How to Choose a Proper Training Shoe
Are you THAT person that unconsciously grabs their favorite pair of runners to bring along to the gym? For your workouts, are you choosing style over kicks that are designed specifically for working out? I am going to go ahead and assume that many of you thought yes to the above questions which is totally normal! Most of my clients who start training with me actually have no idea what the shoes on their feet are purposely made for which can be concerning when it comes to safety during training.
Having an adequate pair of shoes for the gym makes all the difference and plays a major role when it comes to working out. Especially when you are doing more advanced training such as agility work, speed training, etc. having a proper trainer can actually allow you to perform exercises more efficiently and effectively. Not to mention, it lowers risk of injury tremendously. Below will outline what to look for in a shoe used specifically for training/cross-training which will be helpful when picking out your next trainer!
1.) Comfortable and Light
For cross-training, you want to stick with a lighter shoe - definitely nothing heavy/clunky that will weigh you down during speed work and quick interval training. Obviously, you should be choosing a comfy pair of kicks because you hopefully will be spending multiple hours each week in them. I come across so many people who do not even find comfort in their runners (which most of the time leads to pain/injury) but are still wearing them out of tendency and maybe a bit of laziness. Find yourself a pair of trainers that you’d want to wear around town and then go to the gym and lift some heavy shit!
2.) Flexibly and Breathable
Nothing is worse than wearing a pair of runners that are not breathable. No one wants a sweaty sock foot sliding around in their shoe when trying to focus on their workout. Ensure your trainer is made from a breathable material mainly on top but that it also has flexibility. For any type of cross training or agility work, you want your foot to move with the shoe - but NOT move around. The shoe itself should not feel stiff but rather fitted yet flexible.
3.) Durable and Stable
When searching for the perfect running shoe you want to make sure there is lots of support around your toes and ankles. As I mentioned above, you foot should never be moving around in the shoe and if it is there is not enough support and stability. You also want to look for a shoe that does not have an overly cushioned sole. I prefer flatter trainers because they offer way more stability when doing speed/agility work and even for when I am doing heavy lifting. Your foot should feel as if you are standing flat surface as opposed to walking on a cloud (cushioned runners are better for long distance).
I have recently started wearing the Reebok Fast Flexweave running shoe and it is my new go-to for my training sessions. The shoe ecompasses all of the above qualities making it the perfect fit. I do a lot of speed interval work for cardio mixed with strength/cross-training and it is suitable for both. I have had a lot of difficulty in the past finding an appropriate shoe for that style of training but thanks to the Fast Flexweave I have finally found my perfect match!
Remember next time you are out shopping for a pair of runners to take a minute and not just buy based on style. There are so many important factors when choosing a training shoe and ultimately you want a shoe that is going to comfortable, durable and SAFE. Now enough reading and more moving - lace up your runners and head to the gym for a kick-ass session!