Switching from a training shoe to a cross-country racing shoe for competitions can increase a runner's speed. Cross-country racing shoes are significantly lighter than training shoes and have very aggressive soles to increase traction.
Cross-country training shoes are primarily designed to reduce injuries during practice over typical cross-country terrain by preventing slipping and excessive twisting. Cross-country training shoes don't have the heavy shock-absorbing capacity of road running shoes, which are intended for running long distances on hard surfaces. Cross-country training shoes are also lighter and have less aggressive soles than trail running shoes that are intended to provide protection on mountain trails.