Footwear for walking… a lot

Hi. I know that running will put more strain on trainers but wondered how long you would expect a pair of lower priced Nike (downshifter) to last?

I am walking up to 30 miles a week (longest single walk so far was 19 miles). I live in a city so some is walking on pavements/paths and some over fields or brideways/uneven paths.

I only started walking this much since wfh and needing to get out. I have had issues in the past with inflamed Achilles and planta faciatus as well so absolutely need the cushioning.  

I have no idea when I should be planning for new trainers or what other Nike I should be looking at for any potential upgrade?

Or whether there are any lighter weight walking boots that will give me the cushioning protection (my karrimor walking boots aren’t cushioned at all)?

I want to walk even further!
working on clearing the clutterDo I want the stuff or the space?


  • littlegreenparrotlittlegreenparrot Forumite
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    There are lighter weight walking boots.

    Although it's a pain going to stores I would do a few trips to try on some pairs, if you have specific requirements it's worth it. I'd start with Decathlon, Go Outdoors and Blacks and see how you get on. 

    What socks are you wearing? They are not created equal, proper hiking or running socks have cushioning which can make it more comfortable.

    It also might be worth having a chat with your GP, you might benefit from insoles for support and that would need a referral. 
  • edited 14 September 2021 at 6:54PM
    newlywednewlywed Forumite
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    edited 14 September 2021 at 6:54PM
    Thanks @littlegreenparrot yeah maybe I will try and plan some shop visits. We have decathlon, and blacks within 4 miles of us.

    I use saucony running socks… they are super thin but really good in my trainers, so would need different ones for boots.

    getting an appointment with my dr was never easy even pre COVID… and they generally seem too quick to prescribe drugs or want to sign me off work!  My feet are doing so much better since taking magnesium powder and vit D, plus losing over 3 stone will have helped too.  It’s more that I want to prevent anything recurring.
    working on clearing the clutterDo I want the stuff or the space?
  • TELLIT01TELLIT01 Forumite
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    Try to find specialist, independant 'outdoor' shops.  They generally have the depth of expertise to provide good information.  You may pay a few quid more but it will be worth it.
  • MalMonroeMalMonroe Forumite
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    Walking shoes are different to running shoes and pavement pounding shoes are different to track pounding shoes. Then there are waterproof, heavy duty and light duty types. There are so many different types and makes of walking shoe that I am completely confounded. I've been looking into getting some decent walking shoes (and maybe even Nordic walking sticks) as I would like to take up serious walking and hopefully get fit, as you have done. Well done, by the way, losing three stones is no mean feat. But looking at different shoe types has taken me ages! And then, as people are suggesting, you have to have the right socks. 

    I think that if you have to pay more for a good brand, then it is well worth it, as TELLIT01 says. littlegreenparrot has some sound advice as well. 

    I haven't decided as yet but I'm leaning towards Merrell or Brooks. Neither very cheap but both appear to have excellent reputations and they last. 

    Also with shoes you are going to be doing a lot of walking in, I do agree that it's essential to go to a shop and try them before you buy them. 

    As you've been having trouble with your feet, do you think it may be worth just splashing out on seeing a chiropodist/podiatrist for some advice? Sadly they don't come under the NHS but I think that's something else that's well worth the expense. They can also recommend inserts for shoes to help with conditions like plantar fasciitis - which I also suffer from. GPs can only help so far with foot problems but my podiatrist has been very helpful and is very knowledgeable. (I'm not getting paid to say that, btw!)

    Here are two links I've been checking out recently -

    Hope some of that is helpful but if not, please feel very free to ignore!     :)
    Please note - taken from the Forum Rules and amended for my own personal use (with thanks) : It is up to you to investigate, check, double-check and check yet again before you make any decisions or take any action based on any information you glean from any of my posts. Although I do carry out careful research before posting and never intend to mislead or supply out-of-date or incorrect information, please do not rely 100% on what you are reading. Verify everything in order to protect yourself as you are responsible for any action you consequently take.
  • prowlaprowla Forumite
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    I've worn Merrell shoes for many years, but they seem to have gone downhill (haha!) in the past few years.
    I think they've offshored and their production is nowhere near the same quality; I had to take back and replace my last pair twice because they developed a "click" after a few days (apparently it's the design of their internal bracing or something) and also noticed visual mismatches between the two shoes in each pair.
    I think my next shoes will be another brand.
    I've tried Brasher, but they seem to be made for people with narrower feet than me.
    I may look at Timberland next time.
    I also wear padded/hiking socks, which I find more comfortable.
  • newlywednewlywed Forumite
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    Thanks. I have managed to find an independent outdoor shop in a town about 8 miles away… so that’s even within my walking distance now :smiley: 

    everything nearer is a brand store chain like decathlon and blacks etc. Who says living in a city is better? 

    Will look up your links and do some research as to what I might be able to afford or invest in.

    thanks for the Brasher comment too… I have wide feet but narrow heels so will just avoid that brand :smiley:

    next question…. Waterproof, breathable lightweight jackets anyone? I do get pretty warm so don’t want to feel like I’m wrapped in plastic!  Currently using a sea salt tin cloth full length mac. 
    working on clearing the clutterDo I want the stuff or the space?
  • comeandgocomeandgo Forumite
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    I have wide feet and find that Berghaus boots and trainers fit better.  I have many different rain jackets, some for torrential rain, some for showers and some for hurricane weather, again, I find the better jackets cost more.   To reduce sweating try and get a jacket with underarm zips.  If weather is not very windy maybe a poncho type would be better.  What about waterproof trousers, do you have any?  I’m going to suggest Berghaus waterproof trousers with side zips to open if you get too hot.

  • newlywednewlywed Forumite
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    Thanks everyone. Have done much reading of review websites. Keen footwear look like they are generous width but will take some advice when i have some money and visit the shop.

    really not sure whether to go for waterproof footwear or not (I have issues with my spectacles in the rain anyway)…. Plus my feet get warm quickly like the rest of me… but then again, in dry weather I can still wear trainers. Hmmm.

    Have looked at coats but think I will stick with my long Mac for now… it’s just a pain when the rain stops and I want to take it off!

    haven’t looked at socks yet  :lol:
    working on clearing the clutterDo I want the stuff or the space?
  • GBNIGBNI Forumite
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    I definitely recommend going for something more suited for walking as others have said :) I have a pair of Meindels for walking (that's probably spelt wrong!) and whilst they were on the pricier side, they are lightweight, comfortable from the start and waterproof (I went for a material pair as opposed to their leather pairs.) I find I can wear them year round as well.

  • newlywednewlywed Forumite
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    Thanks @GBNI. So not too hot even tho they are waterproof?
    working on clearing the clutterDo I want the stuff or the space?
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