Nike Vaporfly NEXT% first run: running shoes of the gods crushed all my personal bests immediately

Just how much faster will you run in the Nike Vaporfly? We found out – after the first try

Nike Zoomx Vaporfly NEXT% first run
(Image credit: Future)

Admittedly, I have been a bit sceptical about Nike ZoomX Vaporfly NEXT%. There had been too much talk about it recently in the news and the shoes felt just a bit too overhyped. Mechanical doping? Unfair advantage? The best running shoes (opens in new tab) in the world right now?

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But after considering the immense pressure from my peers and taking into account my curiosity about the shoes, I couldn't not try the Nike ZoomX Vaporfly NEXT%, especially after trying and reviewing the Nike React Infinity Run (opens in new tab) and the announcement of the new Nike Air Zoom Alphafly (opens in new tab) running shoes.

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Nike Zoomx Vaporfly NEXT% first run: men wearing Garmin Fenix 6 Pro

I didn't even get the chance to say goodbye to all my PBs beforehand

(Image credit: Future)

ZoomX foam + integrated carbon plate = speed as you've never experienced before

As you can see on the picture above, on my first 10K run in the Nike ZoomX Vaporfly NEXT%, my legs went crazy and I left behind many of – all – my sub-10K personal best times. Using the shoes, I shaved a whole minute off my 5K PB and at least two minutes off my 10K PB. Two days prior, using the Nike React Infinity Run, I ran a 46:55 10K on the same route.

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It's hard to tell if I was running faster because I knew I was wearing fast running shoes; even so, to sustain a faster than usual pace for 10K would still be challenging. Also, as soon as I took a step in the NIke ZoomX Vaporfly NEXT%, I felt the difference: the ZoomX foam felt springy, soft and responsive. The carbon-plate in the middle of the ZoomX foam kicked in just the right time and running in the Vaporfly, my legs felt fresher and more efficient.

Other reviewers mentioned they didn't feel like their new PBs were their own using the shoes; I beg to differ. The Nike ZoomX Vaporfly NEXT% made me a more efficient runner but not a better one. I could control my speed better as well as my energy expenditure.

A full review coming soon.

Running shoes reviewed

Matt Kollat
Fitness Editor

Matt is T3's Fitness Editor and covers everything from smart fitness tech to running and workout shoes, home gym equipment, exercise how-tos, nutrition, cycling, and more. His byline appears in several publications, including Techradar (opens in new tab) and Fit&Well (opens in new tab), and he collaborated with other content creators in the past, such as Garage Gym Reviews (opens in new tab). When he isn't working out, he loves roaming the countryside and trying out new podcasting and content creation equipment, including microphones, cameras and more.