I decided it was time to get some new, proper shoes that would be great for lifting, as well as the occasional cardio class. I did a lot of research (probably more than I should admit) and settled on the Nike Free TR8 Women’s Gym/HIIT/Cross Training Shoes. They were $100 and I got free shipping since I made an account on Nike’s website.
2021 UPDATE: I actually bought these shoes AGAIN because I like them so much. I went with the all-black version, though, so they don’t get as dirty. I moved my white ones to my walking shoes.
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I went with the black laser & fuschia color. The website claims the lists the following features about the shoe:
The heel is flatter than it was in previous models, which creates a wider surface area and greater stability for exercises like squats. An added layer of material over the heel gives it more durability and structure.
This edition of the Free TR has a second layer of soft foam cushioning that wraps your foot in a snug, supportive hug. It allows your foot to sit deeper in the shoe for better support as you move from side to side.
Deep grooves and cutouts in the sole allow the shoe to flex and expand in every direction. This means an incredibly natural, lightweight feel.
- Mesh is extremely durable, flexible and breathable
- Ultralight Flywire cables integrate with the laces for midfoot lockdown
- Full inner-sleeve provides a sock-like fit
- Foam and mesh collar for breathable comfort
- Rubber pods in high-wear areas for excellent traction
A big thing I look for when I’m buying shoes online are the reviews. I want to read what people who have actually tried out the shoe, not what the company claims. This particular shoe had a great rating and a good number of reviews. I read pretty far down through the various reviews and they helped me decide this was the shoe for me.
I wore these for the first time for a Werq class and they did quite well. I thought a dance class was either a terrible or brilliant first wear to see how they hold up with quick, sporadic movements. They were very comfortable and snug on my foot, in a good way. The front and back of the shoe goes up farther on my ankle than previous gym shoes, but it did not take more than a few minutes to adjust. I was impressed and had no issues for my hour-long hip-hop dance class. There was lots of jumping, lunging, squatting, and kicking – all were completely fine! I didn’t really notice my shoes, which is good!
As far as lifting goes, these were fantastic! I definitely felt more stable and flat-footed with these in comparison to the shoes I was wearing before. A lot of people wear converse so their feet are totally flat, but I just find them SO uncomfortable and I’d rather just carry one pair of shoes around vs two. These gave me plenty of support without throwing off my balance or overcompensating. And I think they look cool as hell, which is always a plus! Overall, I’m extremely happy with these shoes.