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I’m often asked about training shoes. For example, is it worth investing in weightlifting shoes with an elevated heel for squats? Should you deadlift in those shoes, or is it better to pull barefoot? What about minimalist, “barefoot-style” shoes? And to be honest, fitness footwear isn’t something I’ve spent a lot of time looking into, so I wanted to invite an expert in the field onto the podcast to discuss the topic. That’s why Jake Boly is joining me for an interview in this episode, to not only explain the differences between fitness shoes, why they matter, and what to look for in a pair gym shoes based on your training, but to also give specific model recommendations.

In case you’re not familiar with Jake, he’s the founder of That Fit Friend, a site dedicated to testing and reviewing the best training shoes and apparel, and creating content to help people make informed buying decisions. A lot of review content out there is nothing more than undercover marketing and paid advertising, but Jake actually runs the gear through the ringer and puts it to the test in real-life both inside and outside the gym, so he can give a genuine, useful review of its performance.

In this interview, Jake and I talk about . . .

  • What to look for in a training shoe
  • The different types of shoes, including different materials and construction and how they impact performance and durability
  • Who should use weightlifting shoes
  • What heel drop is, why it matters, and how it affects your squats and deadlifts
  • Barefoot training and “barefoot” style shoes
  • Specific recommendations of models to check out
  • Signs you might not have the right pair of shoes
  • And more . . .

So if you want to learn what to look for in a pair of shoes for the gym or other types of training, listen to this interview!


0:00 – Save up to 30% during our Black Friday Sale!

6:54 – What should we be looking for in training shoes?

12:55 – Have you reviewed any shoes that are the best for certain training exercises?

22:41 – Do we need proper weight lifting shoes? Does it really make a difference?

28:46 – Are there any other benefits to wearing weightlifting shoes?

39:36 – What are your thoughts on weightlifting with no shoes?

45:43 – Is there any truth to the marketing of running shoes?

48:03 – What are common signs that your running shoes aren’t right for you?

49:53 – Are shin splints caused by shoe type?

1:02:50 – Is there anything else you would like to add?

1:04:35 – Where can people find you?

1:05:27 – Are there any shoes or companies that are terrible?

1:07:54 – Are there any popular shoes that you don’t recommend?

Mentioned on the Show:

Save up to 30% during our Black Friday Sale! Go to and use coupon code MUSCLE to save even more or get double reward points!

Jake’s website:

Jake’s Youtube channel:

Jake’s Instagram:

What did you think of this episode? Have anything else to share? Let me know in the comments below!