As a reviewer, the struggle is real when a shoe so closely resembles its predecessor. The Asics Gel Nimbus 26 is almost a carbon copy of the Asics Gel Nimbus 25. Sure, there’s some small tweaks but I’m going to handle those in one paragraph. Heck, I could probably get them out in one sentence if I wanted to make it a long one.
But my pain is probably not your pain. Most runners who come to depend on a shoe, especially a comfortable daily trainer like the Nimbus, don’t want epic changes year in and year out. Nimbus fans who were at first shocked by the sea change of the Nimbus 25 are probably just now used to the new look and feel.
Asics Gel Nimbus 26
Release Date: January 1, 2024
Weight: Men’s 10.7 oz., Women’s 9.2 oz.
Sizing: True to size
- Rundown: The Asics Gel Nimbus 26 isn’t snappy, but the highly padded, comfortable upper, and cushion make it the perfect shoe for putting in a lot of easy-paced miles.
If the Asics Gel Nimbus 26 had been another giant departure from the current model it may have been too much change for the majority of runners that are creatures of habit. Talk to any salesperson at a local running store and you’ll hear a similar refrain. Too much change spooks long time, loyal customers of a brand or shoe.
And that’s ok. At the end of the day, most runners just want a reliable shoe that will perform day in and day out so they can enjoy their hobby without any extra worries. I can’t blame them for that. Not everyone is going to be a shoe geek like me.
So, those of you here to see if the Asics Gel Nimbus 26 will fulfill your performance needs as good or better than the Nimbus 25 without too much change, you’re in luck. This year’s light touch by the Asics design team means the shoe feels almost exactly the same below and around the foot. The experience is completely consistent with last year.
Not much. Just some slight differences in midsole and outsole.
First, let’s tackle the midsole. The midsole uses the same FF Blast+ Eco foam but is shaped a little differently to lose some weight and look more suave. The high end stability is still there as is the plush cushion.
Next, the outsole. The Nimbus 25’s traction could be inconsistent so Asics implemented a new Hybrid Asicsgrip outsole that’s a little stickier and has a bit more bite. It’s still not gonna help you grip winter ice but you’ll feel secure in rainy, wet weather. That was a bit of a gamble last year so it’s good to have that fixed.
There’s also a slight tweak in the lacing structure but it doesn’t change the fit in any discernible way. It’s a more durable lacing setup though so it should help the shoes last longer if you’re one that’s constantly yanking on your laces.
Other than that, well, *checks notes*, the Asics Gel Nimbus 26 is the same as last year. And that’s not a bad thing when last year’s model did its job so well.
- All around comfort and padding
- Super-stretchy knit tongue (best on the market)
- Streamlined aesthetics and casual appeal
- Top of class stability both laterally and medially
- Passes the theme park test
- Singular purpose. It’s only built for long, slow miles.
Is the Asics Gel Nimbus 26 wide foot friendly?
The Asics Gel Nimbus 26 fits true to size and is quite accommodating in the forefoot. The engineered mesh upper is quite stretchy. And if that’s not enough, the Asics Gel Nimbus 26 is also available in two more widths, 2E and 4E Extra-Wide.
Because of all that, wide footers are covered better than almost any other shoe on the market.
Is the Asics Gel Nimbus 26 worth $160?
More or less. $150-160 is where highly cushioned daily trainers sit nowadays. That’s crazy to say but in our high inflation environment, this is what we get. The Asics Gel Nimbus 26 provides enough value to justify its price.
But, given how close the Gel Nimbus 25 and 26 are, I’d buy the Nimbus 25 on sale until they’re no longer available and then transition to the Nimbus 26. That’ll save you money and you won’t be missing out on much.
Asics Gel Nimbus 26 Summary
Just like the Nimbus 25, the Asics Gel Nimbus 26 is a well-cushioned, super comfortable daily running shoe that can absorb hundreds of easy road miles. It also feels great on the treadmill. You won’t use it on speed days but it’s a luxurious option for recovery runs or jogs.
How does the Author Run?
Drew Whitcomb (age 42, 6’6″ 195lbs): Runs daily with a once a week rest day. Runs a lot of miles due to testing needs and a growing affinity for long-distance races. Regularly competes in marathons, half-marathons, 10k, and 5k races.
While Asics did send a pair of the Asics Gel Nimbus 26 to facilitate this review, they had no involvement in this review, didn’t receive an advance look at it, and have not attempted to influence it.