Happy New Year and congrats on taking the first step to reaching a healthier you! I'm glad you're getting active with SparkPeople - it's a great community, wonderful resources and fantastic support.
You really asked me the right question because I've had TONS AND TONS of problems with my feet - including what it sounds like you're having! The pain by my heel is plantar fasciitis and the pain in the middle area could be any of several things I've had - sheesh, I've had capsulitis, metatarsalgia and a stress fracture that didn't heal right. I was just about your age when my foot troubles started, too - what a coincidence!!
Anyway, I've discovered that a good podiatrist and good orthotics are a starting point. I also got physical therapy for my feet and got some specific exercises and other things I could do at home - do a web search on plantar fasciitis and you'll find them because I guess they're pretty commonly suggested.
Of course, the BIGGEST help is losing weight - I was restricted to non-impact exercise and still try to do a lot of that because if I do too much walking, it will still start to hurt - so I've used stationary bike, elliptical and also done strength exercises, stretches and balance exercises. All of them seem to help my feet!!
FYI, in addition to 'all of the above,' I've also had acute tendonitis in my ankle which was apparently related to the other problems in my feet and orthotics, physical therapy and icing helped that, along with ibuprofen.
And, as if all of that's not quite enough, I am developing arthritis in my feet, ankles and knees and developing osteopenia [the condition before osteoporosis] - my dad had severe osteoarthritis & his toes were all curled over, which is what's starting to happen to me - I learned from his experience that continuing to walk and stay active can help a lot - once he stopped doing that, his feet and ankles curled up beyond help and he was permanently bedridden.
So my advice is to do everything you possibly can to work this out before it gets worse - losing weight is #1 but get to a podiatrist or orthopedic doctor as soon as possible - if you have insurance that covers physical therapy, you might benefit from that, too - sorry to hear about your problems because I wouldn't wish this on anyone - but there is hope!!
Please check out the SparkTeams - I think you will find a lot of others 'just like you' there. You can choose SparkTeams by age group, lifestyle or interests, geographic location or several other ways - in fact, I suggest joining more than one group, post your intro there and write blogs as often as you can - you will find tons of friends and support that way, I promise!!
In my experience, SparkPeople is like a in some ways - it's lots of fun and easy to make friends because we're all in this together. I like the way a HEALTHY LIFESTYLE is emphasized instead of a 'quick fix wonder diet' - it's about waaaaaay more than 'just' losing weight so you have definitely come to the right place!
If you ever need any help using features of the site, there are tutorial videos under the HELP section that can show you how to use the features of the site. You can also find them on the START page and several other places on the site.
If you haven't discovered The Spark book and/or the SparkDiet linked at the bottom of the START page, check them out - the program is simple but extremely effective. There is a TON of information on this site - so much it might even seem overwhelming but fortunately we don't have to 'digest' everything at once! The FastBreak program is a good way to start.
Another nice thing about SparkPeople is that we have permission to be human - we don't have to change everything at once or be in a hurry to reach our goals. Take a few baby steps and then a few more and before you know it, you'll have completed a long journey - I hope you enjoy this community as much as I do - it teaches us how to make positive lifetime changes because that's the only thing that will work over time!
Yes I am in Washington. We did have snow last night but a warm front has come through and it is now gone hopefully for the winter. We don't get enough snow here to have snow tires so we end up being stranded when we get much snow. I am glad not to be as cold as you. BRRR
WELCOME to the..........WORLD'S BEST GRANDMAS AND GRANDPAS TEAM.
You will LOVE THIS TEAM! It's amazingly positive and supportive. The members here are always willing to lend a hand, an ear, or a shoulder. They have done it for me and they will do the same for you!! We are here to support and encourage you on your journey to success. All the best to you on reaching your goals.
Leader: Warriors In Pink Team Leader: World's Best Grandmas and Grandpas Team Leader: Angels Amongst Us Team Leader: Strengthen and Tone Your Body Team Leader: You're The Boss Of You Team Leader: Sparkle N Shine Team Leader: New Beginnings Team Leader: Passing The Spark Team Leader: Creating A New You Team
baby You are going to love it here! on writing a book that is so here is a link to a few cool things here at SP enjoy the journey to a healthier you! www.sparkpeople.com/resource/motivat ion_articles.asp?id=1521