Over the year last two years, Inov-8 has made some seriously awesome cross-training shoes. Three of their most popular current models include the Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2, Inov-8 F-Lite G 300, and the Inov-8 F-Lite 235 V3. To the unknowing eye, all of these models may seem very similar, but there are some stark differences between each of these models.
In this article, I’m going to break down the key construction and performance differences between the Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2, the Inov-8 F-Lite G 300, and the Inov-8 F-Lite 235 V3. Each model performs, fits, and feels slightly differently so understanding their differences can be incredibly important for making the best buying decision.
In this Inov-8 F-Lite G 300 versus 235 V3 versus 260 V2 comparison article, I’m going to discuss the following topics to provide you with context into each cross-training shoe.
On the market for new cross-training shoes? Make sure you check my 7 Best Cross-Training Shoes article to find the best models for the context of your training needs!
Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2 Vs G 300 Vs 235 V3 Performance
To discuss performance in each of these Inov-8 cross-training shoes, I’m going to break this section into how these models perform with stability in lifting and CrossFit workouts, how they do with versatile training, and how they fair with shorter runs and daily wear.
Stability When Lifting and Doing CrossFit
With the Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2, F-Lite G 300, and F-Lite 235 V3, you shouldn’t have any issues with stability in either of these models. Each model is designed for tackling lifting and CrossFit workouts so they’re all built with the intention to limit compression. In each model, I’ve trained between 455-505 lbs and have noticed very minimal compression.
In the Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2 and the F-Lite 235 V3 you’re going to get Inov-8’s signature Powerflow midsole. This construction aspect delivers a nice blend of stability and responsiveness and I’m a fan of the Powerflow midsole whenever Inov-8 utilizes it in their cross-training shoes.
Must Read: 8 Best CrossFit Shoes | Picks for Flat Feet, Rope Climbs, and More
In the F-Lite G 300, you’re getting a blend of medium and high-density foam throughout the midsole. All of the midsoles in these shoes are solid for squats, deadlifts, cleans, and more. A big difference though to note with these models in regard to their lifting and CrossFit performance is their heel-to-toe drops, as they’re all different.
- Inov-8 F-Lite 235 V3: 4mm
- Inov-8 F-Lite G 300: 6mm
- Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2: 8mm
Higher heel-to-toe drops in cross-training shoes will give them more “heel” and will put your ankle in a more positive position. Basically, they’ll put the foot into a slightly more plantarflexed position which can then contribute to altering lower body mechanics when training.
I know that can sound complicated, so in regard to the context of this article and these shoes. If you like having a slightly higher heel when training, then you should go F-Lite 260. For those who love having a flatter foot position, then go F-Lite 235 V3, and for a hybrid go F-Lite G 300.
There’s no right or wrong heel-to-toe drop for lifting and CrossFit, they’re just a matter of personal preference per your movement mechanics wants and needs.
Winner: Tie. They’re all solid for both lifting and CrossFit. I’d suggest instead considering the heel-to-toe drops listed above and cross-referencing them with your wants and exploring the sizing section below!
Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2
- CrossFit Workouts
- Recreational Lifting
- Versatile Training
- HIIT and Agility Workouts
- For Wider Footed Athletes
- For Cost-Efficiency
For workouts that include plyometrics, athletic-focused work, and things HIIT all of these models will excel once again, however, for slightly different reasons. Personally, I love the Inov-8 F-Lite 235 V3 for versatile training due to its lightweight sock-like fit and its Dynamic Fascia Band throughout the outsole.
Honestly, the Inov-8 F-Lite 235 V3 has almost a barefoot-esque feel to it in regard to its fit and maneuverability. The Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2 also provides a lightweight fit and build with the Dynamic Fascia Band which also makes it a good contender for versatile training.
The only caveat to this model is that it has a pretty narrow midfoot construction, so with its higher heel-to-toe drop some lifters and athletes with wider and flatter feet may find this shoe uncomfortable for plyometrics and other bounding activities.
The Inov-8 F-Lite G 300 has a knit bootie construction that gives a lightweight feel and has meta-flex construction throughout the forefoot on the outsole. This gives the toe box a nice level of maneuverability, however, this shoe’s midsole and outsole are not malleable as the 235 V3 and 260 V2.
That being said, all of these models excel for versatile training, but I personally would give the edge to the F-Lite 235 V3 or F-Lite 260 V2 due to their high level of maneuverability. If you like having a slightly stiffer model with a bit more midfoot support, then I would recommend going with the F-Lite G 300.
Winner: Inov-8 F-Lite 235 V3 or F-Lite 260 V2. Go with the F-Lite G 300 if you want a bit more midfoot support.
Inov-8 F-Lite 235 V3
- Agility Workouts
- Plyometric Training
- Athletic Training
- Recreational Lifting
- For Cost-Efficiency
Shorter Runs and Daily Wear
Like with most cross-training shoes, these models will work for shorter runs and daily wear, but only to an extent. In all of these models, I’d suggest capping your mileage for one session to 2-3 miles. Since these shoes all provide a decent level of stability, they may not be the most comfortable ride for those trying to tackle runs longer than the mileage above.
Plus, with each shoes’ different heel-to-toe drops, each model will perform slightly differently per the context of your running style. For example, if you have more of a mid-foot to slight heel strike and it’s inevitable with your running, then going for the F-Lite 260 V2 or F-Lite G 300 could be a smart and safe call.
For daily wear, these models are all fairly comfortable, but I do like the F-Lite G 300 most due to its supportive build and Graphene construction. This model will fair best with long-term outsole durability if you plan to use these models as daily drivers.
Winner: Tie. For daily wear though, go F-Lite G 300 due to durability.
Inov-8 F-Lite G 300
- Versatile Training
- Recreational Lifting
- Shorter Runs
- For Cost-Efficiency
Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2 Vs G 300 Vs 235 V3 Construction
To make this construction section a bit more concise and digestible, I’m going to break down individual constructions between each Inov-8 cross-training shoe below.
The Inov-8 F-Lite G 300, F-Lite 260 V2, and F-Lite 235 V3 all have full rubber outsole construction. Each model had adequate grip and a variety of surfaces. The Inov-8 F-Lite 235 V3 and F-Lite 260 V2 both have Inov-8 signature Dynamic Fascia Band running throughout their outsoles.
This construction feature provides these models with a super maneuverable feel and the band is intended to replicate the plantar fascia in the foot providing a more “natural” fit.
The Inov-8 F-Lite G 300 has an outsole that’s infused with Graphene which is a highly durable material that gives the G 300 its “G” in its name. This model features meta-flex grooves in the forefoot for additional forefoot flexibility.
We briefly discussed midsole constructions above, but you can expect each of these model midsoles to include medium to high-density foams. The F-Lite 260 V2 and F-Lite 235 V3 both utilize Inov-8’s Powerflow midsole technology to provide a blend of stability and responsiveness.
In the F-Lite G 300, you’ll get a thicker midsole build that includes higher-density foams. Additionally, all of these models feature Inov-8’s Rope-Tech which is an outsole layer that wraps up and covers the midsole in each shoe’s midfoot. This is a nice perk for additional stability and durability for rope climbs.
One of the perks that I like about and that comes along with most Inov-8 training shoes is their lightweight upper constructions. In the Inov-8 F-Lite 235 V3, you’re going to get a super lightweight and breathable upper construction made with mesh and light synthetic layers for additional durability.
The Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2 also features a mesh upper like the 235 V3 but has slightly more strategic additional upper layers. This model features a heavier toe cap for abrasion resistance and durability and has a thicker rope-tech midfoot construction. You can tell this model is designed specifically for tackling CrossFit workouts.
The Inov-8 F-Lite G 300 has a bootie construction that features a lightweight and stretchable knit material. To provide additional security, the G 300 has a midfoot TPU cage for providing durability and overall foot security.
Laces and Tongue
The Inov-8 F-Lite 235 V3 and F-Lite 260 V2 both have separate tongues with additional loops to help secure the tongue from moving when training. The F-Lite G 300 has a bootie construction so there is no separate tongue and the anterior part of this model’s boot has an additional loop for pulling this model on the foot.
The Inov-8 F-Lite 235 V3 has six eyelets and seventh for lace-lock. The F-Lite 260 V2 has five eyelets with a sixth for lace-lock and the F-Lite G 300 just has five eyelets. Overall, I enjoy these models’ lacing systems and how they lock down the foot when training.
All three of these models feature removable insoles. The Inov-8 F-Lite G 300 features a durable cushioned ETPU which is different from the F-Lite 260 V2 and 235 V3 insoles which are standard foam insoles.
The Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2 and F-Lite G 300 have slightly deeper constructions so they may be better models for custom orthotics and inserts. The F-Lite 235 V3 is a fairly shallow model that could feel limiting with thicker insoles.
Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2 Vs G 300 Vs 235 V3 Sizing
If you’ve never worn Inov-8 shoes, then I think it’s important to note that typically their shoes run a bit more narrow in regard to their fit. Inov-8 has a fit scale that runs from 1-5 with five being the widest in regard to shoe width.
We’ll discuss how each of these models fits below, but I want to disclose that even a “5” on their fit scale isn’t wide enough for some lifters and athletes.
- Inov-8 F-Lite 235 V3 Sizing: True-to-Size. Inov-8 fit scale of 5. This model has a sock-like fit to it.
- Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2 Sizing: True-to-size. Inov-8 fit scale of 5. This model’s higher heel-to-toe drop and narrow midfoot give it a very interesting fit. It may feel uncomfortable for those with wider and flatter feet.
- Inov-8 F-Lite G 300 Sizing: True-to-size. Inov-8 fit scale of 5. This model provides the most midfoot support and would be a good option for folks that like having a bit more arch in their shoe.
If you have additional questions about these models and their sizing, I have detailed analyses on my YouTube channel and you can also drop comments below and I can help accordingly.
Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2 Vs G 300 Vs 235 V3 Durability
In regard to durability, all of these models have done a pretty good job at not breaking down quickly. I’ve rocked the Inov-8 F-Lite 235 V3 for gym sessions, trail runs, and daily wear and they’re still holding up well.
Similarly, the Inov-8 F-Lite G 300 has also done a really good job at resisting abrasion and the outsole has been an absolute tank on concrete. The Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2 is my newest model and thus far it’s done a really good job at resisting breakdown in my lifting and cross-training sessions.
I think if you use these models for how they’re intended to be used, then they should go the distance for you in regard to durability.
The only potential caveat that I could see breaking down with any of these models is the heel’s midsole in the F-Lite 260 V2. Since it’s a higher drop, I could see the Powerflow midsole showing signs of creasing faster than the other models.
The Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2, F-Lite 235 V3, and F-Lite G 300 all have somewhat similar price points and they’re not the most-efficient models out there. The F-Lite 235 V3 and F-Lite 260 V2 have price points that hover around $140 USD.
The Inov-8 F-Lite G 300 costs $150 USD when not on sale. Personally, I think these models are worth their price if you use them for their intended purposes, but they’re definitely not the most budget-friendly cross-training shoes on the market.
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Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2 Vs G 300 Vs 235 V3 FAQs
I’ve received multiple questions about the Inov-8 F-Lite 235 V3, F-Lite 260 V2, and F-Lite G 300 on my YouTube channel and other review content. Below are some of the most frequently asked questions.
Which Inov-8 cross-training shoes are best for CrossFit?
Honestly, all of the models compared in this article can be solid options for CrossFit. They each have construction features rope-tec and additional upper layers to support long-term durability with this style of training. Plus, they’re all stable under a variety of loads.
Can I run in Inov-8 cross-training shoes?
Yes and no. You can definitely tackle shorter runs in Inov-8 cross-training shoes, but I’d suggest capping your mileage to about 2-3 miles per session if you plan to use them for running bouts that are longer than what you’d get in your average CrossFit class.
Do Inov-8 cross-training fit true-to-size?
Yes, the Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2, F-Lite 235 V3, and F-Lite G 300 all fit true-to-size in regard to length and they all have size “5” fits on Inov-8’s fit scale. The only caveat to these models is that they’re not the widest shoes on the market.
I personally enjoy training in all of these Inov-8 cross-training shoes and for slightly different reasons. The F-Lite 235 V3 has a nice sock-like minimality feeling, the F-Lite 260 V2 has a nice blocky heel to them if you love training with a higher drop, and the F-Lite G 300 provides a nice level of midfoot support.
If you have any questions about these Inov-8 cross-training shoes, drop a comment below or reach out to me personally via Instagram (@jake_boly).
I buy and test the products featured on That Fit Friend using a regimen of training tests that I’ve developed over years of testing training shoes and gear. I may earn commissions on sales made through the links on my site.