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Customer Curiosity: New Balance Toning Sneakers

July 20, 2011

Right before the Fourth of July, our local New Balance outlet store had its annual tent sale.  Everyone in the area looks forward to this sale because all prices are discounted an additional 25%.  That can lead to some serious savings.

Any other year, I would have jumped on some new running shorts and a new sports bra.  With our need to save, however, I decided to forgo them and just look for a pair of shorts for B.  We run a four-mile race every Fourth of July, and since B has lost a lot of weight, he needed some serious running shorts STAT.  Otherwise, there would have been a lot of other runners/walkers asking if there was a full moon that day.  This plan worked until we got to the tent sale, and then it went downhill.  I found a pair of toning sneakers that were originally $89 marked down to $30… and then another 25% off!  $21.50 for toning sneakers!  I had always been intrigued by what I had heard about toning sneakers, and I wanted to give them a shot.  Who doesn’t want a more toned booty?  With some encouragement from B and the justification that I could use the money I had leftover from my birthday, I purchased them.

I have used them about a dozen times, and I have to tell you; I love them!  We’ll start with the looks first.  Some of the toning sneakers are the market look extremely awkward because of the rounded sole.  The sole is thick and makes the sneakers look like they are giant orthopedic shoes for 150 year olds.  While the soles of the New Balance shoes are thicker than a typical sneaker, the contrast in colors offers an optical illusion that make them appear smaller.  The slant of the sole is enough to allow you to rock back and forth when standing on flat ground, but not enough to make you feel like you are going to fall over with every step.  The top of the sneaker is just like other sneaker with mesh to allow the foot to breathe.  I picked out the silver and purple ones because I loved the colors, but they also had brown (which was ALL brown… kind of ugly in my opinion) a hiking-boot look, and silver and teal.  At the beginning of the sale, there were also pink, silver, and white ones to support the Breast Cancer Foundation.

How a sneaker supports my foot is super important.  I have plantar fasciitis, or in lame terms, flat feet.  It’s painful when I don’t get the right shoe when really working out, so before I buy anything, I make sure there is great arch support on the top AND on the bottom.  Yes, both matter.  The New Balance toning sneakers score high on the bottom support.  There is a very defined arch within the shoe and it doesn’t pinch the foot when you move around.  The top arch support is middle of the pack.  The tongue of the sneaker seems a little thick to allow the tightness of the laces to brace the foot.  You have to pull them pretty tightly before you get to the desired level.

So how does it work?  I think it works pretty well.  I use these on a walking route that goes on even ground, uphill, downhill, and then even ground.  I have noticed that when I walk on even ground, the middle of my hamstrings is most engaged.  I can feel them tighten as soon as I put them on and walk around the apartment a little.  Going uphill, the shift in your weight on the sneaker targets your tush, and boy, does it ever!  By the time I get to the top of the hill, my butt is crying out for a reprieve.  On the way down, the sneakers work on the upper thighs and hip area.  Now, this is all how it works on me, so someone with a different body configuration and weight may have different results, but I try to pay attention to how they feel every time I use them.  So far, these results have occurred every time.

I use these sneakers in conjunction with eating healthy and doing other workouts.  Do I have buns of steel?  Nope, not yet, and I’m not sure that just using these sneakers would make that happen.  I am sure, however, that these are a great part of the process to get there.

Should you buy them?  Yes, especially with the price difference.

Rating:  <3<3<3<3

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. Amanda @ Leap! permalink
    August 11, 2011 4:46 am

    Ummm…I might use your review as an excuse to finally buy toning sneakers the next time I see a pair marked down…Thanks!

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