7 Best Nike Road Running Shoes in 2024

Jens Jakob Andersen
Jens Jakob Andersen on
7 Best Nike Road Running Shoes in 2024
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Majority of Nike running shoes available in the market today are designed for road runners. Thus, buying the perfect pair that suits one’s training and racing needs can be pretty overwhelming to some, especially for those who have just started running.

In order to provide you with our best picks for your browsing convenience, we have tested over 100 Nike road running shoes in the lab and on a variety of road tests and selected the top-rated models for different categories.

If you only want the best value for your money, head on to see our fantastic selections of highly-rated road running shoes from a versatile trainer and a budget-friendly pair to a performance-boosting speed and racing option.

How we test road running shoes

Each model of shoe has to earn its spot on this list after a rigorous process. To keep this guide comprehensive and bias-free, we make sure that:

  • We purchase all the shoes from Nike by spending money from our own pockets.
  • We run in them for at least 30 to 50 miles and keep a record of our impressions
  • We cut each pair open in our shoe testing lab to closely check its essential parts. Not only that but we measure 30+ parameters using our calipers, durometers, weighing scales, et cetera. We also compare the data we obtain to the averages to allow us to better illustrate where a shoe stands depending on the parameter.

Best Nike road running shoes overall

Nike Pegasus 40
87
Great!

What makes it the best?

Four decades later, the legendary Pegasus series is still going strong. This muscled stallion glides through daily runs with relentless might, bestowing a plush and liberating ride along the way. Numbers double-checked, the Pegasus 40 is the ultimate Nike road running shoe.

An indisputable titan, the Pegasus stalwartly smashed whatever we threw under it with its military-grade outsole. Applying our durometer against it revealed an outlandish 86.0 HC score, way harder than the 79.9 HC average. Such a high reading foreshadows exceptional durability, with the aggressive waffle-patterned traction tailored to master the roughest of asphalts.

Beneath this rugged facade resides a heart-melting soul. Our feet were enveloped in an ultra-padded realm from the very first mile, with the midsole taking center stage—it emerged as 28.2% softer than average in our durometer, imparting a downy touch to our strides. Plus, the Pegasus 40 is crazy flexible! Our 90º bending test skyrocketed this shoe to the top 6% most flexible we ever tested, allowing for a freeing and relaxed feel that flooded our runs.

We do not recommend the Pegasus 40 for runners seeking a lively kick to pump the adrenaline levels up, as its rather dull ride failed to stay in our memories for long.

Pros

  • Plush and comfortable upper
  • Breathable
  • Secure lockdown
  • Has enough toe-box space
  • Not overly soft or firm underfoot
  • Good energy return
  • Great grip on most surfaces
  • Incredible durability
  • Perfect for everyday miles and LSDs

Cons

  • A generally narrow fit
  • Heavier than the v39
  • Not a very memorable ride
Full review of Nike Pegasus 40

Nike road running shoes with the best cushioning

What makes it the best?

The InfinityRN 4 embodies protection and comfort, overflowing with that homey feeling when gliding through the city streets. Its lab data leaves no room for doubts, this is the finest cushioning from Nike road running.

Hitting the asphalt with the Infinity was a breeze, with the lofty midsole muting any landing impact from our strides. The shoe is generously cushioned, mainly at the heel, exhibiting 34.2 mm of heel stack and 24.4 mm of forefoot stack. Well, in today’s world, these numbers aren’t eye-popping. However, with our durometer ranking the ReactX foam as an ultra-downy 47.9% softer than average, the Infinity reaches unbeatable levels when it comes to cushioning.

Much to our delight, Nike’s Flyknit upper graces this shoe. It’s durable, stretchy, and very premium-feeling. Our toes wiggled in joy within the virtually boundless toebox, with our caliper confirming the upper to be 2.9 mm wider at the big toe.

All that cushioning doesn’t go weightless, as the Infinity’s 316 grams (11.15 oz) fall deeply on the heavier side of the running spectrum. For reference, the average running shoe sits at 268 grams (9.45 oz).

Pros

  • All-new ReactX plush midsole
  • Soft and stretchy Flyknit upper
  • Ideal for heel strikers
  • Generously cushioned
  • Excellent for easy runs
  • Feels like running on clouds
  • Durable, long-lasting outsole
  • Reduced carbon footprint

Cons

  • Average-at-best breathability
  • On the heavier side
  • Sizes run notably small
Full review of Nike InfinityRN 4

Nike road running shoes with the best comfort

What makes it the best?

With plush cushioning radiating from every seam, the Invincible Run Flyknit 3 remains the star player of Nike’s comfort game. Soothing and stable, it seals the deal with a roomy toebox that delighted our feet.

A melter of hearts, the Invincible Run 3 sank each of our footfalls in its white velvet. Its gentle core received our durometer’s approval, with the ZoomX foam standing as 40.8% softer than average. Still, it doesn't feel all over the place, with the extra width of the midsole ensuring secure landings. Bringing our caliper back into action revealed a midsole width of 102.1 mm at the heel and 121.8 mm at the forefoot, easily surpassing the average by 12.1 mm and 9.0 mm respectively.

Endless room inside the toebox enhances the Invincible’s comfort, and our toes left each of our workouts overflowing with joy instead of sweat. With 97.7 mm at its widest, the upper falls a mere 0.2 mm short of the average—while that may seem disappointing at first, the stretchy upper makes up for it and we were utterly satisfied with its loose fit in the toe area.

However, beware of the rainy season, as the Invincible’s traction system couldn’t handle wet asphalt at all.

Pros

  • Way more stable than previous versions
  • Tall stack of impact-absorbing cushioning
  • Good energy return
  • Comfort for the entire foot
  • Thicker, more durable outsole
  • A solid ride that works for more runners
  • Breathable
  • Great for recovery days and long easy runs

Cons

  • Poor grip on wet roads
  • Heel slippage
  • Heel clip can be irritating when cornering
Full review of Nike ZoomX Invincible Run Flyknit 3

Best Nike road running shoes for speed training

What makes it the best?

Echoing velocity through each of its seams, the ZoomX Streakfly is the epitome of speed workouts. It’s bouncy and an absolute delight to run in, all while packing Nike’s premium tech into a shoe that feels as light as air.

Leaving our chronometer struggling to keep up with the pace, the Streakfly obliterated each of our repetitions. It picks up the pace as easily as it maintains it, making it a superb option for an endless variety of workouts. There’s no beating this sparky feeling, with the ZoomX foam emerging as a plush 50.0% softer than the average running shoe.

Its upper screams summer-ready, dissipating heat at the highest rate. We pumped smoke into the shoe for the naked eye to see it happen. How easily and smoothly the smoke ushed out through the upper wasn’t foretold, earning the Streakfly a perfect 5 out of 5 for breathability. Plus, its weight (or the lack of it) is truly mindblowing! It’s as if gravity itself has lightened, with its mere 171 grams (6.03 oz) outperforming the average 244 grams (8.61 oz) for speed trainers.

Heel striking with the Streakfly might not be ideal, particularly at slower paces. Our caliper revealed a midsole 12.8 mm narrower than average at the heel, which can lead to stability issues when landing.

Pros

  • Screams fast and speed-ready
  • Nike’s lightest racing shoe yet
  • Stable and good at cornering
  • Incredible lockdown
  • Splendid track workhorse
  • Roomy toe box
  • Grippy outsole
  • Eye-catching design
  • Not so expensive!

Cons

  • Narrow-footed runners may experience poor lockdown
  • Insanely thin laces
  • Falls short for racing
  • Heavy runners can “bottom out”
Full review of Nike ZoomX Streakfly

Best Nike road running shoes for race

Nike Vaporfly 3
89
Great!

What makes it the best?

Vaporfly hits the mark with its V3 edition, emerging as the top choice for racing, outperforming all other Nike road-running shoes in our laboratory and real-world trials. This lightweight champion strikes the perfect balance of comfort and energy return for extended distances. The V3 model maintains our power and pace, guaranteeing peak performance in our races.

V3’s ride feels phenomenal as it blends energy return and comfort. Its ZoomX midsole promotes a lot of bounce and feels cozy underfoot. Our durometer confirms the foam stands 29.1% softer than average. This racer ensures comfort for any footstriker with its 37.1/26.0 mm heel and forefoot stack.

V3’s unyielding ride ensures record-breaking runs with its spoon-shaped carbon plate springing back the power with every stride. It feels very rigid, translating to stronger energy return and sustained momentum. Our bend test confirms our observation as V3 emerged 88.3% stiffer than average!

Another factor contributing to each stride feeling smoother is the V3's lightweight and breathable design. Weighing in at 6.7 oz (190g), it surpasses the average supershoe (7.5 oz/214g). The well-ventilated upper, which earned a perfect score in our lab breathability test, ensures both comfort and breathability during endurance runs.

Those of us with wide feet or mild pronation didn’t enjoy the 107.6/76.6 mm narrow midsole. We recommend exploring other shoes for more support.

Pros

  • Exceptionally breathable upper
  • Outstanding ZoomX cushioning
  • Superb choice from the mile to the marathon
  • Impressively low weight
  • Enhanced stability
  • Plush, cloud-like foam
  • Upgraded outsole for better grip

Cons

  • Uncomfortably large tongue
  • The heel is still too narrow
Full review of Nike Vaporfly 3

Best Nike road running shoes for marathon

What makes it the best?

The third time’s a charm as Alphafly 3 is crowned best for marathon/ultras—beating all other Nike road-running shoes in our lab. This featherweight champion hits the sweet spot in our runs, delivering comfort and energy return for long miles. A3 sustains our power, speed, and surefootedness, ensuring a strong pace from start to finish.

Alphafly 3 feels phenomenal underfoot as its world-class ZoomX midsole blends propulsion, comfort, and stability into one platform. It features two layers of foam with the stiff FlyPlate in between and the Air Pods in the forefoot. From top to bottom, the first foam measures a firm 29.3 HA for a balanced ride. Next is the rigid carbon plate, which emerged 144.7% stiffer than average in our bend test. Together with the Air Pods, these translate to insane responsiveness that comes alive once engaged correctly. The bottom cushion is a plush 18.1 HA for dampening the impact of repetitive landings.

What also makes each turnover easier is its airy build. Tipping the scales to 7.1 oz (201g), it sits above the average supershoe (7.5 oz/214g). Ensuring comfort and breathability even for the hottest marathons is the well-ventilated Atomknit upper that scored a 5/5 on our lab breathability test.

Just like other race shoes, the outsole wears out faster than average. Our lab shows the Fast Shot rubber is only 1.9 mm thin.

Pros

  • Remarkably lightweight despite its broad size
  • Best-in-class breathability
  • Excels in the marathon distance
  • Repositioned Air Pods offer a better ride than the v2
  • ZoomX foam delivers massive energy return
  • Aids in forward momentum, especially when legs begin to fatigue
  • Better than ever for 5K/10K racing
  • Finally smooth transitions!

Cons

  • Heel strikers might wear down the outsole quickly
  • The arch could still be a challenge for some
  • The sock-like tongue might not suit everyone
Full review of Nike Alphafly 3

Best budget Nike road running shoes

What makes it the best?

Revolution 7 defies the traditional budget-friendly shoe. It’s remarkably versatile in our runs and lab tests, boasting a stable ride tailor-made for newcomers to the running realm. At £80, it’s our top Nike road-running budget shoe. For reference, the average Nike trainer costs £130.

Revolution offers a pleasantly stable ride—a feature usually reserved for more expensive counterparts. The support doesn’t feel intrusive since the shoe doesn’t have many rigid elements other than the firm cushion. Applying our durometer against the midsole revealed a 28.4 HA score, meaning it’s 20.3% harder than the average running shoe. A 20-minute stay in the freezer elevated this to 31.0 HA, a 9.2% increment. Considering the average is a 26.6% increase, we can say that the Revolution’s unbridled ride transcends seasons.

Notably, the Revolution 7 remains consistently flexible in our runs. Our force gauge shows a remarkably low 18.3N resistance to our 90º bend test, reflecting 37.5% greater flexibility than average. This makes it suitable for walking and other activities beyond running.

While the shoe is resilient in cold weather, it lacks ventilation for warmer weather. Its 3/5 breathability score in our lab is underwhelming.

Pros

  • Excellent value
  • Spacious, comfortable upper
  • Can double for gym workouts
  • Really flexible
  • Perfect for beginners and heel strikers
  • Durable outsole
  • Acceptable weight for its size

Cons

  • Stiff cushioning
  • Poor ventilation
  • Minimal bounce-back
Full review of Nike Revolution 7
Author
Jens Jakob Andersen
Jens Jakob Andersen
Jens Jakob is a fan of short distances with a 5K PR at 15:58 minutes. Based on 35 million race results, he's among the fastest 0.2% runners. Jens Jakob previously owned a running store, when he was also a competitive runner. His work is regularly featured in The New York Times, Washington Post, BBC and the likes as well as peer-reviewed journals. Finally, he has been a guest on +30 podcasts on running.