The Nike Mayfly, in its original conception was, perhaps, the ultimate performance racing shoe. In the world of competitive running, “seconds count” is more than just a figure of speech, and when mere seconds can make the difference between victory and defeat, or coming just short of a new PR, any chance to shave them off your time is critical.
The Nike Mayfly sought to achieve this through weight reduction. The more weight a runner is carrying, the more effort has to be expended to achieve the same result. The Mayfly eliminated any extra baggage. The parachute nylon upper and minimalist sole were as light as possible. The idea was that wearing the Mayfly in a race after training in your every day shoes would make your normal effort that much more effective.
The original Mayfly’s innovation didn’t stop there. The shoe was designed to last over the course of 100 kilometers, which is why the shoe took its name from an insect with a 24-hour life cycle. Users were supposed to send the shoes back to Nike, where they would be recycled. That part didn’t quite work out as planned. Most people weren’t willing to part with the distinctive yellow and black, tree bark patterned Mayfly, planned obsolescence or not.
Now, the Mayfly is back in a form that the wearer is fully intended to keep for good. The shoe has been reimagined as a lifestyle silhouette. The sleek, minimal shape of the Mayfly is the same, but the lightweight nylon has given way to a woven, suede upper. Some things never change though. You’ll definitely want to keep these long after you’ve eclipsed the 100k mark.
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