Monday, November 21, 2011

If the shoe fits...

I really should start a regular posting called "I told you so:  Mother knows best."

When I decided to lose weight and exercise regularly, my Mom told me that I should go to my local athletic shoe shop down the street from where I work, fork out the dough, and get a really good pair of shoes to work out in.  I was reluctant because I'm an intermittent tightwad (I have a tendency to grossly overthink "important" purchases).

Well, she told me so.  I went to Gazelle Sports in Kalamazoo, Michigan and let them work their magic. I did check some out online that I wanted to see, but I decided ultimately to not look at any price tags, be open-minded about how the shoes looked (I always opt for vanity over practicality), and let the good people at Gazelle guide me.  They asked what I was looking for, watched me walk, asked what size I needed, and brought me out options.  I tried on a fair few pairs of shoes, and ended up trying on one that just felt like heaven.  I had no idea that shoes were supposed to be a bit loose, and that your arches are actually located directly below your ankle bones - not in the middle of your feet like I'd assumed.  I've been so used to "making it work."

I ended up spending $125 of my tax return on these babies, but it was worth every penny.  They're still in good shape, but I might get some insoles to perk up the soles of my feet again.  I can't believe the difference they made.  I took the dog on a three mile walk a few days after I got them, and my arches burned for a little bit, but then it made everything better.  My back wasn't as sore, my feet didn't get tired and cramp up or fall asleep, and it was great.

Honestly - investing in a really good pair of properly fitting workout shoes is one of the best things I could have done.  And, really - what better to invest in than making sure I have good tools to get healthy?

My advice...  Find a place in your area that knows what they're doing, and take the plunge.  It might seem crazy spending that much on a pair of tennis shoes, but it will be worth it!


  1. So, I got really lucky. I'm totally on board with this. I've learned to spend out on athletic shoes the hard way. I needed a new pair this year and the pair that seemed like the best fit are normally about the same as what you paid. I managed to find them online at amazon for 35 gbp. Total score. A little perseverance and maniacal bulldog like refusal to give up can sometimes pay off. If it doesn't it's still totally worth taking the plunge.

  2. I agree. I have two bad knees and Fred Flintstone feet so a fitting was pretty much necessary for me but the sneakers are so worth it!

    I had to go with an orthopaedic sneaker so they were super expensive and ugly but they make such a difference!

  3. Yeah, couldn't agree more, ladies. And good call, by the way - I'll have to search for these online once it's time for a new pair! I'll probably end up going to Gazelle's again, though. With all this weight off me, I might need to adjust the shoes I get, and they'll set me straight!