News flash! Your old running sneakers that you’ve been wearing to the gym, might just be the thing standing between you and your next deadlift PR (personal record)! The right kind of workout shoes sets the tone for your sweaty session at the gym. So, if you’re trying to be a serious ‘gym guy’ choosing the correct pair will be game-changing! You’ll not only perform, and therefore, progress better, but also reduce the risk of injuries. Mumbai-based certified personal trainer, Bhaskar Shetty, says, “Running shoes have more cushioning, and that can throw your balance off while weightlifting. Choose shoes that are not too high off the ground in the heel, so that it will give you grip and support.” Presenting our list of top seven training shoes.
1. Nike Metcon 6 Flyease: Nike claims that this is the most breathable Metcon version to-date! The heel is padded with a special, lightweight foam that keeps your foot firmly in place during jumps, lifts and more. Combine that with the shoe’s wide, flat bottom and it will keep you grounded when you need to be! This pair’s all-mesh upper is said to keep air flowing through, helping you cool down sooner between sets. Designed to stand up to the push and pull off heavily-weighted and high-intensity workouts, it features a step-in entry with laces you only have to tie once. What’s not to love? Nike Metcon 6 Flyease: Nike claims that this is the most breathable Metcon version to-date! The heel is padded with a special, lightweight foam that keeps your foot firmly in place during jumps, lifts and more. Combine that with the shoe’s wide, flat bottom and it will keep you grounded when you need to be! This pair’s all-mesh upper is said to keep air flowing through, helping you cool down sooner between sets. Designed to stand up to the push and pull off heavily-weighted and high-intensity workouts, it features a step-in entry with laces you only have to tie once. What’s not to love?
2. Reebok Nano X: Whether you like swinging heavy kettlebells or jumping on and off boxes, Reebok Nano’s popularity knows no bounds. To celebrate the 10th anniversary of the Nano (originally built for CrossFit), the brand has reimagined this iconic shoe beloved by the training community. The Nano X has a soft woven textile upper with upgraded Flexweave®, providing breathability, stability and durability. This versatile pair’s lightweight cushioning keeps you fast on your feet, and its minimal drop outsole provides secure footing—all making it ideal for a hardcore session at the gym.
3. Men’s UA HOVR™ Apex 2: The latest arrival form Under Armour has similar Hovr foam cushioning system from its running and basketball shoes. A layered support system locks in your heel from front to back, unlocking your foot’s forward, backward, and side-to-side potential: Meaning, these shoes are perfectly capable of handling those intense lifting sessions! They offer a slightly higher base than Nike’s Metcon 6, but won’t make you feel unstable without feeling unstable, thanks to the midfoot support from UA TriBaseTM Tech. No wonder then that they enjoy a cult-following among serious gym-goers!
4. Adidas Powerlift 4 Shoes: Take your weight training sessions to new heights with the Powerlift 4 Shoes. Made for stability, these weightlifting shoes have a narrow fit, a midsole wedge and a wide instep strap for complete lockdown. A rubber outsole keeps you firmly planted when lifting. The lightweight upper is made from durable canvas. Focusing on those gains is now easy!
5. Inov-8 F-Lite 230 Cross-training Shoes: Made graphene, said to be the world’s strongest material, the revamped F-Lite 230, delivers a more durable and grippier outsole unit than the standard rubber one. They’re designed to move naturally with your foot while delivering support and flexibility, making this pair ideal for both cardio and weight-lifting enthusiasts.
6. Conviction X 2 by Asics: If you like your strength training to be fast-paced and agility-intensive, slip-on Asics’ Conviction X 2. Perfect for HIIT/Bootcamp sessions, the Conviction X™ 2 crushes those high-intensity workouts with its redesigned seamless upper and improved fit. The firm, flat heel structure provides stability during heavy lifts while the integrated Lace Garage™ technology minimises distractions: A low-profile pocket in the shoe’s tongue keeps your laces out of the way! To keep you dry and comfortable during extra-long sweat sessions, this model also includes a perforated sock-liner that promotes breathability.
7. Minimus 40 Trainer by New Balance: You can easily switch between heavy lifting and short runs with the multi-tasking Minimus 40. The drop from heel-to-toe helps level out your stance for greater stability when you deadlift, while a run-friendly midsole makes it perfect for short bursts of cardio or HIIT. The outsole will hold onto anything from wooden boxes to rubberised gym floors, and everything in-between. Plus, the external heel clip and internal design cradle your feet to keep you locked in during explosive lateral movements so that you can really work out like a mean machine that you want to be!
Choosing the best workout shoe for you will primarily depend on the type of exercise you do and your budget. While having different pairs for different routines might seem like a bit of a stretch, but the investment will be totally worth it when you start smashing your fitness goals!
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