"LOVE/hate. This is the new balance."
And I can tell you why this is the new balance - because New Balance simply does provide the best footwear and gear for runners.
I got a new pair of New Balance 1123 running shoes, and I am really impressed. Usually when I get a new pair of shoes, it feels like I'm running on clouds for a few runs, but then the support system breaks down fairly quickly and feel like I'm back to running in old shoes in a matter of days. However, I still feel like I'm running on clouds with the 1123's.
I'm very much a 'heel striker' and the 1123's are like little personal down comforters for my heels. In addition to being a 'heel striker,' I feel like my running style can also be described as 'toe jamming.' This has been a problem in the past with Asics and Mizuno models I've tried, but the 1123's are unique in that they fit my foot snugly, but still have a roomy toe box. I'm thinking that with these babies I'll be able to toe the line in Columbus on October 19th, with, well, all of my toenails!
They also offer maximum stability for the ankles - I am constantly rolling my ankles, but these have really helped. I was speaking with someone who actually broke their ankle a few years ago, and her doctor recommended the 1123's for their ankle support. (I'll add here that she wasn't wearing the 1123's when she broke her ankle!)
I also really like how they look - a clean and simple design on a shoe that will help you both to elevate your training, and to kick butt and take names.
If you are looking for a new pair of shoes to start your fall marathon training plans in, the New Balance 1123's get two thumbs up from me!