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Notorious Lift Radix Review | Awesome Barefoot Shoe On a Budget?

The Notorious Lift Radix has been a super interesting barefoot shoe to train in. In the strength sports world, Notorious Lift has built its name around being a go-to option for deadlift slippers but has since shifted gears to making barefoot shoes, too.

The Radix has a fairly decent price point compared to some of its higher-end peers, like the Primus Lite III from Vivobarefoot. Heading into my review, I wanted to know if their lower price means a compromise in versatility and performance.

After multiple lifting sessions in the Radix, I’ve found a lot to like about this shoe if you’ve been on the fence about it. I also have a few buying and sizing tips to make sure you make the best choice for your needs.

I run That Fit Friend by myself and buy the shoes I review. If my Radix review helped you make a decision, it helps a ton if you go through the links in this article. Thank you!

Show Me the Pros & Cons

Logo

Pros

  • Novus Griptech outsole is super grippy
  • Minimalist branding is great for casual wear
  • 3.3mm stack height gives A LOT of ground feel

Cons

  • Tongue can slide when cross-training
  • Run a little short out of the box

What I Like

  1. Great Stack Height for Powerlifting and Strength Training: The Radix features a stack height of 3.3mm, giving it a super minimalist feel when lifting. I love the articulation that you get from this shoe and how much you can “feel” the ground when deadlifting and doing heavy lower-body sessions.
  2. Sleek Minimalist Branding and Wide Toe Box: I’ve also been subtly surprised by how good the Radix can look for casual wear. I’m a big fan of barefoot shoes that I can train in and wear out and about outside of the gym, and these fit that box pretty well. The wider toe box also gives this shoe a comfy fit for all-day wear.
  3. Good Price Point for Quality: For $100, I feel like this shoe can be a no-brainer for the lifting and cost-focused buyer. These have performed just as well as models like the Primus Lite Knit and TYR DropZero and cost $50-70 less.

Notorious-Lift-Radix-That-Fit-Friend

What I Don’t Like

  1. Tongue Can Lack Security: This model’s tongue lacks a gusset and an additional loop for security. This can result in the tongue sliding when cross-training and doing lateral exercises like lateral sled drags.
  2. Run Short Out of the Box: Size up. This model runs small, and in case you missed the sizing chart and Notorious Lift’s note on how they run small on the product page, size up a half to full size to play it safe.
  3. May Not Be the “Best” for Beginners: If you’re brand new to barefoot shoes and you need a little more cushion and support for your acclimation phase, then you’ll want to potentially consider other options as this shoe’s 3.3mm stack height may feel like a lot for you.

Specs to Know

  • Price: $100
  • Heel-to-Toe Drop: 0mm
  • Weight: 8.95 oz (size 10 model)
  • Removable Insole: Yes
  • Width: Wide, good for 3E feet and below.
  • Sizing: Runs small. Size up half-size or full-size.
  • Good Alternative Apex Power 1.5: Read My Review

Notorious Lift Radix

$100

Notorious-Lift-Radix-Product-Shot
4.7
Stability
4.9
Versatility
4.6
Durability
4.7
Quality
4.8

Best For

  • Powerlifting
  • General Strength Training
  • Cross-Training
  • Walking
  • Wide Feet

Falls Short

  • For Long Runs

How I Tested the Radix

  • Lifting: 4.8/5. For lifting, I’ve loved this shoe and enjoy how grippy it is for my deadlifts and lower body days. My heaviest deadlift sets in this shoe include 455 for sets of 5.
  • Versatility: 4.3/5. This shoe does a fairly good job for versatile workouts, and I’ve tested them with plyometrics, sled drags and pushes, and full-body circuits.
  • Daily Wear: 4.4/5. I’ve used this model for all-day wear, dog walks up to 3 miles, and coffee shop meetings and I’ve enjoyed their performance.

For Lifting, This Shoe’s Grip and Flexibility Are the Wins

The Radix will best serve as a barefoot shoe for heavy training. There are three construction features that I’ve come to appreciate about this shoe in terms of its general lifting and powerlifting performance.

First, the stack height of this shoe is sick for true minimalist lovers. This shoe’s sole has a 2mm thickness, and the lugs come in at 1.3mm, giving it a total stack height of 3.3mm. Most barefoot shoes sit around ~5mm for context.

Notorious-Lift-Radix-Deadlift-Tests-That-Fit-Friend

The internal construction of this shoe is finished, which is also great if you like taking out your insoles when training. I do this when deadlifting and have thoroughly enjoyed how much ground feel I get with this model.

Second, the Novus Griptech used in this shoe has been great for supporting traction on different surfaces. I’ve trained on virtually every surface in this shoe and have yet to have issues with traction in this shoe. It’s a good model for machines and floor-based lifting.

The grip, blended with the low stack height, gives this shoe a great feel for leg days. When doing things like reverse deficit lunges, I appreciated how much bite I got from this shoe’s forefoot and how the midfoot flexed and let my feet move freely.

Notorious-Lift-Radix-Leg-Day-Tests-That-Fit-Friend

Third and lastly, the TPU cage and sole wrap are nice touches for promoting upper security during training. When doing anything sumo-related, this shoe locked my feet down, and this cage also promotes security when doing power cleans.

They Can Work for Cross-Training for the Most Part

I like this shoe for versatile workouts, and it’s almost there, but the lack of tongue security holds it back slightly. It’s one of those small details that I could see bothering some who want this shoe with a heavy bias toward athletic workouts.

Outside of the tongue security issue, this model has done exceptionally well when tackling my athletic-focused sessions. This shoe grips well for plyometrics, and it works well on every surface, so for my turf-focused friends, you shouldn’t have issues with these.

Notorious-Lift-Radix-Sled-Drag-Tests-That-Fit-Friend

Despite the 360 sole wrap being built for lifting, it feeds well into cross-training because it adds to this shoe’s platform. For example, if you’re doing multi-directional exercises, this gives you an additional wall to brace and drive through.

The wider forefoot and midfoot are perks for promoting toe splay and letting the arches flex and react when cross-training. If you find models like the Xero Shoes HFS 2 and 360 feel too narrow, then you may want to explore the Radix.

These Surprised Me for Daily Wear and Walking

I love barefoot shoes that I can lift and train in and wear casually. The Radix has surprised me with its ability to look more casual, and I’ve worn this shoe out to bars with friends and for coffee meetings/dates.

I never felt out of place in these settings with the Radix on, and that’s when I wear both pants and shorts. Sometimes, I find “sporty” barefoot shoes to look a little out of place in these contexts, but these have been a nice exception.

Notorious-Lift-Radix-Walking-Tests-That-Fit-Friend

For daily wear, I’ll leave the thin foam removable insole in for additional cushion, and I feel like it gives you just enough to add a little more comfort if you’re walking a bunch or standing all day.

The wider forefoot and midfoot also contribute to this shoe’s comfort and ability to perform in this vertical. For my flat-footed friends, these can be a good option for you and should give you plenty of room to let your feet do their things.

Pro-tip: I keep my shoe laces loose so I can easily slip them on and off when rocking these casually. I have yet to have security issues when wearing these looser, which my lazy self appreciates.

Have You Trained In the Radix? Let Me Know Below

Leave a Review

Crowd Sourced Reviews
3
3
3

Reader's Rating

4.9 out of 5
Sizing/Fit: True to Size
Durability
4.8

Reader Reviews

May 24th, 2024
I'm hyped I took Jake's advice on these. The Radix have been in my rotation with my Tolos model and I swap them in for deadlift days where I want maximal grip. Overall happy with this shoe and its price.
May 24th, 2024
May 24th, 2024

Construction Breakdown

Sole

  • Novus Griptech rubber. This shoe utilizes a proprietary tread from Notorious Lift to promote traction and grip.
  • Herringbone tread patterning. The primary tread pattern used on this shoe is a herringbone design, and the lugs are 1.3mm deep.
  • 360 wrap. The forefoot, midfoot, and heel are wrapped with a rubber sole to promote additional support and security.

Notorious-Lift-Radix-Sole-Construction-That-Fit-Friend

Upper

  • Mesh and knit are the primary upper materials used throughout the forefoot, midfoot, and heel.
  • The TPU cage encloses the toe box and parts of the midfoot to promote security during training.
  • Leather overlay encloses the heel to add a layer of support regarding boot structure.

Notorious-Lift-Radix-Upper-Construction-That-Fit-Friend

Laces and Tongue

  • The tongue is built with a padded mesh. This tongue doesn’t have a gusset or additional loops for security.
  • There are six core eyelets on this shoe and a seventh for lace-locking. The laces don’t come untied easily which I appreciate.

Notorious-Lift-Radix-Midfoot-Construction-That-Fit-Friend

Final Verdict, Would I Buy These Again?

I absolutely would, and I have already bought a second pair so I could have both colorways. Does that make me gluttonous or strategic to avoid them selling out? That’s up for debate.

The Notorious Lift Radix has been exceptional for lifting. I’ve greatly appreciated its super minimalist feel, grippy outsole, wide construction, and fair price point.

If you’re new to barefoot shoes and don’t want to spend a ton and want a model for lifting with some cross-training and daily wear, then I don’t think you’ll regret copping a pair of the Radix.

If you have additional questions about this shoe, drop a comment below or hit me on Instagram (@that_fit_friend or @jake_boly).

Jake Boly, CSCS, MS Sports Science

Jake Boly, CSCS, MS Sports Science

Jake Boly is the Founder and Editor-In-Chief of That Fit Friend. He's often regarded to as a go-to resource in various performance shoe communities. He’s been formally reviewing shoes and training gear for over 7 years and has hand-tested over 400 pairs of shoes. Jake is known on the internet and YouTube for blending his review process with his educational, strength sports, and personal training background.

Jake has a Masters in Sports Science, a Bachelors in Exercise Science, a CSCS, and he's been personal training for over 10 years helping hundreds of clients get stronger, lose weight, and accomplish their goals. He uses his exercise science brain and personal training background to make curated and thoughtful review content on the fitness gear he's testing.

2 thoughts on “Notorious Lift Radix Review | Awesome Barefoot Shoe On a Budget?”

  1. I’ved used the Radix for my sumo deadlift sessions and they grip very well even when the bottom is slightly dirty.

  2. These are my absolute favorite for deadlifting now! I feel locked in and close to the ground. And they are versatile for doing any of my powerlifting accessories. Great review!!

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