When homo sapiens went upright many moons ago, those appendages were barefoot. Flat sandals or mocassins served our predecessors reasonably well. These days as Dr, Seuss advised, we put Feet in our Shoes. Or, consider those grand feet painted by Da Vinci:
Broken toes, plantar fasciitis, warts, and bone bruise experiences are footnotes, so to speak, in my own story. I also had a really nasty case of athlete’s foot – which unfortunately coincided with my two-week hike with the Boy Scouts in the New Mexico mountains. Talk about itchy-itchy, scratchy-scratchy! I’ll bet a lost wages nickel that I’m not alone for foot issues acquired over one’s years.
Wait, wait – there are positive things to share about our footsies, I promise.
These imaged activities are assuredly better with good feet at play!
Yes, I had a practical and healthy reason for having that hiking boot in the Well Past Forty® corporate logo.
We are engineered to move on our feet – unless you are a Spiderman or a circus performer…Being Grounded to Tierra Firma has benefits too!
Yes, many many folks have lost toes or a foot or both feet. Prosthetics are amazing, and modern fitness extends to these adaptive athletes. And yes, there are many folks with hindered mobility. I remember some teens who were proud of their flat feet if those diagnoses changed Military DRAFT classifications.
Let’s celebrate those footsy systems with aging skin, twenty-six bones, tens of muscles, and many connective tissues working in harmony, or being a real episodic or chronic PAIN… While we’re celebrating, let’s acknowledge that our feet tend to get flatter and wider as we age. Let’s acknowledge that our heels can crack and that ingrown toenails may happen more than when we were younger.
Keep in mind all life’s positives that our feet enable as a groundwork for taking positive care of them.
That is a thick tendon on the bottom of our foot between our heel and toes on each foot with the fancy name of Plantar Fascia (PF). When it’s aggravated or inflamed it becomes plantar fasciitis which can be a royal pain. I speak from experience that plantar fasciitis may take months and months to get past this troublesome inflammation. My remediation? I rolled my foot regularly [ morning and night] with small hard balls, massaged them often. It took a lot to get my “PF” limbered up daily because that bow-shaped tissue really isn’t one that stretches and changes shape very well. This problem – which affects millions – is worse when the person is overweight, has high foot arches, or played “plyometric” sports like basketball. Keep the faith. Orthotics might help, yet insta-successes are few and far between. Toe manipulation and regular heel stretches can help.
Osteoarthritis and etc.
You may recall that our big Toes or Great toes have over-sized importance for balance and stability. Hold that thought, or refresh your knowledge from KABOOMER’s stability and stretching chapters
Do try to avert both Foot Boots and Crutches!
You may know how some unlucky folks experience big toe arthritis – with fancy official names of hallux limitus or hallux rigidus. Yes – cartilage in our toes can also degrade over time and with use (or with unfortunate inheritances or auto-immunity).
Then Bunions, Hammertoes, Shin splints, foot pain from Peripheral Neuropathy may be part of your past, present, or future “AGONY not ECSTACY”.
Ecstasy? Here’s nirvana pictured from a foot massage. I hope you’ve felt that “ahhhh” after a long hard upright day!
If in discomfort or AGONY – a Doctor’s SHOE may Fit! If you see something like discoloration or feel that your feet aren’t right – perhaps a Podiatrist or someone from the American College of Foot and Ankle Surgeons, a sports podiatrist, or your General Practitioner.
a. you think you have a sprain or broken toe or non-trivial foot injury,
b. you note a change in toenail appearance toenails that can suggest fungal infections
c. you have abnormal discomfort after standing
d. you have heel pain or bottom of foot pain in the morning that may be a precursor to plantar fasciitis
e. the bottoms of your athletic shoes suggest irregular wear – you may be a pronator or supinator when striding
f. your feet have irregular swelling …
Avert denial or inactivity.
For KABOOMERS who want to age well, do as HealthNewsToday dictates, “Make foot care a priority as you get older.” End of the homily. KABOOM.