Gear Review: New Balance MT10

a rainbow at the rtt

I’ve been out for awhile.  I was in South America running away from the Havitos which chased me into an airplane that had a snake in it.  As chance would have it, I then found myself in the Middle East trying to keep the Germans from getting their hands on the Ark of the Covenant.  I’m back now, though…and better than ever!  Btw, everything I just said did not really happen, – it’s all confidential.

I think I may have found the right shoe for doing the Cremator Ultra 50 in July.  Today, I bought and tested the New Balance Minimus MT10.  I love my vff bikilas but I’ve been experiencing a great deal of discomfort in them due to friction on the balls of my feet when running in them.  Last week, I had to cut a long run short after the balls of my feet (both feet) became so irritated I could hardly walk.  I did another run in them two days later and the same thing.  Yesterday, I ran 6.2 miles and felt like the soft spot below my big toe on both feet were on fire.  You see, there is this small cavity just below the big toe on each foot where the bikilas rub up on my the skin of my feet.  The area is no bigger than a quarter.  I do not know if this is a design flaw in the bikilas or, if my feet are abnormal but when I run in my vff’s when the weather is warming up my feet just below the big toe burns like crazy.  I do not have this problem at any time of the year except when it’s pretty warm outside.  I think it may have something to do with my feet sweating.  I don’t know if that dampness in the shoe tends to create a little suction between the skin on that particular part of my foot and the interior of the bikilas and when my foot comes off the ground it pulls away from the shoe and then upon impact with the next step it begins to create friction.  I hate that this happens because I truly love running in my bikilas.  Any way, I cannot continue to train for an ultra if I constantly have to cut my runs short because of this slight grievance.

my new nb mt10s

So, that’s where the NB MT10s step in.  I wanted a minimalist running shoe that alleviated this hot spot on my feet and, I wanted a minimalist shoe that I could run on the rails to trails without tearing up my feet.  I think this shoe may have satisfied both arguments.

I ran 6.43 miles tonight in the MT10s.  5.6 miles were run on the heavily eroded, deeply rutted, rocky western section of the rails to trails.  The last part of the run was on the slanted shoulders of highway 80.  I ran the rtt with minimal discomfort even after having stepped on some pretty nasty large loose rocks.  At no point at all during the run on the trail did I feel any hot spots due to friction between shoe and skin.  I did begin to develop a couple of hot spots on my left foot as I ran on highway 80.  One of the hot spots was on my middle toe (which happens to be my longest toe) as it continually rubbed on the inside tip of the shoe.  That was fine to me.  The shoe hasn’t even been broken in.  I need to allow the shoe to stretch some.  The other hot spot was also on the left foot, on the outside of it just below the little toe.  There, I developed a hot spot that was perhaps an inch in length.  These shoes, although, fitting quite snug, do not grip the foot like vff’s do.  So, there is a little shifting of the foot inside of the shoe.  Also, the left and right shoulders of highway 80 slant down at an angle pushing my foot against the shoe.  So, since I ran against traffic both ways on 80, my left foot was always on the slant.  And, that’s why I think I had the hot spot there.  This could probably be easily remedied with a slice of mole skin on the outside of the foot or perhaps by wearing socks.  I’m definitely not going to wear socks.  So, that leaves the mole skin as the possible solution.  On the tip of the long middle toe?  Mole skin, there too, I guess.

confronting the rtt in my new mt10's

The MT10 is light, – 7.5 ounces (213 grams).  It’s obviously not as light as the bikilas but it is light enough that I hardly noticed the weight difference.  Because the sole is thicker than the bikila’s you do not have the flexibility that makes the foot feel so natural as it does in bikilas but, the thicker sole protects the bottom of the feet tremendously when running over good-sized loose rocks that litter the rails to trails so much.  One of the things that I noticed immediately when I put on the MT10s was how snug the shoe cups the heel.  It actually feels great.  I do not know how to adequately describe the feeling but it cups and holds my heel very snug in the shoe and it feels good.

So far, after one run, I am very happy with the New Balance MT10.  It’s a good shoe.  It’s not too expensive but not very cheap either but, it was in my budget at $104.99 at Half Moon Outfitters.  With tax it was $112 and some change.

I’m going to run in the MT10s most of the week and, most importantly, will do my long run next weekend in them.  I’ll give my full ten cents after next weekend’s long run.

old and wise

Wildlife inventory:

  • 3 rabbits
  • 10,000 fiddler crabs
  • 1 vulture
  • about 50 dead shad fish
  • 1 dead turtle that didn’t quite make it to the other side of the road, unfortunately.
  • 2 dragon flies
  • 7 great egrets
  • 1 red-winged black bird
  • 1 old wise looking dog

Stats:

  • run log
  • total miles on NB MT10: 6.43
  • total real miles for 2012: 452.97
  • total treadmill miles for 2012: 47.49

Thank you for stopping by.

All the very best to you and yours.

God bless…

peace,

dh

05/20/2012

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