... is not fun! When you have foot pain or foot problems, you really aren't too enthused about walking for fun and fitness are you?
You probably are only thinking about the darn pain! Let's figure out what type of pain is bugging you and see how we can help you a bit with it.
The very first place for help though is your...
We're not medical professionals! We're walking enthusiasts who've overcome various physical challenges mostly just by walking (read more). Your symptoms can be caused by a whole whack of things.
That's why you need to discuss your foot problems with your health professional FIRST. That first hand 'eyeball to foot' contact is very important for you.
Tell your health 'pro' you want to start a walking program and need help getting past your current foot problems. (Feel free to share our website with them).
Ask for guidance, exercise or a therapy program to help you get past your pain. Just get your 'green light' first. OK?
Oh The Pain!
First...the obvious. Foot pain symptoms are pretty much in the 'common sense' category. If something doesn't feel right in your foot then you probably have some foot problem! The trick is to figure out the cause and fix it!
Did you know that EACH of your feet has:
Thats a lot of stuff in there! A lot of stuff that can go 'outta whack' if you're not nice to your feet.
No wonder about 75% of us have had some sort of foot pain at some time in our lives. 75%! That is scary!
Even scarier - over 85% of the elderly suffer from foot pain too! Do you think it's probably a good thing to learn how to reduce or avoid the pain? We do!
Did You Know ...
...the major cause of foot pain is
SHOES THAT DON'T FIT RIGHT!
Yes - we are shouting that because there is no reason for it!
Over 70% of people today are wearing shoes right now that don't fit properly! Isn't that just plain silly? Great for the shoe companies. Not so great for your feet or your pocketbook!
Just by making the effort to get your shoes PROPERLY fitted you probably remove most of the cause of your foot pain! Why isn't there a stampede to qualified shoe professionals to insist on shoes that fit properly?
Why not avoid that stampede. Visit our 4 Steps To A Successful Shoe Fitsection. Lots of shoe fitting help there. Yoko worked in a shoe store making 'happy feet' and shares her experiences.
Of course there are other causes of foot pain. It would be great if it was just about shoe fit but it's not. Here are a few.
Some Common Types Of Foot Pain
Common Foot Problems
You probably know these all hurt! And foot pain can sure get in the way of you enjoying a walk. The good news? Most of these can be treated with 'over the counter' solutions. Your health 'pro' can give you some specific suggestions.
More good news. These foot pains are either caused by or made much worse by poorly fitting shoes! Narrow shoes. Short shoes. High Heels. Obesity! OK - obesity is also a big issue but it isn't a type of shoe you can change. (Wouldn't that be nice!). See 4 Steps To A Successful Shoe Fit section for more details.
The solution? Better fitting shoes and weight loss! Yup. More rocket science!
Just a few foot injuries but you get the idea. (We spared you the medical terms.) This is all 'see your doctor' stuff and it hurts!
If you suffer a major foot injury, get to your doctor as soon as possible.
If you suffer a 'minor' foot injury (still hurts like heck but you don't suspect broken bones) try this treatment immediately until you see your doctor. It's called the R.I.C.E. Treatment (Rest, Ice, Compression and Elevation).
Your pain and swelling should decrease within 48 hours. Trying some very gentle movement may help. You should not put pressure on a sprained joint until the pain is completely gone. That can take from 1 to several weeks.
Yup, could be time for those wonderful crutches too! Oh goodie! When you do start walking again - slowly at first - walk on level ground and NOT uneven ground. This way you reduce the risk of a slight slip or stumble that could aggravate or even worsen your injury. That's the last thing you want!
Disease Related Conditions
These conditions are discussed in detail in the Arthritis Foot and Diabetes Foot sections.
Aging & Sedentary Lifestyle
Ah yes...A biggie! Gosh, don't you just love it when doing nothing hurts too?
There is good news though. Part of this we can slow down. Part we can fix. (You did choose Sedentary Lifestyle as the one we can fix - Right?)
Aging? Just pursuing a healthy lifestyle and good walking program can really slow down your aging process.
Here's a quote from our Benefits Of Walking - Anti-Aging Section.
"Walking helps shape and tone your legs and butt, slims your waist and helps you sleep better. Your stress level goes down as you spirit goes up! More reasons to put a big smile on your face. You do age more slowly!"
If your foot pain is mostly from a sedentary lifestyle - you can probably improve it! You can sort of figure out that the less active you are, the more you're going to hurt because you just aren't using your muscles and joints as much. They get lazy. You get lazy. It hurts you more to walk. You walk even less. Vicious circle time!
The solution? Start becoming more active!
Start slow and easy at first. Just a bit of stretching and warm up. That is the key to feeling good enough to want to keep going! Even if you just take a few steps each day, then add a few more steps and a few more, you will succeed.
Don't be in a hurry to start this new journey. Just make sure you start it! There is a special section in our Walking Programs just for you.
Sedentary lifestyle? What sedentary lifestyle?
Want More Detailed Information?
OK! You're working with your health 'pro'. You're following your program. You know what you have to do. You're doing it!
That is great. You're starting to feel good and enjoying it!
Along the way remember...
*You can start while sitting down with a few easy chair exercises if this is easier for you in the early stages. (Check with your doctor to make sure these are OK for your condition)
Great success on your recovery from foot pain! When you're ready - let's get started on your Fitness Walking Program
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