How Should Cross-Training Shoes Fit?

A shoe is one element of your sportswear that ties the whole workout together (pun 100% intended). However, finding a shoe that fits like a glove is a completely different matter. Shoe fitting is more of an individual thing, but there are some universally accepted factors that go into finding the right fit. So, let’s dig into how should cross-training shoes fit.

Your feet are the most important parts are here so you must have a good understanding of them. Remember that not all shoes and all models are ideal for cross-training routines. The correct fit is strongly related to podiatric science, how you feel in them, and personal selection.

Keep reading to learn how should cross-training shoes fit alongside some tips and tricks to find the right trainers for yourself.

How’s the Fit?

There are some who simply don’t care that a size too big or too small is an issue when shopping for athletic sneakers. Picking one that’s about half a size too small can put you in risk of injuring the feet and toes. On the other hand, half a size too big leaves you vulnerable to blisters which may decrease your exercising potential.

The age old sales line, “They’ll break in! Just give them a week or two!” is a complete hoax and we’re announcing it right now. Make sure there is enough wiggle room in there. In general, the wiggle room offers the feet enough support from the interior fabric. And while it may sound bogus, the time of the day when you go out shopping for the shoes can also have an impact – given you’re heading to a brick-and-mortar store.

Towards the end of the day, your feet can swell up and increase by half a shoe size, so this is the best time to go shopping – late hours.

Knowing Your Feet

Aside from the obvious variation in size, alignment and morphology in the human feet can also be a bit different. It’s crucial to keep this aspect in mind when shopping for shoes because, for instance, if it’s not fitting your arch type, it may cause pain or limit workout performance.

There are three general foot types/shapes and you can know which is yours by a simple tactic. Get your feet wet and put on a brown paper bag before walking around like it. 

Firstly, if there’s a footprint with second to none curve on the inside, that there is a flatfooted person. This essentially means that their feet tend to excessively pronate, resulting more wear outside the heel and inside the forefoot. If you’re flatfooted, pick cross training shoes that feature motion control for the optimum fit.

Secondly, if the footprint shows a narrow link to the heel and only a part of the forefoot, this means you have a high-arched feet. This is the opposite of the flatfoot in the sense that the feet fail to pronate enough, causing excessive wear on the little toe and outer part of the heel. These feet call for shoes with extra cushioning and soft midsoles.

Last by not the least, a footprint with a uniform curve on the interior indicates a normally arched foot. If you have these, you can wear shoes uniformly. In this case, a pair of stability cross trainers would fit the bill. The have a nice combination of cushion and support.

Note: Majority cross training shoes will last you about six weeks or 500 miles of extreme exercising. In general, it would be a good idea to get a new pair after every 4 months if you put the sneakers to use four times a week.

Find the Right Shoes

Let’s talk about how to determine the fit.

Check the space between the shoe tip and the big toe and if it’s about a thumb’s width or 3/8’’ to half an inch.

The upper and heel need a comfier and snug tight – still not too tight. The shoe must not slip off when you walk or feel abnormally uncomfortable in particular places. There are a few tests you can perform to evaluate the fit instantly.

After slipping into the shoes, walk around and jog in place. You should be able to tell the rigidity and comfort. It will look a tad bit odd, but if you’re fine with it, it would be great if you could mimic some general movements you perform in the gym to check if the shoes are up for it. If possible, walk on a few different surfaces like carpet, tiles, etc.

One more key elements that determines how cross trainers fit is proper lacing. The laces holes should ideally be one inch apart after being laced up, or it will be hard to adjust them. Additionally, each shoes should be bendable enough with any sort of tightness or rubbing.

If socks are at hand and you have the chance, try the cross-training shoes with your gym socks. Pack an old pair of trainers. This will give the shoe professional a better idea on how to judge your walk.

Note: Stand on your tiptoes with the shoes on. Choose another model if the heel pops out.

Extra Things to Consider

A lot of the times you walk into the shop with a particular brand in mind. While there’s nothing wrong with that, it’s still a good idea to try out some other brands for the experience. After all, you’re looking for the ultimate comfort, snug fit, and good rigidity.

However, don’t pin too many multitasking hopes on your shoes. A good pair of cross training shoes is perfect for light jogging, gym, and cardio; but they’re going to lack when it comes to trail running.


We hope this guide on how should cross-training shoes fit helpful in giving you a better knowledge of how cross trainers should fit. If you’re purchasing online, make sure to get the shoes from a store with a liberal return policy so you won’t have to freak out if you get the wrong size (or if you simple don’t like the shoes).

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