An Evolution of My Shoes

Reebok Transition 2.0

When you’re working out 4+ times per week, shoes get to be pretty important. I’m pretty picky about shoes and knowing a lot more about biomechanics of the lower extremities it’s a hard subject not to totally geek out about for me! I started my CrossFit journey out in a pair of Reebok Realflex Transition 2.0’s. I liked the look and they were pretty much a basic crosstraining type of shoe with a nice, squishy sole.

I was surprised when I was sizing them at the shoe store because I am a 9.5-10 in most shoes and these were snug at 10.5! But, sizing is meaningless so no big deal. I wore these for the first 2-3 months of CrossFit and overall I liked them. They broke in pretty quickly and I found them to have good durability, very comfy and with a lot of SQUISH, which is not necessarily the best thing (read on). The tongue of one of my pairs (I bought two because I got a killer sale deal on them) started to rip at the seam where the thread came loose, but they’ve been fine without repair and that pair is my around-town/beater pair now.

A lot of people rave about Inov-8 shoes in the CrossFit community and a few months ago I got a good sale on a pair of F-Lite 230’s on They regularly carry sales on Inov-8 and other “minimalist” shoes and they have awesome sales on outdoor stuff in general (it is a “referral” site so if you order something if you’d use my referral link I get a little kickback and would appreciate it! Here it is: Anyway, the 230’s are CRAZY light, have less drop (i.e. the heel is only a few millimeters higher than the toes, which has a lot to do with biomechanics and etc), a much thinner sole and therefore, a much firmer and less squishy feel.

I found the Inov-8’s to have a weird fit at first but they broke in pretty quickly. I bought a size 10 and that seemed right. I liked the firmer sole for all lifting, which is important because a thick, squishy sole is like working out on stability pads and it destabilizes you as well as making your leg muscles work harder. Anyway, the Inov-8’s seemed on the narrow side, although they aren’t super structured in the upper, so there is room for your toes to spread out after a few breaking in WOD’s. I also noticed that the toebox is kind of pointy at the end, with some extra material at the tip that wants to catch on box jumps, lunges, Turkish Get-Ups, etc. I am not the only person I’ve talked to who felt like they fit similarly for them, too.

Inov-8 F-Lite 230

Inov-8 F-Lite 2.0

That being said, I really liked these shoes despite the few shortcomings. We did a 1/2 Murph on Memorial Day a while back and I switched back to the Reebok Transitions because of the running and they were SO much more squishy. Felt good on the runs, but I HIGHLY RECOMMEND something more like the firmer and more minimal sole of the Inov-8’s for all the lifting and stuff in CrossFit.

I’ve really been wanting Reebok Nano 2.0’s since I started CrossFit and finally found some on sale in the Earth/Khaki digital camouflage version, which is probably being discontinued because I found it for around $80-$90 on several sites. Being a cheapskate I can’t pass up a deal even if those aren’t my ideal colors/look! LOL

Being that my other Reeboks were 10.5’s and I know the Nano 2.0’s were wider in the toebox, I ordered 10’s and they were HUGE for me. I went down to 9.5 and they were great. So much for sizing standards, even within the same company!

Reebok Nano 2.0 in Earth/Khaki DigiCam

Like the Inov-8’s they have a more neutral drop (but not neutral/zero drop by any stretch) than a regular running shoe, they are light and the sole is firmer, thinner rubber. Unlike the Inov-8’s they have a wide toe box and lacked the “point” at the end that annoyed me on my Inov-8’s. I’ve only worn the Nano 2.0’s on one WOD (my wife has two pairs and loves hers, including one customized pair. Sigh) and I loved them. My only complaint was on some planks we did during the warmups, my Nano’s didn’t have a great grip on the rubber flooring in the box. The Inov-8’s are basically glued to the floor, but the Nano’s had noticeable slide. I’m guessing this will go away as whatever release agent they use in their molds wears off and/or the rubber breaks in a little, but it could just be the compound they use in the sole, too, which would be a bummer because you don’t want to be slipping around when you’re doing planks and such. I’ll report in after some more use to see if this problem goes away.

Reebok CrossFit Nano 2.0

Overall, I think the Nano’s are going to be my keepers. I have seen photos of the new 3.0’s and I think they look horrendous, so I hope they keep making 2.0’s for a while because I like them so much.


Seven Months in and CrossFit Total

Last attempt at max back squat - 265#

Last attempt at max back squat – 265#

Tomorrow is close to my 7-month anniversary for CrossFit. It’s also the one-year anniversary of the box we work out at, CrossFit I-35 in Overland Park, KS.

We’re celebrating with CrossFit Total followed by cocktails and a cookout, so it should be a lot of fun! Hopefully the Total doesn’t make me too gross to socialize afterward! LOL

We’ve been a little lax on our diet lately. A lot of that is traveling to teach on weekends and the troubles of eating proper when I’m on the road. It can be done, but it’s very tough so it’s easy to default into old patterns. Weight has been pretty steady and I wore a pair of dress pants the other day that I hadn’t had on in 6 years and couldn’t hardly get over my hips for the past 5! LOL

I am in the mid 240’s, but continuing to get stronger, put on muscle and see more veins in my arms, so I’m a good example of the whole reality that you don’t always “lose weight” as you get healthier. I’ve still lose 15 pounds or so altogether, which isn’t a lot, but I’ve put on a lot of muscle and dropped a couple belt sizes, so the numbers don’t tell much of the story.

As far as weight goes, though, I would like to drop into the 230’s by the beginning of August. I think that’s mainly an issue of just buckling down a bit tighter on the diet and being stricter with paleo. It has been hot and humid here and coming home after work and cracking a beer or two has been all too easy! LOL My wife is doing another round of Whole30 again, so that will help. When she falls off the wagon I go right along with her! LOL


Killing the Fat Man

Just discovered a series of videos posted by CrossFit HQ featuring Gary Roberts called “Killing the Fat Man.” Dovetails nicely with the purpose of this blog, so well worth checking out. I am excited to watch more episodes. Here is #1: