You've got to get to an athletic shoe store. They should be able to get you into the right shoe. The good ones will order anything you need and be right there with answers to questions about footwear (and socks) that you might have. The shoe should feel good right then, there should be no "break in" period.
I am a heavier run/walker with a wide foot and was very apprehensive about footwear at the beginning of my new activity. I was surprised with the alternatives out there. There are quite a few brands and models.
Also track the miles you put on your footwear. Generally you should start thinking about a new pair after about 250-350 miles (or when you start to get new aches and pains).
I second the comment about going to an athletic shoe store. Even when I get a type of shoe I like I periodically go back to be refitted as the various companies change styles and my feet have actually changed over time. Good luck to you and enjoy your walking.
The only sneakers I've ever found with actual widths are New Balance sneakers. And I would also strongly suggest that you get another pair of sneakers right away since a pair that is 10+ years old is almost useless for support. I always buy my sneakers in batches of two pairs. I only wear a pair for less than 10 months before they are replaced with the newer pair. I walk a lot and I want my "tootsies" to be pain-free.
And if it is possible, find a store that will actually fit you with a pair of New Balance. I started with buying from an actual sneaker store with workers that knew a lot about walking gait, size and surfaces I wanted to walk on. After that initial consultation, I then was able to buy the New Balance from other cheaper sources. Also, New Balance changes it's models from year to year, so I was able to pick up some bargains from online stores since I knew the old model numbers that my feet needed.
So I suggest that you not worry about the cost of those first few pairs. The investment is worthwhile concerning your needs, stopping pain, and the amount of weight you must lose.
I just recently joined our local gym, and I've really enjoyed walking on the treadmill, but I can tell already that I'm wearing the wrong kind of shoes by the way my feet cramp. I have A LOT of weight to lose (150 pounds), and I would love some recommendations on what to buy. I don't want to get discouraged and stop working out, but I can't handle these foot cramps. The only pair I own now are 10+ years old and too narrow for my wide feet.
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