There are a lot of really strong-performing cross-training shoes on the market. Three of the top contenders for both cross-training and CrossFit include the RAD ONE versus the NOBULL Trainer versus the TYR CXT-1 Trainer.
All of these models can hold their own for CrossFit and cross-training, but for slightly different reasons. For example, the NOBULL Trainer and Trainer+ are some of the most durable, while the RAD ONE delivers nice versatility, and the TYR CXT-1 Trainer excels for lifting.
In this cross-training shoe showdown, I’ll be comparing the NOBULL Trainer (and Trainer+) to the RAD ONE and the TYR CXT-1 Trainer. This way, if you’re debating between any of these shoes, hopefully, this article can lead you to the best pick for your needs.
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RAD ONE Vs NOBULL Trainer Vs TYR CXT-1 Trainer Performance
To break down the performance between the RAD ONE versus the NOBULL Trainer (and Trainer+) versus the TYR CXT-1 Trainer, I’ll discuss how these models perform in a variety of performance contexts.
Since these shoes are all designed to perform well for lifting, CrossFit, and cross-training, hopefully, you can better cross-reference which shoe will fit your individual training needs best.
Testing the RAD ONE Vs NOBULL Trainer Vs TYR CXT-1 Trainer for Lifting and CrossFit
For lifting, all of these works really exceptionally well and there are subtle nuances that differentiate each. In the context of stability, I’ve deadlifted over 500 lbs in all of these shoes and have squatted over 400 lbs in each model and have enjoyed their performance.
When it comes to subtle differences, the TYR CXT-1 Trainer is a great pick for lifting if you like higher heel-to-toe drops. This model features a 9mm heel-to-toe drop which can be great for taller lifters and those that like a little more “heel” when training.
Personally, I’ve really enjoyed the higher drop for high-bar squats, wall balls, and thrusters because I’m a taller guy with long legs, so this drop feeds well into my anatomical needs. This would definitely be worth considering if you’re in a similar position.
The RAD ONE’s Swell Foam midsole walks a nice line between being responsive and stable. This shoe has the most “responsive” midsole, but it doesn’t limit the level of stability you get, and I think most lifters will enjoy how this midsole feels under heavy weight.
The outsole in the RAD ONE also provides a nice level of traction on different surfaces, so it’s a good model for lifting on rubber gym floors, wooden platforms, and even outdoors.
The NOBULL Trainer and NOBULL Trainer+ are also good picks for lifting due to their higher-density EVA foam midsole. From a pure lifting point of view, the NOBULL Trainer does take a slight edge over the Trainer+ due to its lower stack height.
In the context of CrossFit, I would rank the NOBULL Trainer, TYR CXT-1 Trainer, and RAD ONE all in my top five CrossFit shoes as being really well-rounded. The most well-rounded is probably the RAD ONE and that’s due to its versatility and durability.
The RAD ONE has a nice level of bounce for exercises like double-unders and box jumps, and its durability is really solid for rope climbs and toe-dragging movements like burpees. If you like CrossFit shoes with more versatility, the RAD ONE is a great pick.
The TYR CXT-1 Trainer offers a nice blend of stability and versatility, but I would argue this shoe has a greater bias toward lifting performance in CrossFit WODs. Its Surge NRG foam midsole is bouncy and the patent-pending stability platform is a nice feature.
My only hesitation with the TYR CXT-1 Trainer is its long-term durability for rope climbs. I had a model lose a part of its midfoot wrap during one of my climbing sessions. I’m hoping this was a one-off occasion, but it’s something to keep an eye on, nonetheless.
The NOBULL Trainer and NOBULL Trainer+ earn their street cred due to their long-term durability. It’s really tough to break a NOBULL Trainer during a CrossFit workout and if you want something consistent that lasts a while, then both of these options are great.
If you want a CrossFit shoe from NOBULL with a bigger lifting bias, then go with the NOBULL Trainer, and if you want a model that has a bigger bias towards versatility and outdoor training, go with the NOBULL Trainer+ as its outsole and thicker EVA foam midsole give it the edge here.
Winner: For lifting, the TYR CXT-1 Trainer does an exceptional job and is awesome for athletes that want a bigger drop. However, in reality, all of these work really well and you should be well-suited no matter which model you reach for.
For CrossFit, I think the RAD ONE is the most well-rounded CrossFit shoe at the moment. That being said, the NOBULL Trainer and Trainer+ are both super durable and consistent, and TYR CXT-1 Trainer also works well.
TYR CXT-1 Trainer
Testing the RAD ONE Vs NOBULL Trainer Vs TYR CXT-1 Trainer for Versatility
For versatile and athletic-style training sessions, I’ve enjoyed all of these shoes, but I do think there are stronger performers in this bunch. The top three models to explore for anyone with heavy versatility in their training include the RAD ONE, TYR CXT-1 Trainer, and NOBULL Trainer+.
All three of these shoes can hold their own for HIIT workouts, plyometrics, and things like multi-directional exercises. I like the RAD ONE and how bouncy the Swell Foam midsole is. The outsole wrap also increases this shoe’s traction for multi-directional work.
My only drawback with the RAD ONE is that the breathability isn’t the best in this model. Another model that works well for versatility, but suffers from a lack of breathability is the NOBULL Trainer+. The SuperFabric upper can run fairly hot at times in this model.
If you want a model for daily wear that also works well for outdoor sessions, the NOBULL Trainer+ will be a good option to explore. This shoe’s aggressive herringbone tread patterning and thicker rubber outsole provide a nice level of durability and traction.
Plus, the thicker EVA foam midsole in this model with its wider last make this shoe a good pick for those that want a bit more motion control in their shoes. The TYR CXT-1 Trainer can also be a viable option if you want a shoe that feels more “athletic” in nature.
This model offers a nice level of arch support and has a nice stable boot construction which adds to its ability to perform for athletic-style sessions. Plus, the Surge NRG Foam midsole is a bit denser so you get a nice level of ground feedback in this shoe.
Winner: The RAD ONE, NOBULL Trainer+, and TYR CXT-1 Trainer all work well for versatile training. The RAD ONE will be the bounciest, while the NOBULL Trainer+ takes the edge for durability and the TYR CXT-1 Trainer for ground feedback.
Testing the RAD ONE Vs NOBULL Trainer Vs TYR CXT-1 Trainer for Daily Wear and Running
When it comes to short runs, all of these models can technically work, but there’s a pretty clear hierarchy as to which excel better than others. For example, if you’re running around 400-meters in a WOD, then I wouldn’t stress the performance of these shoes as they’ll all work.
That being said, if you’re wanting a shoe for pre and post-workout runs that range from 1-3 miles, then you’ll want to pick a model that can accommodate your needs better. The RAD ONE will be your best bet for tacking on a few miles here and there.
Outside of the RAD ONE, the TYR CXT-1 Trainer and NOBULL Trainer+ can be comfortable for around a mile before their stability takes away from their performance. Between these two, the TYR CXT-1 Trainer is a bit more comfortable for sprint work.
The regular NOBULL Trainer can run pretty uncomfortable for running, so I’d pass on this model entirely if that’s a big performance ask of yours. For daily wear, all of these shoes will work, but the NOBULL Trainer+, NOBULL Trainer, and RAD ONE are all my go-to’s.
The NOBULL Trainers are great because their durability makes them easy options for all-season wear. I’ve had NOBULL Trainers last two to three years when wearing them on a day-to-day basis. The RAD ONE is also a comfortable option for casual wear.
I’d pass on the TYR CXT-1 Trainer for daily wear. This shoe will be best served to save for the gym and I’m not a huge fan of them for all-day wear regarding long-term durability.
Winner: For short runs, go for the RAD ONE. For sprints, opt for the TYR CXT-1 Trainer, and for short outdoor runs go with the NOBULL Trainer+. For daily wear, opt for the NOBULL Trainer+, NOBULL Trainer, or RAD ONE.
RAD ONE Vs NOBULL Trainer Vs TYR CXT-1 Trainer Construction
To discuss the construction between the NOBULL Trainer, RAD ONE, NOBULL Trainer+, and TYR CXT-1 Trainer, I’ll break down various parts of the shoes below and compare their features to one another.
Hopefully, this will make this section more digestible and will help highlight construction areas of note that can influence each shoe’s performance and durability.
Regarding the midsole constructions of these shoes, all of these models have midsoles that bias a bit more firmness. The NOBULL Trainer features a medium-density midsole that comes with a firmer feel.
The NOBULL Trainer+ has a thicker EVA foam midsole that compresses a bit more compared to its NOBULL Trainer peer. This midsole gives you a bit more bounce and it’s more versatile for daily wear and versatile training.
The RAD ONE features a Swell Foam midsole that walks a good line between stable, and responsive. This midsole doesn’t compress easily under heavy weight and it’s wrapped inside a protective TPU layer.
The TYR CXT-1 Trainer features a proprietary Surge NRG foam and it has a stable feel to it. There’s a rubber wrap around the midfoot and heel in this model that protects the midsole.
All of these models feature full rubber outsoles that provide good levels of tread on different surfaces. I don’t think you’ll have slip and traction issues in any of these shoes.
The NOBULL Trainer has a full rubber outsole composed of a lug tread patterning while the Trainer+ features an aggressive herringbone tread. The NOBULL Trainer+ gives you more grip for outdoor training and can be a good option for daily wear.
The TYR CXT-1 Trainer has a full rubber outsole that has varied tread throughout the forefoot, midfoot, and heel. The midfoot has a slight arch, and again, there’s a rubber wrap around the midfoot and heel.
The RAD ONE also features a rubber outsole that has a herringbone tread patterning. This outsole has a nice level of grip and it has a “stickier” feel on different surfaces.
The upper constructions in all of these shoes do a good job regarding durability. The NOBULL Trainer and NOBULL Trainer+ both feature SuperFabric uppers that do a really good job with abrasion resistance. Both of these uppers can run warm at times.
The RAD ONE has a breathable mesh upper that extends from the forefoot to the heel. There are suede and synthetic overlays over the forefoot and midfoot for additional durability support.
The TYR CXT-1 Trainer has a breathable mesh throughout the forefoot and midfoot and it has an internal toe guard. As this shoe’s upper transitions to the heel, there are synthetic overlays with a bit more structure to the boot.
Laces and Tongue
When it comes to the laces and tongue construction in all of these shoes, you shouldn’t run into midfoot security issues whatsoever. The NOBULL Trainer and NOBULL Trainer+ both feature lightweight perforated tongues that are not gusseted.
The NOBULL Trainer features five metal eyelets, while the NOBULL Trainer+ features four internal webbing eyelets with a top fifth metal eyelet. Both models have good tongue security despite the lack of gusset.
The RAD ONE features a similar lacing structure to the NOBULL Trainer+ with four internal webbing eyelets and a fifth metal eyelet. The tongue in this model is gusseted and it has a nice level of padding to it.
The TYR CXT-1 Trainer’s tongue has a gusset and two loops to promote full tongue security. This model features five traditional eyelets with a sixth eyelet for lace-locking.
Insole, Weight, and Heel-to-Toe Drop
All of these models feature thin foam removable insoles, so technically, all of them could work for custom insoles or orthotics. Additionally, the RAD ONE has the least amount of upper volume available for adding in custom insoles whereas the NOBULL Trainers have the most.
- NOBULL Trainer+ Heel-to-Toe Drop and Weight: 4mm and 12.75 oz (for my size 10 model)
- NOBULL Trainer Heel-to-Toe Drop and Weight: 4mm and 10.7 oz (for my size 10 model)
- RAD ONE Heel-to-Toe Drop and Weight: 6mm and 12.70 oz (for my size 10 model)
- TYR CXT-1 Trainer Heel-to-Toe Drop and Weight: 9mm and 12.65 oz (for my size 10 model)
If you have additional construction questions on the NOBULL Trainer, RAD ONE, TYR CXT-1 Trainer, and NOBULL Trainer+, drop a comment below.
RAD ONE Vs NOBULL Trainer Vs TYR CXT-1 Trainer Sizing
In the RAD ONE, NOBULL Trainer, NOBULL Trainer+, and TYR CXT-1 Trainer, most athletes and lifters should be safe going true to size. All of these models run true to size regarding length and their widths all hover around neutral with some variance.
The NOBULL Trainer and NOBULL Trainer+ both run a bit wider throughout compared to the RAD ONE and TYR CXT-1 Trainer. Additionally, the NOBULL Trainer+ has a fair amount of upper volume so it can be a good option for custom inserts and orthotics.
The TYR CXT-1 Trainer has the most arch support of these models and it has a nice structured boot for additional ankle support. The RAD ONE has the most “traditional” fit compared to all of these models.
- RAD ONE Sizing Thoughts: Go true to size for narrow-width and neutral-width feet if you generally have a bit of room at the end of your toe box. Go up a half size for neutral-width that air on the wider side and wider feet.
- NOBULL Trainer Sizing Thoughts: Go true to size.
- NOBULL Trainer+ Sizing Thoughts: Go true to size. Size down a half-size if you have narrow feet.
- TYR CXT-1 Trainer Sizing Thoughts: Go true to size.
If you have additional sizing and fit questions about the NOBULL Trainer, NOBULL Trainer+, RAD ONE, and TYR CXT-1 Trainer, drop a comment below.
RAD ONE Vs NOBULL Trainer Vs TYR CXT-1 Trainer Durability
When it comes to general durability the NOBULL Trainer, NOBULL Trainer+, RAD ONE, and TYR CXT-1 Trainer, all do a fairly good job. I don’t think you’ll experience breakdown issues with any of these shoes for general lifting and cross-training.
The midsoles, outsoles, and upper constructions in all of these models work well and do a good job against general abrasion resistance. Plus, the midsoles and outsoles tend to last a while when it comes to compression and friction from different surfaces.
The most durable options up here are probably the NOBULL Trainer and NOBULL Trainer+. These shoes tend to last a while and that’s one of the biggest perks of NOBULL Trainers in general. For CrossFit, they’ll both hold up well.
The RAD ONE is also a durable model, and it holds up well to the demands of CrossFit workouts. The upper construction and TPU wrap around the midsole in this model help prolong this shoe’s durability from rope climbs, burpees, and everything else.
I mentioned this above, but the TYR CXT-1 Trainer’s durability can be a little hit or miss. Since they’re newer on the market, it will be useful to have more data points once more athletes are training in them, but I did experience an issue with my pair when rope climbing.
I had part of the lateral outsole wrap break off on the midfoot. Once again, I’m hoping this is a one-off case, and I ordered another pair to retest this aspect, but it’s worth mentioning with this model as it could be something to keep an eye on long-term.
That being said, honestly, all of these shoes should do a pretty good job for durability, especially compared to their peers. In the context of CrossFit, I’m excited for more athletes to start training in and testing the TYR model to give us all more durability data.
For these cross-training shoes, you can expect to pay between $130-$150 USD. For the NOBULL Trainer and TYR CXT-1 Trainer, you can expect to pay around $130 USD.
The NOBULL Trainer+ has a price point that sits around $139 USD and the RAD one is the priciest model with a price of $150 USD. All of these models could be described as more premium in nature.
Personally, I feel like the price points for all of these models are worth it, especially if you invest in the pair that matches your wants and needs the best. That being said, if those prices are out of your budget, you can definitely explore other budget cross-training shoes that perform strongly.
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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Q:Can you run in NOBULL Trainers?
Q:Are the RAD ONE good for CrossFit?
Q:Are the TYR CXT-1 Trainer good for lifting?
The NOBULL Trainer, RAD ONE, TYR CXT-1 Trainer, and NOBULL Trainer+ are all really well-built cross-training shoes. All of these models have their lists of pros and cons and excel for slightly different reasons.
Whether you want a cross-training shoe for lifting, CrossFit, or versatile training, all of these shoes should work to various degrees. Their performance all ebb and flow based on the biases of their construction and features.
If you have additional questions on the NOBULL Trainer, TYR CXT-1 Trainer, NOBULL Trainer+, or RAD ONE, drop a comment below or reach out to me personally via Instagram (@jake_boly or @that_fit_friend).
I personally test every product featured on That Fit Friend using a regimen of training tests that I’ve developed over years of testing training gear. I buy the gear I test and may earn commissions on sales made through links on my site.
I bought a haze trainer at 10.5 and the r.a.d. one drop 8 at 10.5, when it comes to the haze trainer it fit me like a glove, the r.a.d. one was very tight on the sides in the middle of the foot, which caused me pain and made it very uncomfortable, I ended up selling it to a friend who wears 10 and it fits perfectly
Hey! Interesting and good to know. The RAD ONE used to run a little short, but has since been said to be TTS and my model fits TTS, but I think I’m going to add a little sizing disclaimer once more on their shoes just to be safe. Thanks for letting me know and sharing your experiences, Manuel!