After putting hundreds of miles on my Nike Zoom Elite 8 sneakers, I wanted a similar shoe with slightly more cushioning for my long distance runs.
So, I landed in a pair of the Nike Free RN Distance 2. Best shoe I have ever purchase!
In the past, I have had recurring injuries in my peroneal tendon (outer foot) and sciatic nerve. After running in my Nike Free RN distance 2 sneakers for four months and about 450 miles, I have had zero pain and no injuries.
Thanks to the flexibility of the shoe, my running form and natural gait was corrected. When running barefoot, our body will naturally correct our form and gait to protect the body.
The Nike Free RN Distance 2 gives your foot the freedom and natural movement of barefoot running with sufficient cushioning to run 14 plus miles.
The midsole of the shoe is made of foam, which allows for comfort, durability and a lightweight shoe.
The midsole is made up of two layers of foam, including Lunarlon foam. As a neutral runner with a high arch, the shoe is soft but responsive. I do not feel any extra pressure or uncomfortable stitching on my arch. My foot moves naturally through the midsole, which allows for a natural gait.
The outsole is made of the same EVA foam as the bottom layer of the midsole. The outer is almost completely smooth with slits throughout the bottom of the shoe, increasing flexibility. However, the lack of grooves hinders the grip of the shoe.
The Free RN Distance 2 has adequate grip for the road, but I would not recommend using the shoe on a trail or any off-road surface. Also, the outsole is round and wide. The shape and width are perfect for a run, but the outsole is too bulky for every day walking in the shoe.
When walking in the shoes, I constantly trip over my own feet. Besides the lack of grip and bulky outsole, the shoe is very durable. I have logged about 450 miles, including a half marathon, and the shoe shows little to no signs of wear.
The upper is the best-designed part of the Free RN Distance 2. The shoe has a bootie design, meaning the tongue and heel are one piece. Note, the bootie is not a complete sock-like shoe.
Since the tongue and heel are one piece, you will never experience the discomfort of the tongue sliding to the side of your shoe while running. In addition, the Free RN Distance 2 uses Flywire design, giving the bootie a snug fit.
My only complaint about the upper is the laces. Most Nike shoes include flat, thin laces that lay naturally with the shoe. However, the Free RN Distance 2 has round, thick laces that don't hinder the comfort of the shoe, but they do not lay naturally with the bootie fit.
The Nike Free RN Distance 2 fits true to size. The toe box is roomy.
If you have a normal to wider toe width, you will have plenty of room in the shoe. However, Nike does not offer different widths.
So, if you tend to have a very wide or narrow foot, you may want to go up a half size or down a half size, depending on the width of your toe.
- Minimalist shoe for long distance runners
- Reasonable price
- Round, bulky laces
- Outsole causes tripping when walking
Overall, the Nike Free RN Distance 2 is a flexible, lightweight, durable, and comfortable shoe that will meet all of your long distance training and racing needs. Half and full marathoners should seriously consider this shoe.
If you are a neutral runner that prefers a very flexible run, buy this shoe. Maybe even two pairs. You will not be disappointed!