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Reviews > Footwear > Trail Shoes > New Balance Trail Runner 1110 > Test Report by Brian Tannehill

August 22, 2008



NAME: Brian Tannehill
EMAIL: tannehillclan (at) gmail (dot) com
AGE: 33
LOCATION: Colorado Springs, Co
HEIGHT: 5' 7" (1.70 m)
WEIGHT: 185 lb (83.90 kg)

I am fairly new to backpacking, but I have hunted/fished/camped all my life in East Texas, Colorado, and California. My young kids (4, 10, 12) limit me to weekend overnight camping trips, or day hikes Geocaching. I am also an avid mountain biker. Currently I live in Colorado Springs, Co at the base of the Rocky Mountains. Pike National Forest surrounds me at 9000 - 14,110 feet (2743 m - 4301 m). Snow can happen 10 months out of the year and summer is the hottest reaching 65 F + (18 C +), the other months average 45 F (7 C).



Manufacturer: New Balance
Year of Manufacture: 2008
Manufacturer's Website:
MSRP: US$ 119.99
Listed Weight: 13.6 ounces (385 grams)
Measured weight each shoe: 12.37 ounces (352 grams)
Measured weight combined: 1 lb 9.1 ounces (710 grams)
Shoe size: 9D

NB Shoes
Fig 1

From the Web Site:

This off-road trainer is designed to provide cushioning and stability, plus features a GORE-TEX® XCR® waterproof lining - an excellent pick for adventurous trail runners seeking comfort.

New Balance 1110 Product Details

* GORE-TEX® XCR® offers advanced waterproof protection and durability
* Entire midsole made of Abzorb® FL provides unique lightweight shock absorption
* Toe Protect™ rubber compound provides reinforcement and protects against the elements
* Gusseted Tongue fully attached to shoe keeps debris out
* N-Durance® rubber compound for maximum outsole durability
* Rock Stop™2 midsole technology provides full-foot stability and protection from debris
* BIOSHIELD® upper provides weather protection and breathability
* Sure Lace™ secure shoe laces provide added midfoot support and keep the shoe snug around the foot
* Color: Gray with Orange
* Shoe Weight: 385 grams (13.6 oz)
* Shoe Last: SL-1


I've worn these shoes a few times on a few workouts, and I am impressed. I received them on a Monday night and Tuesday morning I was running 1.5 miles (2.42 km) in them. I did not break these shoes in before running. The best part is I didn't get any blisters!! These shoes were a bit more than what I expected after reading the web site. They have a lot of features that I enjoy.

Fig 2 courtesy of

Fig 2 is a close up of the mesh outside the shoe. The mesh is grey, with an orange background. I'm wondering how this material will hold up. Will it tear easily if I get it caught on some brush or a thorny vine?

The shoes appear to be well built, and I like the toe protect box.
Fig 3 courtesy of


I was a bit skeptical about using a pair of shoes without trying them on for fit. I've made that mistake once, and it cost me about 20 blisters over the course of a few months. For the New Balance shoes, I received a size 9D, and they fit great. Another added benefit is I had a gait analysis performed a while back, and it said I should choose a pair of shoes that are for stability. The New Balance shoes I received have "stability" on the inside of the shoe. That's probably another reason I like to run in them. I've run around three miles (4.8 km) in them over two days. I've run on anything from a track, basketball court, treadmill, dirt, and grass and these shoes have performed great. Fig 4 is a picture of the arches of my feet. I have fairly high arches, and my feet actually feel good in these shoes. The soles provide good foot support for me and so far the arches of my feet have not cramped up while running.

Fig 4

I would also like to know how fast the soles wear away. I took a few measurements where I typically wear away the sole on a shoe first. Fig 5 shows a standard US dime for comparison of tread depth. Fig 6 shoes a ruler and about .24 in (.6 cm) of tread.
tread depth
Fig 5

Fig 6


My testing strategy will consist of the following: running 3 miles per day x 3 days per week on dirt trails, grass, track, and inside surfaces. Three big things I will be looking for are how they grip on wet/snow/ice/cold rocks/scree, and will the Gore-Tex(r) keep my feet dry from the snow/snow melt/creeks around here. I'd also like to know if they produce odor, and how bad. I'd like to know if the mud/dirt builds up on the tread as I walk and if I have to consistently knock it off.

Some other questions to answer:
How long will they take to break in?
How stiff is the ankle support? Is it stiff enough to give me blisters
on my Achilles tendon or will it move with my ankle? I have fairly
strong ankles thankfully, but I do roll them on occasion (knock on
wood I have not gotten hurt either.) How well will they support me?

Will they keep my feet warm?
That's the big question. I get miserable and cry and want to come home
if my feet get cold. I will wear them with a few different pair of
socks, mostly my Thorlos, but will also include athletic socks, and
thick winter socks.

So to recap for those who have short term memory loss, I will look for
warmth, fit to find out if these are a blister making machine,
waterproofness, and all around comfort and durability.


So far out of the box, I really like these shoes. They are light, sturdy, and supportive.

This concludes my initial report, please check back in about two months (Jun 2008) for my field report.



Since the initial report, I've logged around 75 miles on these shoes. I've worn them no less than three times a week, and a few times on the weekend. Total days I've worn them is around 35 days. I've worn them on five different four mile (6.4 km) trail runs, one six mile (9.6 km) road run for the Bolder Boulder Race, and for my annual PT test that consisted of a 1.5 mile (2.4 km) run. All the other runs have been a minimum of 1.5 miles (2.4 km) plus numerous sports like soccer, ultimate Frisbee, mountain biking, and of course hiking. I have worn them on grass, dirt, trails, tracks, pavement, and treadmills.


This shoe has performed great! I've hiked some around one of the local lakes in these shoes. Distance was about 2 miles (3.2 km), and conditions were muddy, wet, and slippery. I had to walk in water that was about 1 inch (2.5 cm) deep to get to some of the fishing spots. The shoes did not and have not leaked. They also gripped great while on the wet rocks.

Another outing was on a 7.5 mile (12 km) mountain bike ride. While most of the ride was dry, there was one stream crossing. The stream was about 3 feet (0.9 m) wide, and about 12 inches (0.3 m) deep. The stream covered my shoes as I rode through it. My feet were totally dry, while I can not say the same for my partner who crossed right behind me.

Another notable time the shoes kept me dry was during an early morning soccer game on a field wet from dew. We played soccer for an hour and the shoes stayed dry. My feet had perspired some so my socks were damp from that, but not from the dew. Everyone else's shoes were soaked to the bone.

The shoes also have great traction. We have been playing numerous sports that require quick starts, stops, and cuts left or right. The field we play on is in decent shape, but does have some mud in places. I have not had any problems with slipping in the wet grass, nor while starting or stopping suddenly.

To continue with my measurements, here are a few shots. There does not seem to be really any wear on the tread after 75 miles of use. I would like to point out in Fig 9 that it appears to have worn some on a small angle when compared to Fig 6 in my initial report above.
Fig 7

Fig 8

Fig 9

There appears to be some wear on the heel of the shoe. It is at an angle which is odd.

Fig 10

The toebox is showing some signs of wear.

Another feature I like about these shoes are the laces. At first I was skeptical about the shape of them. However, I love the shape now. They hold in place very well when tied, and even better in the eyelets. I do not have to retie these shoes like with other shoe laces.
Fig 11


Overall I love these shoes. They have held up well over 75 miles in different environments. The GORE-TEX is still working despite all the flexing from running, squatting, etc. I really like the laces as they stay tied and in place.



Since the field report, I have continued the same amount of use. I have logged around 60 miles (97 km) on these shoes for the long term reporting phase for a grand total of about 140 miles (225 km) through out the test series. I've still continued to wear them no less than three times a week, and a few times on the weekend. Total days I've worn them for the duration of the report series is around 80 days. I have continued the same usage as reported before plus numerous sports like soccer, ultimate Frisbee, mountain biking, and of course hiking. I have continued to wear them on grass, dirt, trails, tracks, pavement, and treadmills.


These shoes are wonderful! They have held up great to the abuse I have put then through. I have worn them at every one of my workout sessions and they have worked great. Now that it is transitioning from summer to fall, and my workout sessions are earlier, I find I am getting into more dew and wet grass. The GORE-TEX® lining has held up great and the shoes continue to stay waterproof. My feet do sweat some, but not much.

I also wore them for a cancer walk called Relay for Life. It was a 24 hour walk-a-thon around a standard 400 M (1312 ft) track. I signed up for 3 hours worth of walking and walked a total of 8 miles. For some reason, I did notice the shoes were producing hot spots on the balls of my feet. I walked for 2 hours straight the first go and then one additional hour after a break. I have NEVER had this problem in all my other activities to include playing basketball and racquetball in the shoes.

I wore these shoes on a four mile (6.4 km) hike through the woods. I walked the first half on trails, and knee high grass covered in dew. My pants from the knees down were ringing wet, and the shoes were just as wet on the outside. My socks and feet were almost bone dry. The only part I had a problem with, was the water seeping in through my socks along the top of my foot. This was right under the tongue, where my socks made contact with my pants, and the pants were transferring water to my socks. I did not think to bring my gators to cover my legs, so this was to be expected. The toe box and heel were bone dry.

One of the things I do not like about the shoes, but it is very minimal, is the insole. Certain parts on both insoles have folded over some. This creates a feeling of a small rock initially when I put the shoe on. After my foot is in the shoe though I do not notice these at all.
Fig 12

Tread wear has been really good for these shoes. The following pictures show the end results after all the miles. Compared to the initial pictures (Fig 5,6,7,8) above, I can see some wear. The main thing that stands out are the tread edges are not as sharp.
tread depth
Fig 13
tread depth2
Fig 14

The last picture shows the ball of the shoe with a bit of wear. I can notice on the small triangular piece on the toe (Inside red square on the right) that it has worn through the orange.

shoe bottom
Fig 16


These shoes are great! I love wearing them, they support my feet very well, and the waterproofness has held up over the last 4 months. Here are some answers to some of my original questions.

Q. How long will they take to break in?
A. I wore these out of the box with NO blisters! I did not need to break them in.

Q. How stiff is the ankle support? Is it stiff enough to give me blisters
on my Achilles tendon or will it move with my ankle?
A. On very low cut athletic socks, I did feel the back of the shoe rubbing on my Achilles tendon. I stopped wearing them before a blister formed, but it was a hot spot.

Q. I have fairly strong ankles thankfully, but I do roll them on occasion (knock on
wood I have not gotten hurt either.) How well will they support me?
A. These shoes have good support especially when laced through the last eyelets.

Q. Will they keep my feet warm?
A. I did not get into very cold temperatures but my feet did stay warm.

This report was created with the Report Writer Version 1. Copyright 2008. All rights reserved.

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