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Shoes...Yes Shoes (This could save you some PAIN!)

This post... Oh, how to explain the IMPORTANCE of this post!

Okay guys, I'm going to help you avoid something that becomes very painful after about a week's worth of carrying toddlers on your back (or heavy backpacks, sure).  They tend to get heavy after a few miles- or I should say staircases?  Especially when your older toddler cannot POSSIBLY walk another step, and you end up with one baby on each side, front and back. Yikes!

Anyways, valuable lesson learned: shoes wear down FAST...   It's not based on the age of the shoes- it's the mileage and force put upon them.

Spend the extra money and get GREAT, comfortable walking shoes or hiking shoes (not boots).  Your feet will still love you- even after a week, maybe even after a month or two.

The Cheapness

When we left for our travel adventure, both my wife and I bought new shoes.  We bought brand name shoes, of course, but we did not get the expensive ones.  Actually, we got clearance shoes- the ones we thought were basically the same except $40 cheaper, because those shoes are SO last season. We went cheap because we thought the brand would be enough.

Except for one major snag in our genius savings plan: we had to carry about 50-90 lbs on our backs for a lot of hiking through various cities. And then there was that one time we had to carry EXTRA bags because a couple of the older ones *ahem* had a sudden onset of weakness.  

This baby weighs 5,000 pounds. At least. 😜
We walked in our awesome discount shoes through New York City for a week. We walked in them through Lisbon for a few days. To our surprise, Lisbon is the city of hills. (What people fail to mention was that Lisbon is also the city of long staircases.) Then, we walked in them through Seville for a few days more...  Are you picking up what I'm putting down? We did a MASSIVE amount of walking!

Add to that the fact that Baby Larry is typically carried around on my back when we go exploring.  Plus, after an hour or two on any given day, Jessica (and Kaley) winds up carrying Gabbie around, too.  (Side note- we listened to one person's bad advice about a stroller not being compatible with Europe's narrow streets, and we paid the price. Bring a stroller, people!)


By the time we got to Seville, our feet hurt SOOO bad.  It only got worse as we traveled onward, and by the time we made it to Valencia and found a flat to lease, we were in EXCRUCIATING pain. I'm not exaggerating- we literally spent a few days resting our legs (some of us may have also cried a bit), pretty much because the inside soles of our shoes had been crushed under all of that mileage.

Not only did our feet hurt, but we were also experiencing knee and hip pains. I mean, seriously, we're not in our 20's anymore. Our bodies can't bounce back like they used to!

She may be cute, but she's heavy! (And so is the toddler!)
Even now, in Valencia, we still walk about 15,000 steps every day. Some days we walk with a pack on our backs. Keeping that in mind, we knew we HAD to do something about our insanely crappy shoes, ASAP.

The Probelm

How do we know it was the shoes? Well, we finally broke down and bought new pairs before our trip to Italy- and you can bet your sweet cheeks that we did some serious research this time around.  We did NOT want to make the same mistake. After a LOT of googling, both of us got really great walking shoes- and we did NOT care about the price.

Okay, that's a lie, we cared about the price to an extent...we do have a lot of mouths to feed, after all...  But still- we splurged a little bit and bought shoes that we KNEW (thanks, Google) already had great reviews for handling massive amounts of walking.

There was a remarkable difference after our trip to Italy. The carrying of the packs- and the baby- was not painful on the knees, hip, or feet. In fact, by the time we returned, neither of us were crippled, nobody cried, and foot pain was a distant memory. 

Okay so what does this long, winded post actually teach you?!?

It is HIGHLY recommended to spend the extra money and get great walking shoes. This is one expense that you do not want to skimp on just to save a couple of bucks. Save money with the off-brand hygiene stuff instead. Seriously though, if you have to buy ANOTHER pair after a month or two, you're not really saving any money anyways, right?

In case you're interested in what shoes we bought:

<--- Larry got these wicked cool brown walking shoes from Decathlon because they pass as dressier style shoes with slacks...perfect for traveling if you don't want to look like a sloppy bear. They had amazing reviews online and did NOT disappoint.

And Jessica went with the good ol' timeless classic, Adidas Cloudfoam because she's been wearing some variation of these shoes since the 90's and they haven't failed her yet... Plus they look good with her skinny jeans or her palazzo pants. 😉

So now you know more than you really ever planned to know about travel-worthy shoes, and hopefully you can save yourself some pain (and tears) by choosing your next pair carefully.

Woohoo! (You're welcome.)

**This post was edited by Jessica, who loves her husband so much she wants to spare him the spelling errors and abrupt ADHD-inspired topic changes. **