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Altra One 2.5 Review

The Good

Meaghan: This shoe is LIGHT. When I first picked up the Altra One 2.5, I couldn’t believe how airy it felt. With all the max cushion, extra supportive, wave-plate enhanced shoes out there; it’s nice to wear something with a little less… stuff. My W7.5 came in at 5.4oz. The upper is designed with a quick-drying air mesh. It’s extremely light and breathes well. The tongue and collar have minimal padding, but just enough to create a comfortable fit and feel. The flat lacing system works well for this shoe. I never had any issues with the laces coming untied and they provide a secure fit. As with all Altra Running shoes, the toebox is ginormous and provides tons of room for your toes to hang out and move around. These shoes fall into the “light” cushioning category, but they still provide a decent amount of cush underfoot (23mm stack height if you’re into that). It’s a very soft feeling shoe all-around. The cushioning reminds me of a Saucony Virrata or Skechers GOrun, but maybe a little squishier. Altra suggests using the One 2.5 for speed work, but I’d say they’re more of a daily trainer.

Thomas: Three words: Light, cushioned, and flexible. The Altra One 2.5 is unique; it seems minimal but offers long distance comfort with its cushioning. The upper on the shoe is seamless and quite simple. As you might guess, with the weight of 7.05 oz for a size 10.5 there is not a lot of rubber on the outsole. I am pretty tough on shoes and the bottoms look barely worn after 30+ miles. The pleasure of this shoe comes in the combo of the cushioning and flexibility. I am struggling to describe the way they feel under foot. The best way to get at it is to go through the stride I suppose.

  1. Impact absorption
  2. Flexibility landing to toe-off
  3. light with fast turnover

The Bad

Meaghan: The wide toebox FEELS amazing, but it doesn’t really look amazing. Trying to photograph this shoe was a real challenge. I like that Altra used minimal amounts of rubber on the outsole, but I foresee wear issues in the near future. The soft cushioning is perfect for my shorter-distance runs but I wouldn’t use this shoe for marathon distance training.

Thomas: The upper material puckers when I lace it to fit my narrow foot. The shoe stays on securely, but the pucker doesn’t look good. I would like more structure to the upper. The only problem for Altra is, I don’t want the shoe to gain weight. The laces are super long, you may want to get a pair of Locklaces for these kicks.


Meaghan: The Altra One 2.5 is a super light, super flexible running shoe. While it didn’t win me over in the “looks” category, it still has a place in my shoe rotation. The One 2.5 works well for shorter distances, walking or even cross-training. If you prefer a simple shoe, with minimal features, the Altra One 2.5 is a great option.

Thomas: I really enjoy running in the Altra One 2.5. Unlike Meaghan, I think the One 2.5 is a shoe that can go the marathon distance. I ran a 20 mile run in the first version and was good. For a daily trainer, I would go with the Altra Instinct over the One 2.5. If you like Altra, save the One 2.5 for faster days and races. Side note: You may notice in the pics above, I used the heel lock lacing system to get a better fit in the One 2.5.

Altra One 2.5 Review


Have something to say? Leave a Comment

  1. Brad Williams says:

    Thanks for the review guys. I love Altra shoes but I am getting increasingly frustrated with their sizing. Examples: I love the fit of The One 2 and was very excited about the 2.5 but my shoes do the same thing, upper puckers like crazy. That I can understand being 2 different versions. However, I also have a pair of the black Lone Peak 2.0s and love the shoe and fit. Bought a yellow pair to mix it up and it fits noticeably bigger. Not in the length but with the upper puckering again. Have either of you noticed any of these issues at all?


    1. Hi Brad, The One 2.5 has the most noticeable pucker issue. I attribute it to my narrow low volume foot. I have had some puckering in other models as well.

  2. stephan says:

    How’s the height of the toebox on these? The 2.0 was horrible – I didn’t even try a run. The Instinct 3.0 is slightly better, but the only Altra that actually works for my toes is the Provision… which is a little more shoe than I like.

    I so want to like Altra, but struggling to find any that work for me.

    1. They are pretty similar to the originals.

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