I used to run in VFFs if you can believe that (that's tho weird toe shoe things your mom complains about). In fact, that was my very first REAL running shoe, so you can imagine that I have a tendency to have a less-is-more mentality when it comes to shoes.
The ST-2 is a revamp from the old Topo Athletic ST (standing for Speed Trainer) but I never had the chance to experience this badboy, ergo my review isn't a comparison to that but a comparison to others in the current line-up.
3 words: minimal, weightless, speedster.
The upper gives this shoe its popularity, as its lack of a heel counter makes it collapsible and ridiculously easy to pack for travel. The mesh is breathable and sock-like, making the shoe feel like you’re almost wearing slippers rather than a road shoe. Expect your feet to get wet quickly, but there will be no standing water, as the mesh will release the water out with ease. (It will take a little longer to dry than the mesh of the Fli-lyte upper.) The colors make this the sleeker looking shoe in the Topo Athletic line, for those cool kids that care.
This shoe is for the minimalist runner and often compared to the Vibram’s 5 Fingers. Its zero heel-to-toe drop and 4mm outsole means expect your bod to do all the pushing. This is a fast, flat shoe that’s a little more protection than a sock.
You’re going to fly, if you have it in YOU, not the shoe. I don’t mean to make that sound bad. This minimalist shoe is my go-to track and speedwork shoe. Great for quick 5km races because the lighter weight on you the better, right?
It’s also quickly becoming popular in the CrossFit circuit for its minimal weight and comfortable, mesh fit. The 7mm midsole and total stack height of 13mm makes it similar to the Halsa Cross-trainer, so it’s not surprising that the ST-2 is making an appearance as a balance between a runner and cross-trainer.
I don’t fall into this category, but have heard from some that blisters are known to form on the pinky toes. The toe box of the ST-2, while wide, isn’t AS wide as the other runners (or so it would seem). If your toes are used to the full splay, then you may also find this issue, especially when running sockless. Again, this isn’t me. I have had no problems with blisters from the ST-2.
**Disclosure: I am a Topo Athletic Ambassador, although they do not pay me or require me to write positive reviews. Feel free to use TOPOSOLOMON20 at checkout for a 20% discount on any shoe at www.topoathletic.com