Thursday, July 6, 2017

New Balance Leadville MT1210 Trail Running Shoe Review

The New Balance MT1210 "Leadville" trail running shoes have been extremely reliable, and have traveled many miles with me. I primarily use them for road or road/trail mix running. One of my favorite things about the shoes is how versatile they are. They feel great running on pavement, and they can seamlessly transition to dirt and gravel. I don't think I would recommend them as a primary trail shoe, but they have been my go to for anything that bridges both worlds of trail and road.

What makes the New Balance Leadville so versatile, is that they are pretty middle-of-the-road in all of their specs. They're not overly lightweight, but they're also not too heavy. They breath well, but also provide good coverage and support. The traction and outer sole aren't exactly geared for mountain trail running, but manage to find a sweet spot on both pavement and mild to moderate trails. I've covered just about every type of terrain in them; pavement, dirt, gravel, grass, snow/slush, and they have proven to be incredibly durable.

I'd like to comment on a few cons that I've read in other reviews about the Leadvilles. The first is cost. At $100+ I can understand why people would complain about the price, but after all of the shoes I've owned, if I make it over 500 miles in a pair of shoes I'll gladly pay $100 or more. I think the Leadvilles are well worth the cost new, but if you keep your eyes out on www.amazon.com, www.zappos.com, www.runningwarehouse.com or other discount sites, you can find them a bit cheaper. Some other, more general gripes with the shoes I've heard are that they don't offer enough arch support, the heel drop (8mm) isn't inline with other New Balance minimalist designs, and that the outer sole wears down too fast. Concerning arch support and heel drop, those are some of the reasons I've liked these shoes so much. I'm a bigger guy, and I run a lot of miles, and I've never been able to get truly minimalist shoes to work for me. I'm a bit surprised on the last one. I'm a pretty tough user of running shoes, and I've experienced the exact opposite in terms of durability.

Bottom line, I think these shoes are amazing daily runners for covering a variety of surfaces. I would turn to a more technical trail shoe for difficult trails, but I'm happy to take these out for just about any other environment. They are comfortable, stable, and durable.

Happy Running!