By ALYX GORMAN
I’m 26 years old, and I’ve been tying my shoes wrong my whole life.
Call me shallow, but I’m the kind of girl who’s always cared about looks.
Especially when it comes to my shoes. It doesn’t matter if they’re not the right fit for me – put a pair of good-looking shoes in my path and damn it, I’ll try to make it work.
I’ve lost two toenails to a pair of oxblood leather Marc Jacobs pumps. I’ve had my heel scraped off by a size-too-small Miu Miu brogue.
It’s been that way, ever since I was a kid. I remember fibbing repeatedly about which shoes felt best when it was time to put my rapidly expanding feet into a new pair of back-to-school sneakers.
Another thing you should know about me: I have kangaroo feet. They’re very long, and very, very thin.
Just as an FYI, you should know that this post is sponsored by The Athlete’s Foot. But all opinions expressed by the author are 100% authentic and written in their own words.
9 ½, A2 narrow. I learned that recently.
I learned that because, after thousands of blisters, I’d finally come to a tripping point.
About six months ago, I started intermittent running on the treadmill at a nearby gym. With this style of training, you go full burst for 30 seconds, running as fast as you can. Then you jump onto the sides of the treadmill and rest for 30 seconds. On again, off again for around 30 minutes (okay, most of the time it’s more like 20).
It makes me feel great all over, except for one part: my feet. It burns them. After 10 minutes, they’re hot. After 20, it feels like they’re on fire. As if the treadmill is scorching through the rubber of their soles.
Impossible? Yes. But the sensation alone is enough to put me off running. So it was time to make a change.
That’s how I found myself back at The Athlete’s Foot. The place where I’d lied so often about what felt comfortable as a kid.
They’ve had a bit of a tech upgrade since I was 11 years old. The foot measurer is still there, telling me my kangaroo feet haven’t changed since I was 14, but it has been joined by pressure mapping and video technology. They can literally run you through a battery of tests in order to find the right shoe for you.
The second I walk in I spot the shoes I hope will be my sole-mates. A pair of fly knit Nike Frees in sunset colours. Like an orange juice spiked with grenadine.
But Charlotte, the lovely sales assistant who is putting me through my paces that day, informs me that they’re also about a mile and a half too wide for me and not suited for the kind of running I’m doing, anyway.