Last Updated on September 27, 2019 by Heather Hart, ACSM EP, CSCS
It has been a few years since I’ve run in a pair of Saucony shoes. I consider myself a lucky runner because my feet aren’t too particular when it comes to running sneakers. As long as they neutral and relatively minimal (around 6 mm drop or less), I typically have zero issues switching back and forth between various sneakers and brands. I am also very lucky because I am often given the opportunity to review various sneakers.
All of this is to say that over the past few years, it has been very rare for me to find one pair of shoes that I find myself gravitating to every single day. And then I met the Saucony Virrata 2.
Right out of the box, I became a fan. The colors were bright, the shoes were incredibly lightweight. Sadly, the pair in the box was 3 sizes too small.
So I wrapped them up in their box and sent them back for the correct size, which thankfully arrived rather quickly.
I immediately put them on and danced a few circles around my boyfriend’s sisters living room. Spontaneity is the key to successful shoe reviews. They were as comfortable and lightweight as I imagined the first pair would have felt, had I been able to squeeze my big feet into them. And then of course, took them on multiple runs. But before we get into the full review, let’s have some background information.
O mm heel to toe drop
Weight: Weight: 6.0oz. / 170 g (size 8 womens), Weight: 6.5oz / 184 g (size 9 mens).
Breathable Mono Mesh
Internal Bootie Construction
HydraMAX™ Collar Lining
Collar lining material combines superior moisture wicking properties with a plush feel for comfort
High Abrasion EVA (EVA+)
High Abrasion EVA foam that is a lighter alternative to rubber in the midsole and outsole construction
Premium carbon rubber outsole material that offers exceptional traction and high-wear properties
Triangular Lug Design
Provides traction and durability
What Saucony says:
The Virrata 2 is a featherweight, natural motion running shoe that weighs in at a mere 6.5 ounces (men’s size 9), translating into plenty of speed with a barely-there feel for the runner. Yet, this zero-drop trainer delivers plenty of protection from the road: The 18mm midsole of high abrasion EVA+™ foam−a lighter alternative to rubber−positions the Virrata 2 as one of the most cushioned shoes for its weight on the market. This latest edition features an incredibly breathable and quick-drying mono mesh upper along with an internal booty that creates a sock-like, dynamic fit with that adapts and moves with the runner’s foot throughout the entire stride.
The cumulative effect of the Virrata 2’s lower offset with increased midsole foam and optimal flexibility helps create a more powerful running stride with plenty of protection from the road. Twenty-four ultra-springy pods on the outsole along with accentuated flex groves allow the runner’s foot to move naturally with an effortless transition. Engineered with a HydraMax™ collar lining for superior moisture wicking and heightened reflective details, the Virrata 2 is the most advanced weapon of choice for natural motion runners.
FIT: As mentioned above, I loved these shoes right out of the box. Incredibly lightweight, breathable, and fit like a glove (or a sock I suppose.) I ordered a size 10, and they fit true to size. The toe box is not necessarily narrow, but it also isn’t wide, as I had experienced in the Kinvaras years before. The lacing is standard and comfortable, I was able to get a nice secure fit: important for my narrow foot. The sole is very flexible underfoot allowing for natural movement.
RUN: One word: smooth. Though these shoes have a 0 mm drop, the midsole is still built up enough to provide some cushion, as opposed to running in a “glove” type shoe, or similar lightweight shoe. While the drop is 0 mm, the sole itself is slightly curved and not necessarily flat (again, not common in a 0 mm shoe). This was discovered when I tried to squat a significantly heavy barbell in these shoes and realized I felt very unstable. A noteworthy point: I could feel the tread of the sole under my forefoot through the shoe. It was a sensation reminiscent of the lugs under the forefoot of Newton shoes. I’m doubtful this was planned, however, it wasn’t necessarily unwelcome and not (in my opinion) uncomfortable. A subtle reminder of where to plant my foot each time I land. I did notice this sensation disappeared with added miles, but was significant enough in the beginning to warrant a mention.
Zero chaffing or hot spots, laces held and stayed in place.
I’ve put a good 30+ miles running on these shoes (mostly treadmill) as well as probably 40+ hours of walking around the gym working. So far, I have experienced no breakdown in the sole or any sort of wear. (Just dirt: white shoes + Heather are rarely a good mix). I am curious to see how the EVA+™ foam sole (as opposed to rubber) holds up over time.
SUMMARY: This is an incredibly comfortable pair of shoes for running or walking. These are my current go-to mileage shoes for road or treadmill, as they seemingly disappear on my feet. As mentioned, I’ll be curious to see how the sole holds up overtime, and will update this post as necessary. At a suggested retail price of $90, they are on the lower end of the running shoe spectrum, which everyone always appreciates. If you prefer a minimal drop, but still require a bit of cushion underfoot to protect you from the road (or treadmill), I would recommend giving this pair a try.
*disclaimer* Saucony provided me with a pair of Virrata 2’s at no cost to me, however, all opinions expressed are my own.
Heather Hart is an ACSM certified Exercise Physiologist, NSCA Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist (CSCS), UESCA certified Ultrarunning Coach, RRCA certified Running Coach, co-founder of Hart Strength and Endurance Coaching, and creator of this site, Relentless Forward Commotion. She is a mom of two teen boys, and has been running and racing distances of 5K to 100+ miles for over a decade. Heather has been writing and encouraging others to find a love for fitness and movement since 2009.