Facts

  • Terrain

    Road

    Shoes best for road, track and light gravel. See the best road shoes.

    Trail

    Shoes best for trail, off road, mountains and other unstable surfaces. See the best trail shoes.

    Good to know

    As long as you stick to the road or path, and if you want just one running shoe, buy a road running shoe.

  • Arch support

    Neutral / cushion / high arch

    Shoes for runners who do not need any additional arch support (Around 50% of runners). Best for people with normal, high or medium high arches. See the best neutral shoes.

    Stability / overpronation / normal arch

    Shoes for runners who need mild to moderate arch support (Around 45% of runners). Best for runners with a low arch. See the best stability shoes.

    Motion control / severe overpronation / flat feet

    Shoes for runners who needs a lot of arch support. Best for runners with flat feet. See the best motion control shoes.

    Good to know

    - Rule of thumb: If in doubt, buy neutral shoes to avoid injuries.
    - More about arch support in this video.
    - Find your arch type by following steps from this video.

  • Use

    Daily running

    Cushioned shoes for your daily easy running. Great comfort. See best shoes for daily running.

    Competition

    Lightweight shoes good for races, interval training, tempo runs and fartlek. Here are the best competition running shoes.

    Good to know

    If you want just one pair of shoes, buy a shoe for daily running.

  • Price
    $100
  • Weight
    Men: 8.4oz
    Women: 6.9oz
  • Heel to toe drop
    Men: 3mm
    Women: 3mm

    The height difference from the heel to the forefoot, also known as heel drop, toe spring, heel to toe spring or simply drop.

    There are many opinions about what a good heel drop is. We do not recommend any in particular. Lean more in this video.

  • Heel height
    Men: 23mm
    Women: 23mm
  • Forefoot height
    Men: 20mm
    Women: 20mm
  • Width
    Men: normal
    Women: normal
  • Release date
    May 2017
Show more facts

Summary

We spent 8.7 hours reading reviews from experts and users. In summary, this is what runners think:

6 reasons to buy

  • Some runners commended the breathable and flexible nature of this running shoe.
  • A good number of testers agreed that they experienced a smooth and highly responsive ride.
  • Several reviewers mentioned that the lightweight structure of the Topo Athletic Fli-Lyte 2 was agreeable for all-day running sessions.
  • According to some consumers, the shoe provided enough traction on slick pavements and asphaltic surfaces.
  • A lot of runners loved the shoe’s spacious toe box.
  • Many testers agreed that the shoe was affordably-priced.

3 reasons not to buy

  • One of the runners said that the tongue unit was a little bit bulky.
  • Some runners complained that the laces easily unraveled by themselves.
  • A small number of buyers commented that there was a seam that rubbed and went over their big toes. This resulted in the painful cuts on both toes.

Bottom line

Many neutral road runners agreed that the Topo Athletic Fli-Lyte 2 was able to offer a soft, flexible, and responsive ride. The new upper material gained fans as it delivered a comfortable and breathable coverage. Suffice it to say that it was generally welcomed as an efficient shoe that excels in a variety of speeds and distances. Although some had noted a few cuts on their big toes, others still recommended this shoe because of its roomy toe box and reasonable price.

Rankings

Expert Reviews

Experts are runners, who post reviews at youtube, directly at RunRepeat or at their own websites. Each expert is categorized from level 1 to level 5 based on expertise. See stats on expert reviews and how we calculate scores here.

Are you an expert? Apply to contribute here.

90 / 100 based on 11 expert reviews

  • 96 / 100 | Avery Smith

    Topo Flylite 2: The Only Road Shoe You Need

    If I could only have a single pair of road running shoes, I would happily choose the Topo Athletic Flylite 2.

    They can handle any type of road running, from speed work to long runs. With a wide toe box and low drop platform, the Flylites are a perfect combination of a barefoot running shoe and a standard daily trainer.

     

    Marketed Statistics

       Weight  8.4oz Terrain  Road
       Heel Height 23mm  Support Level  Neutral
       Forefoot Height 10mm  Price  $100
       Drop  3m    

    Data from Runners World Shoe Lab:

    • Weight -  Light | 8.4 oz
    • Heel-To-Toe-Drop - Low | 4.3 mm
    • Heel Height - Very Low | 25.4 mm
    • Heel Cushioning - Moderate
    • Forefoot Height - Low | 21.1 mm
    • Forefoot Cushioning- Firm
    • Flexibility - Very Stiff
    • Stability Features - More
    • Energy Return - Most
    • Upper 

     

    The Flylite has a soft, yet sturdy, perforated mesh upper. The upper has a synthetic moisture-wicking lining which keeps the feet cool and dry in hot weather. I never developed any hot spots or blisters while running in the Flylite.

    The upper is reinforced with printed plastic overlays giving the upper a defined, yet adaptable structure. It doesn’t collapse around your foot like other uppers, making it feel more sturdy.

    Heel cup

    The Flylite has a low profile heel cup to provide structure and support. The heel collar is lined with plush cushioning to enhance comfort.

    Topo made the cushioning just right: there is just enough padding for maximum comfort, without feeling clumsy and hot.

     

    Tongue and Laces

    The tongue has a moderate amount of padding. It absorbs all of the pressure from the laces without going overboard.

    The tongue stays put on top of the foot. It doesn't bunch up or move from side to side. The Flylite has standard flat laces.

    Since the shoe has a wide fit, I do have to crank down on the laces a little bit, but this isn't a problem. The laces do not stretch at all. I wish they did; It would improve the fit.
    I recommend putting a pair of lock laces on almost any pair of running shoes; they make putting on the shoe very easy and they improve the fit.

    Fit

    The Flylite has a straight fit. The heel and midfoot are the standard widths, but the toe box is very wide. This is a distinguishing factor of the Flylite, as it allows your toes to splay as if you were running barefoot.

     

    Midsole Material

    The midsole is a made of a standard wedge of EVA cushioning that dampens a fair amount of impact. The EVA moderately dense. This makes the shoe feel decently fast while still absorbing plenty of impact.

    The Flylite is quite a stiff shoe considering how thin the midsole is. The stiff midsole gives the shoe more of a standard daily trainer feel when running slowly and more of a fast springy ride when running uptempo.

     

    Strobel board

    A strobel board is a hard piece of material between the midsole foam and the sockliner. The strobel board stops your foot from sinking into the midsole cushioning. The strobel board effectively moves the epicenter of the midsole compression from just underneath your foot, to just above the outsole.

    The strobel board causes your foot and lower leg muscles to work harder, but as a result you go faster. Removing the strobel board makes the shoe more comfortable, because your feet and lower legs do not have to work as hard, but you can't sustain as fast of a pace.

    Drop

    The Flylite has a 3-millimeter heel to toe offset. This makes the shoe better for midfoot and forefoot strikers.

    The shoe does not have enough cushioning to accommodate heel strikers. The low drop coupled with the wide toe box gives the shoe a natural ride.

     

    Outsole

    The outsole is a combination of hardened EVA foam in lower wear areas and durable carbon rubber in high abrasion areas. The outsole provides good traction on wet roads and light trails.

    The shoe prioritizes being lightweight over being durable. As a result, the shoe will only last about 300 miles. The shoe is also less expensive than the standard shoe so don’t feel like your getting gypped by the durability!

     

    Best Result

    If I could only have one road running shoe, It would quite possibly be the Flylite. (Luckily this is not the case). The Flylite works very well as a lightweight daily trainer but can also handle uptempo running. I would run any race up to a marathon in this shoe.

    This shoe runs best on roads. It works fine on groomed trails but the performance breaks down on anything technical. I recommend this shoe to any efficient forefoot/midfoot strikers on the market for another all-around road running shoe.

    Sizing

      Shoe Brand My Size
      Topo Athletic  12.5
      Merrell  12
      Brooks  12.5
      Saucony  12
      Altra   12
      New Balance  12 
      Nike  12.5
      Scott   12.5
      Adidas  12.5
      Hoka One One  12.5
      Vibram  12
      Inov-8  12.5
      Vivobarefoot  12

    Comparisons

    Topo Flylite 2 Vs. New Balance Fresh Foam Zante V4

    The Zante is the normal shoe version of the Flylite since the two shoes have a similar ride and weight, but the Zante has a standard narrow fit and greater heel to toe offset.

    The Zante has a more secure fit and better traction. If you prefer more of a natural fit, the Flylite is a better option; but if you prefer a more standard shoe with the same ride, the Zante is a better choice.

    Topo Flylite 2 Vs. Topo Magnifly

    The Magnifly is the big brother of the Flylite. The Magnifly still has the flat geometry and the wide toe box of the Flylite, it just has an ounce and a half extra cushion.

    If you want more cushion for longer runs or because you are a less efficient runner, the Magnifly would be a better choice.

    Topo Flylite 2 Vs. Altra The One 3.0

    The One is another low profile, natural running shoe. The one is slighter lighter than the Flylite and has slightly less cushion.

    The One also has an even wider toe box. The Flylite can handle longer distances and rougher terrain than the One whereas the one has a more barefoot feel.

    Conclusion

    Topo has done a fantastic job with the Flylite. If Topo keeps producing such high-quality shoes that are so fun to wear, they are sure to become one of the big name shoe brands.

    There is no blatant flaw with the Flylite; however, with further innovation, it could become always be lighter, more durable and more comfortable.

    This expert has been verified by RunRepeat. Reviews are neutral, unbiased and based on extensive testing.

  • 95 / 100 | Loretta Engle

    Topo Fli-Lyte 2 - Out of the box comfort!

    It’s so frustrating to think you identified the perfect running shoe, then the new and improved release is not the same and its back to square one!

    As a “mature” runner in the grand master category who has suffered foot issues over the years, it has required me to do a great deal of shoe experimenting. I thought I hit a home run with the Saucony Kinvara earlier releases, but, unfortunately, recent versions have not been working. 

    At the 2017 Boston Marathon expo, I was introduced to Topo and I am glad I paid attention by trying on the Fli-Lyte 2. The shoe felt perfect from the instant they went on my feet!

    Design & Comfort

    Being primarily a road runner, I average 55 to 65 miles a week and race a variety of distances. Although, living in North Central Florida does result in a flexible definition of a road, at times to include our share of lime rock and sandy surfaces.

    The shoe is very responsive and provides cushioning especially when tracking over some of the irregular and rough “roads”.

    My experience with the lower drop shoes (Fli-Lyte 2 is 3 mm drop), has been very successful providing appropriate positioning and striking comfort. In addition, I have not experienced any running injuries. 

     

     

    I love the anatomical toe box with the no seams feature. It has eliminated all my prior blister problems, painful rubbing, and black toenails.  

    Although the toe box is wider, the shoe has just the right snug fit in the heel and midsole area. I did not make any adjustments to my shoe size. Even at the end of marathon races, my toes were not compressed, and feet still felt comfortable!

    The shoe is available in three colors: black/yellow, blue/pink and coral/aqua. Of all the features, the color selections are my least favorite, however, also of least importance!

    Durability

    The shoe is lightweight (size 7 is 6.9 oz.) and the upper portion made of breathable mesh materials that have proven to be very durable.

    The soles have excellent traction and are not slippery on wet surfaces of which I have encountered in other running shoe lines. I placed approximately 275 miles on these shoes and you can see the bottom tread have reasonable wear based on the usage.

     

    Conclusion

    The Topo Fli-Lyte 2 is a fairly priced shoe and deliver both comfort and durability.

    It was put to the test supporting me through the sopping rain and relentless puddles at the 2018 Boston Marathon.

    This expert has been verified by RunRepeat. Reviews are neutral, unbiased and based on extensive testing.

  • 91 / 100 | Runner's World

    The biggest change here is that the shoe is softer without the midsole getting any fatter—and, importantly, the shoe’s weight remains unchanged.

  • 90 / 100 | Run Bulldog Run

    Weight, look and fit are all pretty similar to the original, but the out-of-the-box experience and snazzy new colors should make this another winning shoe

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Updates to Topo Athletic Fli-Lyte 2

  • The Topo Athletic Fli-Lyte 2 features a Full-Length EVA Midsole that’s made to provide a more flexible and softer ride. It has a wide Anatomical Toe Box that allows natural splay.
  • An updated upper design adds durability and form to the façade. It also features a Printed Upper Pattern to provide midfoot security.
  • Lastly, a Rubber Outsole is layered beneath the midsole foam, and it provides enough traction and increased durability.

Topo Athletic Fli-Lyte 2 size and fit

The Topo Athletic Fli-Lyte 2 is a neutral road shoe that has a standard running shoe length when it comes to sizing. This best for users who prefer short and long-distance running activities. The available widths are D – Medium for the men’s version and B – Medium for the women’s version.

Outsole

The Topo Athletic Fli-Lyte 2 utilizes a Rubber Outsole that enhances traction and increased durability. It has the ability to withstand any damage and pressure. It performs its function properly over a long period of time.

Midsole

In its midsole, the Topo Athletic Fli-Lyte 2 utilizes the Full-Length EVA material. The foam is soft and flexible. It provides enough cushioning and rebound properties. This technology is important in protecting the runner’s foot from feeling sharp objects during walking and running activities. Engineered with a 3-mm heel-to-toe drop, the cushioned midsole encourages foot motion and natural loading.

Upper

The Topo Athletic Fli-Lyte 2has an updated Ultra Light Mesh that provides additional structure. It offers added durability without affecting the breathability and weight.

It utilizes a Printed Upper Pattern that provides a more snug and secure fit for the midfoot.

The Anatomical Toe box also plays an important role in the construction of the shoe. The roomy box promotes a more comfortable and natural toe splay. This prevents runners from experiencing issues like blisters, bunions, and cuts.