Lighten Your Step: Top 5 Treadmill and Cross-Training Shoes for Runners

Wearing the right treadmill running and cross-training shoes is crucial for performance and injury prevention. The wrong shoes can lead to discomfort, pain, and even accidents. That's why it's essential to consider various factors before purchasing. 

This article will discuss the most critical factors and present the top 5 lightweight shoes for treadmill running and cross-training.

Factors to consider when choosing treadmill and cross-training shoes

  1. Cushioning and support: Treadmill running and cross-training involve different movements and impacts, so you need shoes with adequate cushioning and support. Look for shoes with shock-absorbing materials, responsive midsoles, and a secure fit.
  2. Flexibility and traction: Treadmill running requires less traction than cross-training, which involves lateral and multi-directional movements. Ensure your shoes have enough flexibility and grip to support your movements.
  3. Breathability and durability: Sweaty feet can lead to discomfort and infections, so choose shoes with breathable materials that allow air circulation. Also, consider the shoes' durability and how long they will last with your usage.

Top 5 lightweight shoes for treadmill running and cross-training

As people who spend a lot of time on treadmills, bicycles, and in fitness studios or physiotherapy offices (key for preventing injuries, not just treating them), we’d be remiss if we didn’t share some of our favourite lightweight shoes for cross-training. 

There are too many to choose from, but here are a few to get you started: 

  1. Puma Velocity Nitro 2 First Mile: This shoe offers excellent cushioning and energy return, thanks to its Nitro foam technology. It also has a breathable upper and a durable outsole with good traction.
  2. Saucony Kinvara: This shoe is a lightweight, flexible, responsive midsole that adapts to your movements. It also has a breathable upper and a durable outsole with good traction.
  3. Adidas Adizero SL: This shoe is designed for speed and agility, with a lightweight upper and a responsive midsole that provides energy return. It also has a durable outsole with good traction and a breathable design.
  4. On Cloudflow: This shoe has a unique cushioning system that adapts to your stride and provides a cloud-like feel. It also has a breathable upper and a durable outsole with good traction.
  5. Altra Rivera: This shoe has a spacious toe box and a zero-drop platform that encourages natural foot movement. It also has a responsive midsole and a durable outsole with good traction.

How to properly care for your treadmill and cross-training shoes:

Just like your outdoor running shoes, you should take steps to care for your treadmill and lightweight running shoes properly.

Care includes 

  1. Cleaning and maintenance 
  2. Getting replacement running shoes
  3. Proper lightweight shoe storage

Cleaning and maintenance tips: Regularly clean your shoes BY HAND with mild detergent and warm water. Avoid using harsh chemicals or exposing them to extreme temperatures.

PSA: If you wash your shoes in the washing machine, don’t come at us when the sole starts falling off or they don’t feel as “bouncy” as before! 

When to replace your shoes: Replace your shoes when the midsole or outsole shows signs of wear and tear. This typically happens after 300-500 miles of use – often closer to the 300-mile mark for lightweight trainers. 

RELATED: How to Tell When You Need New Running Shoes.

Storing your shoes: Keep your shoes in a cool and dry place, away from direct sunlight and moisture. Avoid storing them in a cramped space or extreme temperatures.

Frequently asked questions about treadmill and cross-training shoes

Can I wear running shoes for cross-training and vice versa? 

Running and cross-training shoes have different designs and features, so it's best to choose shoes specifically designed for each activity.

How often should I replace my treadmill running shoes? 

As mentioned earlier, replace your shoes after 300-500 miles of use or when they show signs of wear and tear.

Are expensive running shoes better than cheaper ones? 

Expensive cross-training and treadmill shoes are not necessarily better than cheaper ones. Choosing shoes that meet your needs and fit your budget is important. Ultimately, choose the shoes that are most comfortable on your feet – don’t worry about looks, colour, or price (if you can!). 

RELATED: Strength Training vs. Cross-Training – what is the difference?


Running and cross-training safely requires wearing the right shoes.

Consider the abovementioned factors when choosing shoes and try different options to find the best fit for your needs. The top 5 lightweight shoes mentioned in this article are excellent options. Remember to properly care for your shoes and replace them when needed to ensure optimal performance and comfort.

Have questions? Contact us or stop by the store to discuss your running shoe needs!