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Time for a new pair of kicks, and looking for any advice/opinions:
I started running consistently about 3.5 years ago. Over that time I moved from light stability shoes to Nike Free to NB Minimus - first the MR10 (meh) and now the 730 (like 'em). Past two years in NBs have seen me get stronger, faster, and avoid injuries. Been working on mid-forefoot striking, but it's hard to know if I'm really doing it 'right.' I need to videotape myself! My stride is maybe too short and choppy, but I'm pretty sure I avoid heel striking so long as I'm in rhythm and not too tired out.
I like the 730s quite a bit save for sometimes having to fuss with the lacing to get my heel locked down - I often lace too tight on the top of my foot and then have to stop to retie. The rubber is worn through to the midsole on both big toes after about 325 miles, which is a little disappointing, but oh well. They're simple and smooth/firm and the price is nice, too. But ... time for new shoes is always fun.
I average about 20 miles/week running 3-6 miles at a time, so it's not like I'm racking up the marathon training miles. I'd like to get back up to doing long runs of 8-10 miles, but also just had a second kid (!), so I may not have the luxury of time for long runs anytime soon :) Also, I do 95% of my running on pavement. The trail running I've done has been awesome, and I want to do more. But I don't *need* trail shoes just yet.
I could just get another pair of 730s, but I kind of want to try zero drop - both for fun and to work on my footstrike. I think I have it narrowed down to Merrell Bare Access (1) or Flux Glove Sport. They're both on steep discount via Sierra Trading Post coupons right now, and get favorable reviews here and elsewhere, so likely I can't go wrong.
Bare Access are lighter and "made for road running," but the Flux Gloves have less cushioning, which might theoretically help my road feel and my stride … even though they're heavier? So confusing.
Any thoughts on these or other zero/low drop options? I'd prefer to spend under $70, and have no problem with "last year's models."