One of the most common questions we get from new members is "What shoes should I be wearing for CrossFit?"
One of my personal beliefs is that I'll spend money on two things - a good mattress and good shoes (Ok there may be a few other things, but those two are prioritized!). You spend 30% of your life sleeping ... so you better have a good mattress. You also spend a ton of time on your feet, so skimping on the good pair of shoes for a cheaper pair will likely result in a trip to the chiropractor!
Here are 3 categories of shoes for CrossFit athletes and my recommendations in each:
1 - CrossFit Shoes
These are your general "do everything" shoes. You'll wear these to class most days, and they do just about everything. Running short distance, weightlifting, rope climbs, box jumps, and everything else done in CrossFit.
Reebok Nanos - $130
Nike Metcons - $130
2 - Weightlifting Shoes
These are more specific. These are only worn for Olympic weightlifting or perhaps some heavy squats. They have a raised heel for better ankle flexion (tight ankles? You need these!) and more support built into the shoe for dealing with heavier weights. You cannot run in these!
Nike Romaleos - $150
Inov-8 Fast Lifts - $150
3 - Running Shoes
If you like to go for longer runs, we do not advise running in your CrossFit shoes! You certainly can, but your feet will thank you if you adopt a pure running built shoe. These have 0mm drop and promote good running form, as well as having a little more cushion built in.
Altra Torin 3.0
My CrossFit shoes and running shoes I try to replace every 3 to 4 months. Yep, its certainly a cost, but if worn daily, shoes break down, and the support they once provided will be diminished. Bad shoes can results in foot pain, knee pain, hip pain, back pain, and more. Its just not worth it. If needed, look at the old model to save money, but still get "new" shoes. Lifting shoes on the other hand, those should last years. They are worn significantly less, and are built tougher.
Shoes should be seen as in investment in your health, not as a cost. A couple hundred dollars a year is well worth it over just 1 trip to the doctor for unnecessary pain! (Not to mention all the extra gains you get from new shoes!)