Altra triathlon specific running shoe review

photo (3)

Dear Izzy, Max, and Kate,

Triathletes are an adventurous bunch. That’s stating the obvious, I suppose. That sense of adventure often leads to early adoption of new technology in gear and gadgets related to swimbikerun.

Altra, having won over thousands to their zero drop running technology, has now “officially” entered the triathlon market with their new tri specific running shoe, the “3-Sum”.

I’m personally a huge fan of Altra. Most of my long run miles have been done in the Altra Instinct 1.5 as I’ve prepared for Rev3 Knoxville. Since I first heard that they were creating a tri shoe I’ve been anxiously awaiting it’s release. I was thrilled to be given a chance to review an advance release pair of the 3-Sum.

Out of the box it’s a great looking shoe! It stays in step with the recent trend in running with bright colors. Simply stated: if fashion is your motivator, this shoe has “it”.

It’s light at just 6.7oz for the men’s shoe. I noticed right away that this is a fast shoe. My first few runs in the 3-Sum were short and fast. I knew right away that I’d be racing short distances in the 3-Sum. The challenge still remains though…can I ramp up for half or even full distance runs? While incredibly comfortable they feel a bit less cushioned than the Instinct 1.5 and it’s predecessors. Care should be taken if you’re new to zero drop/forefoot running. Altra provides excellent education on the subject on their website.

Altra didn’t skimp on triathlon specific features:

  • Seamless upper making sockless running easier
  • Heel and tongue loops for quick entry in transition
  • built in Yankz elastic lacing system
  • Drainage holes in the bottoms of the shoe

photo (4)photo (6)

While adding these tri friendly features, Altra also maintained what has made them great to begin with: Zero drop tech for more efficient forefoot running and a wide toe box for more natural “spread” upon landing.

I’ve been a big time believer in the Instinct for a while now, converting several friends to Altra. I’m just as pleased with Altra’s entry into the tri market with the 3-Sum.

photo (5)

Initial thoughts: awesome short course shoe for fast transitions and racing. I believe I can work my way up to 13.1 and perhaps 26.2 in these, but I will take my time.

I love you,

– Daddy

More on Altra’s entire line of shoes HERE

* I was given this shoe for purposes of this review. However, my opinions are my own and I was under no obligation to provide a favorable review.