Before I left for San Diego, I went and bought a new pair of shoes. I knew I’d be doing a lot of walking on my trip and a quick look at my shoe collection instantly revealed I didn’t own a pair that would be up to the challenge. For the last few years, my shoes have skewed heavily towards the more casual side, with skate shoes being the largest contingent. I think I own four or five pairs of skate shoes, all of which came to me free. These are the perks of working on three skateboarding games. Despite being generally comfy, you do not want to walk for long distances in skate shoes. They’re not designed to support your feet while walking and there are other types of shoes that do a much better job of treating your feet right.

I first learned the importance of good shoes when I went to New York City for the first time in 1997. With a pair of Nike ACGs on my feet, it made traversing the long blocks of Manhattan that much easier. I was able to walk and stand for long periods of time without it affecting my feet. For some reason, I forgot or chose to ignore the lessons I learned when I went to Washington, DC in 2010. For whatever reason, I brought a pair of Adidas skate shoes with me as my main “walking around” shoes. What a dumb decision. It didn’t take long for the National Mall to take its toll on my feet. I remember my feet hurting more than I’d ever felt them hurt from walking. I’d make my way from one exhibit to the next within a museum and then having to find a seat to rest my feet. Boy, were my dogs barking on that trip.

Determined to not repeat that mistake again, I did my research and looked for good walking shoes. When I got to the store, I found a pair of Nike walking shoes that I’d read about online. Despite feeling quite comfortable, they looked very plain. As I saw them on my feet, I thought that this was where I turned into a senior citizen and started buying old people stuff. I refused to let that moment happen so I kept looking for another pair. I finally settled on a pair of Nike Air Pegasus 28s. Technically these were running shoes but they felt just as good as those grandpa walking shoes. In fact, they were the most comfortable shoes I’ve ever had on. There was a tremendous amount of cushioning both in the heel and the mid-sole. I actually felt like I was walking on a firm mattress with each step.

I probably walked for miles and miles while I was in San Diego last week and my feet were never a problem. When you are traveling it’s incredibly important to have the right gear and the right shoes are certainly something you shouldn’t overlook.

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