Nike never fails to amaze me when it comes to innovation in running shoes. The Invincible 3 is just the latest example of how experienced they are when it comes to creating breakthroughs in shoe design and performance.
I haven’t experienced so much fun while running on the roads since On running released their hugely popular Cloudmonster running shoes, which I still own and enjoy running with now and then.
Nike has gone a few steps further, however, creating a higher-performance running shoe with the same fun feeling but increased stability and energy return. Keep reading to learn why I believe the Invincible 3 running shoes are going to be such a HUGE hit for Nike.
In this Nike Invincible 3 review I’ll be covering advice on sizing and fit, the key features worth mentioning (plus a couple of small things that could be improved), my full performance review, if they’re worth the money, a video review, and finally, my rating out of 10 with some pros and cons.
I hope this review answers all your Nike Invincible pre-purchase questions, but if I missed something, feel free to drop a comment below with any questions – I’m always happy to talk running shoes.
Nike Invincible 3 sizing and fit
I usually wear a size US (M) 9 in Nike, went with the same for the Invincible 3, and can confirm the fit is perfect in length and width.
If you’re not familiar with Nike’s more premium running shoes, or racing shoes then it’s worth knowing that they do fit on the tighter side of medium-width in the middle of your foot.
I always think that they’re snugger than they should be in this area when I first try them on but when I’m actually running the fit feels spot on.
This must be a very conscious choice by Nike to design them this way to improve performance while running.
The Invincible 3 has a medium-width toe box and is a generally extremely comfortable running shoe with excellent support and loads of cushioning, with a surprisingly impressive amount of energy return – but more on that later in this review.
The key features worth knowing about
Nike Invincible 3’s midsole is where the fun starts
Seeing as the Invincible 3’s midsole cushioning is the most striking and altogether noticeable unique selling point, let’s start there.
The more cushioning that you have underfoot, the softer and more comfortable your running experience can be, and the further you can run, think marathon training ;).
In some cases, this can also reduce the control and stability that you have while running – this is not the case for the Invincible 3, however!
Well-positioned cushioning made from high-performance materials like ZoomX cushioning can help soften the impact as your feet hit the ground and even help propel you forward while maintaining support from any lateral roll.
Nike’s ZoomX cushioning is shaped with a rocker design and has a higher foam stack height. This gives you insane cushioning at foot strike with energy return that makes you want to just keep running.
This midsole really does give you an incredibly fun ride and because it’s so supportive, cushioned, and responsive, I find myself wanting to run further for two reasons.
Firstly my legs are less tired than they would be with most other shoes and secondly, I’m just having SO MUCH FUN!
The midsole also has a really interesting strip of plastic that wraps around the heel area where the midsole joins the upper.
It appears that this strip is being used to help stabilize the heel from lateral roll while running because the midsole does compress a lot thanks to its extreme cushioning properties.
Without some clever design features like this that bring thoughtful placement of structural and supportive materials, your feet would be rolling all over the place.
It’s not just this plastic strip that gives these extremely cushioned running shoes such good support and stability however, the midsole is also wider than the previous Invincible model.
The wide midsole is especially noticeable under the forefoot and heel, where you ideally want to minimize the potential for rolling an ankle or twisting your foot.
The wide midsole does an excellent job of keeping me stable with very little energy lost to lateral roll.
I don’t think Nike could have used anything other than Nike ZoomX foam to get such a lightweight and responsive feel.
Nike Invincible 3 has an evolved Flyknit upper with breathable zones and improved durability
Nike’s newly evolved Flyknit upper places zones of breathability where your feet heat up the most and provides additional durability in areas where they don’t.
I like to test how breathable the upper is in running shoes by putting my hand in the shoe and then blowing through the upper material.
It’s easy to feel the airflow on your hand when the material is super breathable and not so much when there’s no airflow.
It’s a strong and durable mesh unlike any other I have tested before and the Flyknit sections do a really great job of keeping your feet secure while you run with stretch for subtle changes in foot expansion and contraction.
Whilst I’m talking about the upper, I might as well mention how cool it is that Nike has flipped their Swoosh logo on the top of the right-hand shoe to opt for symmetry over correct branding.
I love it as it adds an element of playfulness to these running shoes (see above).
This continues over to a cute smiley face with the Swoosh logo on the inside of the right shoe.
The tongue is super soft and well-padded which means you’ll be able to get a nice snug fit from the laces without actually feeling pressure from the laces pressing through the tongue.
Nike Invincible 3’s tongue is well padded and has a loop for the laces to pass through and to hold the tongue in place. The laces perform well too and have a little stretch in them.
There’s a finger loop and reflective detailing at the rear
This may not seem like something worth mentioning to some but I find finger loops to be very useful when slipping running shoes on.
The loop and heel of the Invincible 3 running shoes also have reflective detailing which will help to ensure you’re seen when running at night or in low-light conditions.
The outsole that wraps that bouncy midsole
The rubber on the outsole sticks well to tarmac and asphalt and so far the durability appears to be holding up well.
The rubber is very flexible and moves with the cushioned ZoomX midsole which is very unusual to see!
Most shoes have a very rigid outsole rubber but the Invincible 3 outsole conforms to the plush compression of the midsole when your foot hits the ground.
This only adds to the fun and bouncy ride that you get with Invincible 3 running shoes.
The image above shows the entire outsole tread and the image below gives a closer look at it.
It’s a lightweight shoe (considering the extreme cushioning)
The Nike Invincible 3 weighs 9.9 oz (280g) which isn’t the lightest shoe ever but it’s not heavy either, and it certainly feels very lightweight when worn thanks to how cloud-like and bouncy they are.
I love the fun and bold design
This one isn’t a feature so to speak but fashion means a lot to me when I’m out running. I mean it’s important to look good when you’re out there eating miles for breakfast right!?
I love how that babelicious design flair in the midsole plays off against the simple, clean, and airy upper design.
What do you think!? Is it a hit for you too or a flop in terms of looks? Let me know in the comments below!
The men’s and women’s Invincible 3 each have 4 different colors to choose from. To see all the vibrant colorways currently available, visit the Invincible 3 product page.
Nike Invincible 3 performance review
Ok now let’s talk about the experience and emotions that are felt when running in the Nike Invincible 3 – because this is really where they shine!
Great features are one thing but it’s how those features and materials translate to the actual run experience that matters the most.
There’s no better way to describe how the Invincible 3 feel when running that FUN.
The way they bounce, and the energy return that you get from that bounce is quite frankly astonishing.
You feel lighter on your feet, and less tired than you normally would after running, and you’ll feel like you can just keep running with smiles for miles.
They’re very comfortable too – this includes the plush, responsive cushioning underfoot, the soft materials that wrap around your heel, and the lightweight upper that comforts you as it hugs your feet.
I do feel like they could benefit from a slightly lower drop of around 5mm – I think this would help with additional stability for anyone who may have a tendency to heel strike when running. That said, although the Nike Invincible 3 has a 9mm drop from heel to toe, it doesn’t feel too high.
That’s all I’m going to leave you with for the performance of the Invincible 3’s because I really want you to try them out for yourself and come back here with your comments after your first run in them! 🙂
I’m confident you will love the experience too.
Who are the Nike Invincible 3 running shoes for?
The Nike Invincible 3 is for you if you’re looking for an insanely cushioned running shoe with great stability and comfort for putting in easy miles.
You’ll also love these if you’re training for a marathon because bagging those essential miles is such an easy game with the Invincible 3 on your feet.
They feel so comfortable that you’ll find the “zone” much quicker than you may be used to and as a result time will fly by quickly, and you’ll likely feel a lot less tired than you may usually be after long runs.
They’re fast shoes too, however, thanks to the great energy return that you get from ZoomX foam in the midsole – this makes them a great choice for 5km, 10km and even half marathon racing and training.
The Nike Invincible 3 is not for you if you’re looking for a super lightweight running shoe that has a low drop, low stack, and maximum ground feel because it’s very much the opposite – it’s a fun, bouncy shoe that’s best for putting in easy miles.
Are they worth your hard-earned money?
$180 for the Nike Invincible 3 is expensive but I do believe you get good value for money because there’s really no other running shoe out there that feels this comforting while running.
For many people having cushioned shoes like these could be the difference between running and not at all because some may need that extra support in order to keep running pains at bay… or to make those long pavement runs that much more fun!