The Nike Invincible was one of best running shoes in the market due to the soft and springy cushioning in the midsole which created a pleasant ride, especially for an easy workout. Aside from its high price tag and occasional instability issues, there was nothing to complain about.
Nike clearly thought so, as not much changed with the second version of the Invincible. The upper has been modified and there is more foam in the midsole, but the ZoomX Invincible Run Flyknit 2 is much the same as the running original. This is largely a good thing, although it may make more sense to seek out a deal on the old shoe.
Nike ZoomX Invincible Run Flyknit 2: Price and Availability
The Invincible 2 is available now and costs $180 in the US and £164.95 in the UK and costs. It’s the same price as the original Invincible and makes the shoe one of the more expensive cushioned options out there. My sample for this review was provided by Pro: Straight Race (opens in a new tab).
Design and fit
The Invincible 2 follows the same design cues as the original shoe, with a large wedge of Nike’s ZoomX foam in the midsole. It’s the same lightweight, springy foam used in the company’s carbon-plate running shoes, the Vaporfly and Alphafly 2but in the Invincible 2, the goal is to create a protective, cushioned ride for easy training, rather than a propulsive ride to set PBs.
At 10.6oz/303g in my UK size 9 the shoe is not a featherweight, but it is on the lighter end of the max cushioning shoes. Nike didn’t give official stats on the shoe’s stack height and drop, although the original is 9mm offset and looks the same on the 2.
The new Invincible has more foam in the midsole than its predecessor. Some of this has been used to increase the stack height slightly, and the midsole is also wider, especially in the forefoot, to make it more stable. There’s also a plastic heel clip around the back of the shoe to make sure all that soft foam doesn’t make the ride choppy.
As with the original, the Invincible 2 has a rocker midsole design to create a smoother heel-to-toe transition, although it’s not as pronounced as the Nike Infinity Run 3’s rocker.
The Flyknit upper is similar to that of the original shoe. The laces are different, being less plump, and there is less padding around the heel. None of the changes to the upper were noticeable to me, but it’s a comfortable upper that grips the foot well. The shoe fits me well in my normal size.
Nike kept the same rubber waffle outsole design as on the original shoe. In my experience, it provides good grip, but it’s not the strongest material. Combined with the soft midsole foam, the Invincible 2 probably won’t be as durable as some cushioned shoes, like the Brooks Glycerin 20 or Nike’s Infinity Run 3.
How I tested this shoe
I’ve clocked 31 miles/50km with the Nike Invincible 2, mostly sticking to an easy run in the shoe as it’s designed to be a cushioned option for core training. I ran a long 15 mile/24.25 km run in the shoe, and all of my running was done during high mileage weeks during marathon training, where the shoe is designed to shine. I also racked up around 75 miles / 120 km of testing in the original Nike Invincible.
The running performance
The Nike Invincible landed on my doorstep at the perfect time, in that I was about to start my marathon training block for the Berlin Marathon and had a few weeks of high mileage ahead of me. I enjoyed using the original Invincible for easy and progression runs, especially long runs, with the bouncy ride it offers offering protection while being a lot of fun.
I found the new shoe to excel in the same way. The ride is unique, even the very bouncy Asics Novablast line falls short of the squish and springiness you get with the Invincible 2. I don’t tend to use max cushioned shoes out of preference, preferring a daily trainer lighter like the Puma Velocity Nitro 2 even for easy runs, but the Invincible 2 is a shoe I find I want to reach for again and again. At the end of every run, there’s always a part of me that wants to go a few more miles to keep using the shoe.
The flaws I have with the shoe are limited, and aside from the price, they revolve around the fact that it’s not as stable as other padded shoes due to the spongy foam. As a neutral rider, I found it fine to use the Invincible a lot, but only really on the road. Even on harder trails, if the surface is uneven, I noticed some instability, and on tired legs, I would sometimes prefer a less fun, more stable, more reliable ride like the Infinity 3.
Keep it on the road, though, and the Invincible is great to use for many miles each week, and in my experience it will help keep your legs cooler during marathon training. It’s also versatile for such a cushioned shoe, in that I found it easy enough to pick up the pace on progression runs. If you’re a relatively new runner who wants a cushioned shoe for all of your training, this would work well, and it would also be a good choice for a marathon runner who is just looking to move around the course comfortably.
Is the Nike ZoomX Invincible Run Flyknit 2 Worth It?
The Invincible 2 is an outstanding cushioned shoe and I consider it neck and neck with the Brooks Glycerin 20 as a top pick in this running shoe category. Both shoes make your easy runs more comfortable and enjoyable, with the Nike standing out as the more springy option, while the Brooks is more stable and reliable underfoot.
However, given the high price of the Invincible 2, I’d go for a deal on the original shoe if you can, as the performance is so similar and $180/£165 is more than I’m going to. ever want to pay for the easy shoe in my rotation. Personally, I’d take the excellent Puma Velocity Nitro 2 for $120/£100 and put the money saved into a carbon racing shoe, but if you want a cushioned shoe and money isn’t an issue, then the Invincible 2 is definitely up there.
If you’re concerned about the stability or durability of the Invincible 2, then the Nike Infinity 3 (or similar Infinity 2) would be a good alternative. It has a less thrilling ride, but lasts (what looks like) forever. Another max-stacked option to check out is the On CloudMonsterwhich is lighter and more versatile than the Invincible 2 while remaining comfortable.