Last month, I got an email from a Tamera VanDyke, a marketing director for New Balance running shoes.
She said if I'd review a pair of New Balance shoes and put a link in the sidebar in my blog, they'd send me a coupon to get 100 percent off a pair of New Balance shoes.
The question I had: Do I buy the shoes, review them, then get reimbursed? "No," Tamera said. Go to the Web site, read about the shoe you would buy and review the product as best as you can, she said. Then, she said, they'd send me the coupon for a free pair of shoes.
Think. Think. Think. Scratch head. Furrow brow.
One thing I will always be on this blog is truthful.
I won't review a shoe that I have not worn just for the sake of getting free shoes.
But I kept thinking. And as it turns out, I have worn a pair of New Balance shoes before, a pair of New Balance shoes that are currently on the New Balance Web site.
Nearly two years ago, I was looking for a shoe to replace my Brooks Adrenalines. I went into the Runner Shop in Arlington, Texas and they had a pair of New Balance 991s (They are now 992s) for me to try on. From what I remember, they felt just like my Brooks Adrenalines. Comfortable. Roomy. Cushiony.
I took the shoes home for a day and ran in them. Comfortable as hell. Really comfortable. But I returned the shoes a day later. Why? I had a half marathon coming up in a few weeks and figured it'd be a bad idea to run in a new shoe. I went back to my Brooks Adrenalines.
Today? I'm still wearing the Adrenalines, the GTS8s to be precise. But I'm looking to try another shoe. After work, I bought two pair of shoes from Luke's Locker in Fort Worth: GTS8s and some Adidas Supernova Sequence. I bought these shoes because Lukes did not have New Balance 991s, which are now 992s.
Not sure if this qualifies as a review for New Balance, but at least I'm being honest. I'd love to try the 992s.
I'll let you know if New Balance ever sends the 992s to me. In the meantime, I'll enjoy the Brooks and the Adidas running shoes