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Shoes for Walking & Daily Wear


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For now, my main exercise is a brisk 45 minute daily walk. I think my ancient Sketchers with the tread worn slick probably aren't doing me any favors in terms of comfort and safety.

 

I'd like to get some new shoes for walking (as exercise) and also for walking (to get around). I'd prefer not to get two separate pairs for this, if possible. I live in NYC so my non-exercise walks are, in reality, pretty serious walks too, just not as fast (usually).

 

I also want to start running. Not super seriously. I started doing the Zombies Run 5k trainer a while back, and I stopped beause I was pretty sure I was going to damage myself due to bad shoes and posture. I'm in my early 30s now and I'm not ready for bad knees! It would be nice if the shoes I buy for walking could also serve for occasional running, as well. I understand that if I take up running as a serious hobby, I will need specific shoes. But for now, are there walking shoes that are OK to run in a bit?

 

I don't think barefoot/minimal is for me. At least not yet. I don't need a lot of support--I have healthy feet--but I don't really want to feel the earth under my feet just now.

 

Finally, does my choice of socks matter? If so, what's best for the situations described above? Obviously I am not limited to one pair of socks ;).

 

Thanks rebels!

 

Parolles


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Go for a great fit. So many people get hung up on specialized shoes, when really, what is important is that the shoe should fit your foot really well. I'm guessing you are mostly walking on concrete/pavement, so some cushioning and support are very appropriate, and staying away from minimalist shoes is an excellent idea. They can be wonderful on trails and soft surfaces, but that isn't your environment.  And yes, it should be no problem to do some light running in the shoes you buy.

 

Keen shoes happen to fit my feet really well and they make several styles that are great for walking but that don't look like a running shoe or a hiking boot.  The Keen Barika, Sterling City, or Toyah models for example.

 

Socks are like shoes - fit and feel matter.  Since socks are relatively inexpensive (as compared to shoes) you might want to try some different fabric mixes.  Often sports stores have deals where if you buy 3 or 4 pairs, you can get a discount. REI does this for example. You could try a wool-blend (Smartwools are a terffic brand), something with wicking fabrics, and you might want to try a natural fabric blend. I use different socks based on length of time I'll workout, so I tend to use some very lightweight wool socks or an acrylic blend hiking, inexpensive cotton on short runs, and mixed fabric on longer outings. If I try a sock and it doesn't work out (bunches under my toes for example), I mark the pair with a permenant marker and it goes into my chores/work sock bin. I am ruthless about socks as I've gotten far more blisters from bad socks than bad shoes!

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I've been going through a huge struggle finding new shoes. I have been without a pair of sneakers for several months now, was wearing hiking boots in early summer and flip flops every day during July - now I've resorted to wearing some of my nicer shoes.

 

My problem is that I used to buy Merrell Chameleon Stretches, but they apparently changed the way they are produced and I destroyed my last pair in 6 months (no joke). The previous pair lasted me over 3 years. I am hell on shoes. So I'm searching for a new line of shoes that are actually well made. - Problem is I have extra wide, short feet (8.5 US, 2E), and literally none of the running/athletic shoe stores in my area carry wides. At all. So I've been on a hunt for several months now. And I refuse to order shoes online because manufacturers refuse to conform to size normalization, so a 8.5 2E in New Balance is drastically different from a 8.5 2E Nike shoe... so who knows what size I'll actually end up with.

 

Getting to a point - get running shoes. Even for just general walking they will be 100x more comfortable.

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For every day walking around, there is a brand called  Born that I'm really in love with.  They give me a great deal of support and are VERY comfortable on my feet!  Add in the bonus that they aren't a running shoe and you can wear them and not look silly!

 

When I am doing something a little more active, I either wear my Keens (when I am hitting rugged terrain) or these shoes by Nike for running/training.

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I really enjoy the Dr Scholl's line of shoes, as does my husband. He has a pair of business looking shoes that he wears all of the time, walking, light jogging, biking, etc. 

 

Find a comfy shoe and rock it.

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Thanks for the ideas, folks.

 

So, one problem is that I'm not sure I actually know what it feels like when shoes fit. I've always had a hard time finding shoes that feel comfortable, but I don't know if that's because I don't really know what they are supposed to feel like.

 

My most comfortable pair of shoes are my Rockport casual dress shoes (Margin Oxford, I think). They are size 10.5EE. The width feels right (EE is wide, right?) although sometimes I think there's too much space in front of my toes. A lot of the times it's hard to find wide sizes. But then, maybe I don't really need wide sizes and I've just gotten used to them?

 

Am I going to have to actually go into a shoe store?

Parolles


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Maybe so =/

 

A good rule of thumb is to leave a 0.5 inch gap between your toes and the end of the shoe.... the widest part of your foot should lightly touch the side, but not rub or be pinched. 

"I was taught that the way of progress was neither swift nor easy." ~~Marie Curie

 

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I have a pair of Keens that I love :) If you need to buy online, zappos might be a good place to start. I've only purchased boots from them, not walking shoes, but their return policy is excellent - they seem to realize that when buying something like shoes online, it might take a few tries to find the right ones, so you're not penalized (free return shipping, Yay!) for sending several pairs back.

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Having spent the last 8ish years walking a few miles a day doing various hospital work, the best shoes I've worn for the job have been Adidas Sambas. They're flat and hard but they have a good arch support and the soles last a very long time. Wearing cross trainers or running shoes always leaves my legs and knees a lot more fatigued than a less engineered shoe. They most certainly won't break the bank either. Go with the classic type with the gum rubber sole. I don't know the longevity of the newer models with white rubber.

 

That said, at the moment my go-to shoe is a pair of Chucks. My dog chewed through my Sambas a month ago and I haven't had a chance to get a new pair.

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