Altra Torin 5
This shoe provides runners with all of the freedom needed for quick laps or lateral movements during cross-training and still holds up quite well over those long distances.
The Torrin 5 boasts some new and modern updates such as a redesigned upper and an all-new midsole that provides a good deal of much-needed energy return. Even though this shoe is packed with plush cushioning, it is still super lightweight and won’t hold up back on those long miles.
Overall, I would recommend this shoe for neutral runners that long for that plush and squishy midsole material found in stability trainers without all of the extra bulk that can weigh you down.
Below, I wanted to take a deep dive into all of the advanced features that make the super comfy Altra Torin 5 a really great pair of neutral running shoes!
Weighs 9 ounces
Breathable and stretchy mesh upper
Available in wide sizes
The new EGO MAX midsole is cushioned yet responsive
Great for long distances or speed
Advanced FootPod outsole technology
The tongue is not gusseted
Upper material is prone to bunching
The update to the midsole is what makes the release of the Torin 5 so exciting. Previous versions of the Torin utilize Altra’s Quantic midsole, which was great at the time. While the Quantic midsole is super soft and squishy, it was just a little lacking in responsiveness. The first mile always felt great, but after mile one your stride would become a little mushy. Altra has worked to fix mushy strides with the release of the EGO MAX foam midsole material.
Somehow, the EGO MAX retains all of the cushioning of the Quantic midsole but provides runners with a more springy and energetic ride that holds up just as well as mile one as it does at mile 10. This midsole runs the full length of the shoe, and wraps your feet in comfort, and helps add a pop of power to your toe-offs and landings.
The midsole boasts a 28 mm stack height with zero drop that provides you with plenty of cushioning without losing agility and ground feel. Plus, runners with bunions and plantar fasciitis found that this cushioning was just enough to ease pain on those long runs.
There was a brief intermission between the Torin 4 and the Torin 5 where Altra released the Torin Plush 4.5. This version of the Torin has a similar style of midsole and cushion, yet it has a very stiff upper that doesn't allow for much movement.
While the Torin 5 shares a lot of similarities with the Torin Plush 4.5, the upper is not one of them. The upper on this design is incredibly thin and stretchy and works to lift hot air up and away from the feet to keep them cool and dry.
Another big improvement made with the design of the upper is the construction of the heel counter. This design has a deep heel counter with ample cushioning along the collar that is thin enough to boost agility, but ample enough to really lock your heels in place to prevent slippage.
The tongue is made from a thinner material with just enough padding to prevent rubbing and chafing. It’s not gusseted, but I haven’t found any indication that this tongue will shift around on your as you start to pick up the pace.
What makes Altra really special is that the outsole is constructed with Altra’s patented FootPod Technology. At a glance, the outsole of this shoe has a skeletal design to indicate where your foot bones land on the inside of this shoe. FootPod Technology in the Torin 5 maps the tendons and bones in your feet to give you extra flexibility where it feels natural, and a little extra cushioning where you need it most.
If you were worried that the extra cushioning would make these shoes feel too stiff, the design of the outsole is made to keep your movements light and nimble in all the right places.
The outsole of this shoe is also composed of Innerflex technology to further boost flexibility and movement. It is composed of a blend of exposed midsole foam and rubber cutouts that are designed to boost flexibility in your gait cycle as well as lateral movements as well. This outsole is also insanely durable and will show little signs of wear and tear even after 100 miles.
Overall, I would recommend this cushioned neutral trainer for runners that long for high-end cushioning without a lot of extra weight and bulk. When on the hunt for neutral running shoes, I’m often met with meager midsoles that don’t quite offer that plush step-in feel found in stability trainers.
Stability trainers offer a good deal of cushioning, but they are often weighed down by heavy carbon plates and very stiff uppers. The Altra Torin 5 is designed to provide you with the comfort of a stability shoe with the performance of a neutral trainer.
While it’s geared more toward running long distances, the flexible features in the outsole paired with the zero drop are great for a myriad of other workouts. While I primarily recommend this running long distances, the lightweight design is also ideal for HIIT, cross-training, and even lifting weights in plush yet versatile comfort.
The hallmark of any Altra running shoe is a wide toe box, and this is certainly true when it comes to the Torin 5. One of the things that runners love more about this running shoe is the super-wide toe box that allows plenty of room for your toes to naturally splay without sacrificing lockdown. Previous designs of the Torin utilized an internal bootie system to lock the shoe in place, and this updated design omits the bootie completely.
I was initially worried that the absence of the internal bootie would limit the Torin 5’s lockdown, but that wasn’t the case. The stretchy mesh upper and ample heel counter really lock these shoes in place while keeping things light and airy.
Many runners also felt that this shoe runs true to size. If you are a size 8 in other Altra running shoes, the same can be said for the Torin 5. While the style of this shoe is fairly wide, Altra also includes a wide size option for those that need a little extra room.
If you have the option, I suggest heading down to your local shoe store to give these shoes a test run before you buy them!
One of the few downsides to this running shoe is that it is a little more expensive than previous versions of the Torin. When compared to similar neutral running shoes out there on the market, this option will cost you a few extra bucks.
However, the addition of the EGO MAX cushioned yet responsive midsole makes this running shoe well worth every penny!
Comparisons to Previous Versions
The biggest change made to this updated design was the implementation of Altra’s new EGO MAX midsole material. Previous versions of this shoe were super-cushioned but lacked a little bit of responsiveness. The EGO MAX midsole material gives you the same comfort as the previous Quantic midsole with an added spring to your step.
Another big change made to the design of this shoe is the overall fit. Sure, the internal bootie system is gone, but the redesigned mesh upper doesn’t demand an internal bootie. The fit of the upper is incredibly stretchy and flexible, and contours to the shape of your foot with ease. The upper is also much more breathable than previous versions as well.
Some runners found that the mesh tends to bunch up when the laces are tightened, but that is simply a cosmetic complaint and won’t affect the overall performance of this shoe.
It’s basically a neutral running shoe that shares all of the benefits of a stability trainer without all of the extra weight and bulk. While this shoe weighs slightly more than your average neutral runner (about 9 ounces), many runners felt that the little bit of extra weight did not hold them back. The high stack with zero drop offers excellent cushioning while still keeping you in tune with the ground under your feet.
It’s a perfect running shoe that can do just about anything. It’s great for long distances, but can also be worn for short circuits, HIIT, or even lifting weight. It may cost a bit more than other Altra trainers, but it is an investment worth making!