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Altra Lone Peak 7 Review: A Cushioned Path to Barefoot Running

Close-up of my well-loved Altra Lone Peak 7 shoes in green, fresh from a trail run. Notice the wide toe box and the subtle, earthy color that blends right into the outdoor vibes. Perfect for those looking to ease into minimalist running without sacrificing comfort. #TrailReady #AltraLonePeak7
Altra Lone Peak 7

I finally decided to give the Altra Lone Peak 7 a go. You know, just another pair of shoes to add to the collection, but these were a bit different. I have been  exclusively using barefoot shoes for a decade now, whether it is on the road or the trails. However, last year I was not able to get out to the trails as much as a I’d liked and to go back into longer trail run I looked for something minimalist but with a bit of cushioning.

Why? You might ask. I have run ultramarathons with barefoot shoes, my legs and feet should be made of steel by now! ( I wish!)

So, I made the sensible decision. I know where I come from, I have done a lot, but I want to go back into it without injuries. With a focus on longer runs, doing long distances too early with shoes that are too minimalist would lead to high stress on my feet and lower calves… Leading to a high chance of injury.

So here I am, with my first barefoot cushioned shoes after a decade of barefoot shoes! Are they going to be too much? Will I lose all ground feeling? Many questions! One way to find out, put them on and run, run  (in the)forest run!

 I usually stick to size 41, but this time, based on their size chart, I went for a 42. And what do you know? They fit pretty well. ( Always look at the size charts!)

Altra lone peak 7, barefoot shoes, barefoot trail shoes, minimalist cushioned shoes
The Lone Peak 7 has 5mm lugs

I picked the green ones, not really a statement or anything, just liked the color. Altra shoes are basically barefoot/minimalist shoes with cushioning. 0 drop, wide toe box and flexible ( to a certain extent, remember, these are cushioned shoes). 25mm between your feet and the ground 20mm cushion 5 mm sole). Which, for me, would be the max I would go with.

But how do they feel? Albeit being very used to high ground feel, I did not feel detached from it with this shoe. They are forgiving but give you enough feedback to feel where you are going through. I found good traction especially on harder ground. While they performed well in a bit of mud, they do get a bit lost in deeper mud or mix of mud and leaves. Which is to be expected in shoes with this kind of sole. Only very aggressive shoes will perform well in those conditions.

They also fit very well and are very comfy, no rubbing anywhere and very nice and wide toe box ( but not clown looking ) provide good fit, which combined with the cushioning and sole creates a great shoe for people looking for barefoot feeling but some extra padding for undertaking longer runs, hikes, starting transition to barefoot shoes or simply don’t like barefoot shoes with thin soles.

All in all, if you’re kinda curious about trying out minimalist shoes but still want some cushion, the Altra Lone Peak 7 might be worth a shot. They’ve found their way into my regular rotation, mainly because they're straightforward and do the job without any fuss.

Before I finish up, let’s add a bit of spice.

Controversy: I have read and heard that these shoes don’t offer toe protection, they lack precision etc. But most of these comments come from people used to regular shod shoes. I approach this from a different angle, I come from very thin barefoot shoes. I learned over time to be precise with my foot placements, I improved my technique, especially running, to be efficient and play with the body position a lot. I did not encounter any of those issues pointed out in many of the other reviews I have seen around about the lone peak shoes. I don’t try to praise myself  but rather to point out that a lot of times it might not be the tool that is not fit for the job but rather us that need to continue to learn as we progress or adventure into new territories.

What are your thoughts on this?


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