Do Your Feet Get Smaller When You Lose Weight?

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When you lose weight, your body changes in ways that I can pretty much guarantee that you’ve never even considered–like that your feet lose weight. And that brings up issues that affect the way you dress and groom yourself. As well as the kind of clothes that you buy. I’d bet money you aren’t used to your feet getting smaller.

I mean, that was one of the biggest changes as I went from 310 pounds to 155. For some reason, I didn’t expect my feet to lose weight when I dropped enough weight to make up for another whole person.

Remember, Runners: As your feet lose weight, your shoes won’t fit anymore.

You expect shirts to get looser and baggier the smaller you get. Pants, too. After all, pant size is the go-to detail in those before/after photos from late-night infomercials. You probably even expect your double-chins to shrink and give you a more pronounced jaw and neckline.

And they will.

But your feet will, too! So will your neck, arms, legs, and face. Heck, your fingers and wrists will shrink, reducing your ring, watch, and bracelet sizes.

You will notice these changes yourself, and other people will notice those changes. They’re public and prominent and easy to see. (And awesome. Don’t forget awesome.) But what really got me was that feet do lose weight. No one really tells fat people that every single inch of your body shrinks.

(I’ll pause here while you guffaw like adolescents for a few minutes.)

But seriously, the biggest change from weight loss–and one that no one told me about–was that my feet would lose weight, too. That meant that my shoe size would change. And it took me a bit of pain to realize how big a problem that was.

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Now, I have nice feet. For a Hobbit. They’re short, thick, hairy, and wide. After my weight loss, I went from wearing a size 12 to a size 9(ish). Even now, 8 years later, I don’t fully know what size I wear. For years, I wore a 10 4E (that’s extra-wide) in my Asics Gel-Nimbus running shoes, but I’ve been told that’s far too big for me, too (my ankles and balls of my feet agree). In Altras and Converse, I tend to wear a 9.5. New Balance 860 is a 9 2E (just wide, not extra).

The fit changes a bit by each shoe and brand, but that just means I get to experiment with more running shoes. So that’s a plus.

Shoes That Are Too Big Hurt. Bad.

When my feet first lost weight, most of my shoes slipped up and down more than they did before, obviously. But I kept wearing them. It was gradual, and despite getting blisters and sore feet and knees, I just kept wearing the one pair of sneakers (those beat up Skechers in the pic above), for both everyday wear and for running.

As I started really running, the blisters got worse. So did the foot and knee pain. It wasn’t the normal fat-guy pain. This was an all-new, all-different kind of pain. And when I finally did buy my first pair of real running shoes (Nimbus 13s, size 10.5 4E–again pictured above), they were a size and a half smaller than my old Skechers. And the soles weren’t destroyed, there was cushion, and they didn’t slip around and blister my feet.

I was in heaven. Once I realized that weight loss made my feet shrink, the fix was easy. But it took me so long for the idea to even come to me. I mean, who has fat feet? Answer: me. I did. Apparently really fat feet when I went from a 12 to a 9.

So please. Take my advice. When you lose weight, don’t wear your old, worn out shoes. They will be far too large. That’s hard on your feet. That’s hard on your ankles and your knees. Basically, it’s hard on your whole body because foot health has an impact on almost every part of your body. Shoes can be expensive. And running shoes even more so, but I always say the only thing a runner really needs is a comfortable pair of running shoes.

And if you’ve lost weight, make that a comfortable pair of running shoes in the right size.

Nobody told me that weight loss would make my feet shrink so dramatically. So this is me. Telling you, straight up: your feet will shrink. A lot.. Prepare for it. And don’t wait to grab even a new, cheap pair of comfy tennies. I am as guilty as anyone of being so obsessed with the exposed and visible areas of my body. We tend to forget that our daily lives and overall well-being are affected by the soles of our feet a whole heck of a lot more than the size of our biceps.

As you’ve lost weight or become more fit, have you noticed any unexpected changes in your body?

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