Guest Author: Corrine Johnson, @outdoorfamfun
I hate to admit that before last week I had never run in a New Balance shoe. In fact, I had never even tried one on. When I found out about the New Balance demo run of the Fresh Foam v2 with Runner’s Corner (@runnerscornerutah) in Utah I decided that this was a perfect opportunity to try them out.
The New Balance rep gave me the second generation of the Fresh Foam Beacon to try. I was pleasantly surprised with every aspect of the shoe. When I pick out a running shoe, 90 percent of the time I end up picking the shoe that feels best when I initially put it on, even after testing multiple shoes on the treadmill.
When I first put on the shoe I audibly said, “Wow.” The shoe felt so comfortable. When I initially walked in it I could definitely feel a bounce in my step.
The comfort remained. I felt a great energy return—almost like I was being propelled forward. There was no weird rubbing or hot spots around the ankle, which has been a struggle with other shoes in the past.
The Fresh Foam Beacon v2 is light weight and has great cushion with an Ultra heel, which simply means that it has an overall thicker sole and heel for added cushion on impact. Likewise, the upper material is thin, comfortable and breathable.
It isn’t necessarily a trail shoe, but it handled the trail better than I expected. During one portion of the of our 7-mile run we climbed and descended 1,000 feet over—one mile out and one mile back.
I never slid or lost grip on the steep decline of the rocky trail. I don’t know if I would use the Fresh Foam Beacon v2 as a primary trail shoe because the foam sole may not hold up as well, but it will definitely perform on an occasional trail.
After the downhill I did notice that my toes were rubbing against the upper material and realized that the shoe fits a bit snug. I generally wear a size 7 in women’s, but I think that I would likely get a 7.5.
Overall, the Fresh Foam Beacon v2 is a shoe that I would highly consider purchasing in the future because of its comfort, versatility and energy return.
Weight: 6.6 oz
Drop: 6 mm
PROS & CONS
Surprisingly good traction
Runs a bit small
WHAT OTHER HAVE TO SAY
Jamison Michael, @jamisonruns
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Corrine Johnson has run for 20 years in everything from 5K's to Marathons. She is a Boston Marathon finisher. She loves everything outdoors. Mother of four and wife to The Average Joe Runner. Follow her on Instagram @outdoorfamfun!