As the leaves start to fall, I feel blessed to enter my favorite season with a pair of shoes I'm really stoked about. I received a pair of New Balance 902 from NBwebexpress.com to try out. After putting in my inaugural 75 miles in them, I'm ready to provide my honest assessment.
The 902s are a lightweight trainer. Since I'm a lightweight runner (read: skinny) with medium arches, I'm probably in the target audience. I've always tended toward heavier shoes that promised a comfortable ride, so when I first pulled the 902s out of the box I was skeptical. I wondered how a shoe so light (10.3 oz) could provide enough support. Then I put the shoes on...
My first run reminded me of the day I time ran in a pair of shoes recommended to me by a specialty running store. At that point, I had struggled with bad shoes for more than a year. Now, years later, I was trying to outrun my woefully overpriced and underwhelming Asics Gel Kinseis. Floating along with shoes that are lighter (nearly 3 ounces), quieter, and smoother brought home a singular idea: NEVER suffer a bad pair of shoes.
On a slightly more technical note, the heel-toe transition is responsive and smooth. The soles provided ample cushioning yet still allow me to feel connected to the ground. Most of my running is on gravel roads and horse trails, and these shoes held up admirably. The only slight issue was a little slippage on steep uphills due to the shallow treads on the soles. This goes away on the asphalt, where they are much more grippy.
At $99, these shoes are much better priced than anything I've run in the last few years. I will definitely buy a couple more pairs.