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Test: Arcteryx Endorphin & New Balance MT 110

October 4, 2012

New Balance WT 110 is a lightweight trail minimalist that will put a smile on your running face. Starting spring 2013 the updated 110-model will be available in running stores in Sweden. When launching previous models in the trail segment New Balance has been ahead of their time. I’m thinking of the 100- and 101-models, which no retailer in Sweden dared to buy.

Celebrating autumn colors – and moisture – I head out on a feel-good- afternoon-trail-run. It proves to be much warmer than expected, letting me run in T-shirt. I have been using arm warmers more and more lately just for this reason, to be flexible. Today I also packed Arcteryx Incendo jacket, a water repellent lightweight beauty, just in case. I have written before about Arcteryx’ running line Endorphin, for obvious reasons. However, I’m not that pleased with their Incendo running tights, which I have to pull-up over and over again. I have also become fond of my new running

Photo credtis: Arcteryx Endorphin

pack (Aerios 7 from Arcteryx), which is big enough for extra jacket and a pair of shoes. The compression straps works great when you want to attach dirty running shoes on the outside.  The waistband can be ennoying on running packs; it just doesn’t feel comfortable. Here is a simple solution: make an X by folding the chest strap around the waistband, and voilá, you’ll have one chest & waist strap, just like like the minimalist elite running packs. You can also check out Marco Olmo’s solution, attaching only between the front bottles with a string.

New Balance MT 110 (Mens Trail)

Today’s test shoes was New Balance MT 110, a lightweight trail-minimalist. The New Balance MT (Mens Trail) 110’s feels nimble and provides a close-to-the ground feeling. The outsole is fairly flat without longer studs. It works better for dry trails than mud, but to my surprise they gripped wet rock quite good. The upper doesn’t have the typical mesh but instead a plastic-like thin  and non-absorbing Synthetic leather upper. Especially in wet conditions this is an advantage. They are also easy to wash, and looks just like new again. The 110 comes with the Minimus last, thus a quite wide forefoot with rockplate and a non-removable sockline insole. Heel-Toe offset is 4 mm (12 mm heel, 8 mm forefoot). Weight approx: 210 gram size US 9,5. How would I use it? If you’re looking for a minimalist trail shoe with running feel this might be the one. However if your feet are narrow the 110 can be too wide, and if you’re a bit on the heavy side you might want somewhat more cushioning. This is not a shoe for hard surfaces or long runs, more for playing on forest trails. Actually I switched to my cushioned shoes before hitting hard trails and pavement. The 2013 version will have a somewhat thicker lateral sole, thus hopefully avoiding the feet slanting inward, which is what some testers have felt with the 2012 version. Colors will also be different: grey/green. Read the story about the developing the 110 with Anton Krupicka here. And read about Tony Krupicka’s sweet comeback the past weekend in the skyrace Cavalls del Vent here and here.

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