The lightweight running shoe category continues to grow according to the guys that watch this stuff. With good reason, since these shoes tend to be a nice bridge between traditional road running shoes with substantial heel-to-toe drop and those in the more minimal category. This in-between ground is fertile territory for shoe manufacturers. Many of them are now on their second or third generation products and able to bring further refinements to the category. These include the folks at ASICS, Merrell and New Balance. We had a chance to try a series of their next-gen lightweight shoes and here’s the results:

ASICS Gel-Lyte33 2 ASICS Gel-Lyte33 2 – The über lightweight feel of the ASICS Gel-Lyte33 2 was immediately evident in our first runs. The 6 mm drop veers directly into the minimal category, but there’s still enough cushion underfoot. See review.

Merrell Road Glove 2Merrell Road Glove 2 – These barefoot styled shoes are light weight with eye popping springs donning the uppers. The long, narrow platform has just enough support to confidently take on the road or trail. The 0 mm drop gives a full toe to heel connection. See review.

New Balance 890v3New Balance 890v3 — New Balance bills the 890v3 as “built to meet the demands of world-class runners.” The 890v3 fits into the minimal drop category with only an 8 mm differential from heel to toe. See review.

Check out these shoes and let us know what you think by leaving a comment on the form below.

Thanks for reading another outdoor gear review from GearGuide. And thanks to ASICS, New Balance and Planet Shoes for providing product for this review.