LOLZletter? It’s a free newsletter that comes out each Monday. This week I talked all about hydration.

In the newsletter, I share running industry trends and things relevant to the sport. There are often giveaways as well as discount codes.

Questions for you:

What is one of your running shoe staples?

Have you run in New Balance before? 

 

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New Balance FuelCell Rebel Shoe Review

New Balance FuelCell Rebel Shoe Review

The New Balance FuelCell Rebel is a brand new shoe from New Balance. In fact, the Fuelcell Rebel was release date was July 1st.

There will be several different Fuelcell Shoes released with the FuelCell line, including a carbon plated shoe.  The shoe isn’t called the “FuelCell,” or “Fuel Cell”, it’s called the “FuelCell Rebel.” The Fuel Cell is just one word: “Fuelcell”.

Like any brand, there will be many shoes called the “FuelCell [name]. (Like the Asics Gel Cumulus or Nike Air Pegasus).

When I first saw the shoe, I thought, “what a beautiful white shoe.” I’m in a white-shoe phase right now and can’t seem to have enough.

New Balance FuelCell Rebel Shoe Review

Right out of the box, the Rebel looked sleek and fast. The FuelCell Rebel is designed for running fast, workouts, or races. There is minimal protection if you strike at the heal and more for the forefront of the shoe. If you are a forefront striker and maybe even underpronate, this shoe is built for you (which is extremely rare in the running world.). The Fuelcell foam is designed for energy return during your run.

New Balance FuelCell Rebel Shoe Review

The FuelCell line was designed in collaboration with American distance-runner Jenny Simpson.

Quick Stats:
Weight: 6.1 Ounces
Drop: 6mm 

Fit:

The FuelCell has Trace Fiber Stitching and reinforced the engineered mesh.  This means there is minimal stitching with less weight. If you have a wide foot or have bunions, there isn’t additional stitching to rub.

There have been several brands try and create a high cut socklike upper, and they miss their (like the Brooks Levitate 2).  This is the first sock-like upper I’ve attempted to, that doesn’t irritate. It has a bootie construction but doesn’t irritate the ankles.

The shoe fits true to size. I typically wear a women’s size 10-11 wide and the 10.5 is fine.

New Balance FuelCell Rebel Shoe Review

Ride:

The outsole of the New Balance Fuelcell Rebel is something I’ve never seen in a running shoe before (which says a lot because I’ve reviewed dozens of shoes). It has support on the outer corners of the shoe and with a wider platform (for say, someone who supinates). It doesn’t correct anything, but there is a wider platform if you strike on the outer edges of your foot. It is still considered a neutral shoe. It feels smooth from heel to toe.

The New Balance Fuelcell running experience is meant to be fast. It’s designed for race day, tempo workouts, or just a speed shoe.  I have run several distances, including easy runs, long runs, and workouts. For me, it fits best for a long run or workout shoe. I like the responsive ride and I’ve been doing most of my long runs in the shoe. As New Balance states: “The FuelCell technology delivers a propulsive feel to help drive you forward”.

I will note, to remove weight there isn’t a lot of traction. There is blown rubber to keep you from sliding but I wouldn’t use the shoe in a torrential downpour or ice.

New Balance FuelCell Rebel Shoe Review

Conclusion:

I like this shoe a lot. I’ve already run about a hundred miles in them. They are a great fast run shoe, and I feel supported from mile 1 to 17. Tied with the Hoka Cavu 2, this is my favorite shoe of 2019. If this is the debut of their FuelCell line, I think we will see a lot of good things to come. I’m looking forward to taking these out on race day on my quest for a marathon shoe.

Current Rotation:

Easy/Daily Runs: Hoka Bondi 6,  Hoka Mach 2,

Speed Work: New Balance FuelCell Rebel, Reebok Float Ride Runfast ProNike Streak Lt,

Long Runs: New Balance FuelCell Rebel, Mizuno R2Hoka Cavu 2

Races:  Reebok Run fast Pro

You can see all current shoe reviews here.

Finally, have you subscribed to the LOLZletter? It’s a free newsletter that comes out each Monday. This week I talked all about hydration.

In the newsletter, I share running industry trends and things relevant to the sport. There are often giveaways as well as discount codes.

Questions for you:

What is your favorite shoe? 

What is your “go-to” fast shoe?

 

New Balance 1080v8 Shoe Review

New Balance 1080v8 Shoe Review

Truthfully, I haven’t run in a lot of New Balance.  Many moons ago, I was injured in my final year of running cross country.  I had been “fitted” for a pair of New Balance shoes, and they were the last pair of trainers before my cyst injury took me out in 2012. It wasn’t the shoes fault, but since then I haven’t found a lot of New Balance shoes that feel comfortable to me.

I’ve tried the New Balance 880 as well as the Fresh Foam Zante.  Both are quality shoes, but they both didn’t have the maximum and plush cushion that I prefer.

new balance 1080 v8 shoe review

Enter the New Balance 1080.

This has quickly become a staple in my rotation as one of my favorite shoes.  New Balance isn’t paying me to tell you that, and I’m not Emma Coburn’s teammate.  In fact, I’m as a surprised as you are of how much I like the shoe!

New Balance Fresh Foam 1080 v8 Fit:

As someone with a more full foot and toebox, I appreciate that the 1080 has a full, seamless, toe box.  It’s deep enough to hold an insert and wide enough to have plenty of space if you’re dealing with bunions or need extra space.  I wear anywhere between a 10-11 wide in running shoes, and the 10.5 regular width is comfortable for me.

New Balance Fresh Foam 1080 v8 Ride:

I’ve tried on previous versions of the 1080 but never run in them.  This is my first review of the 1080.  From my knowledge, the 1080v8 hasn’t been updated too much since V7 (version 7). Most people who have liked the previous versions, also like the V8.

For how much cushion is in the 1080, it’s much stiffer than other plush models such as the Brooks Glycerin or Saucony Triumph.  The stiffness allows a bit more responsiveness.  Another note is the shoe feels much flatter than many other plush brands and has an 8 mm drop.

One thing I appreciate is the flex grooves in the forefoot.  As someone who runs very far on their forefront, it’s support and flexibility I need.  I’ve run both on the treadmill and outdoors, and the shoe feels great.

New Balance Fresh Foam 1080 v8 Conclusions

Although I haven’t worn previous versions, I know there aren’t significant changes to the shoe. If you like the previous version, then you will continue to like the 1080.  If you’re new to the shoe, like me, then you’ll enjoy how soft and cushioned it is.

new balance 1080 v8 shoe review

As you can see, my shoe rotation has currently changed, and I have a lot of shoe reviews to catch up on:

Easy Runs/Daily Runs: Brooks Glycerin 16, New Balance 1080, Saucony Ride ISO, Hoka Mach

Workouts: Nike Fly, New Balance 1400

Races: Nike LT Racer, Nike Fly

Questions for you:

What shoe brand are you “most loyal” too?

Do you like maximum cushioned or minimal shoes? 

New Balance 880 Shoe Review

New Balance 880 Shoe Review

I haven’t run in many New Balance Shoes since college.  Since working at a running store the last few years, I’ve tried New Balance shoes on, but I’ve never run a significant amount of mileage in them.  The only New Balance shoe I’ve tried in the past few years is the New Balance Fresh Foam Zante.

New Balance 880v7 shoe review

After a couple hundred miles, I realized it wasn’t enough cushion for me and looked cute so I made it a kick around shoe.  The 880v7 sells well at our store and it’s a comfortable shoe. Since I’ve been enjoying various models and brands lately, I thought it would be the perfect time to come back to the brand.  The 880 is a neutral shoe and lift weight shoe.  It’s the 7th version, but I haven’t run in any of the previous versions.

I’m not sponsored by New Balance, nor are they paying me to write this. My opinions are my own. 

Fit:

I haven’t run in previous models but based on trying previous versions I can tell the 880v7 is wider. The shoe itself comes in both wide and double wide.

Like many current styles of running shoes, the 880v7 has a seamless upper which accommodates bunions and wider feet.  New Balance is usually known to fit more full feet and to be honest, I find this to be one of the widest neutral shoes out there.  I usually wear 10-10.5 wide in shoes, and in the 880v7 I wear a 10 in the 880.

New Balance 880v7 shoe review

Ride:

The New Balance 880v7 has standard cushioning.  It’s not a minimal shoe or a high cushion shoe but somewhere in the middle.  It’s great for training for the mile or marathon, in fact recently Emma Coburn said it was one of her favorite shoes!  It must be good right?

The cushioning technology is called TRUFUSE which is softer than many other brands.  It has a 10 mm drop and weighs 9.2 ounces for women.  It feels a lot more cushioned than it is, and not as flat as many New Balance shoes.

New Balance 880v7 shoe review

I’ve run anywhere from 2-10 miles in the shoe and it feels good at both the beginning at the end of the run.  Compared to other brands, it does feel a little heavier on my foot. That’s not a bad thing.

Runs I’ve enjoyed the most for soft services such as trails and compacted snow.

Summary:

Right now, the 880v7 is in my rotation as a shoe for an everyday run.  I usually keep it to my days around an hour, but there isn’t a reason for that.

So far I’ve put just over 100 miles on the shoe, and it’s been good to me.  New Balance, themselves, have done a lot of fantastic updates with their shoes recently and definitely different from that stereotypical, “all white leather shoe” which they still make too.

Current Rotation:

Daily Runs: Brooks Glycerin 15, Hoka Clifton 4, Saucony Ride 10, and New Balance 880V7

Speed Work: Nike Zoom Fly, Altra Escalante

Racing: Saucony Type A or Endorphin

Questions for you:

What brand of shoe are you running the most in?

What is your favorite shoe?

New Balance Fresh Foam Zante

New Balance Fresh Foam Zante

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.

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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)

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