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Wearing Shoes … If You Have To

wearing shoesReaders of the blog might remember a post from a couple of weeks ago where I talked about leaving my shoes in the car and walking barefoot in the park when I run my dog in the mornings. I have fallen in love with the practice, even as the mornings get colder and going barefoot requires a little more willpower. When I am done I feel totally different than when I do the same walk with shoes.

But reality always intervenes and I have to get back into my car and back to wearing shoes again. For most of my young life I wore one pair of sneakers until they were completely shot and then replaced them with the exact same brand and style. Somewhere along the way I became a waiter and/or carpenter and added work shoes to the mix. I treated them the same way- wore them till they were completely worn out before replacing them. Wearing shoes was something I had to do and spent little time thinking about what and why.

Fast forward to my middle age as a walking teacher and I have ten pair of shoes that I rotate all the time. In the summer my sandals dominate as in the winter boots take over but even in these times I am trying to switch it up as much as possible. I walk my dog three times a day and try to wear different shoes with each trip. Your feet require movement and switching shoes gives your feet a chance to do slightly different things since no two shoes are alike. I highly recommend multiple pairs of shoes and changing which ones you wear as often as possible.

I have favorite brands but this is relative and different for everyone. I love ecco shoes though they are very expensive. But the way I look at it is shoes can last a long time and good shoes can be re-soled so spending a good chunk of change on worthwhile shoes has an upside. I like Ecco’s because they have a tight heel and an open toe box. While my heel is secure my toes have room to move. I have pair of Johnston & Murphy’s that I got at Century 21 (a great place for shoes, especially the bay ridge location) about seven years ago. I have re-soled them three or four times and couldn’t imagine living without them. They are a very well made shoe.

Wearing shoes can be complicated. Your shoes bear your walking pattern. If you want to change the way you walk you will probably be well served by getting some new shoes for your new feet and paying attention to how you wear them out.

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