To whom it may concern

How can you walk in those things?

Here’s a crazy thing.

I think high heels might be killing me.

Let me explain.

For the past month or so, I’ve been having some problems when running – stiff hips, niggling knee problems, and tight calves.

I couldn’t understand what the heck was going on with me, as I have never, ever had any issues with my body – no matter how hard I’ve been training.

You name it – I can withstand it. I have been competing at a high performance level (whether it be dance, track, badminton, or volleyball) since I was seven years old and I have never once suffered a major injury.

Tough Mudder may have cut and bruised the ever-loving crap out of my arms and legs, but other than a day or two of (very natural) muscle stiffness and soreness, I emerged both times completely unscathed.

So when these aches and pains began to creep up on me, it really gave me pause.

At first I just chalked it up to an over-zealous pre-race weekend (40+ kilometers over three days) coupled by an ill-advised high-heel dance party at the Jungle concert the next day.

But even after my win at Boundary Bay, these zings and pings have not given way.

So I spent some time today thinking about what, if anything, has changed in my life over the past month or two to cause such a substantial shift in the way my body reacts to something that I have been doing for years and years.

And that’s when it hit me: for the first time in my entire life, I have been wearing high heels almost every day.

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To work and for play.

And this gave me pause.

Is it really possible that changing my footwear for such a short period of time could be wrecking so much havoc with my hips and legs?

And the answer, I am truly apt to believe, is a resounding YES.

Which is actually crazy!

But listen to this:

On Friday I wore flats to work because I knew that I would be heading over to Marc’s high school to lead the improv club, and I tell you, spending just twenty-four hours with my feet firmly planted on the ground made a substantial difference in my run this morning.

My had absolutely no problems with my knees and only my right hip felt a little tight (and again, only at the tail end of a very fast eight kilometer run.)

I am curious to see what tomorrow will bring, as today I again shunned my heels, and opted instead to don a pair of flat boots instead.

Stay tuned!

But in the interim, I have to wax further on just how upset I am by this revelation.

Because I LOVE my heels!

I am enamoured by how pretty they all are, and how unbelievably tall I am in each pair, and how unstoppable and badass each pair makes me feel – like I could literally step over every obstacle that might have the audacity to get in my way.

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I like how they make my legs look (about fifty miles long), and how weirdly proud I am of how well I can walk in each pair, no matter how high, or how skinny a heel.

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I love my chunky black boots that I bought for forty dollars at Target, and wore so often the first week post-purchase that I had to re-glue the soles after only seven days.

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I love my five dollar wedges, and my beautiful burgundy suede stilettos, and my cute plaid kitten heels.

I like how my husband doesn’t care that I am taller than him when I wear heels.

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(I like how the only thing that concerns him about these shoes is how they may be impacting my health.)

I really do like (nay love!) everything about them.

But I am also so very wary about what exactly they may be doing long-term to my body, and when it comes down to it, I cherish my ability to run like the wind much, MUCH more than I do a sweet pair of shoes.

No matter how good my legs might look.

Because if I can’t run, they’re not going to look that good anyway.

10 thoughts on “How can you walk in those things?

  1. I totally understand this. I so want to wear cute heels all the time but the running and the heels rarely balance each other out. I also think the running has destroyed my feet enough that I can’t find shoes that feel comfy when I try them on. Ugh.

  2. Any given day, I will gladly wear my heels, all the different kinds, until my calf muscles are so tightly wound that wearing flats would be painful before ever even MULLING the idea of running. I think I would RUN in my heels before ever running for exercise. I am so pathetic that way. So please pass your heels along to me when you’re ready to part with them. I’ll adopt them, even sign papers.

    1. I think, truly, that you’ve just invented the latest Olympic sport.

      Also, I swear to do this, should it come to the point where I am required to give up my beauties. But until that time, I’m trying to switch things up. And so far so good – not a knee pain in sight!

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