Runners with cushion to neutral to light stability needs who are ramping up their miles will benefit from the support and cushion in this PUMA. Wear it for a wide range of daily training from speedwork to long run to recovery miles.
Skip the ForeverRun Nitro if you want a firm midfoot that resists twisting and bending under pressure—in which case, look at the adidas Boston as the ENERGYRODS hold that midfoot stiff. If you are hard on forefoot uppers this might not be your best shoe as the two thin layers of mesh may not wear well against a persistent big toe.
PUMA is adidas’ sister company as these shoe powerhouses were founded by two brothers: Adolf Dassler (adidas) and Rudolf Dassler (PUMA) in Germany in the late 1940’s.
PUMA is trying its hand at stability with a new technology: “nitrogen-injected” foam in two densities for the best in cushion but also support and responsiveness. This is a more stable version of their Magnify NITRO max cushion neutral model and their short distance shoe, the Liberate NITRO.
This added nitrogen is new—but not unique! Brooks’ DNA Loft v3 foam also boasts infused nitrogen.
A very similar shoe to the ForeverRun NITRO is, in fact, the Glycerin GTS 20 which sports a similar nitrogen foam.
Both NITRO and Glycerin DNA loft versions offer a smooth transition, stable Guiderails/RunGuides and a pleasant feel underfoot; Glycerin GTS is .6 oz. heavier than ForeverRun NITRO in my women’s size 9.5, which may be explained by the 3 mm. more midsole in Glycerin.
The list price is $150 USD, $10 lower than the similar Brooks Glycerin GTS.
Shoe weighs in at 9.6 oz. US men’s sz 9, 7.9 oz. Women’s sz 8. The quick transition makes this mid-weight shoe feel light on foot.
Another similar shoe is that adidas Adizero SL.
Opening the box these shoes looked sleek and well cushioned. “Do pumas have spots?” I asked Google, because the shoe has spot-like patches decorating the upper. Adults do not have spots, but young pumas (also called cougars or mountain lions) can have spots or stripes.
The spotted print is fitting, then, for this young stability shoe cutting its teeth in the market!
On my first walk around the kitchen I remarked that it felt like “upside-down suction cups” lined the bottom due to the extra buoyant feel from the double-layer midsole. The sensation reminded me of those little two-inch popper toys that spring up when turned inside out!
Runs feel invigorating in this shoe! Heel fit is locked-in and comfortable with no tricks of special tying needed, and the dense material at the top of the tongue protects from pressure from the ties.
Two thin layers of see-through, breathable mesh make up most of the upper, with a “young puma” pattern of thicker “spots.”
Since I have the white colorway and did a number of runs on a trail covered in mulberries, I was pleased to find that it washes off well! The photos in this review were taken after dark splotches from 4 runs in the mulberries had been cleaned off the upper and sole sidewalls!
I clean them soon after the run under running water with a paper towel or washcloth. Water goes right through this upper, which is great for water release when running in the rain, but it holds a little more water than the single layer adidas racing shoes, such as Takumi Sen. The heel padding is more absorbent and takes a little water on.
A light cap lines the tip of the toebox, and smooth rubbery plastic reinforces the lace holes. The tongue is wide and semi-gusseted, attached to the base of the upper with inch and a half wide bands on both sides; it is made of the same material as the upper and provides a snug midfoot wrap, with two loops to run the laces through for further lock down.
The top of the tongue changes to a coated pad that stays thin yet protects the foot very well where the ties might otherwise bring irritation. Well done, PUMA!
PWRTAPE overlays run all through the upper for reinforcement in addition to the thicker PUMA logo strips that line the lateral side. Making these strips and the logo on the heel more reflective would help with visibility; this shoe does not catch the eye in low light.
Moving to the ankle opening we find the perfect amount of padding for comfort and a healthy heel lock as well as my favorite aspect: the large heel loop! With how helpful this simple piece is, I would expect to find it on more shoes. Adidas can take notes, here, as this loop is far more helpful than the grip piece on the back of their recent Adizero shoes. I appreciate this loop immensely for help slipping the shoe on!
The heel counter is worth highlighting: an external RUNGUIDE System rubbery-plastic clip reinforces an internal heel counter lining the upper mesh. Inside the shoe the heel cup extends down into the midsole, with the more firm outer midsole functioning as the early heel counter—a smart and functional design!
Last but not least, this shoe’s sockliner is also not typical. It contains a metatarsal pad designed by the Kaiser Clinic of Denmark that increases comfort in this high-pressure area but is not noticeable/obtrusive while running.
Fit is true-to-size with a medium-narrow fit throughout. My forefoot felt just a touch constricted early on but the sidewalls relaxed after a few runs.
Soft and dynamic, the inner, less-dense core of the midsole welcomes the foot while a more firm version of this nitrogen-infused supercritical EVA NITRO foam acts as a lower heel counter and guides the foot forward.
“Supercritical” means that the material has the low viscosity of a gas—molecules move past one another freely—and the high density of a liquid.
Though this is a max-cushioned shoe with a wide base, it is not that heavy due to the lighter weight of this foam.
Since the shoe twists pretty easily and bends with some pressure it falls into the light-stability category and is comfortable for neutral runners as well. A wide base that bevels out increases resistance to sideways motion.
The outsole is as intriguing to look at as it is grippy with the PumaGrip teardrop and triangle designs in the rubber as grip and cut out of the midsole to offer windows to the soft inner core.
I am partial to the puma cut-out at the base of the heel. My high school mascot was a tiger, and when our cross country team combined with nearby towns we coined ourselves the cheetahs—bring on the cat-like speed and reflexes!
This shoe has lots of tech such as the wide, thin-padded, gusseted tongue; a guidance system that starts with a midsole molded around the heel; and dual density hypercritical nitrogen midsole. The base of the shoe gives window to its softer layer, and is covered by protective rubber with grip.
The materials and efficient yet comfortable design make this one of my favorite daily trainers. I recommend it to cross country runners up through half marathoners this fall as I am recommending it to my tenth grader!
This venture into stability for their NITRO line lands solidly in the “light stability” category. Those looking for more structure than a neutral shoe will find it here. Those looking for a traditional stability shoe will find it lacking.