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Nike Pegasus 40: Forever Versatile
By Matt Klein and Bach Pham

There is something to be said for consistency for all the new shoes coming out with more bells and whistles. Especially when it comes to daily miles, having a training shoe you can just put on and forget about can be helpful for focusing and tuning out over longer efforts. The Nike Pegasus 40 is a great example of this. While the longest-running shoe series has had its fair share of changes of the year, its function has remained the same. A staple workhorse that can handle some workouts and long runs, the most recent version sees some slight tweaks to the upper, but like its legacy, remains fairly consistent from the previous version. 

Nike Pegasus 40
Price: $129.95 at Running Warehouse
Weight: 9.4 oz, 266 g (men's size 9), 7.7 oz, 218 g (women's size 8)
Stack Height: 33mm / 23 mm
Drop: 10 mm
Classification: Neutral Daily Training Shoe


Matt: The Nike Pegasus 40 returns as a lighter neutral daily trainer with a mild upper update from the previous version. A standard fit with a little extra forefoot volume sits up top, allowing for a variety of foot shapes. Full-length React foam combined with heel and forefoot zoom units make up the midsole, providing a slightly firmer but cushioned ride. A durable and well-lugged outsole sits on the bottom, allowing the shoe to handle a variety of terrain over longer miles. The Nike Pegasus 40 remains consistent as a workhorse daily training shoe with some upper refinements, making it a great option for daily training, long runs and a little uptempo work. 

Bach: Fans of the long-running Nike Pegasus series will find a lot of familiar elements in the Pegasus 40. Maintaining the characteristics of the Peg 39 underfoot, the latest edition opens up the upper a good deal, adding more room over foot. The shoe remains a versatile daily trainer that can not only run, but handle a variety of tasks whether you want to dabble in other sports or run daily errands all in one package.

: Brooks Ghost 15, Mizuno Wave Rider 25
PAST VERSION: Nike Pegasus 39


Matt: The Nike Pegasus 40 fits me true to size in my normal men's size 9. The width is a little wider in the forefoot and progressively snugger in the midfoot and heel. The engineered mesh allows for plenty of stretch and wiggle room the front. This also allows for some extra volume, so those that also need height in the forefoot will do well here. The midfoot is slightly snug with a moderately thick gusseted tongue. The internal mesh that starts as the gusseting for the tongue extends all the way to the forefoot as an additional internal layer. This not only secures the foot, but also acts as an internal sock that is great for sockless running. The heel is slightly snug with a highly padded heel collar and a moderately stiff heel counter. The heel collar cushioning provides plenty of protection from the counter, but those sensitive to counters will need to be cautious as the padding compresses over time. The security is good between the internal mesh/gusseting and the snug heel. I did not have to lace lock this shoe and was able to put it on and forget it was there. 

Bach: If you've tried the Nike Pegasus in the past and found it to be just a bit too narrow or snug, the Pegasus 40 is the first in the series that really aims to open things up throughout and provide a bit more volume. This is now a much more standard/medium fitting shoe, and less of a narrow one. There's a bit more volume in the toebox which is comfortable and for me some volume all the way to the heel. The laces and tongue do a decent job of pulling things together. I didn't have to lace lock the Pegasus, but felt a little more confident in doing so just to get that extra volume reeled in. To be clear, this is not a wide-fitting shoe, just more generous than prior Pegasus models. The heel is moderately cushioned and holds the foot in fine. There's a rigid heel counter with a decent amount of padding.

Nike in general did a nice job making some adjustments that were issues over the past three models, helping provide a secure, no-frills fitting upper that sits feels more like an everyday trainer and less performance fit than some of the recent iterations.


Matt: The Nike Pegasus 40 is a standard, cushioned daily training shoe. The full-length React foam is slightly firmer but there is plenty of underfoot. I did not really notice the heel/forefoot zoom units but did find the heel cushioning to be softer than the forefoot. The weight is on the lighter side at 9.4 oz (men's size 9) but still feels like a standard daily training shoe. There is a 10mm drop listed, although it feels closer to 8mm. There is a slightly lateral heel bevel in the rearfoot although the lateral side of the sole features a lateral longitudinal groove that acts as what Nike calls a "Crash Rail." As the shoe breaks in, this does seem to work well for moderately smooth heel transitions. The forefoot is mild to moderately flexible and transitions well at a variety of paces.

The Nike Pegasus 40 functions best as a daily training/mileage shoe. It works well at easy paces but can also handle moderate efforts. Uptempo running for me has been fine (sub 6:45/7min pace) but for me I would prefer a lighter shoe for true tempo runs (~6-6:10 pace). Strides and fartlek efforts are fine, but I would definitely choose a lighter shoe for track and faster intervals. For those with neutral mechanics, the cushioning is fine for longer efforts if you do not want something too soft. The slightly firmer midsole comes from the combination of React foam and the extensive rubber outsole. The durability has been good as I have 35 miles on my pair with only a little bit of wear at my normal spot. I would expect an average to slightly above average number of miles out of these for a road daily training shoe. The outsole traction is great on a variety of road surfaces. I have also taken this on trail surfaces and while it is not a great choice for aggressive trails, it works fine on mild trails and fire roads. This makes it a decently versatile option, although those wanting to off-road a bit more should check out the Pegasus Trail.

Bach: The Pegasus 40 feels super traditional in so many ways. It does not have a rockered design. It has the classic Pegasus waffle outsole that does an excellent job of gripping everything and remains one of the Peg's strongest suits. The shoe features a full-length React midsole and Zoom Air units in the heel and forefoot. I would say, similar to Matt, I didn't feel it in the heel at all, but definitely felt a mildly soft sensation underneath the middle of the forefoot which far and away is the best part of the whole midsole. Landing heel-to-toe, the shoe otherwise is on the firmer side and honestly is not very exciting, but the Air unit saves the forefoot and provides a moderately softer sensation. The shoe feels best once you are in rhythm and just hitting that Zoom Air unit over and over again.

The shoe does feel a bit lighter than past versions, especially 37 and 38, providing a more balanced weight throughout the Pegasus 40. The shoe transitions pretty well and provides a very middle-of-the-road experience all-around. It's not the most cushioned, but it's also not the most firm. It picks up the pace okay, and can go down to some slower paces just fine as well. I felt comfortable pushing the shoe up and downhills, better than some similar daily trainers in the market right now. The shoe's lighter turnover and again grippy outsole makes pushing uphill feel fairly fine and gives a little bit of extra grip going downhill as well. Durability wise, I have had no wear on my outsole after 50 miles, but am typically a light-footed runner in general. The shoe has remained relatively consistent through testing in terms of performance.

The Nike Pegasus 40 fits best for everyday to medium distance runs, especially if you are used to more cushioned footwear for long efforts. It can handle a long run for those who prefer a lower profile shoe, but those who are used to higher stacked footwear may find it to be a little lacking once you get to training well over an hour compared to a max cushion shoe or a shoe that's a little more responsive.

The Pegasus 40 is a true workhorse for picking up daily miles and finds its versatility in being able to do a mix of terrains from grass to dirt roads and very mild trails relatively well for a road training shoe. It's something you can grab for a large portion of your runs in the week, and pairs well with a super shoe or performance trainer for those harder, longer efforts.


Matt: The Nike Pegasus 40 is a neutral shoe. There are no traditional methods of stability. The sole is width is fairly narrow, especially in the midfoot. There are some mild sidewalls in the medial and lateral midfoot, although I did not notice them outside the feeling of a higher medial arch (which is normal for Nike). The outsole grooves may provide some extremely subtle guidance, but overall the Pegasus is not a stable shoe. I have done fine in this shoe for short to moderate distances but found that my body fatigues over anything longer. Those that do not want any stability or guidance will do well in this shoe, while those that may need more should look at the Nike Structure 24.

Bach: The Pegasus 40 is very much a neutral shoe throughout. It has a classic narrow platform underneath, especially in the midfoot to heel. I could feel this when going down steep hills and having to put some serious breaks in controlling the shoe.

The firmer sole does offer some resistance to collapsing. Also, guidance from both outsole grooves and the sensation of the forefoot air pocket in rhythm provides a hint of centering. It being a lower platform than so many max cushioned shoes makes it feel a little less unwieldy as well. I had no issues with the shoe and my flat feet and felt it was a decently comfortable platform to be on. The lockdown of the upper does provide solid security which offers some confidence when going off road. Neutral runners who seek a well-fitting, traditionally-stacked shoe will do fine in the Peg 40. Those who want a bit of support will want to look at our list of stable neutral shoes.

Thoughts as a DPT: Who Do Stability/Guidance Concepts Not Work For?
By Matthew Klein

We talk about stability and guidance frequently here on Doctors of Running. Much of that comes from my mild stability needs and trying to navigate beyond the older concepts of being stuck with certain shoes. This has led to an exploration of additional methods of guidance including sidewalls, sole width, geometry and more. The purpose of exploring this is detailing how those who need more inherently stable shoes can explore beyond the quickly diminishing category of stability shoes. Fortunately, we have seen an increase in these methods being used, making a variety of previously neutral shoes now "stable neutral." While this is great for many people, there are still some that these methods will not work for or may work against. As detailed in the RUN-CAT (Running Footwear Comfort Assessment Tool), the perception of stability underfoot is on a scale (Bishop et al., 2020). The best is finding something that feels stable enough for you as an individual. Something too stiff or too unstable will not work and thinking "optimal" rather than "as much as possible" (unless you need that) will be more sustainable for each person long term.

The most common methods (as mentioned) for creating inherent stability include sidewalls, wider soles rocker geometries and sole flare. Those sensitive to sidewalls are most commonly the ones who are blister prone. These midsole extensions can create additional pressure and friction that can create hot spots for certain people and may not be the best option for those with this issue. Wider soles, especially in the midfoot, mean more material underfoot that has to flex. This can stiffen the ride, which is a common problem in maximalist shoes. This has to be offset either with appropriate flex grooves and/or appropriate rocker geometry. Those who do not like stiffness and instead want more flexibility may not like this. I continue to disagree with the use of narrow midfoot designs as we have plenty of methods to facilitate forward motion and the midfoot is often not a place you want to facilitate motion in any direction but forward. Rocker geometry has become more common as midsole stack heights have increased. We have discussed that these tend to shift work up toward the knee and hip (Sobhani et al., 2017) so those who prefer to utilize an ankle strategy with running may not do as well with rockers.

Finally, sole flare can be extremely variable for many different people. Sole flare widens the sole and may resist motion in the direction it projects. However, landing on an extension of the sole (sole flare) may increase the velocity of motion in the frontal plane (side to side). A lateral heel flare may be problematic for those sensitive to pronation movements as it may facilitate that faster (Nigg & Bahlsen, 1988). A lateral forefoot flare may be problematic for the same reason in either those who forefoot strike or those that tend to collapse too much off the medial forefoot. Medial flare can be helpful for those who need more help controlling motion that direction. However, it may be problematic for those that need facilitation in that direction and who go too far lateral. 

The above methods are all inherently good because they give people options. Previously, all stability was done a certain way whether it worked for everyone or not. We now have a great variety of options to help facilitate the many incredible ways that people move. The challenge is finding one or two that work for everyone, which I doubt exists and we just need to accept that different things will work for different people. 


Bishop, C., Buckley, J. D., Esterman, A. E., & Arnold, J. B. (2020). The running shoe comfort assessment tool (RUN-CAT): Development and evaluation of a new multi-item assessment tool for evaluating the comfort of running footwear. Journal of Sports Sciences38(18), 2100-2107.

Nigg, B. M., & Bahlsen, H. A. (1988). Influence of heel flare and midsole construction on pronation supination and impact forces for heel-toe running. Journal of Applied Biomechanics4(3), 205-219.

Sobhani, S., van den Heuvel, E. R., Dekker, R., Postema, K., Kluitenberg, B., Bredeweg, S. W., & Hijmans, J. M. (2017). Biomechanics of running with rocker shoes. Journal of Science and Medicine in Sport20(1), 38-44.


Matt: While the Pegasus is not stable enough for me to use for longer efforts, it is a solid shoe that will work for a variety of people with neutral stability needs and wanting a simple daily training shoe. Given that the Structure already exists (I am hopeful and excited for version 25), I don't think it is appropriate for me to suggest this shoe become more stable. I would still love to see the midfoot widened just a bit to match the rest of the sole. This is not to become a stability shoe, but to make it just a hair more stable through that area. My biggest suggestion is in the upper. I think Nike could drop this down to 9 oz (men's size 9) if the extra padding in the upper was paired down. ASICS's flagship trainer, the Cumulus 25, is now down to 9 oz. With Nike's experience with lightweight uppers, I believe dropping the weight a bit more through this method may further improve the versatility of this long-running daily training shoe. 

Bach: It's a popular request to have the Pegasus take some extreme changes, adding something like ZoomX to catapult its performance. I think the Pegasus has an important niche though of being a capable all-arounder that can handle not just running, but other tasks an individual who wants a do-it-all trainer can feel confident in. That's why from a running perspective, it can be hard to really boil down what kind of change the shoe would benefit from.

One thing I've always enjoyed is that the Pegasus is more of a moderate cushioned trainer. While maybe not leaping to ZoomX, I do believe it's time for a bit of a reset with a new foam that lightens the Pegasus into the sub 9 oz trainer range while adding a little bit more responsiveness.


Matt: The Nike Pegasus 40 is for those with neutral mechanics who want a simple daily training shoe for easy runs, long runs and some uptempo work. The fit will work best for those with normal width, slightly wider and slightly narrow feet. The sole will work best for those wanting a slightly firmer ride that stays consistent over mileage. The higher drop and design will work for those used to traditional daily training shoes and the lighter weight makes the shoe a bit more versatile for some uptempo efforts like fartleks, strides and hill repeats. 

Those coming from the Pegasus 39 should know the shoes are not really that different. The upper is a little thicker and there is a bit more volume up front than previous. Outside of that, the underfoot feel is exactly the same. Those wanting to save a dollar should stock up on version 39, while those concerned about whether version 40 will work for them can relax and expect the same reliable ride. 

Bach: There's very little surprise when it comes to the Nike Pegasus 40, and I say that in a good way. It remains a reliable, moderately cushioned trainer that can tackle a little bit of everything. It not only handles your daily mileage, but for people who want a do-it-all trainer that can also handle some recreational basketball, soccer, or tennis while also running errands and daily wear, this continues to be a go-to option. The added width makes it much more comfortable for all day use and a wider range of feet, which I think will go a long way in making this model in particular a popular one this year.

You can just about pair anything with the Pegasus as well. From the Invincible for longer runs and recovery days to Vaporfly or Streakfly for workouts and racing, there's not really a bad option to take alongside the Pegasus.

Competitively, this is certainly the most traditional daily trainer out now with a flatter platform and mild mannered midsole. If you want something similar, but softer, the On Cloudsurfer and ASICS Cumulus 25 may be your best bet. If you want a slightly more stable ride, the Saucony Ride 16 could be a consideration. If you want something very similar, but even higher drop than you may want to see the Mizuno Wave Rider 27.

The Nike Pegasus 40 is really sits in the middle of everything and provides a relatively safe option if you just want a trainer that can cover a variety of bases at a slightly lower price point than some of its competitors.


Fit: A-/B+ (Comfortable upper with a little more volume up front and slightly snug in the back. 
B+ (Solid easy, long and uptempo shoe. React foam consistent but not exciting)
Stability: B [Neutral] (Narrow sole slightly offset by crash pad but basic neutral shoe)
DPT/Footwear Science: B (Standard Pegasus. It has worked and still does. Nothing super innovative and no major changes from the previous version)
Personal: B+ (Although I am limited to short to moderate-distance runs, the Pegasus has been a go-to due to its consistency and ability to get through daily miles without much fuss.)
Overall: B+

Fit: A- (A comfortable fit that amps up room just a notch to feel comfortable and forgettable, which is all you ask of an upper)
B+ (React provides a rhythmic, easy-going ride that's consistent and simple. Great traction)
Stability: B (Confident fit, traction, and mild centering help make this a slightly more stable shoe for me. Construction otherwise is neutral)
DPT/Footwear Science: B (Ultimately just a very subtle update over the past trainer)
Personal: B+/A- (Love the ability to use it any day of the week and on any terrain)
Overall: B+


Nike Pegasus 40
Price: $129.95 at Running Warehouse

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Editor's Note: As always, the views presented on this website belong to myself or the selected few who contribute to these posts. This website should not and does not serve as a replacement for seeking medical care. If you are currently injured or concerned about an injury, please see your
local running physical therapist. If you are in the Los Angeles area, I am currently taking clients for running evaluations.

***Disclaimer: These shoes were provided free of charge in exchange for a review.  We thank the people at Nike Running for sending us a pair.  This in no way affected the honesty of this review. We systematically put each type of shoe through certain runs prior to review. For trainers and performance trainers, we take them on daily runs, workouts, recovery runs and a long run prior to review (often accumulating anywhere from 20-50 miles in the process). For racing flats we ensure that we have completed intervals, a tempo or steady state run as well as a warm-up and cool down in each pair prior to review. This systematic process is to ensure that we have experience with each shoe in a large variety of conditions to provide expansive and thorough reviews for the public and for companies. Our views are based on our extensive history in the footwear industry and years testing and developing footwear. If you are a footwear rep looking for footwear reviews or consultations on development, we are currently looking to partner with companies to assist, discuss and promote footwear models. Partnership will not affect the honesty of our reviews.

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