It helps to come from a place of experience, and having had three children, I can definitely relate to the whole "pregnancy foot woes" thing and it isn’t fun.
When we think about it, feet don’t rank very high on the list of important things to think about when we are pregnant. Fitness however, ranks way up there! Go figure, when your feet hurt , you are not too motivated to get moving. The extra pounds can really pile up (My weakness was SAMS-size Cheetoes!). The more pounds, the more foot pain, the more foot pain… well, you get my drift!
Feet need to rank higher on our list of things to think about! I’ll make it easy by doing the thinking for you!!
Tip #1: Don’t walk around barefoot “Barefoot and pregnant” is a nice cliché, but is not a good idea for so many women suffering with foot pain. The additional weight can sometimes be too much for some feet to handle. Wearing a slipper with an arch support is a great idea! Remember the ligaments loosen everywhere with pregnancy (not just at the hips!) and this can cause increased flattening of the arch. That is why many of us go up in shoe size and never go back down even long after a pregnancy.
Tip #2: Buy new shoes! Yes, yet another good reason to go shoe shopping! We cannot expect our feet to remain the same size during or after pregnancy. It is a great idea to get your feet re-sized about 4-5 months into your pregnancy
Tip #3 Take a load off! Swelling during pregnancy is very common. We hold on to more fluid when we are pregnant. You can end up with achy extremities and those nasty spider and varicose veins. It is important to elevate your feet to the level of the heart for a good 15-20 minutes (those your legs will take what you can give them!) several times a day. If you can’t get off of them completely, then at least sit with your feet propped up and don’t cross your legs. Avoid anything binding at the knees or ankles. Stay cool since heat can aggravate swelling! And please don’t forget to control salt intake! More sodium equals more swelling!
Tip #4 Wear supportive shoes when out and about When you’re feeling marvelously pregnant and you want to style it up, your best bet is a nice supportive shoe. If you insist on a heel, choose a wedge of no more than 1.5 inches. Any more than that puts 75% of your ever increasing body weight on those poor feet. That can cause serious compression of the fat pad in the balls of our feet and we can’t get that or add that fat pad back. Yes, there is fat we want to keep! You may not feel the effect immediately, but with the wearing down of the fat pad, you may end up feeling like you are “walking on bones” with chronic pain to the balls of the feet as your post-pregnanacy years wear on.