One thing I learned in my first year at Penn State is to wear the right shoes. I walked away at the end of the year with plantar fasciitis…ouch. In very simple terms, it is a tear/strain in a ligament underneath the arch of your foot. So yes, it is very painful and it makes walking long distances uncomfortable.
You probably have never really thought about the types of shoes you’re wearing, other than if they are comfortable or not. From personal experience, I am warning you to be more conscientious of the shoes you wear! There are ways to start taking better care of your feet, and the best way to start is to find the right shoe.
First thing’s first, get your feet measured. It may sound silly because you have been buying the same size shoes for years. Trust me–it is worth the 15 seconds it takes to get your feet measured. You can visit any specialty shoe store to ensure you are buying the right shoes for your feet. Wearing the wrong size shoes can cause a lot of discomfort that you do not want to deal with.
Then, after getting your feet measured, you want to find the perfect pair of shoes. You want to feel the way Cinderella does when Prince Charming puts the glass slipper on her foot. It might not be as magical, but there is nothing better than finding just the right shoes. Make sure there is plenty of room so your feet are not squished in them!
Caution! As fun as it is to wear boots, heels and flats, do not wear them for any extended periods of time–they offer hardly any support, with the exception of certain specific shoes. It is not a good idea to walk around campus in boots all day, every day for the entire winter season. That will absolutely destroy your feet. That is not to say never wear those shoes…but try to find better alternatives if you know you’re going to have a long busy day.
Lastly, splurge a little and buy some insoles! Dr. Scholls makes great insoles and you can find that at almost any drug store. They are typically anywhere from $10 to $20, depending on what kind of foot support you are looking for. You can move them from shoe to shoe, so they are definitely worth investing in.
Sadly, feet are easily one of the most abused parts of our bodies. They are overused and not taken care of. We do not mean for it to be that way, but that is how it is. If you adopt new ways of taking care of your feet, you can save yourself a lot of trouble in the long run.
Photo by Shidika Goode