The moderately priced Fuji LITE 2 is part of ASICS’ small but mighty trail lineup; leaning more toward a fast uptempo shoe than a max cushion workhorse. Some competition includes Brooks’ Catamount and Adidas’ Terrex Speed Ultra.
Its name is simplified from the debut FujiTrabuco Lyte. The upper and midsole have been revamped this time around. Weight remains around the same.
Not particularly stable
I really liked these the moment I took them out of the box. The dark colorway looked great and had a nice pop to it without being obnoxious looking.
I loved how light it felt in my hands, how flexible it felt, and the overall design. When it comes to trail running, I am typically wearing chunky workhorses like Hoka Torrents so this was a nice change.
I found it excelled on DRY, dirt packed trails. The lower 4mm drop propelled me forward; allowing me to bomb down hills and going uphill felt easy. 4mm drop shoes tend to be calf burners, but this was a non issue – thanks to the soft and light midsole flytefoam compound.
it was easy to go on the road with these. I did not feel like I was dragging my feet when the terrain changed. I will be using on snow days come winter.
While it did great on packed dirt and pavement, it did not fare well in other areas. The outsole performed poorly making me slip constantly in the mud. The softer midsole and lack of a rock plate had me feeling every. single. root and rock. It made things quite unpleasant at times.. An annoying tradeoff for sure.
After a few wipeouts and sore feet, I avoided using these if I knew I wouldn’t be running on an even surface.
The upper as a whole has tough engineered mesh. It drained well and dried fast.
The toebox has a thin overlay for good, but not great protection. I still felt it when my foot would get caught in a root or slam into a rock. Better than nothing.
The lacing system was innovative to help protect me from tripping. There were no hotspots and I had no issues with blistering or unpleasant rubbing. I felt locked in thanks to this and the soft heel unit.
The lace garage; a pocket in the tongue where I could stuff my laces was a neat touch. Unfortunately, once the shoe got broken in, it was not a foolproof solution. I would make sure to still double knot because you will still find the laces slipping out.
The Fuji Lite 2 does not have a rock plate.
The shoe is durable. It had minimal wear after testing and it will be in my trail rotation for quite some time. That said, the shoe really did not do well in anything that wasn’t dry.
I found myself gassed on runs over 10 miles. I would not use these for anything above a half marathon.
In the right conditions, I could really fly. I am a very clumsy person and do not usually go fast on trails but I found it hard not to at times. The low drop and midsole compound complemented each other great! Flytefoam is a compound that is getting better every year. This is no exception.
Not surprisingly for ASICS, the fit is very true to size. It felt tight and narrow at times especially on longer efforts. I would go half a size up if your feet are narrow.
Buy size smaller
Buy size bigger
I thought this was a good shoe; especially considering I am mostly a road runner. I enjoyed how light they felt and how close to a road shoe it was. I liked the low drop and how responsive the midsole was. It allowed me to stay on my feet and go fast if I wanted to.
I did not enjoy taking these out in the mud or on technical terrains. My home park is Patapsco Valley State Park in Maryland. There’s a good amount of packed dirt single track that I used these on and it was a blast. There is a lot more technical, rooty, rocky trails that I dreaded running on and will not be using these on.
Overall, I think this is a solid shoe, especially if you are primarily a road runner. Just study your route and watch the weather report before you take them out.