The Best Zero Drop Running Shoes of 2020

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Altra Olympus 4 review trail running shoes
The Altra Olympus 4 is a very good trail running shoe that's ideal for long runs with its maximum cushioning and wid platform.
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$169.95
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Best deal at: Amazon.com
Last price update was: October 31, 2020 5:15 am
The Altra Olympus 4 is a trail shoe with a high-stack sole (33 mm), zero drop (so no offset between heel and toes), and a wide platform. This new version is more refined, however, which gives the shoe a more streamlined and less massive design. However, it retains the qualities that have made it so successful. Its high-stack cushioning ensures comfortable shock absorption throughout the run. Also, the running sensations are responsive with an enjoyable bounce. Of course, with its relatively heavy weight (318 g for men, 289 g for women), this is not a model made for speed and daring descents. The Olympus is a trail running cruiser that's all about comfort. It shows in the upper with a mesh that now has an open texture for better ventilation. The result is a pleasant and rather ample lockdown (be careful if you have narrow feet). The toe box is spacious as on all Altra models. Finally, the grip is very good with a Vibram MegaGrip rubber sole that features moderate lugs. The configuration is sturdy and can take a beating according to trailers who tested the shoe. Thus, the Olympus 4 is a comfortable option for medium difficulty trails (its ample foot lockdown and not-so-aggressive lugs don't make it the best choice for the most technical surfaces). A very good shoe for trailers looking for maximum comfort for their long trail runs.
Comfort
9.5
Traction
9
Protection
9.5
Durability
9.5
Value for money
9
Design
9
PROS:
  • Great comfort
  • Maximalist and springy cushioning
  • Comfortable upper with ample lockdown and spacious toe box
  • Sturdy model
  • Effective traction on intermediate level trails
CONS:
  • Still on the heavy side
  • High price
  • May be insufficient on very technical trails
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Altra Escalante 2 review road running shoes
The Altra Escalante 2 is a good, simple and effective zero drop road shoe with light cushioning.
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$40.00
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Best deal at: jackrabbit.com
Last price update was: October 31, 2020 6:15 am
The Altra Escalante 2 is a zero drop road shoe with a limited cushioning. Indeed, it has a relatively thin sole (19 mm) and no drop between the heel and the toes. Altra's goal is to create shoes that respect the anatomy of the foot and the human body in general as much as possible. The Escalante 2 fulfils this role well by offering an excellent feeling under the foot for running sensations close to minimalism. The previous model had received some criticism for its flexibility, which kept the foot a bit loosely. It seems that Altra has addressed this point as the support is now stricter, which may or may not be to the liking of every runner. According to athletes who have tested the Escalante 2, it is a fairly firm road shoe overall. On the other hand, it is worth noting that the shoe has gained weight (40 grams more) while reducing the cushioning (4 mm less sole thickness) which is a bit surprising and disappointing. To summarize, the Altra Escalante 2 is a good road shoe but this new version reveals some important changes that might not please fans of the previous model.
Comfort
8.5
Durability
9
Value for money
9.5
Design
9.5
PROS:
  • Good comfort
  • Responsive cushioning with good ground feeling
  • Improved foot support
  • Nice, simple and efficient design
CONS:
  • Heavier compared to the previous model despite a thinner sole
  • Platform a bit too rigid according to some runners
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