Our verdict


The Fast-R Nitro Elite is an elite racing shoe from PUMA that takes the original PUMA Nitro Elite's stability and overall performance to new heights. A new addition to the super shoe scene, this shoe offers a quick and agile ride in half to full marathons. One-upping the Nitro Elite, the PUMA Fast-R continues Puma's momentum in the running world.


  • Responsive during fast runs
  • Smooth ride
  • Insanely light
  • Dampens impact
  • No slips during fast turns
  • Grippy
  • Tongue stays in place
  • Welcomes wide feet
  • Great heel hold
  • Breathable during hot days


  • Firm during easy days
  • Not for narrow feet

Who should buy the PUMA Fast-R Nitro Elite

Take the Fast-R Nitro Elite if you're looking to buy a: 

  • stable, carbon-plated racing flat for half marathons to full marathons
  • responsive and snappy ride that won't weigh you down

Who should NOT buy it

If you're looking for a bouncy ride for all paces, the Nike Alphafly is a much better-suited option than the PUMA Fast-R Nitro Elite. And if you're looking for a wide-feet-friendly option, check out the Hoka Carbon X 3.

Ride: Super shoe 

Despite the PUMA Fast-R Nitro Elite looking "disjointed," and having the decoupled heel (like the Brooks Aurora-BL), experts still find the ride smooth and seamless. 

On top of this, the shoe maintains a responsive ride. With its carbon-fiber plate, a snappy toe-off is created that generates a bolting sensation. 

Overall, runners say the ride is reminiscent of the Saucony Endorphin Pro—neither too bouncy nor too soft. 

Instability should be the least of your concerns

Multiple runners state that they "just couldn't feel unstable" in the PUMA Fast-R. The dual-density midsole paired with the wide forefoot base creates a steady ride no matter the surface and the pace. 

No more achy feet with the Fast-R Nitro Elite

There's a lot of cushion underneath, so expect less ground feel. On top of this, numerous reports say that the midsole is an effective impact dampener. 

Race-day fit

Exceptional is a byword for the fit of the Fast-R Nitro Elite. From the heel to the midfoot, the fit is dialed-in and secure. So much so, testers don't feel tippy nor have they experienced missteps in this shoe even during sharp turns. 

Overall, it's "one of the best lockdowns" to date among racers. 

Wide-footed runners, beware. 

Like any other racing shoe, the Fast-R Nitro Elite from PUMA is on the snug end of the fit spectrum. Don't expect a lot of room, especially on the forefoot. And to this, broad-footed runners agree. 

According to them, it's a tad too snug in the forefoot; it's constricting. 

The tongue is awesome

It stays in place and it adds to the shoe's overall support, keeping the foot locked in position. 

Ready for the heat

This shoe has a translucent upper that's (1) very light and (2) extremely breathable. Even under humid conditions, road runners don't feel toasty in it. 

Serving a tacky bite on the pavement

Compared to other road running shoes, many find the PUMA Fast-R Nitro Elite very sticky, which steps up its confidence-inspiring ride. 

Weight that's barely there

On average, racing shoes weigh in at 208 g/7.3 oz. The PUMA Fast-R Nitro Elite, however, only weighs in at 198 g/7 oz in US M 9. Although not crazy, in the racing scene, every gram counts. 

The PUMA Fast-R Nitro Elite is a no-no for easy runs

Unlike the Alphafly, which remains bouncy at all paces, the Fast-R feels dead and flat when walking and running slowly. This is because the midsole only comes to life when you push the pace. Other than that, it's a rigid ride.