Saucony Guide ISO 2 Review

A stylish, budget-friendly stability shoe for overpronators

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3.8

Saucony Guide ISO 2

Saucony Guide ISO 2

Verywell Fit / Deanna McCormack

What We Like
  • Breathable mesh upper and liner with a custom-like fit

  • Plush, durable cushioning

  • Reduces overpronating

  • Supportive laces

What We Don't Like
  • Small overall fit, wide toebox

  • Shaped for overpronators

  • Take time to break in

Bottom Line

The Saucony Guide ISO 2s are true stability shoes and do well to alleviate pain caused by plantar fasciitis—especially for overpronators. They offer great support in the heels and arches, plush cushioning, breathability, and a near-custom fit. Plus, they look great.

3.8

Saucony Guide ISO 2

Saucony Guide ISO 2

Verywell Fit / Deanna McCormack

We purchased a pair of the Saucony Guide ISO 2s so our reviewer could thoroughly test them. Keep reading for our full product review.

Plantar fasciitis, or inflammation of the tissue connecting the heel bone to the toes, is painfully stubborn. Even with the right shoes—in this case, the Saucony Guide ISO 2s—and a fail-safe stretching routine, there’s never a guarantee I will run pain-free. That said, shoes do make a big difference. In fact, there are some shoes I know right away to avoid because they’ll cause my plantar fasciitis pain to worsen, which can sideline me for days. With running shoes, I have to be particularly choosy. 

The Guide ISO 2s are a popular choice for runners with plantar fasciitis who seek arch support, heel cushioning, and of course, shock absorption, which reduces impact and keeps inflammation to a minimum. To see if the second generation ISOs live up to their reputation as an all-around great shoe for plantar fasciitis sufferers, I ran in the women’s version for two weeks, covering almost 25 miles on the road and treadmill.

Saucony Guide ISO 2
Verywell Fit / Deanna McCormack

Performance: Smooth, steady, and surprisingly speedy

The Guide ISO 2 is an updated version of Saucony’s original Guide ISO; an everyday shoe many runners love for their stability, comfort, and liveliness. Compared to their predecessor, the ISO 2s boast an updated ISOFIT design that adapts to the shape of your foot for a more custom fit. 

During and after my first few runs in the ISO 2s, I thought they may be a little stiff for my liking. Over time, however, they seemed to “loosen up” and adjust to my gait and footfall. From then on, running in the ISO 2s was just as I expected it to be: smooth, consistent and pain-free. They were also surprisingly light and lively and responded well to my pace changes. Their great flexibility and traction are also worth noting since it isn’t something I would normally find in such a plush shoe.

Saucony Guide ISO 2
Verywell Fit / Deanna McCormack 

Fit: Roomy and customizable

While I found the length of these shoes to be a bit short, I wouldn’t suggest sizing up; the rest of the shoe is roomy and comfortable. The toe box is wide but the heel cavity is narrow—a key factor for plantar fasciitis since heel slipping can lead to pain. 

The outstanding cushioning in the ISO 2s reduced the strain on my plantar fascia that would normally lead to inflammation and pain.

My favorite part about the fit of these shoes, however, is the flexible upper and segmented lacing system. Basically, when you tighten the laces, the whole upper tightens. With this feature, I can customize the fit of the shoe without adding pressure to the top of my foot. 

Support: Even distribution and subtle guidance

Like many Saucony brand shoes, the Guides offer arch and heel support. The outstanding cushioning and the medial posts in the ISO 2s reduced the strain on my plantar fascia that would normally lead to inflammation and pain. 

The shoes also provide gentle guidance for overpronators, which can often be a cause of plantar fasciitis (although not for me). In combination with the shape of the insole, the 2’s EVERUN topsole cushioning is plush and firm and supported my weight and stride perfectly, even after long distances on concrete roads. I also noticed that the cushioning was distributed evenly between the heel and forefoot. This made running feel natural and made me feel balanced and supported during each step.

Saucony Guide ISO 2
Verywell Fit / Deanna McCormack 

Shock Absorption: Plush and springy

Along with the EVERUN cushioning, which Saucony touts as “livelier and more responsive, with smoother landings and stronger takeoff,” the Guide ISO 2s have a no-nonsense PWRFOAM midsole for maximum comfort. While meant for road-running, these shoes made me feel like I wasn’t running on a road at all. (Great news for runners like me with plantar fasciitis who want to avoid pounding the pavement at all costs.)

For what you get—pain-free running, super support, and style—these shoes are a steal.

Weight: Lighter than expected

At under 9 ounces (for women’s pairs), the Saucony Guide ISO 2s aren’t far off from being considered “lightweight”—a huge feat considering how well they perform for those with plantar fasciitis. While I would normally dismiss a lighter shoe for fear that it wouldn’t offer the support and shock-absorption necessary to prevent heel pain, these shoes were perfect: light, breathable, and supportive in all the right places. 

Saucony Guide ISO 2
Verywell Fit / Deanna McCormack 

Materials: Durable with techy uppers

Other than the aforementioned PWRFOAM midsole, the upper is made of single-knit Jacquard mesh and is very light, stretchy, and breathable. These shoes have a strong, lightweight material called Flexifilm melded to the upper, which adds flexibility and structure without the bulk. What feels like a sock liner inside the shoe is actually the brand’s ISOFIT system, which is designed to give the shoes a more custom feel. 

I never felt like my feet were too hot, and with the connected lacing system, I felt supported and steady throughout my run.

While the shoes are not waterproof or even water-resistant, the sock liner kept sweat out of the shoe and prevented my foot from sliding around in the shoe and getting blisters. I never felt like my feet were too hot, and with the connected lacing system, I felt supported and steady throughout my run.

Design: Modern and flexible

From a style perspective, I really like the shape and design of the ISO 2. The shoes definitely strike me as something I would wear casually. While they only come in seven color variations, there are options for runners who like bright and colorful shoes and options for those who prefer muted tones like blush and gray. The shoes also have reflective elements on the heel, which is great for night and early morning runners.

Price: Budget-friendly

While some might not consider a running shoe at the ISO 2’s price point ($120) to be “budget-friendly,” anyone with plantar fasciitis would argue the opposite. For what you get—pain-free running, super support, and style—these shoes are a steal.

Competition: Depends on your pain points

The only real way to compare running shoes meant to alleviate pain from plantar fasciitis is to look to the source of the pain. The Hoka One One Bondi 6s, for example, are more expensive, higher, heavier, and less aesthetically pleasing, but they might be right for someone who is a neutral pronator or has foot pain from injury or overuse.

On the other hand, the Asics 2000 GT 7s are priced similarly to the ISO 2s yet are lighter, slimmer, and have more control throughout. They offer a more snug heel and arch support but not as much cushioning as the Guide ISOs.

Final Verdict

A top-of-the-line stability shoe with excellent cushion and flexibility.

You won’t be disappointed by the stylish, budget-friendly Saucony Guide ISO 2s. They offer a custom-like fit, outstanding cushion, and a flexible upper—perfect for relief from plantar fasciitis pain.

Specs

  • Product Name Guide ISO 2
  • Product Brand Saucony
  • Price $120.00
  • Weight 9 oz.
  • Heel Stack Height 27 mm.
  • Offset 8 mm.
  • Forefoot Stack Height 19 mm.
  • Cushion Plush
  • Arch Normal (mid), low
  • Surface Road, track
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