It sounds counterintuitive to be reviewing an older shoe, but at the time of purchase, the discount on these was incredible! I was looking for a shoe that I could do some tempo and speed work in, and the Nike Air Zoom Winflo 5 seemed like a great option!
- Purchase price - £42
- Surface - Road
- Foot type - Overpronation
- Drop - 10mm
- Features - Flywire and Zoom foam
For this review, I have covered 91km/55 miles over eight runs
I’m honestly a fan of the blue and white colourway; I think that it looks sharp without coming across all flashy. They aren’t the shoe that is writing cheques that your legs will struggle to cash.
I feel that the other colourways available aren’t as appealing. There are only four in total, so your choices are limited.
The material of the upper looks a little on the cheap side. But, as these aren’t a premium shoe, it seems silly to expect a premium upper.
Sure, the mesh of the upper lacks a quality feel, but it is just as good at keeping my feet cool as more expensive alternatives in my collection.
The sock liner and heel collar don’t offer top-end comfort, but I have not been using these shoes for high mileage sessions. I am pleased that, so far, my feet have been kept in good condition when using these shoes.
It is great to see the inclusion of Flywires on a cheaper shoe. I thought these were a little gimmicky on first appearance. However, they do the job that they are intended to as (in conjunction with the laces) my feet barely slip in the Winflos.
The laces are functional and perform as one would expect. They certainly don’t detract from the overall experience.
I should add that over the first few runs that I used these shoes for. I tended to over tighten the laces. This did create pressure spots on the instep of my foot, but experience has allowed me to find the right balance of tension to keep my feet secure and comfortable.
The midsole, for me, is what either makes or breaks a shoe. I have never worn Nike shoes before.
The Zoom foam, which the salesperson assured me was 15% lighter than any Adidas offering, working with the Cushlon ST does an excellent job of protecting my feet through my overpronation gait cycle.
But, I do confess that I’ve not gone further than 14km/8.5 miles in any one run. I have not suffered from any aches or soreness in my legs from running in these shoes.
The overall effect of the midsole results in a ride, which is cushioned enough to prevent you from feeling ill effects from pounding the pavement hard for an hour but retains enough firmness.
You feel confident that a high proportion of your efforts are being converted into the speed that you would hope for from a shoe that presents itself as a bit of an all-rounder. More succinctly put, this shoe is responsive enough that I am happy to race in, as well as train.
Although it is designed primarily as a shoe offering support to heel strikers, there is enough flexibility in the midsole to allow a midfoot striker, such as myself, to still find the quality of ride, which you would expect from more expensive shoes.
Whilst it is early days, the midsole is holding up relatively well; I’m not anticipating this to be a shoe with long life, so the odd crease in the foam is to be expected.
Truth be told, I’m looking to get 700km/440 miles out of these, which is a little lower than most people would expect, but given that Nike themselves aren’t pushing the Winflo as a top-end shoe means that you are still getting a good amount of bang for your buck!
The outsole of the shoe appears to have deep tread; the grid nature of the construction seems to work nicely. But, this is all overshadowed by one real concern with these shoes: it’s all about traction.
As I pointed out earlier on, I’m new to Nike shoes, so I’m mainly comparing against Adidas, Merrell, Mizuno, and Saucony here. But on wet tarmac, these shoes leave me feeling twitchy!! When touched, the outsole feels hard and plastic.
On a dry day, the Winflo’s are great, but out in the wet, or on a drying surface, there is a sensation that you skid a little every time you encounter any gradient.
To give Nike their credit, the grid design allows for enough flex that it feels as if I’m making full foot contact with the ground. But, even this is not enough to prevent some skidding when I’m running down any noticeable descent.
As I see it, the benefits of the harder outsole come two-fold. First, the durability of these soles looks good. Except for losing some of the sole to the skidding, these look like they will outlast the midsole comfortably.
The second benefit comes in performance. If you have a high cadence and a short ground contact time, this shoe feels responsive, and you will barely notice any issues with traction in the dry.
During speed sessions, I’ve recorded some of my best training times in these shoes.
- Great value for money
- Light and responsive in the dry
- Flywires hold your feet securely
- A good looking stability shoe
- Midsole appears to lacks durability
- Traction is an issue in wet conditions
Given my reason for purchasing these shoes, they are great. But, if you’d asked me to spend more than £50 on these, then I wouldn’t have been reviewing these in the first place.
A little bit of research told me that the Winflo series is aimed at high school runners, and I can see why. This is a solid shoe that will get you out on the road and allow you to develop your craft, be it from 5km to a half marathon.
(Note: I feel confident that they would make a reasonable half marathon race shoe, but coming in at 283g, there are better offerings on the market.)
When it comes to the crunch, if you want a quality shoe, remember, there is some truth to: ‘you get what you pay for’.
Good to know
- The Nike Air Zoom Winflo 5 is a running shoe that’s designed for those who have neutral pronation and overpronation. Its midsole was intended to fully support the underside of the foot, carrying and sustaining the tendons and muscles while also preventing arch-collapse.
- A rubber compound serves as the outsole unit of this product. This layer protects the rest of the platform from wear-and-tear. It also doles out traction via patterns and nodes. Flex grooves are catalysts for the natural bending capacity of the toe joints.
- The upper unit of this lightweight shoe is made of engineered mesh. This lightweight material offers a breathable wrap. It also permits a sock-like fit. A porous lining graces the internal sleeve, and it further encourages ventilation.
The outsole unit of the Nike Air Zoom Winflo 5 makes use of a rubber compound. Its goal is to cover the rest of the platform, shielding it from the abrasive nature of the surfaces. It is also responsible for gripping the ground.
There are textured patterns and traction nodes that are meant to heighten grip over the surface.
Flex grooves are meant to allow the foot to bend naturally as it goes through the gait cycle. Such a mechanism accommodates the toe-off phase of the gait cycle.
The Cushlon foam serves as the lateral base of this shoe’s platform, receiving impact shock during the landing phase.
Encompassing the top and the medial side of the sole unit is the Cushlon ST. It’s a dense compound that prevents the arch from buckling during the running session. It also bolsters the structural integrity of the midsole.
A crash rail runs from the lateral side to the heel. This wall cushions the foot during the foot-strike, preventing it from wobbling or experiencing discomfort.
The Nike Air Zoom Winflo 5 features the cloth-like coverage of the engineered mesh. This material has ventilation pores that accommodate air into the foot-chamber, thus ensuring a breezy in-shoe experience. It’s also lightweight and flexible.
A traditional lacing system permits the runner to adjust the fit accordingly. The flat laces are connected to Flywire cables, stretchy strands that further inspire a customizable fit.
The padded tongue and collar are responsible for cushioning the top portions of the foot. They are also meant to prevent accidental shoe removals.