Altra Instinct 4.5 Review / Altra Intuition 4.5 Review | Zero Drop & Well Cushioned

(For Men) Altra Instinct 4.5 Review
(For Women) Altra Intuition 4.5 Review

As you probably know already, Altra’s shoes are Zero Drop to promote a more natural midfoot landing. They also have a wider, rounded toe box that Altra call Foot Shaped,  as feet aren’t pointy like many modern running shoes seem to suggest.  Altra shoes also differ in shape from men’s to women’s as our feet are different anatomically. That is, the women’s range is not just a tad smaller and a different colour. Most Women have a narrower heel and midfoot, higher instep and a  longer arch. Altra is the first shoe company to introduce an entire line of truly female specific shoes. Not just Men’s shoes made in smaller sizes. Every last of Altra women’s running shoes has been moulded around the unique shape of the female foot.

The Altra Instinct 4.5/Intuition 4.5 is Altra’s most versatile everyday running shoe and has had a few updates compared with the version 4. The upper is now an engineered mesh. There is now a rubber wrap around the toe box for more toe protection and a more plush and softer ride makes this shoe more of an everyday training shoe. I found that the Intuition 4 was more responsive and so great for faster running.

The Intuition 4.5’s plush feel makes it the perfect shoe for nice long runs, warming up before sessions and doing long steady runs.


A potential reason for softening it up is Altra now has the popular Escalante in its range, which is a light, flexible shoe that could be used for sessions, tempo runs as well as easy runs.  So if you want your versatile training shoe to be more geared to faster running this might be a better option than the new Intuition 4.5/Instinct 4.5. However, if you want more of an everyday training shoe ideal for all but your fasted running and races, then this may well be the shoe.

The men’s Instinct 4 was a bit smaller than other Altra shoes. The Instinct 4.5 fits more like other Altra shoes, so if you have been using the Instinct 4 then half a size smaller in the new Instinct 4.5 might be the size to try.

Charlie @ Northern Runner Newcastle

Other Shoes to Consider

Topo Fli-Lyte 2

Topo has a very similar toe shape to Altra shoes. So, there is plenty of room to let your toes spread. On the whole Topo shoes are a bit snugger fitting in the heel and midfoot in comparison to Altra shoes. The Fli-Lyte 2 is no exception. They have a firmer more responsive feel than the Instinct 4.5/Intuition 4.5 and are therefore a bit more like the Instinct 4/Intuition 4. The Fli-Lyte 2 is 3mm from heel to forefoot where as all Altra shoes are zero drop.

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