So this post is inspired by a discussion/experiment we had in the gym a while back ☺️… as you all probably know there are a multitude of shoe options for workouts including lifting shoes, Crossfit shoes, Crossfit speed shoes, running shoes, barefoot shoes, etc. etc. and very often I get asked – but which shoes should I wear? And which are best?… and, as with most things, the answer to this isn’t straightforward 😐…
Let’s start with the difference between the shoes – so weight lifting shoes tend to have a rigid heeled sole so it’s as if you are on a slight wedge which is super hard; running shoes tend to have soft cushioned soles which are relatively thick (depends on brand and model) in order to reduce impact on striking the ground; now Crossfit shoes are in between they are flatter with less cushioning but not as hard as the weight lifting shoes – the speed versions tend to be lighter and a bit softer than the non speed variety; and finally barefoot shoes are meant to emulate the barefoot feel so they have little to no cushioning and are not rigid at all…. Now onto the real question – which ones are right for you? first you need to choose which athlete of the below you are:
I am an outdoor runner 🏃🏼♀️🏃– if this is you – especially if you do a lot of road running – you should definitely invest in a pair of good and well cushioned running shoes – the cushioning is of utmost importance to protect your knees and body from the impact of the floor… when it comes to choosing between which running shoes – I strongly suggest you have your feet checked out for pronation – this along with running style and usual distance should all be taken into consideration to determine the right type of running shoe for you (there are a multitude of articles which compare the brands and latest models out there – though very commonly mentioned are Saucony, Asics and Nike)
I do CrossFit/Functional training and focus more on long endurance style workouts or lower weights – if this is you I strongly recommend the speed TR version of the Reebok CrossFit shoes (I believe Nike do something very similar for indoor training) – these have a pretty flat and sturdy sole but are also lightweight and pretty flexible for a little bit of running or those burpees and box jumps.
I do CrossFit/Functional training and like to lift pretty heavy 🏋🏼♀️🏋🏼- in this case you need the classic CrossFit shoes – so the nanos or the metcons – these have nice and sturdy flat soles as the speed version does but they are a little heavier – this extra weight comes with a lot of extra stability which is super helpful when you come to lift those heavier weights.
I do a lot of Weight Lifting … HEAVY! – in this case I would strongly recommend you try out some lifting shoes – they can add some kilos onto your lifts pretty quickly – but beware of becoming reliant on these shoes – they are nice, sturdy and rock solid so they really help you keep your balance – but this doesn’t mean you should use them every time you lift heavy.
I do a mix of everything – so in this case I suggest the speed TRs as they are nice all rounders and light and easy – though if you often take long runs I do believe you should have a specific shoe for those runs as your knees will thank you later.
What about barefoot? Those of you that know me know that I love training barefoot – and with good reason – all that stability offered by flatter shoes – there is no better stability than having your bare feet in contact with the ground! So I like to mix it up especially with lifting – sometimes lifting shoes, sometimes nanos, sometimes barefoot, etc… It is also great for my confidence – that I can lift a weight no matter what the shoes I am wearing❣️
So I in fact have a pair of all types of shoe I mentioned (see pic ✌🏻😍🙈) but I collected them over time and now select according to what workout I plan to do 💪🏻☺️ – FYI my first pair were the speed TRs (these are the purple and orange ones in the pic) 👊🏻
I hope you found some useful info in this post and should you want to ask something just comment below and I can try to answer 🤷🏼♀️