The gym can be an intimidating place for newcomers — whether it be due to the heavy equipment or the self-assured, seasoned gymgoers. The truth is, you’re not alone! I experience gym-anxiety, too, and so do many other men and women I’ve spoken to — regular gym-rats, included.
Regardless of where you fall on your wellness journey, the gym should feel like a safe space, more so than a prison yard. Remind yourself why you’re getting into this – is it to integrate more movement into your lifestyle? To prep for an athletic event? To try a new sport?
To help you feel more prepared, I’ve put together a guide to help you find the right shoes for your workouts! Not only will the right pair of shoes make sure you have a comfortable workout, but they can also help protect you against injuries, as well. There are four types of shoes for varying workouts: cross-training (including CrossFit), weightlifting, and running shoes.
Cross-training is “training with a few different types of exercise, movement, or modalities,” says Mike Donavanik, CSCS, founder of Sweat Factor. This just means that you’re mixing up your workouts and varying the intensities! Crossfit, for example, is a combination of aerobics, calisthenics, and Olympic weightlifting.
Cross-training shoes are suitable for most gym-based exercises (with the exception of running on the treadmill), and you’ll require a flat and cushioned sole.
The UA TriBase Reign 2 is an upgrade from the original model; it has a sturdy heel for stability and a foam midsole for responsive cushioning. Women’s UA TriBase™ Reign 2 Training Shoes: Women’s UA TriBase™ Reign 2 Training Shoes
The Commit TR EX shoe serves up a sleek design, heavy-duty traction, comfort and more. It’s perfect for all your cross-training needs: UA Commit TR EX
when lifting weights, your feet need to be very grounded – you need to be able to grip the ground for stability. The ultimate shoes for weightlifting are probably already in your shoe closet! Vans or Converse are flat and have no padding. Padding is a weightlifter’s enemy.
Eric Emig certified personal trainer and co-founder of Evolution Fitness in St. Louis, says, “You want to be able to feel a drive through your heels into the floor, which can be difficult when wearing heavily padded shoes.
The classic Chuck Taylor All-Stars is more than a lifestyle shoe. The flat soles and minimal cushioning makes it a weightlifter’s best friend: Converse Chuck Taylor All Star Hi-Top Trainers – Optical White
Vans Old Skool sneakers have clout beyond the skate park and offer all the same perks Converse does for weightlifters. If you don’t already have a pair, you should definitely get your hands on one – even if it’s just for everyday wear: Vans Old Skool Trainers – Black/White
On the flip side, runners need padding to make sure they get the most out of their workout. Lightweight shoes, with a moderate heel and cushioning, is the best option for runners. You’ll also need to know your gait (the way you walk; sometimes feet roll inwards or outwards) to identify the best shoe for you – if you’re a long-distance runner, you’d already know that.
Ultra-lightweight (thanks to the “zero gravity” HOVR technology), provides flexibility and versatility, and connects to the UA “MAPMYRUN” app – which analyzes your metrics to help improve your runs — what more do you need in a running shoe? Women’s UA HOVR™ Infinite 2 Running Shoes
The men’s UA HOVR Infinite 2 has all the amazing specifications of the women’s version and comes in a range of 8 different colors! Men’s UA HOVR™ Infinite 2 Running Shoes
Now that you have the right shoes, you can do anything.