Athletic Shoes 101
January 09, 2014

The brands, the technology, the fits, the styles—with so many athletic shoe options, picking the perfect pair can overwhelm any Shoe (and fitness) Lover. So here are a few insider tips to get you started on the hunt:

  1. Match the shoe to the workout
    Running, walking, cross training, hitting the trail—athletic shoes tailored to your exercise of choice help make sure you've got the best fit and technology for your workout.

  2. Know your stride
    Everyone moves differently, so pay attention to how you run or walk. If your foot rolls too far in or out, it can lead to injury—when you identify these issues, you can shoe shop accordingly.

  3. Get serious about technology and support
    Not all athletic shoes are made alike. Based on your stride, look for shoes that support the proper part of the foot and technology that's compatible with your workout routine.

  4. Consider the weight
    Lightweight shoes are hot on the scene these days. If you're interested in a more minimalist option, give 'em a try (they're especially good for walking and aerobic exercise), but make sure they provide the support you need.

  5. Have some fun
    Fitness? It's not all-work-no-play. Rock an athletic shoe in a bright color, and switch it up every time you replace 'em. Yes, it's totally acceptable to turn heads at the gym.

Top Row (left to right): Converse Chuck Taylor All Star $44.95 (Compare at $50!), Nike Revolution 2 $49.95 (Compare at $55!), Skechers GOwalk 2 $54.95 (Compare at $65!), ASICS GEL Contend 2 $54.95 (Compare at $60!)

Middle Row (left to right): Saucony Grid Excursion $54.95 (Compare at $65!), Vans Atwood $49.95 (Compare at $55!), ASICS GEL Excite 2 $59.95 (Compare at $70!)

Bottom Row (left to right): Converse All Star $27.95 (Compare at $32!), New Balance 990 $54.95 (Compare at $60!), Converse All Star $27.95 (Compare at $32!), Reebok Zigkick $59.95 (Compare at $65!)