There are so many training shoes to choose from that it’s a staggering task to decide which shoe to buy for the gym. You can find everything from cutting-edge, tech-heavy models designed to handle everything in the weight room, to shoes designed specifically for just 1 or 2 types of lifts. It can get tricky to sift through all the available sneakers, especially if you’re looking for the best budget training shoes available.
All of the shoes featured on our list feature all the basics of a training shoe and nothing more or less. They won’t boast premium materials or the highest level of technology, but they do perform well. Our best budget training shoes list is all about top-notch performance at a reasonable price.
At WearTesters, we test hundreds of sneakers each year. To put together this list, we found outstanding budget training performers that can offer a little bit of everything. We chose stable shoes that have the correct training-focused support features and are also affordable. Cross training is no easy task for one shoe, but we think you’ll enjoy our picks for the best budget training shoes.
Categories are used below so you can easily find what’s important to you. If you know what you need, you can simply click the category link. If not, feel free to browse the whole list.
Best Budget Training Shoes
Nike Renew Retaliation 4
The Nike Renew Retaliation 4 is an upgrade from its predecessor, the Nike Renew Retaliation TR 3, and takes the crown as the best budget cross training shoe today. The biggest and most notable difference is the replacement of the lockdown wings with a strap. Although you might be skeptical about it, the strap locks your feet in so nicely that you’re never unstable. It’s lockdown at its finest. The Renew midsole, though, performs the same as the previous version. See the full review. Price: $80
Puma Fuse 2.0
The Puma Fuse 2.0 is a minimalist cross training shoe that’s ultra-stable and packs an insane grip from Puma Grip, Puma’s proprietary rubber compound that’s best in class. It sticks to the ground and prevents movement during lifts.
The stability is also top of the line as the outrigger at the lateral forefoot, raised midfoot sidewalls, and a beefy TPU heel counter combine to keep the foot in place no matter how much weight you’re slinging. The cushion is super thin (don’t run in them), so some people may get too much ground feel for their liking. But for those lifting weights, you can spread your toes inside the roomy toebox and press into the ground to create extra force.
The mesh and fuse upper is surprisingly comfy in large part thanks to the sewn-in comfy padded tongue. The Fuse 2.0 is better than the current Reebok Nano X2 AND $30 less expensive. You’re unlikely to find a better weightlifting shoe at this price. Price: $100
Reasons to buy: Stability, Traction, Price
Reason not to buy: Cushion
Nike Legend Essential 3
The Nike Legend Essential 3 is by far the cheapest shoe on this list, but don’t be fooled. You might be surprised about how well these lock down your heel. Honestly, the Legend Essential 3 is one of the best if you’re looking for that solid heel containment and support. For the price, it’s easily a steal. The performance lives up to the name. Read the full review. Price: $65
Best Training Shoes Now on Sale
Nike Metcon 7
The Nike Metcon 7 is a stand-out. With the Metcon 7, you get full-length React foam cushioning, great traction, and an improved toe box with greater mobility than previous Metcon models. The upper is breathable, flexible, and supportive and the shoe’s wide forefoot will give you even more stability while lifting. Keep any running (very) short because the heel is clunky. Otherwise, this is a solid all-around workout shoe, now at a discount. See the full review. Price:
Reebok Nano X1
The Reebok Nano X1 is technically a CrossFit shoe, which means that it’s designed to handle a wide variety of different moves. Reebok used their split-finger outsole on the Nano X1. Consider it Reebok’s attempt at giving a traditional training shoe the mobility of a five-toe shoe. The Nano X1 outsole is split in the forefoot enough to allow for each toe and toe area to grip the floor almost independently. The Nano X1 is an excellent shoe for the gym and you can now get it for less than retail. Read the full review. Price:
Thinking of a shoe we should add to the best budget training shoes list? We’d also like to hear your thoughts on this list and see your best budget training shoes list in the comments. Comment below or message us on Instagram or Twitter.