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Are you ready to take your fitness to the next level? Whether you're a seasoned athlete or just starting your fitness journey, finding the best cross training shoes is essential for maximizing your performance. From squats to HIIT classes to running, these versatile kicks will support you every step of the way. In this article, we've meticulously researched and tested the top contenders to bring you the ultimate guide to the best cross training shoes on the market. So lace up, grab your gym bag, and get ready to discover the perfect pair for your active lifestyle.

Best Cross-Training Shoes Overall: Nike Metcon 8

Good for: Individuals in need of a shoe that is suitable for both lifting and cardio.

Nike Metcon 8Nike Metcon 8
  • Available in various colors and customizable options
  • Recommended for individuals with narrow or wide feet
  • Easy to break in
  • Ideal for CrossFit enthusiasts
  • Some designs may cost $150 or more
  • Laces are not very durable
  • Average flexibility at best
Metcon is a workout regimen that combines strength training and cardio, making the Nike Metcon 8 our top choice for the best cross-training shoes. While we haven't personally tested the Metcon 8s yet, their specifications are nearly identical to the 7s, which were our previous top pick. Early reviews indicate that the shoes are very similar in every aspect.

Apart from the name, there are several obvious reasons why the Nike Metcon 8 has become my go-to gym shoes.

Firstly, they are designed for almost every activity imaginable. Their wide base provides stability during deadlifts and squats, the well-cushioned forefront makes cardio bursts effortless, and the heel handstand clips enable easy handstand push-ups. Additionally, the mid-foot rope guard offers extra grip during rope climbs.

I am particularly fond of the grippy all-rubber outsole, which provides excellent traction during box jumps, burpees, and heavy lifting. The shoes also feature a highly breathable mesh upper, which is perfect for intense workouts. While the flexibility is average, I would not recommend running more than a mile in them; for longer runs, it is advisable to switch to running shoes.

Having tested all Nike Metcon versions from Metcon 6 to the original, I believe Nike has perfected the design with their last two iterations. The 7s were the first to resolve the squeaking issue caused by the combination of midsole and insole, and I hope the 8s follow suit.

For those seeking the absolute best, these are my top favorites. And if you are willing to invest, Nike offers full customization options for the sneakers, allowing you to truly make them your own.

To learn more about the Nike Metcon 8, read our in-depth review here.

How We Selected and Tested the Best Cross-Trainers

To gauge the performance of these shoes as cross-trainers, we put them through a wide range of activities, including running, powerlifting, CrossFit, rope climbs, walking, wearing them casually, and trail running. We also sought recommendations from our Facebook group, which provided us with valuable insights.

Considering that no single shoe can excel at every task as effectively as a specialized shoe, our aim was to find options that performed well across a broad spectrum of activities. We also took other factors into account.


We evaluated how well these shoes withstood our rigorous testing system. If they fell apart after a few weeks or caused discomfort, we eliminated them and moved on to the next pair.


While some shoes on our list may be more expensive than others, we found that they offered enough performance to justify the price. Conversely, the cheaper options on our list are considered a good value because they provide optimal performance for the price.


While functionality is crucial, we also wanted to ensure that the shoes were visually appealing.


We have already touched on this, but a good cross-trainer should be able to handle a variety of workouts. At the very least, it should be suitable for everyday use and workouts, such as cardio and weightlifting.


It goes without saying that shoes should be comfortable to wear, whether they are dress shoes or athletic shoes.

How We Picked These Cross-Training Shoes

To make our recommendations, we looked for cross-training shoes with design elements that facilitate multi-directional movements, explosive workouts, cardio/strength circuits, and heavy lifting sessions. These features include flexible uppers, cushioned (yet firm where needed) midsoles, minimal heel-to-toe drops, reinforced heels, extra grip, and protective overlays. Some of these shoes have been tested by Runner's World's editors and wear test team, while others were selected based on our experience with previous iterations or extensive research of online reviews. We initially started with a list of 12 shoes in 2021 and updated it in 2022 to include the best new releases.

→ Head here for the most comfortable shoes you'll ever run in! 🏃‍♀?? 🏃

Our Confidence in Our Selections

Fleet Feet is renowned for its expertise in running. Our picks for the best cross-training shoes are based on over four decades of experience outfitting runners, athletes, and fitness enthusiasts of all abilities, ages, and sizes. If you purchase gear from us and find that it doesn't meet your expectations in terms of appearance, fit, or performance, you can return it within 60 days for a full refund. Additionally, we offer free shipping and returns on all orders over on, and we guarantee a price match with qualifying retailers. Our commitment is encapsulated in our Happy Fit Guarantee.

Best Cross-Training Shoes for Squats: Adidas Adipower 2

Good for: Individuals who need support for deep squats

Adidas AdiPower 2Adidas AdiPower 2
  • 20.1mm heel-to-toe drop provides excellent support during squats
  • Flexible forefoot
  • Durable upper
  • Costs around $200
  • Sacrifices some stability for flexibility
  • Doesn't excel in any specific area
An elevated heel is particularly useful during squat sessions as it allows the lifter to achieve deeper positions and helps transfer force to the quads while limiting hip movement. The Adidas AdiPower 2 boasts a 20.1 millimeter heel-to-toe drop, one of the highest in training shoes. Remarkably, these kicks are suitable for much more than weightlifting exercises.

The Adipowers have a flexible forefoot, making them suitable for conditioning workouts. However, I would not recommend running more than a quarter mile in these shoes.

Another valuable feature for squatters is the toe box, which is spacious enough to allow for toe spreading, aiding in balance.

These shoes are not inexpensive, with some designs priced over $300. They are worth the investment for serious weightlifters who also engage in occasional cardio sessions. However, if you primarily focus on lifting or cardio, you may want to look for specialized shoes.

Adidas recently released the Adipower III, so it will be interesting to see if they surpass this model.

Read my comprehensive Adidas Adipower 2 review to learn more about this shoe.

Best Cross-Training Shoes for Men

When evaluating the best cross-training shoes for men, I focus on two main performance aspects. Firstly, I consider the shoe's stability and versatility.

Secondly, I assess the overall durability of the shoe's upper, midsole, and outsole. Will it withstand a wide range of workouts, or will it wear out quickly during specific training sessions?

1. Under Armour TriBase Reign 4

The UA TriBase Reign 4 is my top pick for the best cross-training shoe for men. This model offers excellent versatility and performs well in various training styles.

under armour tribase reign 4 for lifting

The Micro G Foam midsole provides stability for heavier sessions and responsiveness for power-focused training. The TriBase technology on the outsole enhances stability and balance.

If you desire a cross-training shoe that excels in recreational lifting, CrossFit workouts, HIIT sessions, and has a lower heel-to-toe drop, then the UA TriBase Reign 4 is the perfect choice. With its 2mm heel-to-toe drop, it is one of the flatter cross-training shoes on the market.

under armour tribase reign 4 for CrossFit workouts

One notable advantage of the UA TriBase Reign 4 is that it becomes even more comfortable over time. After a few weeks of regular training in this model, it feels better suited for all types of workouts.

  • Best For: Lifting, HIIT, and CrossFit-Style Training
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 2mm
  • Weight: 13 oz (based on size 10)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size
  • Read My Review: UA TriBase Reign 4 Review

2. NOBULL Trainer

The NOBULL Trainer is my second choice for the best cross-training shoes for men. This model is perfect for individuals who desire a shoe suitable for lifting, CrossFit, and outdoor workouts.

NOBULL Trainer Plus for lifting and CrossFit

Compared to the original NOBULL Trainer, the NOBULL Trainer Plus features a thicker EVA foam midsole and herringbone tread pattern. These additions enhance comfort and versatility for outdoor workouts.

The NOBULL Trainer is also a suitable option for wider feet and provides some motion control. It offers great durability for various types of workouts.

NOBULL Trainer Plus for versatile training

Another option worth exploring is the NOBULL Court Trainer, which has similar construction elements to the Trainer but features an outsole wrap and tread specifically designed for court sports.

  • Best For: Recreational Lifting, Flat Feet, and CrossFit-Style Training
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 4mm
  • Weight: 12.7 oz (based on size 10)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size
  • Read My Review: NOBULL Trainer Plus Review

3. Inov-8 F-Lite G 300

The Inov-8 F-Lite G 300 is an underrated cross-training shoe that I highly recommend. This model is perfect for handling hybrid tasks in the gym. It has proven to be extremely durable during my heavier lifts.

Inov-8 F-Lite G 300 Pros

Even when lifting over 450 lbs in deadlifts, I noticed minimal compression in this model. The midsole strikes a balance between stability and versatility, making it suitable for plyometrics and HIIT-style workouts.

One of the major advantages of this model is the Graphene construction, indicated by the "G" in its name. The graphene component enhances durability and performance, particularly in terms of stability and traction.

If you are looking for a cross-training shoe for lifting, HIIT workouts, CrossFit, and shorter interval-focused runs, the Inov-8 F-Lite G 300 is an excellent option to consider.

  • Best For: Lifting, HIIT, and CrossFit-Style Training
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 6mm
  • Weight: 12.3 oz (based on size 10)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size
  • Read My Review: Inov-8 F-Lite G 300 Review

Best Cross Training Shoes for Women

When selecting the best cross-training shoes for women, I rely on feedback from my girlfriend and my YouTube community. Women have different foot structures, so it is essential to find options that perform well and accommodate their specific needs.

For this section, I combine the feedback received from the female athletes in my life with my own interpretation of certain cross-training shoes.

1. Nike Metcon 8

In terms of versatility, durability, and stability, the Nike Metcon 8 is an excellent choice. The Nike React Foam in the shoe's forefoot provides a responsive and bouncy feel, making it ideal for classes and HIIT workouts involving frequent toe movements.

Testing the Nike Metcon 8 for HIIT

The Hyperlift insert in the heel enhances stability during various types of lifting. Moreover, the Metcon 8's upper has been improved and is more durable than its predecessor, the Nike Metcon 7.

The Nike Metcon 8 effectively meets the needs of athletes who engage in a variety of training styles. According to my girlfriend, "Similar to the Metcon 7s, I love the stability and support that the Metcon 8 provides...continued below".

Nike Metcon 8 Review

"The rigidity in the midfoot creates a stable base for heavy lifting, and the structured upper provides a secure feel during lateral movements."

One common criticism of the Nike Metcon 8 is that the Hyperlift insert can feel clunky at times. Therefore, it is not the best choice for short runs or everyday wear. For more information, refer to my in-depth review.

  • Best For: Lifting, HIIT, and CrossFit-Style Training
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 4mm
  • Weight: 12.4 oz (based on size 10)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size
  • Read My Review: Nike Metcon 8 Review

2. Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2

The Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2 is a highly underrated cross-training shoe. It features an 8mm heel-to-toe drop and a Dynamic Fascia Band construction that lends it a more natural feel.

inov 8 f lite 260 v2 lifting

This model promotes a heightened connection with the ground and provides a neutral width that suits most women's foot anatomy.

The PowerFlow midsole strikes a balance between stability and versatility, while the Dynamic Fascia Band outsole ensures a responsive and adaptable fit.

For individuals who enjoy lifting, HIIT sessions, and lighter runs, the Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2 is an excellent choice. It offers flexibility, a lightweight feel, an athletic fit, and solid stability across various activities.

  • Best For: CrossFit-Style Training
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 8mm
  • Weight: 10.5 oz
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size (individuals with wider feet may size up half a size)
  • Read My Review: Inov-8 F-Lite 260 V2 Review

3. Reebok Nano X2

For women with wider and flatter feet, the Reebok Nano X2 is a great option to consider. This model offers versatility and is suitable for various training styles.

Reebok Nano X2 for Women Girlfriend wearing her Reebok Nano X2 for lower body training.

My girlfriend, who has flatter feet and often struggles to find suitable cross-training shoes, enjoys the Nano X2 for its midfoot support.

When asked about the Reebok Nano X2, she said, "The Reebok Nano X2s are currently my favorite shoes for cross-training. They strike a good balance between stability and flexibility, making them suitable for heavy lower-body lifts, short runs, and plyometric work...continued below".

Reebok Nano X2 In Depth Review

"They also provide a snug fit in the midfoot and heel without being too narrow in the forefoot, allowing me to maintain active toes throughout my workout."

  • Best For: General Training, HIIT Workouts, Casual CrossFit, and Wider Feet
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 7mm
  • Weight: 11.9 oz (based on size 10)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size for wider feet; individuals with narrow/neutral-width feet may want to size down half a size
  • Read My Review: Reebok Nano X2 Review

Best Cross-Training Shoes for Flat/Wide Feet

When testing the best cross-training shoes for flatter and wider feet, my main focus is on comfort for those with flat and wide feet.

Flat and wide feet can vary from person to person due to differences in foot anatomy. Here are my top three picks for flat feet:

1. Reebok Nano X2

The Reebok Nano X2 is my top choice for best cross-training shoes for flat feet. It offers a combination of features that make it suitable for those with flatter feet.

Deadlifting 505 lbs In the Reebok Nano X2 Lifting Test

The Nano X2 is slightly wider and has TPU clips around the midfoot for additional support. This is crucial for individuals with flatter feet who require more support.

In terms of lifting performance, I have successfully deadlifted up to 505 lbs and squatted up to 405 lbs in this model with minimal compression issues. So if you plan on training heavy, the Nano X2 is a great choice.

Squatting 405 lbs In the Reebok Nano X2 Lifting Test

For versatile training, the Floatride Energy foam midsole provides responsiveness, making it suitable for various workouts such as classes, HIIT, and outdoor sessions.

  • Best For: General Training, HIIT Workouts, Casual CrossFit, and Wider Feet
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 7mm
  • Weight: 11.9 oz (size 10 model)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size for wider feet, size down half a size for narrow/neutral-width feet.
  • Read My ReviewReebok Nano X2 Review

2. NOBULL Trainer

The NOBULL Trainer is another good option for those with flat feet. It has a wide construction throughout the forefoot, midfoot, and heel, providing ample space and comfort.

NOBULL Trainer Plus for lifting and CrossFit

This model offers minimal arch support, making it suitable for individuals with low arches. It also excels in motion control and provides stability under heavier weights. The SuperFabric upper adds durability by preventing abrasion.

NOBULL Trainer Plus for crossfit and lifting

If you're in search of a wide-foot-friendly shoe that can handle lifting and CrossFit-style training, the NOBULL Trainer is a great choice.

  • Best For: Recreational Lifting, Flat Feet, CrossFit-Style Training
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 4mm
  • Weight: 12.7 oz (size 10 model)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size
  • Read My Review: NOBULL Trainer Review

3. Altra Solstice XT 2

The Altra Solstice XT 2 is my final recommendation for the best cross-training shoes for flat feet. It is designed for individuals with flat and wide feet who prefer minimal arch support.

altra solstice xt 2 for crossfit and lifting (1)

This shoe stands out for its wide construction, particularly in the forefoot. It provides a comfortable fit, especially for individuals who often feel restricted in the toe box due to flat feet.

The Altra Solstice XT 2 has a responsive foam midsole, making it suitable for light to moderate lifting and versatile training.

altra solstice xt 2 for classes and plyometrics

If you're looking for a shoe that can handle various activities on a weekly basis without sacrificing width and a zero-drop construction, the Solstice XT 2 is a great choice.

  • Best For: Flat Feet, Wide Feet, HIIT Workouts, Recreational Training
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 0mm
  • Weight: 9.5 oz (size 10 model)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size
  • Read My ReviewAltra Solstice XT 2 Review

Best Cross-Training Shoes for HIIT and Classes

When testing the best shoes for HIIT workouts and classes, my focus is on versatility, responsiveness, and durability.

I consider two factors: the shoe's ability to perform well in jumping and class-style sessions, and the grip of the outsole for multi-directional work, as well as the durability of the upper for high-impact activities.

1. Nike Free Metcon 4

The Nike Free Metcon 4 is my top pick for the best cross-training shoes for HIIT workouts and classes. This model excels in both versatility and responsiveness, making it comfortable for jumping and class-style sessions.

testing the nike free metcon 4 for classes

The Nike Free technology in this shoe provides a mobile and maneuverable feel, allowing for easy movement and multi-directional work.

The bootie-style construction offers a form-fitting feel, making it ideal for individuals who prefer shoes that hug their feet and feel athletic. However, individuals with wider feet may find the fit less comfortable.

testing the nike free metcon 4 for versatile training and plyometrics

The Nike Free Metcon 4 strikes a good balance between stability and versatility. It is suitable for lifting, with a suggested loading limit of 315 lbs to avoid compression.

  • Best For: HIIT Workouts, Light Lifting, Shorter Runs
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: N/A
  • Weight: 10.6 oz
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size, but shallow instep so it may feel tight for wider feet.
  • Read My ReviewNike Free Metcon 4 Review

2. Reebok Nano X2

The Reebok Nano X2 is another great cross-training shoe option for HIIT workouts and classes. It offers excellent performance in both its midsole and outsole.

Reviewing the Reebok Nano X2 for HIIT Training

The Nano X2 features Reebok Floatride Energy foam in its midsole, which provides stability and responsiveness. The full rubber outsole with lug patterning ensures traction during multi-directional movements and outdoor sessions.

The upper and midfoot construction of the Nano X2 are also noteworthy. The knit material in the forefoot offers breathability, while the TPU midfoot clips provide midfoot support.

  • Best For: General Training, HIIT Workouts, Casual CrossFit, and Wider Feet
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 7mm
  • Weight: 11.9 oz (size 10 model)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: For wider feet, true-to-size is recommended for the Nano X2. Narrow/neutral-width feet should size down half a size.
  • Read My ReviewReebok Nano X2 Review

3. On Cloud X 3

The On Cloud X 3 is a great cross-training shoe for classes, HIIT workouts, and light strength training. It offers a balance between responsiveness and comfort.

On Cloud X 3 Try On and Sizing

The CloudTec midsole provides a responsive performance, ideal for activities like jump rope, skips, short runs, and squat jumps. The shoe is breathable, lightweight, and suitable for daily wear.

My only complaints with the On Cloud X 3 are its new lacing construction, which can appear awkward, and the increased price compared to the previous Cloud X model. If you prefer the Cloud X and want to save money, I recommend sticking with that model.

  • Best For: Shorter Runs, Light Lifting, HIIT, Agility
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 8mm
  • Weight: 9.05 oz (size 10 model)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size
  • Read My Review: On Cloud X 3 Review

If you frequently train with jump ropes and need a highly responsive cross-training shoe, the following list is perfect for you. All of the shoes listed below have reactive forefoot constructions designed for jump roping.

Whether you're adding jump rope to your weekly training or focusing on jump rope workouts, these shoes will meet your needs.

1. YORK Athletics Frank Trainer

The YORK Athletics Frank Trainer is my top pick for the best cross-training shoe for jump rope. It is influenced by boxing-style workouts that often include jump rope work for conditioning.

Reviewing the YORK Athletics Mfg The Frank Trainer for jump rope

The Frank Trainer's lightweight and responsive EVA foam midsole provides a nice bounce, making it suitable for jump rope and plyometric exercises.

The bootie-style construction and mesh upper offer a comfortable and breathable fit. The YORK Athletics Frank Trainer is not just great for jump rope but also for daily wear.

  • Best For: Jump Rope, Light Runs, Classes, Lifting, and HIIT
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 9mm
  • Weight: 10.4 oz (size 10 model)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size
  • Read My Review: YORK Athletics Frank Trainer

2. UA HOVR Rise 4

The UA HOVR Rise 4 is a solid choice for jump rope due to its HOVR midsole construction. Its reactive forefoot provides a nice bounce for jump rope and other athletic movements.

Testing the UA HOVR Rise 4 for Jump Rope

The grooves under the forefoot enhance the shoe's bounce and flexibility. The TriBase outsole technology adds stability, making it suitable for various activities.

If you primarily engage in classes, light runs, HIIT workouts, and moderate lifting, the UA HOVR Rise 4 is a great choice.

Testing the Under Armour HOVR Rise 4 for HIIT workouts

The breathable upper and bootie-style construction contribute to the overall comfortable feel of the shoe. The UA HOVR Rise 4 is also priced competitively at $110 USD.

  • Best For: Jump Rope, HIIT, and Classes
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 8mm
  • Weight: 11.1 oz (size 10 model)
  • Removable Insole: No
  • Sizing: True to Size
  • Read My Review: UA HOVR Rise 4 Review

3. Nike Zoom Metcon Turbo 2

The Nike Zoom Metcon Turbo 2 performs exceptionally well for jump rope sessions and HIIT-style workouts. Its Nike React foam insole with a Zoom Air packet in the forefoot provides a responsive performance for jump roping.

Testing the Nike Zoom Metcon Turbo 2 for HIIT Workouts

The outsole construction enhances maneuverability and the shoe's minimalistic design offers an athletic fit. The Nike Zoom Metcon Turbo 2 strikes a good balance between stability and responsiveness.

  • Best For: Jump Rope, Lifting, HIIT, Agility, and Classes
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 4mm
  • Weight: 12.50 oz (size 10 model)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: Length Is True, Width Is Narrower
  • Read My Review: Nike Zoom Metcon Turbo 2 Review

Top Recommendations for Running Cross-Training Shoes

When it comes to running in cross-training shoes, it's important to keep in mind that they are best suited for shorter runs. They may not provide the ideal support for longer distances. Additionally, the performance of cross-training shoes may vary depending on your level of strength training. As you progress in your strength workouts, you may find that certain models lose their responsiveness. However, there are cross-training shoes on the market that are specifically designed for hybrid training, blending running and lifting together.

1. ON Cloud X Training Shoes

The ON Cloud X Training Shoes are an excellent choice for those who want to incorporate regular runs into their training routine without focusing on heavy lifting. These shoes offer three key advantages when it comes to hybrid performance.

can you run in the on cloud x

Firstly, they provide a comfortable and responsive running experience, unlike many other cross-training shoes. The CloudTec midsole offers a forgiving and responsive feel for runs ranging from 1 to 7ish miles.

Secondly, these shoes offer good stability for lighter lifting and class-style sessions, up to around 275 lbs. If you lift weights lighter than that, you'll appreciate the stability these shoes provide.

nike metcon 7 vs on cloud x for crossfit

Lastly, the ON Cloud X Training Shoes can also be worn as everyday shoes, making them a versatile option for blending running and lifting throughout the week.

  • Best For: Shorter Runs, Light Lifting, HIIT, Agility
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 6mm
  • Weight: 8.8 oz (for size 10)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size
  • Read My Review: On Cloud X Review

2. STR/KE MVMNT Vimana Hybrid Runner

The STR/KE MVMNT Vimana Hybrid Runner is an outstanding choice for trail runs, road runs, and moderate to heavy lifts. It's also suitable for everyday use.

strike mvmnt vimana hybrid runner trail run

These shoes feature STR/KE MVMNT's Cush50™ EVA/EPE Midsole, providing a perfect blend of stability and versatility. In terms of lifting performance, they offer stability up to 455 lbs without compromising performance.

For running, the STR/KE MVMNT Vimana Hybrid Runner is a go-to option for shorter trail runs that prioritize speed. The firmness of these shoes delivers a more "minimalist" feel for running.

STRKE MVMNT Vimana Hybrid Runner for Lifting

The outsole features STR/KE MVMNT's Meta Platform, offering ample ground feedback, stability, and an Omni-directional tread for outdoor training. If you enjoy both trail running and lifting, the Vimana Hybrid Runner is an excellent option to consider.

  • Best For: Trail Runs, Road Runs, Lifting, Daily Wear
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 4mm
  • Weight: 10.8 oz (for size 10)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size
  • Read My Review: STR/KE MVMNT Vimana Hybrid Runner

3. YORK Athletics Frank Trainer

The YORK Athletics Frank Trainer is the final recommendation for the best cross-training shoes for running. These shoes are particularly suited for shorter runs.

Reviewing the YORK Athletics Mfg The Frank Trainer for running

If you engage in regular 1-3 mile runs, you'll appreciate the overall performance and comfort provided by The Frank Trainer. The responsive midsole and lightweight construction offer a form-fitting and comfortable experience.

These shoes also excel in classes and lifting sessions. If you enjoy combining HIIT workouts, boxing classes, lifting, and lighter runs on a weekly basis, The Frank Trainer delivers excellent performance.

Reviewing the YORK Athletics Mfg The Frank Trainer for lifting weights

Additionally, The Frank Trainer works well as an everyday shoe. It stands out as a stylish and classy option among cross-training shoes, making it suitable for various occasions.

  • Best For: Light Runs, Classes, Lifting, and HIIT
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 9mm
  • Weight: 10.4 oz (for size 10)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size
  • Read My Review: YORK Athletics Frank Trainer

Top Budget Cross-Training Shoes Under $100

When it comes to budget-friendly cross-training shoes, there are two important factors to consider. First, the price point of the shoe itself, ensuring it fits within your budget. Second, the performance of the shoe in relation to its price. Is it a cost-effective option or does it fall short despite the lower price tag?

1. Reebok Nanoflex TR 2

The Reebok Nanoflex TR 2 takes the top spot as the best cross-training shoe under $100. In terms of well-rounded performance and affordability, it's hard to beat the price tag of the Nanoflex TR 2.

Testing the Reebok Nanoflex V2 for versatile training

Compared to the original Nanoflex TR, this model features several construction updates that improve the fit and overall performance. The widened last of the Nanoflex TR 2 caters to a wider range of foot anatomies.

The medium-density foam midsole provides stability for lifting and versatility for HIIT and athletic-style training. These shoes allow you to lift heavy and excel in various workout styles.

Reebok Nanoflex V2 Lifting Performance and Review

The midfoot RopePro tech is another valuable feature, enhancing performance during CrossFit workouts. If you're on a budget or a beginner/intermediate athlete seeking a versatile shoe, the Reebok Nanoflex TR 2 is an excellent choice.

  • Best For: HIIT, Light Running, and Recreational Lifting
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 7mm
  • Weight: 11.8 oz (for size 10)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size
  • Read My Review: Reebok Nanoflex V2 Review

2. PUMA FUSE 2.0

The PUMA FUSE 2.0 is another impressive budget-friendly option, retailing at $100. There are several features that make the Puma Fuse 2.0 worth considering, especially considering the improvements made from the original Puma Fuse.

Testing the Puma Fuse 2.0 for Versatile Training

These shoes excel in stability, making them one of the most stable cross-training options in the sub-$100 range. They are suitable for heavy lifting, and while they may not offer the same level of stability as more expensive models, they are more than sufficient for most recreational lifters.

The PUMAGRIP outsole provides excellent traction and enhances the shoe's maneuverability for CrossFit workouts and versatile training. The overall construction of the Puma Fuse 2.0 has been improved compared to its predecessor.

  • Best For: CrossFit-Style Training and Lifting
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 4mm
  • Weight: 13.3 oz (for size 10)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size
  • Read My Review: PUMA FUSE 2.0 Review

3. Nike MC Trainer 2

The Nike MC Trainer 2 secures the third spot as the best cross-training shoe under $100. With a price of , these shoes are highly affordable and budget-conscious.

Testing the Nike MC Trainer 2 for Lifting

Despite their lower price, the MC Trainer 2 offers a well-rounded construction and performance. When it comes to lifting, the medium-density foam midsole provides ample stability.

The full rubber outsole ensures excellent durability and traction on various training surfaces, setting these shoes apart from other budget-friendly options.

Nike MC Trainer 2 Performance Review

For individuals seeking a cost-effective training shoe that performs well in lifting, HIIT workouts, and athletic training, the Nike MC Trainer 2 is a viable option.

  • Best For: Lifting, HIIT Workouts, and Athletic Training
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: Likely 4mm (per Nike’s support team)
  • Weight: 11.1 oz (for size 10)
  • Removable Insole: No
  • Sizing: True to Size
  • Read My Review: Nike MC Trainer 2 Review

Best Value Cross-Training Shoes: Feiyue FE LO 1920

Good for: Individuals in need of a highly affordable training shoe.

Feiyue Kung Fu ShoesFeiyue Kung Fu Shoes
  • Price: Approximately $35 (excluding shipping) 
  • Highly flexible 
  • Effective traction
  • Great for recreational athletes
  • Not the most durable option  
  • May not suit serious CrossFitters or powerlifters 
  • Round up to the nearest full size if you're in between (e.g., if you're a 7.5, go for size 8)
While they may be the most affordable shoes recommended, the Feiyue FE LO 1920 shoes have a lot to offer. After all, these are the shoes worn by Shaolin monks and international martial arts masters. 

First and foremost, these shoes provide exceptional flexibility. They offer great ankle mobility and flexibility, allowing you to move freely. While they may not provide much cushioning, they make up for it in terms of mobility. 

The rubber outsole offers excellent traction, which is why they are favored by professional parkour athletes. With virtually no heel-to-toe drop, these shoes mimic a barefoot-style feel, suitable for deadlifts and high-volume strength training. However, they may lack the stability required for frequent squatting. 

These shoes provide minimal cushioning, but if you desire more comfort, the insoles are removable and can be replaced with your own. Additionally, Feiyue sells its own insole inserts. 

Considering their price of approximately $35, these shoes may not be the most durable. However, even with regular use, they can last a few months. Buying four pairs of Feiyue FE LO 1920 shoes would cost the same as a single pair of Nike Metcons. 

Best Budget Cross-Training Shoe: Reebok Nanoflex TR

Good for: Those seeking an affordable cross-trainer 

Reebok Nanoflex TR Training Shoes
  • Extremely budget-friendly under $100  
  • Comfortable for everyday wear 
  • Suitable for various workout styles
  • Not recommended for serious athletes or heavy lifters  
  • Narrow toe box 
  • Not the most durable option
The Reebok Nanoflex TR is a budget-friendly alternative to the Reebok Nanos. As of now, you can find them for , making them an accessible option for those on a tight budget. 

Our fitness writer and personal trainer, Amanda Capritto, thoroughly tested these shoes to determine their cross-training capabilities. While they performed adequately for CrossFit and weightlifting workouts, their true strength lies in HIIT exercises. The highly responsive foam midsole makes plyometric movements effortless, and they offer more cushioning and shock absorption compared to other cross-trainers. 

These shoes can be worn for CrossFit and weightlifting workouts, depending on your fitness level. For recreational athletes, they will suffice, but serious bodybuilders and CrossFit enthusiasts may require more stability. 

The Reebok Nanoflex TR also excels as an everyday shoe, with eight different colorways available for men and six for women. The additional cushioning provides all-day comfort. However, individuals with wider feet may find the narrow toe box problematic. 

Considering the price, these shoes offer good value, although they may not be as durable as more expensive options. 

Read my full Reebok Nanoflex TR review. 

Best Cross-Training Shoe for Wide Feet: Inov-8 F-Lite G-300

Good for: Individuals with wider feet or those in need of arch support

Inov-8 F-LITE 300 GInov-8 F-LITE 300 G
  • Ideal for individuals with wider feet  
  • Durable construction
  • Lightweight at just 10.5 oz.
  • No lengthy break-in period 
  • Laces may not tighten snugly (can be positive or negative depending on preference) 
  • Limited availability in US stores 
  • Not ideal for those who prefer a tighter fit
The Inov-8 F-Lite G-300 is highly regarded by individuals with wider feet, including GGR product tester and fitness writer Anthony O'Reilly (size 15). These shoes offer comfort without feeling loose during training. 

One standout feature of these shoes is the ETPU (expanded thermoplastic polyurethane) cushioning on the footbed. This material is similar to TPU cushioning found in Reebok Nanos but offers improved elasticity and shock absorption due to high-pressure and heat treatment. ETPU is commonly used in insole inserts, safety footwear, and heavy-duty work shoes. The G-300s incorporate this material, making them an excellent choice for individuals in need of arch support. The cushioning feels great on different surfaces, from cold pavement to gym mats. The G-300s also require no break-in period, allowing you to start training immediately. 

In terms of cross-training capabilities, these shoes deliver. The knit upper promotes breathability, while the graphene-infused outsole and midsole increase durability. These shoes are built to last.

While they may not be suitable for setting personal records in deadlifts or training for a half-marathon, they offer ample support for recreational athletes who require support in specific areas while engaging in short-duration physical activities. Individuals with wider feet will find these shoes to be an excellent fit.

Read my full Inov-8 F-LITE-G-300 review here.

Best Cross Training Shoes for CrossFit

In evaluating the top cross-training shoes for CrossFit, I consider how well a model handles the demands of various CrossFit workouts. CrossFit workouts can put a lot of strain on cross-training shoes, so it's crucial to have a model specifically designed for this style of training.

To provide some context, when assessing cross-training shoes for CrossFit, I look at their stability, versatility, and overall durability. It's important to note that the three options below are all excellent choices and could easily be considered the number one pick based on personal fit and shoe preferences.

1. STR/KE MVMNT Haze Trainer

The STR/KE MVMNT Haze Trainer has earned the top spot as the best CrossFit shoe in 2021. This model consistently delivers exceptional performance for both CrossFit and heavy lifting due to three key factors.

Testing the Haze Trainer for CrossFit workouts

First, the medium-density midsole in the Haze Trainer offers a perfect balance of versatility and stability. I have trained with weights exceeding 500 lbs in this model without experiencing any compression issues.

The midsole is also comfortable for dynamic movements like double-unders and box jumps. Second, this model features a wider toe box that is comparable to the Altra Escalante's, making it highly maneuverable.

Testing the Haze Trainer for Box Jumps

Lastly, the Cross-Platform outsole flexes and bends well, accommodating all types of training. This makes it ideal for those who prefer a more mobile cross-training shoe designed for CrossFit workouts.

  • Best For: CrossFit-Style Training
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 4mm
  • Weight: 11.2 oz (based on size 10)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size
  • Read My ReviewSTR/KE MVMNT Haze Trainer Review

2. R.A.D ONE

The R.A.D ONE is one of the latest cross-training shoes for 2022, and it stands out as an excellent model for CrossFit. This shoe's midsole and outsole strike a perfect balance between versatility and stability.

Testing the RAD ONE for CrossFit

Whether you're new to CrossFit or pushing yourself to the limit with heavy lifts, the R.A.D ONE provides exceptional support. The midsole remains stable even with weights up to 500 lbs and offers ample comfort for athletic-focused training sessions.

In terms of durability for CrossFit workouts, this shoe's rubber outsole wraps over the midsole, providing excellent traction and additional durability for activities like rope climbs that can wear out the midfoot.

Testing the RAD ONE for HIIT workouts

The upper of this model incorporates strategic layers to enhance durability around the toe and midfoot, areas prone to quick breakdown during this type of training. For a newer model, the R.A.D ONE performs impressively well for CrossFit workouts.

  • Best For: CrossFit
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 6mm
  • Weight: 12.7 oz (based on size 10)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: R.A.D recommends going up a half size, but true size worked for me (more details in my review article)
  • Read My Review: R.A.D ONE Review

3. TYR CXT-1 Trainer

The TYR CXT-1 Trainer secures the third spot as one of the best cross-training shoes for CrossFit. TYR is a relatively new player in the CrossFit world and made a significant impact at the 2022 NOBULL CrossFit Games.

Testing the TYR CXT-1 Trainer for Squatting

This model offers versatility and stability, making it an excellent choice for CrossFit. The CXT-1 Trainer features TYR's patent-pending Stability Platform and Surge NRG foam midsole, providing a solid and stable feel during heavy training.

I also appreciate the higher heel-to-toe drop in the TYR CXT-1 Trainer, which will appeal to certain athletes. If you prefer having a slightly elevated heel for lifting, thrusters, and wall balls, this shoe's performance will suit you well.

TYR CXT-1 Trainer Durability for CrossFit Training

In terms of durability, the breathable mesh upper and thicker toe bumper contribute to the shoe's long-term durability. However, I do have some concerns about rope climbing durability, which I discuss extensively in my review.

  • Best For: Lifting, CrossFit, and Athletic Training
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 9mm
  • Weight: 12.65 oz (based on size 10)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size
  • Read My Review: TYR CXT-1 Trainer Review

Best Cross-Training Shoe for CrossFit: Reebok Nano X2

Good for: CrossFitters seeking a reliable training shoe.

Reebok Nano X2 MenReebok Nano X2 Men's Training Shoe
  • Includes features to support all aspects of CrossFit, including rope climbs
  • Excellent shock absorption
  • 7mm heel-to-toe drop
  • Stable, with good cushioning
  • Not the best for heavy lifts
  • May not be ideal for individuals with narrow feet due to the wide toe box
  • No trial period available
The Reebok Nanos have long been a staple in the CrossFit community, and in my opinion, the Nano X2 is the best version to date.

The cushioned midsole and wide, flat base provide ample support during cardio bursts and lifts, although there might be slightly too much cushioning for achieving new personal records. However, for high-volume work, these shoes are an excellent choice. The cushioning also provides great shock absorption, particularly during box jumps.

Compared to the X1s, the Nano X2s have a lower heel cup and fewer reports of blisters during testing. They are also impressively durable compared to their older counterparts, which is always a positive feature.

Those with smaller and narrower feet should be aware that the Nano X2s have a wide toe box, so it may be better to explore other options if you fit into that category.

As with any great CrossFit shoe, the Nano X2s don't excel in a specific category, but they perform admirably well in various aspects.

Read our comprehensive Reebok Nano X2 review for more information about these shoes.

The Top Crossfit Shoes of 2023

Best Overall: Inov8 F-LITE 260 V2 Knitted — Men’s & Women’s

Inov8 F-LITE 260 V2 Knitted

Scott Panchick, a former competitive CrossFit athlete turned coach, utilized his experience in the games to assist in designing the F-lite 260 V2 ($140)

The F-lite 260 v2 stands out for its lightness and comfort, offering breathability and cushioning without compromising support and performance. The 8mm drop in the heel provides optimal positioning for lifters without the sensation of wearing heavyweight lifting shoes.

While the F-lite 260 is not the go-to choice for heavy lifts or Olympic lifting, it performs exceptionally well in squats, presses, jumps, and sleds. Those looking for a more specialized weightlifting shoe may prefer the Rogue/Do-Win Classic Lifter.

DSC07272 The F-Lite 260 is revered as one of the lightest and most breathable Crossfit shoes, making it a favorite among testers; (photo/Matt Bento)The V2 features a new “Met-Cradle” in the midfoot for enhanced protection and assistance during rope climbs. Despite its sleek appearance, this feature outperforms similar elements found in the Metcon 7 and Nano x2. Its low profile preserves the shoe's lightweight and responsive feel, while the Met-Cradle and Toe Bumper offer protection and peace of mind.

Despite Inov8's claim that the shoe is wider for a better fit, it could have been even wider. Testers with slightly wider feet noticed some protrusion of the footbed and occasional sliding during cutting and jumping moves.

While the F-lite 260 offers comfort and flexibility, concerns arise regarding the shoe's longevity due to its width and mesh upper. Individuals with average-width feet will be satisfied with this shoe, while those with wider feet may prefer an alternative option.

Overall, the Inov8 F-lite 260 V2 Knitted is a strong contender for the best CrossFit shoe of 2023. Those seeking a new gym shoe should seriously consider it.


  • Best for: Athletes who desire a light, breathable, comfortable, and protective cross trainer for everyday gym use
  • Drop: 8 mm
  • Width: Medium
  • Weight: 9.17oz
  • Bonus: Met-Cradle excels in rope climbs. Mesh upper provides exceptional breathability and comfort.
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Best Value: Rogue/Do-Win Classic Lifters

If it's not broken, there's no need to fix it. The Do-Win classic lifters ($130) are almost identical to the classic lifters previously offered by Pendlay/Do-Win. With updated materials and color options, these shoes deliver similar performance to the original version. They offer great value for beginners in weightlifting or those still undecided.

Featuring a stacked leather heel and TPU sole, the classic lifter ensures excellent stability and grip. The midfoot straps keep the foot secure and the laces out of the way. The suede/mesh upper allows for adequate ventilation, and the vibrant color adds a stylish touch to your gym attire.

However, durability has been a concern among users, particularly the possibility of the heel coming unglued. While our tester has not experienced any issues with longevity, the stacked leather heel presents a potential weak point in the construction of the shoes.

Some purchasers have noted that the shoe runs slightly small and narrow, suggesting ordering half a size up. Our tester with size 11 feet found the shoe to be a snug fit. Additionally, the laces were described as too long and susceptible to fraying from the velcro straps.

The Rogue/DO-Win Classic lifters are a solid lifting shoe with minor issues. Despite that, considering the competitive price and stylish design, they may be worth considering.


  • Best for: Olympic weightlifting and heavy strength training
  • Drop: 19 mm
  • Width: Narrow
  • Weight: 22.3 oz
  • Bonus: Competitive price and retro style
Check Price at Rogue

Best WOD Shoe: Reebok Nano X2 — Men’s & Women’s

Reebok Nano X2

For a high-performance cross trainer with a stylish design, the Reebok Nano X2 ($130) is a top choice. Reebok, the first company to create a shoe specifically for CrossFit, has perfected its Nano line over the past decade. The Nano X2, the 12th iteration, showcases years of refinement.

The Nano X2 strikes a perfect balance between cushioning and stability, offering comfort and support for both box jumps and personal records on cleans.

Previous versions of the Nano were praised for their stability but criticized for narrow toeboxes and lack of comfort during non-weighted movements, particularly during cardio workouts.

With enhanced heel cup support, the X2 maintains stability by directing the force from leg drive to the floor instead of sideways. However, testers found the updated rope guard to be less grippy and slightly bulky compared to other options like the Inov8 F-lite 260 or the Nike Metcon 7.

The X2's heel is less bulky compared to the Metcon 7, but it still possesses some bulkiness. Individuals seeking stable and supportive shoes may not mind the bulk, especially if their focus is on lifting. However, the clunky heel and overall material abundance become apparent during running, jumping, and sprinting.

Crossfitters with medium volume feet who prioritize lifting-based workouts will find this shoe to be an excellent choice. However, those desiring a wider, lighter, or better running shoe should explore other options for a more versatile CrossFit experience.


  • Best for: Athletes who prefer one shoe for all workouts
  • Drop: 7 mm
  • Width: Medium
  • Weight: 10.2oz
  • Bonus: Extra cushioning on the tongue and around the ankle cuff provides a luxurious feel compared to most CrossFit shoes
Check Men’s Price at AmazonCheck Women’s Price at Amazon

Best Everyday Shoe: Nike Metcon 7 — Men’s & Women’s

Nike Metcon 7

The Nike Metcon line, known worldwide as one of the most prominent CrossFit shoes, revolutionized the market with its spacious toebox, supportive cushioning, and impeccable style. Athletes often wear their Metcons as everyday shoes.

Over the years, Nike has refined the Metcon based on feedback from athletes, resulting in improved comfort and CrossFit-specific features.

One notable feature of the Metcon 7 is its rope guard, which wraps around the upper to provide grip and protection during rope climbs. However, our testers found the grip to be less effective and the guard somewhat bulky compared to other shoes on the list, such as the Inov8 F-lite 260.

The newest version features a velcro lace keeper, preventing the laces from coming undone during workouts. This feature is especially useful for the Metcon 7 since folding the velcro away often leads to frequent untying during running and jumping rope.

DSC07269 The Metcon 7 is a top choice for running during Crossfit workouts; (photo/Matt Bento)The heel and midfoot offer stability and support, while the mesh upper ensures good ventilation during intense workouts. The shoe retains the hard plastic heel point, ideal for handstand pushups. However, this feature makes the Metcon 7 feel slightly bulky and cumbersome.

The toebox is wider compared to the Reebok Nanox2 and inov8 F-lite 260, but individuals preferring a wider toebox may opt for shoes such as the Inov8 Bare Xf 210 or the New Balance Minimus.

The Metcon 7 delivers exceptional performance in most workout scenarios, providing stability during lifts and agility during running. Testers noted a faster feel, thanks to the springy heel cushioning and responsive forefoot, resulting in a smoother stride.

The Metcon 7 offers versatility, comfort, and style for gym-goers seeking an all-around shoe. It is best suited for CrossFitters who focus on running, have medium-volume feet, and desire a shoe that can transition seamlessly from the gym to everyday activities.


  • Best for: All types of workouts, with a slight emphasis on running
  • Drop: 4 mm
  • Width: Medium
  • Weight: 10oz
  • Bonus: The collapsible heel on the FlyEase version allows for easy sliding without untying the laces
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Best Barefoot-Style CrossFit Shoe: inov-8 Bare-XF 210 V2 — Men’s & Women’s

inov-8 Bare-XF 210 V2

During the early days of CrossFit, athletes pursued a natural lifting experience by using shoes with minimal material between their feet and the ground. Remember those Vibram Five Finger shoes?

While the trend has shifted away from zero cushioning, the desire for a barefoot feel remains. Fortunately, U.K.-based footwear company inov-8 offers an option to achieve that barefoot sensation with their Bare-XF 210 V2 ($110), the latest version of their barefoot-style shoe.

The Bare-XF features a completely flexible sole, allowing natural foot movement during complex exercises. The thin (3mm) and tacky rubber outsole provides excellent grip on boxes and lifting platforms, while keeping the feet close to the ground. Male and female testers compared the shoe to wearing a sock with added protection.

Earlier versions of this shoe were known for their fragility, but inov-8 has addressed this issue by enhancing the outsole's durability and adding a flexible plastic cage to protect the upper from rope abrasion. Our current pair has withstood months of use without showing any signs of wear.


  • Best for: Athletes who desire a lightweight, barefoot feel during workouts
  • Drop: Zero
  • Width: Wide
  • Weight: 7.5oz
  • Bonus: Each pair includes a 3mm cushioned insert for athletes who occasionally seek additional cushioning
  • Best Shoes for Cross-Training

    The Expert: This guide is based on the expertise of fitness editor Lindsey Emery, who specializes in reviewing gear related to health and wellness. To update the product selections, I combined my knowledge and experience as a runner, multisport athlete, and CrossFit enthusiast. I have been reviewing shoes for Runner's World for over 10 years, both as a staff member and as a freelancer. During that time, I have tested numerous running and cross-training shoes, giving me a thorough understanding of the features that make a great trainer. A good cross-training shoe should be versatile enough for strength training and cardio workouts, while also providing the necessary support for specific activities in your training plan. Unfortunately, there is no one-size-fits-all shoe that works for everyone and every workout. Your footwear needs will vary depending on your interests, fitness level, and foot type. However, there are certain features that tend to work well across the board, whether you're on the treadmill or at the CrossFit box. Here's what you should look for.

    Other Cross-Training Shoes We Researched

    These are just a few of the shoes we tested and considered. There were several others that didn't quite make the cut.

    Inov-8 F-Lite 235 V.2: Inov-8 has some excellent trainers, and one of them made it onto our list. However, the F-Lite 235 V2 is not as comfortable or durable as some of their other models.

    Nike Metcon 6: These are great training shoes, but the Metcons 7 are even better and not much more expensive, making them worth the extra investment.

    Reebok JJ IV Men's Training Shoe: These shoes are designed for people with larger feet. Currently, we only have one staff member who fits that criteria, and he has not had the opportunity to test them yet. However, based on our research and positive reviews, as well as our appreciation for shoes designed by JJ Watt, we will update you if and when we get a chance to try them out.

    Under Armour HOVR Apex 3: These shoes have received excellent online reviews, but we have not had the opportunity to test them ourselves.

    On Cloud X: While these shoes are more suitable for running than for cross-training, they are worth considering if running plays a significant role in your workouts.

    Hoka Kawana: These shoes are better suited for dedicated runners rather than cross-training.

    Puma Fuse: With its wide toe box, minimal heel-to-toe drop, and shock absorption, we are excited to try out these shoes!

    Nike Romaleos 4

    Best for Weight-Heavy Days

    Romaleos 4


    • The straps provide excellent foot lockdown
    • Supportive midsole
    • Wide base


    • Pricey
    • Not suitable for running beyond sprints
    • Heavy
    Excels atWeightlifting
    Weight20.1oz (M/W)

    The Romaleos 4 may come with a higher price tag, but it has gained a strong following in the weightlifting community, especially among those who appreciate the fit, feel, and style of Nike shoes. The shoe's supportive midsole and the high heel wedge over a flat, wide platform provide a stable base for lifting. The custom-feeling fit is also a major highlight, with two wide straps that secure over traditional laces, delivering exceptional foot lockdown during fast and explosive movements. The Romaleos 4 is also suitable for weight-heavy workouts and high-intensity interval training (HIIT) due to its grippy rubber outsole and high traction.

    On Cloud X

    Cloud X


    • The outsole supports multi-directional movements
    • Perfect cushioning without weighing you down


    • Designed primarily for sprints, not long-distance running
    Excels atCardio
    Weight8.47oz (M), 7.05oz (W)

    If you're looking for a shoe that can handle plyometric workouts, track sprints, or a combination of the two, the On Cloud X might be the perfect fit. On, a Swiss running company known for its smart and innovative design, created this lightweight, no-sew shoe with the goal of meeting all cross-training needs. Its adaptive design features On's unique CloudTec outsole, which consists of a flexible grid of hollow Zero-Gravity Foam pods. This technology cushions your feet from the forces generated by explosive workouts that involve running, jumping, and lateral movements. The shoe's cushioned, dual-density midsole provides support and flexibility for gym sessions while still delivering a responsive ride when you need it.

    Shop Men's: Shop Now

    Shop Women's: Shop Now

    Under Armour TriBase Reign 4

    TriBase Reign 4


    • Excellent grip with a wraparound outsole at the midfoot
    • Low-profile design for more power


    • Cushioning could be improved
    Excels atHIIT
    Weight11oz (M), 10oz (W)

    The TriBase Reign 4 is designed to be versatile, supporting various types of workouts such as CrossFit, HIIT, and Olympic lifting. With its low profile and just a 2mm heel-to-toe drop, it allows for better power transfer. The shoe features a built-in heel counter to keep your foot securely in place during lifts, as well as a full-rubber hatched outsole that provides durability and exceptional grip. Like its predecessor, the TriBase Reign 3, this version offers excellent flexibility in the forefoot for functional movements and responsive cushioning for high-impact activities. The addition of a grip-enhancing wraparound outsole at the midfoot allows for better traction during rope exercises. The shoe also features a more traditional-looking upper with breathable layered mesh, ensuring your foot stays in place during burpees, overhead lifts, and other activities performed in the box.

    Nobull Gum Trainer

    Gum Trainer


    • Durable with a grippy outsole
    • Streamlined, no-fuss style


    • Abrasion-resistant upper can be a bit stiff
    Excels atCrossFit
    Weight10oz (M/W)

    The Nobull Gum Trainer is an updated version of the classic Trainer from a brand known for its CrossFit-friendly shoes. It features a tight-fitting mesh upper wrapped in SuperFabric, a lightweight material that provides breathability and superior resistance to abrasion and slashing. The initial stiffness of the shoe's construction gives way to increased comfort as you break them in. The flexible rubber outsole is designed for multi-directional movements, making it suitable for the gym and various cross-training activities. With just a 4mm heel-to-toe drop, the Nobull Gum Trainer can seamlessly transition from weightlifting to running. It also includes a medial rope grip for those intense workouts.

    Shop Men's: Shop Now

    Shop Women's: Shop Now

    Adidas Dropset Trainer

    Dropset Trainer


    • Durable with a reinforced toe
    • Versatile for weights and cardio


    • Not suitable for long-distance running
    • Relatively heavy
    Excels atWeightlifting
    Weight13oz (M/W)

    The Dropset Trainer from Adidas is a dedicated cross-training shoe that excels in various fitness activities. Its dual-density midsole provides ample forefoot cushioning for sprints and short-distance running, while the stiffer heel offers optimal support for weightlifting. The breathable mesh upper features a spacious forefoot area and a secure fitting heel to prevent foot movement during workouts. The multi-patterned tread on the rubber outsole ensures excellent traction in the gym or on the pavement. It may not be the best choice for long-distance running, but for sprints, cardio HIIT workouts, and strength training, it offers great performance at a reasonable price.

    Altra Solstice XT 2

    Solstice XT 2


    • Comfortable
    • Versatile
    • Good foot lockdown


    • Not enough cushion for longer runs
    Excels atHIIT
    Weight10oz (M), 8.3oz (W)

    The Altra Solstice XT 2 is designed to provide a comfortable and secure fit for all types of cross-training movements. It features an updated caged upper that offers firmer and more secure support without sacrificing the roomy fit that Altra is known for. The shoe's light cushioning and flexible, zero-drop midsole make it ideal for weightlifting, while the grippy rubber outsole ensures stability during movements. The Solstice XT 2 also performs well in cardio training, providing sufficient padding for lower-mileage runs. To enhance durability, Altra added reinforcement at the toe.

    Rykä Dynamic Pro Training Shoe

    Dynamic Pro Training Shoe


    • Pivot point on outsole for quick turns
    • Extra arch and heel support


    • Only available in women's sizes
    Excels atGym classes
    Weight8.8oz (W)

    Whether you're dancing or performing various exercises in your at-home fitness studio, the Rykä Dynamic Pro Training Shoe offers the necessary support and comfort. Its well-cushioned foam midsole provides bounce and reduces the impact on landing. The narrow heel cup ensures stability during movements, and the wider toe box allows for breathability. The outsole features strategically placed flex grooves, enabling smooth foot movement in all directions, and a pivot point for quick turns. Please note that this shoe is only available in women's sizes.

    Shop Now: Shop on Amazon

    Puma Fuse


    Now 21% Off

    Credit: Puma


    • Shock-absorbing midsole
    • Flexible rubber grip


    Excels at CrossFit
    Weight 13oz (M), unknown (W)
    Drop 4mm

    The Puma Fuse is an innovative new style from PUMA for functional training. It provides several features that make it suitable for a cross-training workout. With a low-to-the-ground design and a 4mm heel-to-toe drop, it offers extra stability in the heel and a solid base for strength training. The toe box is wide enough to provide stability without sacrificing comfort. The shock-absorbing midsole ensures a comfortable landing during jumps and sprints. The outsole is made of durable rubber that offers flexibility and grip without limiting movement. The shoe also features mesh overlays and reinforced rubber in high-wear areas for extra traction and durability during activities like rope and wall climbs, rowing, and heavy lifts. It is available in unisex sizing only.

    Nike SuperRep Go 3 Next Nature Flyknit

    SuperRep Go 3 Next Nature Flyknit

    Now 41% Off


    • Made with recycled materials
    • Flexible outsole
    • Good price


    Excels at HIIT
    Weight 8.9oz (M), unknown (W)
    Drop 5mm

    The Nike SuperRep Go 3 Next Nature Flyknit is a shoe that focuses on HIIT training. It is designed to provide excellent performance, comfort, and style while incorporating recycled and sustainable materials. The flyknit upper offers a snug fit and flexibility for dynamic movements. The lightweight foam midsole provides cushioning and support during cardio workouts. The outsole features flexible grooves for better spring-off and enhanced rubber for durability and traction. This shoe is a great choice for those looking for a versatile and eco-friendly option.

    Mizuno TF-01 Training Shoe

    TF-01 Training Shoe

    Credit: Mizuno


    • Innovative foot pods improve agility


    • Feel of pods underfoot can take some getting used to
    Excels at CrossFit
    Weight 10.4oz (M), 8.3oz (W)
    Drop 4mm

    The Mizuno TF-01 Training Shoe is built with innovative technology to enhance performance, specifically focusing on improving agility. The shoe features foot pods in the outsole that provide a unique texture and feedback to enhance your connection to the ground. This design improves balance and agility during cross-training activities. The shoe also has a durable rubber outsole with a diamond pattern for better grip and lateral support. The upper is made of soft, woven mesh for comfort, and the reinforced heel provides stability. This lightweight shoe is suitable for various workouts and offers a stable and comfortable fit.

    Hoka Kawana




    • Lightweight, breathable mesh upper
    • Accommodating fit for wide-foot runners
    • Soft, supportive midsole


    • On the heavier side for some testers
    • Poor traction
    Excels at Cardio
    Weight 10.2oz (M), 8.4oz (W)
    Drop 5mm

    The Hoka Kawana is a shoe designed for running-heavy workouts. It features a lightweight and breathable mesh upper that provides comfort and ventilation. The shoe offers an accommodating fit, making it suitable for wide-foot runners. The midsole is soft and supportive, delivering cushioning and stability during cardio exercises. Although it is slightly heavier compared to other Hoka models, it offers ample cushioning and a smooth ride. The shoe may not provide the best traction, but it excels in providing a comfortable and supportive experience during high-impact workouts.

    Reebok Legacy Lifter II

    Legacy Lifter II

    Credit: Reebok


    • Raised heel for added stability
    • Breathable textile upper


    • Too stiff for cardio bursts
    Excels at Weightlifting
    Weight 22.9oz (M/W)
    Drop 22mm

    The Reebok Legacy Lifter II is a weightlifting shoe designed to provide stability and support. It features a raised heel that enhances stability during heavy lifts. The breathable textile upper ensures comfort and ventilation. The shoe has a durable rubber outsole that provides grip and allows for a solid stance while lifting. It offers a secure fit with its laces-strap combination. The Legacy Lifter II is an ideal choice for weightlifting activities but may be too stiff for cardio bursts.

    Nike Air ZoomX SuperRep Surge

    Air ZoomX SuperRep Surge

    Now 26% Off

    Credit: Nike


    • Designed to excel on the treadmill, rower and gym floor


    • Performs better indoors than on the road
    Excels at HIIT
    Weight 12.2oz (M), unknown (W)
    Drop 10mm

    The Nike Air ZoomX SuperRep Surge is a versatile shoe designed to excel in various high-intensity workouts. It offers exceptional performance on the treadmill, rower, and gym floor. The shoe features a super-light and super-cushy foam midsole that provides a springy and comfortable feel during activities. It offers extra arch support for stability during cross-training exercises. The shoe's heel is designed to clip into rowing machines with ease, and the reinforced mesh upper ensures durability and comfort. The rubber tread on the outsole provides optimal traction for both treadmill and studio floor workouts.

    How Should Cross-Training Shoes Fit?

    A cross-training shoe’s fit will be individual, however, as a general rule of thumb, you’ll likely want between .2-.6″ of room in the toe box. This will provide enough room to avoid jamming the toes excessively in every workout while also not making them too loose to where you experience heel slip.

    how should cross training shoes fit (1)

    It’s important to recognize that every shoe will fit slightly differently and this is due to the multiple types of lasts companies can use when creating models. This is why some models feel wider than others, it’s not you, it’s the companies using different last (foot molds) to create their models.

    If a cross-training shoe’s fit feels weird on you, then I’d highly suggest looking for models that have molds that work better for your foot’s anatomy. Trial and error will be your best bet as you find your ideal pairs and brands that work well for you.

    How to Clean Cross-Training Shoes

    To ensure that your cross-training shoes last, it's important to clean them regularly to prevent the accumulation of dust, dirt, and other materials that can cause damage to the polyurethanes and foams.

    I recommend spot cleaning your cross-training shoes using a three-step approach to ensure a thorough clean. Remember, do not put your shoes in the washing or drying machines. Follow the four steps below to properly clean your cross-training shoes.

    How to clean training shoes

    • Step 1: Gather your cross-training shoes, a clean washcloth, a mild soap without harsh dyes or fragrances, and lukewarm water.
    • Step 2: Dampen the washcloth with lukewarm water and apply a small amount of soap, less than the size of a dime.
    • Step 3: Remove the insoles from your shoes and spot clean any areas that require attention. Avoid soaking your shoes. Repeat this process, dampening the washcloth and gently rubbing troubled spots until your shoes appear cleaner. If your shoes have bright colors, be gentle to avoid damaging the colorway.
    • Step 4: Once you are satisfied with the appearance of your shoes, place them in a well-ventilated or dry area and keep the insoles removed until they are completely dry.

    By regularly cleaning your cross-training shoes and taking the time to do it properly, you can extend their lifespan and continue enjoying your favorite pair for longer.

    How to choose the best cross training shoes

    When selecting cross-training shoes, consider two main factors: the shape and size of your feet, and the type of activities you will primarily engage in.

    If you have wider feet, choose cross-training shoes that come in wide sizes or have extra room in the midsole and toe box. You may also want to consider "wide toe box" shoes depending on your regular activities. If you have flat feet, look for shoes with motion control.

    Although cross-training shoes are designed for various exercise regimens, it is important to think about the workouts you do most frequently. If you tend to run or participate in high-intensity interval training (HIIT), choose cross-training shoes with ample midsole and lateral support, along with a higher heel-to-toe drop. For weightlifting activities, select shoes with a low or zero drop and minimal cushioning to establish a solid connection with the ground. If you often exercise outdoors, opt for cross-training shoes with appropriate tread on the outsole.

    Lighter, more flexible cushion at the midsole

    Cross-training workouts often involve sprints and quick bursts of running, so it is essential to have a certain level of midsole cushioning for comfort and impact absorption. However, these workouts also incorporate lateral movements like skaters, side-to-side lunges, grapevines, and side shuffles. Therefore, cross-training shoes should have wider and more stable soles with less cushioning beneath for a grounded feel. Additionally, they should provide flexibility at the midsole to accommodate multidirectional movements. A lower heel-to-toe drop than that of running shoes is ideal, along with even cushioning throughout the shoe.

    A flatter sole or lifted heel

    Weight lifters often benefit from flat-soled shoes with a firm midsole and wider base, as they offer better grip on the floor and enhance stability. These shoes allow the feet to spread out and establish a stronger connection with the ground compared to cushioned running shoes. Some weight lifters prefer dedicated weight-lifting shoes with a raised heel of up to an inch. This firm wedge helps maintain proper alignment during lifts and squats. Good cross-training shoes for weightlifting combine these features with softer forefoot cushioning and breathable uppers for cardio-friendly functionality.

    A grippy, durable outsole

    Due to the dynamic movements involved in cross-training exercises, shoes tend to undergo more wear and tear. Therefore, it's important to choose shoes made from durable materials with reinforced outsoles, including high-traction tread that prevents slipping on gym floors or other surfaces.

    • shoes 100 or less9 Affordable Running Shoes We Love

    Most running shoe uppers prioritize lightweight and breathable designs. However, cross-training shoes require sturdier and more durable uppers that provide a secure fit without compromising comfort. To support explosive and multidirectional movements, cross-training uppers often feature added TPU overlays and Velcro straps that securely hold the foot in place.

    Takeaway Thoughts

    The world of cross-training shoes continues to evolve, much like the talent in strength sports and the training methodologies we use. With numerous options available, it's normal to feel overwhelmed, especially if you're new to cross-training shoes.

    If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment below or reach out to me personally on Instagram (@jake_boly). I'll be happy to help you find the best models for your specific needs.

    CrossFit Shoes Comparison Chart

    DSC07311 To excel in CrossFit training, you need versatile shoes that can handle various workouts. (photo/Matt Bento)

    In conclusion, when it comes to finding the best cross-training shoes, there are plenty of fantastic options to choose from. Whether you're looking for overall performance, specific features for your workout style, or a budget-friendly option, this extensive list has got you covered. From the Nike Metcon 8, which takes the top spot for best overall cross-training shoe, to the Reebok Nano X2, the ultimate shoe for CrossFit enthusiasts, there is something for everyone. So, lace up those shoes, hit the gym, and conquer your fitness goals with the perfect pair of cross-training shoes.