Saturday, June 06, 2009

Traveling shoes question

Okay, here's the deal. When I travel, my feet swell outrageously. Even though I travel with walking shoes--Clark's, Doc Martens, sneakers, etc. my flesh gets torn off my feet. It's horrifying to behold. I wear good shoes and usually socks. I break the shoes in. I cut back on salt and drink as much water as I can. And still my feet swell so much my shoes don't fit.

When we went to Italy on our honeymoon, I could barely hobble around because my sausage feet hurt so much. I felt like they were stuffed into three-sizes too-small shoes. A week into the trip, my feet were still swollen alarmingly and the men all said I should have been wearing sneakers--as if that wouldn't have been worse--I wasn't wearing stilettos, I was wearing freaking walking shoes! And sneakers are awful when your feet are swollen because there's only so far you can loosen the laces. There's no relief. Another woman helped me out by loaning me some shoes that were a half size larger than I normally wear. I finally felt some relief.

On subsequent trips, I've had my feet swell again. When we went to Eastern Europe I had a pair of Sofft loafers and a pair of Clarks loafers with heels. I had no problem until we were in Paris and I wore the heeled loafers with tights instead of socks. I had the old horror movie torn, bloody flesh. Painful and also extremely sexy. All I wanted to do was lie on the bed with my feet up the air. And that's it.

So, what should I do? Should I just buy some nice walking shoes in a half size larger? What about socks? I want to be able to wear skirts and dresses (you can easily dress them up or down).

And I don't want to wear some horrible ugly shoes! Especially because I know from running that some hideous lace-up thing, like sneakers, can be a torture chamber when your feet get all hot and swollen.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!


Shoeaddict said...

My feet don't usually swell but OH MY GOODNESS they were swollen when I got off of the plane. My advice- don't travel while preggo.

I think that maybe a half a size bigger might be good. I really don't know though. I'm so sorry that you have to deal with that.

Kelly said...

I'm no help - by the end of our 2-week tour of Italy, my old Reef flipflops were the only shoes I would consider at all. And, like you, soaking my feet in bidets...

Alli said...

I don't know how often you travel, but I would buy bigger shoes for traveling if you're in that much pain. You can't enjoy yourself when you are in agony.

Chraycee said...

After I had JB I had horribly swollen legs and feet (including and above the knees)and my feet didn't fit in any shoes - I was reduced to one pair of flip flops and (gasp!)the evil ugliness of Crocs. They were damn comfortable though...I even wore them to Disneyland with no ill effects after walking all day. (admittedly it was an experiment - was no longer experiencing the horrible swelling, but the shoes were so comfy I had to test them out on a walking intense way). I have since given them up in public, but wear them around the yard.
They make less ugly ones that actually look like shoes rather than garden clogs...maybe try some of those?
Or buy the larger normal shoes :) You travel often so it's worth the investment. Non-misery is definitely worth it.

Mary~Momathon said...

flip flops? can you take a coldpack with you to help reduce swelling? I bet you tried that... I a of no use to you today, but I wish you well! Wonder if its an altitude thing?

Lawfrog said...

Ouch, so sorry you had to suffer like that! My suggestions:

- Buy shoes in a larger size
- Every night you come back to the hotel or wherever you are staying, put your feet into a bucket of ice. Not a cold pack, not a bath of cold water, but a bucket of ice. That will help to reduce the swelling.
- Get some comfortable inserts for your shoes to help reduce the pain of walking a lot.
- Also, consider not walking a lot if possible. No shame in getting a taxi or whatever whenever you can. Sure, it's nice on vacation to be able to walk, but when you're feet come back for the night looking like you were captured by a tribe of cannibals, it's time to consider some alternatives.

Hope that helps.

Susan said...

Kate, what about the new (?) Mary Jane, open back, adjustable strap, Danskos? They are cute, your feet can "breathe", lots of wiggle room, and they are theraputic. Mama (a teacher, who also loves shoes and has made peace with her feet)

SweetThang said...

I would suggest looking at some compression socks (like for diabetics) or hose. I would think that might help since you would sitting for a long time. My dad wears them when they fly since he's diabetic as well as having had a blood clot at one time. Those really helped him quite a bit.