CROSS COUNTRY SHOES VS RUNNING SHOES

CROSS COUNTRY SHOES VS RUNNING SHOES

Cross country races are more involving compared to normal running races as they involve a quite tasking terrain. Regular races take place mostly on smooth, even surfaces. At the same time, cross country is engaged on a landscape characterized by wetness, slippery, filthy, grassy, sharp turns, short steep hills, bridges, creeks to cross among other difficulties. This makes it a more disrupted race than a usual run which happens in an even ground. Athletes who take part in cross country should engage themselves in a more involving preparation, unlike their counterparts who participate in regular races to equip themselves with the skill needed to succeed in the exercise. Cross country is a unique race as it does not only involve the runner against his or her competitors; it will also include the runner against Mother Nature.  As a result, one will need to go an extra mile in getting readiness for a cross country challenge to face both the competitor and Mother Nature.

The essential item involved in running, whether a short distance or long, a cross country or a usual run is the footwear. A runner should take their time as well as to conduct adequate research on the kind of footwear they will have to wear during the activity. Different types of races will require different types of shoes so one should have it in mind that, the type of footwear needed for an ordinary race is not the same as the one required for cross country.

Considerations When Choosing Running Shoes.

Lightweight. Despite many shoes in the market having been designed to accommodate older and weightier people, therefore coming with features suiting them, like having a lot of cushioning and support. An athlete should go for footwear which does not encompass such features. The excess material in the shoe will not only add weight which is unnecessary to the runner but also alters their strides. This happens because such materials will interfere with the shoe's flexibility; thus, one will be unable to experience the underfoot ground effect. Much support is unnecessary since the user of these shoes is athletic, and they can comfortably create their support. This should be better observed when trainees are involved.

Involve an expert. Before one settles on a running shoe they ought to purchase; it will be necessary they seek some advice from a knowledgeable and experienced person with various types and brands of footwear. The expert will guide according to the runner’s injury history, the level of running they have been involved in, their training program as well as their proficiency on different brands of shoes. The expert may even request the runner to do simple exercises such as the squat or even do some running so that they can analyze the athlete's pace before they can advise them on the right shoes they should purchase.

Go by feel and not looks. Many people may easily be convinced by the physical appearance of the shoe and not how one feels on it. For instance, an athlete who has a craving for a red colour may likely go for a red coloured shoe which has no good feel on their feet while leaving out a black coloured one with a good feeling. One may also decide on the type of footwear to go for based on what their friends have therefore ending up having a wrong fit or even which they will not be comfortable on. While choosing the right shoe, one is advised to have the shoes on and take a run, on the treadmill from the store they are purchasing from but not just stepping on them and decide that they are alright. This should be done on several pairs before one settles on the one they are most comfortable in.

Extra room.

A running shoe should be different from street footwear in that the running pair should be more spacious. While on the run, feet do swell, hence the extra room will be vital to accommodate them comfortably. Space should be at least a thumb –width, again ensure that the shoe is not too narrow since a room for spreading at the ball of the foot is required. One should also understand that most athletes are middle-aged people; thus, they are still growing, and a big shoe will serve them for a more extended period. After all, it will be disappointing to find that your favourite shoe is no longer fitting after a brief period.

Be smart about spiked footwear.

Spiked running shoes are not made for everyone, they are also not made for all types of races, and mostly they are made for cross country whereby they are commonly used by experienced runners or in other words those who have been in the game for some time. Athletes beginning their career are advised to run on the pair they started training on until they gather enough experience when they can decide on a more advanced type of footwear. Spikes are known to cause strain on one's feet, leading to a likelihood of fatigue development a factor which might lower one's performance. Spikes will not be conducive to use on courses that go over pavements. Before one decides to go for the spiked shoes, they should also understand that spikes add extra weight on one's foot, and lightweight shoes are more preferred for running. 

Shoes are not a remedy for injuries.

Some runners will assume that the kind of shoes they go for can protect them from developing an injury which is not the case. Although shoes play a role in injury protection, it is relatively minimal. If one is struggling with injuries, they are advised to visit a health care provider but not to seek a solution to their problem in the shoe store. One should also understand that injuries originate from the weaknesses of the body as well as inadequate training thus if one is preoccupied with time to time, injuries should consider advancing their training techniques and not the shoe.

Having seen the factors which should be put into consideration before a buyer purchases a running shoe, now will embark on different varieties of running shoes in the market. In this, we will have to categorize them in both cross country and regular running footwear, as well as shoes, made for ladies and gentlemen.

Best Cross Country, Running Shoes for Men.

Salomon Men’s Speedcross 4 Trail.

This shoe is well designed to cope with intricate landscapes which involve; wet surfaces, grassy, sharp corners, mountainous regions traversed by cross country runners. The features combined in making these shoes are aimed at making them, stable, comfortable and supportive to the runner to make them beat the fore mentioned challenges efficiently.

They are modified to produce an anti-debris mesh upper which guards the shoe against any debris penetrating inside while the runner is in action, this will ensure minimal disruption as one takes on cross country races. They have EVA footbed, which is modelled to produce a comfort of high quality is vital in cross country races. The midsole of this pair is lightweight a factor which contributes to the lightness of the shoe thus the runner will not have to worry of unnecessary weight on their foot while in action hence the chances of feet fatigue are minimal. The cushioning given to this pair is excellent as it will enable rebounding, thus energizing the athlete's feet.

It is made with an ortholite sock liner which enhances the breathability of the shoe, enabling the runner's feet to remain cool and dry during all weather conditions. They are made up with a mudguard which forms a guarding barrier to guard the runner's feet from synthetic and abrasive materials when they go through uneven terrain. Their lacing involves a quick lace system whereby one will have to tighten their shoes by just one pull, and they are ready to go with their feet being well secured.  The outsoles are well rugged to produce the best traction with all kinds of terrains; thus, the wearer is stable and secure wherever they traverse on. They are waterproof from so the runner can traverse on watery landscapes with no worry of their foot developing wetness.

Saucony Men’s Kilkenny Xc5

Despite being a spiked type of a shoe, it is lightweight which is well designed to offer the best control to a runner, therefore producing one of the best men's footwear currently in the market. The spiked sole is also versatile, making it create excellent traction with any terrain the runner might traverse on; thus, an athlete will always be stable irrespective of landscape or the conditions prevailing on it. It is modified to produce a neutral fit making it the best choice for the neutral pronators. Its midsole is made of a compressed molded EVA to give it the best cushioning as well as comfort. The uppers are made of minimalist mesh, making it breathable a factor which ensures that the wearer's feet will remain cool and dry all through.

New Balance Men’s 900v4.

Men's 900v4 is made to suit those who require affordable footwear made to accommodate features needed in a cross country shoe. It uppers comprise of 360-degree mesh which makes the shoe highly breathable and lightweight enabling the runner's feet remain cool and dry all through. Its lightness will ensure that unnecessary weight is not added upon the athlete’s feet, therefore minimizing any chances of fatigue, enabling the runner to give their best performance.

It is designed to produce a FantomFit which allows the uppers to mold to the wearer’s feet, offering them fantastic support as well as fit. Its sole is made to accommodate a 6-pin spike plate to improve on the shoe's traction; thus it can maintain a perfect grip in any terrain, whether grassy, muddy, rocky or slippery making an excellent pair for one to conduct cross country on. On top of this, the sole is also well rugged to produce more stability. The components used in making this pair gives it an ability to last long. It is made of an abrasion-resistant sole thus one’s feet are protected from any sort of moisture irrespective of ground conditions a factor which boosts the runner's performance on the track.

Adidas Performance Men’s XCS.

The weight of this pair is estimated at seven ounces making it lightweight therefore a comfy shoe to choose for cross country races as it does not add extra weight on the runner's feet thus boosting their performance. The uppers are made on airy mesh material combined with a therapeutic tape hence making this pair highly breathable so the wearer is assured of the comfort of their foot as it will remain cool and dry all through. It is given a touch of rubberized print which guards it against accumulating filthy and mud making its cleaning simple. 

It is modelled to produce a tremendous lace-up system which locks the feet well ensuring that it is secured therefore boosting the runner's stability. It’s made of Litestrike EVA midsole which is lightweight enabling the t runner to take cross country races comfortably, thus increasing their performance. The midsole is incorporated with an inner bootee which is lightweight too making it even cosier since it produces a barefoot feeling to the wearer. Its outer sole is modelled to produce a six forefoot spikes to give the shoe the highest level of traction with any surface the runner might traverse on thus enabling the runner to maintain the stability of highest level.

Brooks Mens Mach 18 Spikeless.

This pair is designed for a neutral pronator as it is flexible, lightweight making it suitable for cross country races. It is well cushioned by having a 4mm heel drop which enables it to produce a sock-liner feel, on top of this has an EVA midsole which is incorporated with a soft fabric lining As well as a padded collar. These features make the shoe comfortable, stable and ensure that the athlete's feet are secure. The uppers are made of breathable mesh materials combined with 3D printing making them highly breathable so the wearer's feet will remain highly breathable all through.

It also has microfiber support from inside, which makes the shoe more supportive to the wearer's feet, thus building more stability. Its outer sole is made on a Pebax Renew plate enabling it to tract well with all kinds landscapes, on top of this it will also it will as well offer energy return for explosive acceleration thus making it a unique pair to purchase for cross country races. The sole is also made of a well-rugged rubber to produce more grip with the surface, thus creating further stability to the runner; therefore, this pair can be used well on difficult terrain. The shoe is designed to produce an adjustable lace closure system which secures one's feet comfortably as its fit can be adjusted accordingly. 

La Sportive Men’s Wildcat.

La sportive is a highly durable shoe; therefore, upon purchasing this, one will take a more extended period before replacing. It is designed to suit areas of cool climates for they have thick soles which keep the wearer's feet warm. Its outer is coated with Gore-Tex waterproof to ensure that wetness cannot penetrate to the inner side, making one's feet cosy while on it. The shortcoming associated with this pair is that, it's not usable in warm climates for being thick and that their outer soles are stiff making unable to traverse rugged terrains.

New Balance Men’s 900v4 Removable Spike. 

As the name suggests, this pair comes with removable spikes making it ideal for use in both road running and trail running, since one can remove the spikes when running is involved in a smooth running. The removable spikes will also make them suitable for use by trainees as they can remove the spikes for training then replace them when they have advanced. They are also durable so one will take some time before they can replace them.


Best cross country shoes for ladies. 

New Balance Women’s 7OOv5.

This shoe is designed to cope with the harsh condition making it one of the best shoes ladies should purchase for cross country purposes. It's known for its, outstanding performance, comfort and balance. The uppers of this shoe are made of mesh and synthetic fabric, making it highly breathable; thus, the wearer's feet will remain cool and dry all through. It has a revlite midsole as well as FantomFit which produces the best fit, on top of this, it has a cosy sole which is highly cushioned boosting the level of comfort. The outer sole is made of rubber configurated with six flexible spikes; this enables the shoe to maintain the highest level of traction on different types of surfaces so the runner will always remain secure in whichever type of terrain they traverse on. These shoes are stylish, cosy and versatile with a unique lace-up system which holds the wearer's foot securely, thus increasing their level of performance.

Adidas Performance Women’s XCS.

These pair is purposely designed to cope with rugged terrain such as soft surfaces, muddy, grassy, rocky among others; they can attain this for having a well-rugged rubber sole which is conjoined with six forefoot spikes. It is a lightweight shoe as it weighs 6.5 ounces, making it suitable for cross country as the wearer does not have to carry unnecessary weight on their feet, therefore minimizing chances of fatigue development. Their uppers are made of air mesh materials which allow sufficient airflow to the feet, enabling them to remain cool and dry for a very long period. Hence, the runner can cover many miles comfortably. For durability, the shoe is given a touch of rubberized print that guards it against destructive elements such as; mud and dirt. It is designed to produce an asymmetrical lacing system with an excellent lockdown to keep athlete's feet snugly secure in the shoes, thus increasing the level of stability needed during cross country races. It is constructed with a lightweight lite strike EVA midsole which is well cushioned to provide the much-needed cosiness required in cross country running shoes.

Saucony Women's Kilkenny XC5

Kilkenny XC5 is unique in its lightweight and support, thus ranking among the best women footwear for cross country running. Despite being characterized by lightweight, it is a spiked pair, therefore, ensuring the runner of their stability while running irrespective of the terrain they go through since the spikes are modelled to offer superb traction. Its uppers are constructed from synthetic materials which allow sufficient airflow on the wearer's feet, making them remain cool and dry for an extended period so one can run comfortably for a long distance.

Its comfort is built on the tongue and collar which are lightly padded as well as a quality fabric lining from the inner side which produces that required barefoot feeling craved for by cross country runners. The outer sole is made of XT-600 carbon rubber which contributes to the shoe's durability, flexibility as well as enhancing its lightweight. On top of these, the outer sole is well rugged and conjoined with four spike design thus producing fantastic traction with different kinds of landscapes, giving the wearer assurance of their stability.

Women’s Nike Zoom Rival XC. 

Zoom Rival, which has been manufactured by Nike, is known to be a good pair suited for women who take part in cross country. Its midsole is made from  Phylon and modified to produce an excellent cushioning to redirect the energy of impact, therefore provide the runner's foot with the needed support as well as comfort. It has an anatomical heel which is modelled to take a roundish shape to enable the runner to roll with the ground and cope with most challenging terrains easily. 

This pair is designed on Flywire technology, enabling it to produce the best stability with different kinds of terrains, thus improving the level of runner's performance. The level of strength is doubled by its outer sole which is made from sticky rubber to produce superb traction, therefore making it a type of shoe every woman who participates in cross country crave to own.

 

   Brooks Women's Mach 18 Spikeless.

This pair is designed to suit a neutral pronator as it is lightweight and made of highly flexible uppers and sole. Its heel is modified to produce a barefoot feeling effect as it made to have a 4mm drop. The uppers which are made of mesh encompasses a 3D print design enabling it allows sufficient airflow into one's feet, therefore providing the cool and dry condition which is vital in cross country shoes. It has a lace-up closure system which ensures that the shoe is well secured on the wearer's feet a factor which increases the comfort level. The lace-up design is adjustable as well; thus, an athlete will be able to adjust it accordingly to attain a comfortable fit.

The comfort produced by this shoe is increased by the presence of a tongue and collar which are lightly padded and soft; this is combined with a fabric lining from inside which durable. A well-cushioned molded midsole concludes on the high level of comfortness.  The shoe has an aggressive pattern which produces excellent traction, raising the level of athlete’s stability. It weighs 4 ounces making it too friendly to an athlete taking part in cross country races as they will not have to worry about unnecessary weight on their feet, therefore, minimizing any chances of fatigue.

Best Shoes Made for Running.

Running is a general term which may involve, cross country, marathon, long and short distances races among other categories. Some categories may need their unique type of footwear while others can be accomplished on a common type of shoe. Here we would like to see the best footwear which can be used on general running irrespective of gender.

Brooks Men’s Adrenaline GTS 19.

These shoes are designed to produce a streamlined look which improves on their support and cushion, making them suitable to conduct running or exercise. They are made of breathable material in their upper section to give their wearer the comfort needed in running shoes as the feet will remain cool and dry all through. 

The quality of these shoes is further boosted by being well-cushioned by use of energizing materials from their inner side to give extra control to the wearer. It also has GuideRails system to provide more support from the upper section, thus securing the feet further. Their stability is further enhanced by having asymmetrical insoles as well as a well-rugged rubber outer sole which enables the shoe to produce excellent traction on different surfaces. 

Brooks Women’s Ghost 12. 

Their upper section is well ventilated, enabling them to produce the required breathability in running footwear. For excellent support and structure, they are constructed with synthetic materials. They are modified to create a standard lace-up system which is adjustable, making them fit well to the wearer's feet. Their outer soles are made of a well-rugged rubber material to produce fantastic traction with different surfaces, therefore making the runner stable in various types of surfaces. They are also well-cushioned to have that barefoot feeling on one's foot, making them more comfortable and suitable to be used by women on general running. 

Saucony Men’s Kinvara 10 Running Shoe.

These pair is characterized by soft-feeling and tough-soled. They use a neutral design making them more versatile, therefore usable in different situations. They contain EVA midsole which produces extra comfort, responsiveness and protection while one is running. Though most of their upper section is made of supportive layer, it is well modelled to make it breathable thus one’s feet will remain cool and dry all through making this pair very suitable to use on running. They are lightweight than other brands suiting them for use on running styles that require low weight and the right gear. 

Altra Women’s Torin 4 Road Running Shoe.

These women shoes are lightweight, making it easier for the runner to maintain speed during tasking runs. Their upper section is made of well-ventilated mesh which is modelled to produce large and small perforations enabling it to offer the needed breathability as well as comfort in running shoes. They have a unique Quantic midsole which is well combined with a specially-created type of foam; this factor works well on improving the level of comfort as one's foot can rebound in each step. The rebounds enable the runner to push themselves further, hence keep one on the move without worrying of fatigue arising. They are made of well-rugged rubber outer soles which tracts well with various surfaces enabling the runner to traverse comfortably on several types of landscapes.

New Balance Men’s 1080v9 Running Shoe.  

Their outer soles are constructed of custom blown rubber giving them excellent comfort as well as stability; this ensures that the runner is well balanced. They are made of highly breathable materials on their uppers which enhances sufficient flow of air inside the shoe, maintaining coolness and dryness of the wearer's feet. Despite the upper section being highly breathable, the materials used in its construction a well designed to be strong to ensure the shoe is stable. It is made with an Ortholite insole which produces the much-needed cosiness and support enabling one to beat rugged terrains easily. The outer soles are devised according to the data from the actual runners and several tests; therefore they produce traction based on tried and tested sizes as well as shapes from preceding shoe replicas, making them unique. 

Adidas Originals Women’s Superstar Shoes. 

This model is well suited for those runners who would wish to have a combination of a shoe featuring running qualities and style, making it a perfect shoe for ladies. For instance, it comes with a fantastic retro, laidback artistic appearance. Its style is further improved by a class of white leather exterior, on top of this, it is given a touch of the Adidas three stripes producing a fantastic look. The shoe is also made of fine mesh on its uppers, making it breathable thus one's feet will remain cool and dry. They also possess removable inner soles, so one can remove them for washing or even replace them with the type they desire to attain padding of their choice.

Conclusion.

Cross country shoes are more involved in making compared to running shoes, for instance, their outer soles accommodate advanced features for enhancing traction such as spikes, unlike the running shoes. They are also more cushioned since they should produce more comfort than the running shoes their lace-up system is more advanced than one of the running shoes as the feet need to be more secure during cross country races. They are also made to be more breathable to enable runners feet to remain cool and dry all through allowing them to cope with warm environments while running. 

As discussed in this article, shoes are the biggest secret behind success in running; therefore, the runner should go for the most comfortable pair which will enable them to achieve their set objective in whichever type of running they engage in. One need to purchase their footwear from a reliable supplier who is well versed with footwear required in the running. For instance, one of the best footwear dealers in the world is Freaky Shoes which is an online footwear platform involved in designing and making footwear of all kinds. For quality footwear, you can visit their website; freakyshoes.com.


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