It’s Gotta Be The Shoes!


In the 1980s, Spike Lee portrayed die-hard sports fan Mars Blackmon in a series of Nike commercials, also starring Michael Jordan. In the commercials Mars was convinced Michael Jordan’s basketball skills came from his Nike shoes, even though Jordan denied it.

One of my pet peeves is when people complain about the price of diet and exercise. I constantly hear people complaining about how healthy foods are more expensive than unhealthy choices and how they can’t afford gym memberships or a new treadmill or expensive outfits to wear. Directly because of these complaints I’ve been trying to lose weight while not spending a dime. I don’t exercise at a gym; I walk around my neighborhood. For food, I’ve been buying protein bars at Big Lots and trying to make better choices. I’m not saying gyms and things like diet supplements are bad; I’m just saying just because you can’t afford them doesn’t mean you still can’t make healthy choices.

Last week after complaining about my aching feet, Susan suggested I buy some new walking shoes. She’s suggested this before but I’ve pushed back — again, mostly just because I wanted to prove to myself that I could “lose weight on a budget,” so to speak. Unfortunately my feet were yelling louder than my willpower this time and so I decided to humor my wife and buy some new shoes.

I hate to even mention what brand of shoe I ended up buying because I don’t want to come off as endorsing one brand over another, but let’s just say these particular shoes supposedly help you “balance” when you walk. The shoe salesman I spoke with was very helpful… in leading me right to the most expensive pair of shoes in the store. The first thing that made me nervous was the fact that none of the shoes had price tags on them. The second thing that made me nervous was that it took the salesman almost ten minutes to explain all the features of this particular shoe. I have bought cars with fewer features than this shoe has. (My parents have probably bought cars that cost less than these shoes cost, but I digress…)

The salesman had me try on the shoe in the store and walk around in them for a minute. They felt like I was walking on a tall platform of rubber. (Maybe that’s what provides the “balance”?) I hated to admit it, but they felt great. Then again, they should. I typically buy my shoes from the shoe outlet mall and these new shoes that provide balance cost 5x as much as my normal sneakers. While my feet have stopped hurting, my wallet is still feeling the pain a bit.

For the past month I’ve been walking between one and two miles a day in plain ‘ol tennis shoes, ones that are great for playing basketball in or skateboarding, but perhaps not walking. I can tell a difference already with these new shoes, so while I hate to admit it, they do make my feet hurt less.

I look forward to breaking them in.

Note: November 1st marks my first month of getting back on track. I’m not sure what I will be writing about this Thursday, but next Tuesday I will be writing about how things have gone this first month!

28. October 2014 by robohara
Categories: Exercise, General | 3 comments

Comments (3)

  1. FWIW: All the major shoe brands have outlet locations. Used “exercise equipment” (aka clothing trees) can be had for a song – folks buy it and never use it – you can find this stuff for pennies on the dollar.

    That being said, DON’T scrimp on footwear quality. Don’t pay full retail, but get the best show you can. You’ll enjoy working out more, while experiencing less pain.

    The next big hurdle is Halloween – and it’s on a FRIDAY (double whammy). Don’t go cold turkey, but be cognizant of everything you put into your mouth. I have a tendency to sample the treats as well.

    Keep going, Rob!

  2. *Shoe, not show.

  3. I understand not wanting to endorse certain shoes and to be able to do everything on a budget. That said, I too have “balancing” shoes and they make a huge difference.

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