What is your workout of choice? Running? Elliptical? Weights? Whatever it is, you might be surprised that your shoes can hold you back from getting the best out of your routine.

Cross training shoes can help you get the best lift in the gym.

There is a huge difference between cross training shoes and running shoes. Running shoes are built to give a “rock” effect, meaning their toe box rolls up to give optimal push off of the ball of the foot.

Running shoes are built to move with your foot; they hug the contours of your feet. Running shoes have so many different features: arch support, extra cushioning, flexible soles all depending on who you are and how you move.

Cross trainers are flatter. They take up the best space on the ground and keep your feet grounded so you have great balance and steadiness. They can have a little bit of cushion or hardly any.

When lifting weights, it’s better to wear cross trainers for balance, for steadiness. Rock too much (in a running shoe) and you could end up with a blown out shoe, or worse, a blown out knee.

Run in cross trainers, and you could end up with shin splints or heel problems.

Of course, this isn’t the end-all rule; most people do what they are comfortable in and what works for them. But ask yourself next time at the gym or on a run: am I getting the best performance possible?

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