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How Foot Pain Changed My Shoe Size

Updated: Jan 29, 2020


My problems began when I started an exercise regimen. Walking at first, then jogging up and down the sidewalk near my house. I was so proud of myself. Look at me exercising! Then my left foot started hurting. A burning, shooting pain in the ball of my foot, just behind my second and third toes. My toes would actually go numb and walking was soooo painful. I powered through it for a few days and I bought new shoes thinking that I didn't have the right shoe for jogging and all I needed to do was take some of the pressure off of the ball of my foot. Nope. I did some research and found out that I likely had a Morton's neuroma. The bones in my foot were rubbing together and causing friction in the nerves. Now what?

At the advice of a friend I went to our local old fashioned shoe store, There, I was fitted with a shoe insert specifically for neuroma support, a pair of orthopedic cross trainers and a pair of Birkenstocks. The cross trainers are size 7 1/2 4E! What? I was told that my foot was wide and that I should be wearing wide widths. (I've seen feet a lot pudgier than mine. If I need a 4E width, what are those people wearing?) I wore those 2 pair of shoes constantly for about 6 weeks and did get relief from the pain. But, I was puzzled.


How had I gone from a size 7 1/2 regular, in my 20's, to a 9 and 9 1/2 regular, present day, without realizing I needed a wide shoe instead of a longer shoe? It finally hit me. I'm going to go out on a limb and say that most shoe stores don't carry wide widths. And most shoe stores don't offer full service, measure your feet service. Most stores put the shoes out on the floor and we just go around trying on shoes until we find some that fit.

I had always heard that women's feet grew about 1/2 a size with each pregnancy. Now I'm not sure I believe that entirely, but I figured there was something to it. And just accepted that my feet had gotten bigger. I think they got wider, but not longer. Hmmmm.

I started looking for wide width shoes. Ha! One store told me that they didn't have any at all. Didn't carry them and couldn't order them. One said that they could order them in some styles. I started looking online and the options were better, but still limited. Wide width wearers can't be that elite of a group!



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I reenacted the arrival photo, so these are a little dirty! They arrived in pristine condition and I was so excited that I forgot to take a picture before I jumped into them and took off!

The good news is that I found a pair of colorful, soft suede sneakers that I could get in a wide width. I read the reviews, and based on customer reviews about the fit of the sneakers I decided to order the 8 wide. They fit and feel perfect! Soooo comfortable. I'm happy to report that I have been wearing my Ryka Women's Haiku Loafers for over a month, probably 3-4 days a week. No foot pain. Great arch support and as it turns out, they go with everything!

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