Home » 5 Best Nike Training Shoes (2022 Update) | Picks for HIIT, CrossFit, and More

5 Best Nike Training Shoes (2022 Update) | Picks for HIIT, CrossFit, and More

When it comes to working out and training shoes, we all have our favorite brands and models. For my Nike friends, I wanted to put together a round-up that highlights some of my favorite Nike training shoes. There are a ton of Nike training shoes on the market and not all models are created equal.

I’m constantly fielding Nike training shoe questions on my written reviews and YouTube channel, so I thought it was about time to put together an article discussing my favorite picks. Instead of just talking about something like Nike CrossFit shoes, I wanted to make this round-up inclusive of a wider range of training activities.

Below, you’ll find my top Nike training shoe picks for HIIT, lifting, CrossFit, running, and much more. If we can contextualize how we train and relate that to our preferences, then we can make more educated choices on our Nike training shoes.

If you’re on the market for new cross-training shoes, make sure you also check out my best cross-training shoes of 2022 article. This round-up features over 15 shoes and dives into a variety of cross-training asks!

Best Nike Training Shoes for HIIT

When discussing Nike training shoes for HIIT, I’m considering three key construction aspects. First, the midsole needs to be responsive for jumping, sprints, and other bounding activities. Second, the upper needs to breathe well and be lightweight.

Lastly, the outsole needs to be highly maneuverable and accommodating for multi-directional activity. Below are two of my favorite Nike training shoes for HIIT.

1. Nike Free Metcon 4

The Nike Free Metcon 4 is the fourth iteration in the Nike Free training shoe line, and it has multiple aspects going for it when supporting HIIT training.

testing the nike free metcon 4 for versatile training and plyometrics

This model’s midsole provides a decent level of support for lighter lifting and if you do want to use this model for lifting, then it can support loads up to 275-315 lbs in exercises like deadlifts with relative ease.

In addition to its midsole, this shoe’s outsole construction features a highly maneuverable build that gives you a nice level of “connection” with the ground. This feature gives this shoe an edge for all-around versatility in the gym.

testing the nike free metcon 4 for runs and daily wear

Basically, if you’re performing jumps, sprints, or other activities where you’re really digging into the ground with the forefoot, then you’ll get ample ground feedback with this shoe.

  • Best For: HIIT Workouts and Classes
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 4mm
  • Weight: 10.2 oz (for my size 10 model)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size, but Toe Box Fits Slimmer
  • Read My ReviewNike Free Metcon 4 Review

Nike Free Metcon 4

$120

Nike Free Metcon 4 (1)
4.4
Stability
4.1
Versatility
4.6
Durability
4.4

Best For

  • HIIT Workouts
  • Classes
  • Light Lifting
  • Shorter Runs

Falls Short

  • For Heavy Training
  • For Fitting Wide Feet

2. Nike SuperRep Go 3 Next Nature Flyknit

The Nike SuperRep Go 3 Next Nature Flyknit is my second pick for HIIT training. This shoe is a nice contrast to the Nike Free Metcon 4 because it’s a bit more traditional with its construction, and it has a lower price point.

Testing the Nike SuperRep Go 3 Next Nature Flyknit for working out

This shoe features a responsive foam midsole which provides a nice level of bounce for plyometrics, class-style training, and HIIT workouts. The midsole on this model is also lightweight which keeps the weight of this shoe down.

Another perk of the Nike SuperRep Go 3 Next Nature Flyknit is that it’s made with sustainable materials. This composition of this shoe is built with at least 20% recycled materials. Granted, I’d love to see this number increase for the next iteration, but it’s a good step for Nike HIIT shoes.

Testing the Nike SuperRep Go 3 Next Nature Flyknit for HIIT workouts

I think the final perk of this shoe for HIIT training is its Flyknit upper. The upper on this shoe breathes well and also makes it a good option for daily wear and some light treadmill use. You could also explore the Nike Air Zoom SuperRep Go 3 if neither this model nor the Nike Free Metcon 4 work for you.

Nike SuperRep Go 3 Next Nature Flyknit

$100

Nike SuperRep Go 3 Next Nature Flyknit Product Shot
3.8
Stability
3.9
Versatility
4.1
Durability
3.8

Best For

  • Light Lifting
  • HIIT Workouts
  • Class-Style Training
  • Light Treadmill Running
  • Daily Wear/Walking

Falls Short

  • For Long-Term Durability
  • For Serious Training
  • For Wide Feet

Best Nike Training Shoes for Lifting

When looking into Nike training shoes for lifting, the name of the game is stability. You’re going to want a model that can ground the foot and not compress under heavy lifts.

Since we all have different strength levels, it’s important to recognize that different Nike training shoes will have different lifting thresholds. Some models will fair better under heavy loads while others may only work up to a certain point.

1. Nike Metcon 8

The Nike Metcon 8 is taking my top pick as the Nike training shoe for lifting. This shoe delivers a stable construction for heavy lifts and if you’re wanting these for big squats and deadlifts, you should enjoy their overall stability.

Using the Nike Metcon 8 for Deadlifting

In the context of lifting and my testing the Metcon 8, thus far, I’ve deadlifted 555 lbs, squatted 405 lbs, and Hatfield squatted 500 lbs in this shoe, and it’s done a relatively good job across the board.

The Nike React Foam midsole gives this shoe’s forefoot a nice level of responsiveness for athletic-style training, while the Hyperlift insert in the heel helps contribute to this shoe’s stability when lifting weights.

Testing the Nike Metcon 8 for squats

For anyone wanting a Nike shoe primarily for lifting, the Nike Metcon 8 can be a great option to explore. Plus, this shoe has received a nice update to its upper and lace-lock mechanism, making it a strong cross-training shoe.

  • Best For: Heavy Lifting and CrossFit
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 4mm 
  • Weight: 12.35 oz
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size, but Toe Box Fits Slimmer
  • Read My ReviewNike Metcon 8 Review

Nike Metcon 8

$130

Nike Metcon 8 Product Shot
4.5
Stability
4.5
Versatility
4.3
Durability
4.6

Best For

  • Cross-Training
  • CrossFit and CrossFit-Style Workouts
  • Lifting

Falls Short

  • For Wide Feet
  • For Running

2. Nike Metcon 7

The Nike Metcon 7 is another solid Nike training for lifting due to its midsole and outsole construction, which are pretty much identical to the Nike Metcon 8. The Nike Metcon 7 and Metcon 8 are models built on years where Nike keeps the shoe’s sole consistent.

Nike Metcon 7 Vs Nike Metcon 8 for squats

Before the Nike Metcon 8’s release, the Nike Metcon 7 was one of my favorite go-to Nike training shoes for lifting, cross-training, and CrossFit. This shoe’s stability is great for barbell lifts, machine work, and general strength work.

The chainlink mesh upper in the forefoot also gives this shoe’s toe box a bit more breathability than in the Nike Metcon 8. This is a good thing in the context of generaly lifting because your feet will stay a little cooler during longer sessions.

Nike Metcon 7 Stability and Lifting

I also like the Nike Metcon 7 because their price point will likely be better than the Metcon 8’s for the next year. With the 8’s release, the 7 is often on sale and since its stability is the same as the 8, you’re getting a solid shoe for a good price. 

  • Best For: Moderate to Heavy Lifting
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 4mm
  • Weight: 12.4 oz (for my size 10 model)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size
  • Read My ReviewNike Metcon 7 Review

Nike Metcon 7

$130

Nike Metcon 7
4.5
Stability
4.6
Versatility
4.6
Durability
4.4

Best For

  • Heavy Training
  • CrossFit Workouts
  • Rope Climbs
  • Plyos and Agility Workouts
  • Short Runs

Falls Short

  • For Long-Distance Runs
  • For Wider Feet

Best Nike Training Shoes for CrossFit

The best Nike training shoes for CrossFit will provide three key performance aspects, including stability, versatility, and long-term durability.

Since CrossFit is so diverse, a great CrossFit shoe will need to tackle a variety of tasks and be an “all-in-one” style of training shoe. This is also why regular training shoes don’t really work for serious CrossFit training.

1. Nike Metcon 8

To be honest, I don’t think most can go wrong with the Nike Metcon 8 and Nike Metcon 7 for CrossFit. Both shoes are super comparable with their performance in the context of CrossFit.

Testing the Nike Metcon 8 for functional fitness

However, there are a couple of key differences between these shoes for CrossFit, and that’s why the Metcon 8 is taking the number one spot here. The first difference is the reworked upper in the Nike Metcon 8.

In the Nike Metcon 7, if you were going to fun into durability issues, then you’d generally see them arise around the chainlink mesh upper in the toe box. This is also why I like the mesh for lifting a bit more than CrossFit because with lifting this is often not an issue due to the lack of constant abrasion you’ll encounter.

Reviewing the Nike Metcon 8 for Rope Climbs

The reworked upper in the Metcon 8’s toe box feels a bit more durable long-term for CrossFit. Additionally, this model doesn’t have the medial rubber rope guard the Metcon 7 had which was a super hit or miss feature for athletes.

  • Best For: CrossFit, Cross-Training, and Lifting
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 4mm
  • Weight: 12.35 oz (for my size 10 model)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size, but Toe Box Fits Slimmer
  • Read My ReviewNike Metcon 8 Review

Nike Metcon 8

$130

Nike Metcon 8 Product Shot
4.5
Stability
4.5
Versatility
4.3
Durability
4.6

Best For

  • Cross-Training
  • CrossFit and CrossFit-Style Workouts
  • Lifting

Falls Short

  • For Wide Feet
  • For Running

2. Nike Metcon 7

For most athletes, the Nike Metcon 7 should work exceptionally well for their CrossFit needs and demands. For example, the stability is great in this shoe, and for the most part, they do a good job with durability.

Testing the Metcon 7 for Versatile Training

I mentioned the toe box mesh durability issue above, but this can be pretty rare and I don’t think this will impact everyone. So, if you are on the fence between the Metcon 8 and 7 and the 7 has a better price point for you, you should be okay with this shoe.

The rubber rope guard on this model could also be a perk for some who like the additional material for rope climbing support. Some lifters really enjoy the additional grip you get with this shoe’s rubber rope guard.

Testing the Nike Metcon 7 for CrossFit Workouts

Overall, the Nike Metcon 7 has proven to be a pretty consistent shoe for CrossFit and we have more data on this model due to it being out longer. The heel construction in the 7 and 8 could be better, but when it comes to current Nike training shoes, these are the go-to models for CrossFit.

  • Best For: Moderate to Heavy Lifting
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 7mm
  • Weight: 12.4 oz
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size
  • Read My ReviewNike Metcon 7 Review

Nike Metcon 7

$130

Nike Metcon 7
4.5
Stability
4.6
Versatility
4.6
Durability
4.4

Best For

  • Heavy Training
  • CrossFit Workouts
  • Rope Climbs
  • Plyos and Agility Workouts
  • Short Runs

Falls Short

  • For Long-Distance Runs
  • For Wider Feet

Best Nike Training Shoes for Running

When talking about the best Nike training shoes for running it’s important to note that we’re talking about “training shoes” that you can run in and these are not running shoes.

If you’re doing long-distance runs or putting in serious mileage, then I’d suggest looking into a pair of running-specific shoes because these will match your needs best.

1. Nike Free Metcon 4

If you’re hitting shorter and mid-range runs, then the Nike Free Metcon 4 is worth exploring. We discussed this model being a good option for HIIT already, but this shoe can also work as a short-distance running shoe.

Nike Free Metcon 4 Construction

Basically, if you’re someone who likes to tackle a couple of miles pre or post-workout, or want a training shoe that isn’t overly uncomfortable for interval-style running, the Nike Free Metcon 4 can be a decent option to explore.

The only caveat to this model for running is that if you’re training outside, I’d suggest limiting using this shoe on gravel due to the gravel getting stuck in out the outsole.

nike free metcon 4 performance review

For treadmills and concrete though, this model is pretty solid across the board, and I like that it can be used for other forms of training.

  • Best For: Shorter and Mid-Range Runs
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 4mm
  • Weight: 10.2 oz
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size, but Toe Box Fits Slimmer
  • Read My ReviewNike Free Metcon 4 Review

Nike Free Metcon 4

$120

Nike Free Metcon 4 (1)
4.4
Stability
4.1
Versatility
4.6
Durability
4.4

Best For

  • HIIT Workouts
  • Classes
  • Light Lifting
  • Shorter Runs

Falls Short

  • For Heavy Training
  • For Fitting Wide Feet

2. Nike Zoom Turbo 2 (for sprints, not longer runs)

The Nike Zoom Turbo 2 is making my list for running for one key reason that’s its performance for sprints. This model is NOT great for distances longer than 400-800 meters, but for sprints and fast intervals they work well.

Testing the Nike Zoom Metcon Turbo 2 for Daily Wear

If you want a Nike shoe for longer runs, then I’d suggest exploring running-focused shoes. I want to include the Zoom Turbo 2 with the Nike Free Metcon 4 to provide a little variance between trainers that work for different types of running.

For sprints, I enjoy the Nike Zoom Turbo 2’s sole construction and insole. This model’s outsole has a disassociated construction, which essentially gives this shoe a nice level of articulation and mobility so you can really drive into the forefoot.

Testing the Nike Zoom Metcon Turbo 2 for Lateral Explosive Work

The insole in this model is built with Nike React Foam and a Zoom Air unit, which sits in the forefoot of this model. When driving into the ground for sprints, both of these features help give you a nice level of “pop” and responsivenss.

  • Best For: Shorter and Mid-Range Runs
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 4mm
  • Weight: 9.8 oz
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size
  • Read My ReviewNike Zoom Turbo 2 Review

Nike Zoom Metcon Turbo 2

$150

Nike Zoom Metcon Turbo 2
4.3
Stability
4.5
Versatility
4.6
Durability
4.0

Best For

  • Recreational Lifting
  • HIIT Workouts
  • Athletic-Style Training
  • Casual CrossFit
  • Short Speed-Focused Runs

Falls Short

  • For Rope Climbing
  • For Long-Term Durability
  • For Longer Runs

Best Nike Training Shoes for Classes

For the class-focused individual, I’m looking for two key aspects, and these include versatility and breathability. Since most classes offer a wide range of activities, you’ll need a shoe that can tackle things like jumping, light lifting, and running.

Breathability is important for keeping the feet cool, and if you’re in a hot class setting, then you obviously don’t want overly hot feet that can also be prone to, you know, being smelly (I’m guilty here).

1. Nike Air Zoom SuperRep 3

The Nike Air Zoom SuperRep 3 is taking my top pick for class-focused workouts and training. This model is designed for classes specifically and offers a variety of features to scratch the class-loving individual’s itch.

Testing the Nike Air Zoom SuperRep 3 for Lifting

There’s a lot of Nike tech that goes in the Air Zoom SuperRep 3 like its dual Zoom Air units in the forefoot and sole construction. The Zoom Air units give this shoe a nice level of bounce when jumping and doing multi-directional exercises.

The sole also has a fair amount of tread, so traction and slip issues shouldn’t be a problem with this shoe. I also like the upper breathability in this model and how much ventilation you get through this shoe’s mesh.

Testing the Nike Air Zoom SuperRep 3 for Conditioning Workouts

At the end of the day, the Nike Air Zoom SuperRep 3 is an interesting shoe. I think for class-specific training and for those that like Nike tech in their shoes, they’ll enjoy this model’s overall performance.

  • Best For: Class Workouts
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 9mm
  • Weight: 13.35 oz (for my size 10 model)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size, but Toe Box Fits Slimmer
  • Read My ReviewNike Air Zoom SuperRep 3 Review 

Nike Air Zoom SuperRep 3

$120

Nike Air Zoom SuperRep 3 Product Shot
3.8
Stability
3.8
Versatility
3.7
Durability
3.9

Best For

  • Class-Style Workouts
  • Bodyweight Workouts
  • Light Lifting
  • Some HIIT Workouts

Falls Short

  • For Multi-Directional Workouts
  • For Intense HIIT Workouts
  • For Minimalist Shoe Lovers

2. Nike Free Metcon 4

If you like the casual class but primarily do weight training and casual runs, then the Nike Free Metcon 4 will be a really good option for you. This shoe has been mentioned a few times in this round-up, for good reason.

This model is a good “best of all worlds” style of shoe for the person that likes doing a little bit of everything.

As opposed to a Nike Metcon that is a bit more limited with its versatility due to its increased stability, the Nike Free Metcon 4 does a good job at providing enough stability without taking away from its capabilities to excel in activities like classes.

  • Best For: Classes and Light Lifting
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 4mm
  • Weight: 10.2 oz (for my size 10 model)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Sizing: True to Size, but Toe Box Fits Slimmer
  • Read My ReviewNike Free Metcon 4 Review

Nike Free Metcon 4

$120

Nike Free Metcon 4 (1)
4.4
Stability
4.1
Versatility
4.6
Durability
4.4

Best For

  • HIIT Workouts
  • Classes
  • Light Lifting
  • Shorter Runs

Falls Short

  • For Heavy Training
  • For Fitting Wide Feet

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q:
What are the best Nike training shoes for CrossFit?

A:
The Nike Metcon 7 and Nike Metcon 8 both excel for CrossFit. These models provide a nice level of stability for heavy lifting and durability for things like rope climbs and burpees.

Q:
Can you run in Nike training shoes?

A:
You can run short distances in some Nike training shoes. For example, the Nike Free Metcon 4 and Nike SuperRep Go training shoes work for a couple of miles, but you'll want to pass on running in more stable Nike trainers like the Nike Metcon 8.

Takeaway Thoughts

Every year, Nike comes out with multiple new training shoes, and I think it’s crucial to recognize how you like to train when selecting your perfect shoe.

If we can better understand what types of construction features are needed for our preferred style of training, then we can better select models to help us perform our best.

If you have any questions about the Nike training shoes featured in this article, drop a comment below or reach out to me personally via Instagram (@jake_boly).

That Fit Friend is a site that is supported by myself (Jake Boly) and its readers. If you purchase products through affiliates links on this site, then I may receive a small commission on the sale. These commissions help keep the lights on here at That Fit Friend so I can continue to create content and they help me purchase new models to review!

nv-author-image

Jake Boly

I've been in the fitness and strength training industry for nearly a decade. In that time, I've trained hundreds of clients, written thousands of articles, reviewed over 100+ pairs of training shoes, and have produced a large list of training videos. I live and breathe fitness and training gear, and I think it's important that reviewers walk the walk with the gear they're testing. As for my educational background, I have my Masters in Sports Science, Bachelors in Exercise Science, and have my CSCS.

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