We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
If you feel like putting a non-lethal curse on somebody, curse them with a case of Plantar Fasciitis. It's like an epidemic these days.
It's a common affliction of the middle-aged (like Frozen Shoulder), and usually there is never an identifiable cause although weight gain seems to be one. It can be in one foot or both. Sometimes it can be easily fixed with ice and stretching but it can be a chronic problem which eventually will disappear as mysteriously and suddenly as it appeared.
The most common symptom is feeling like somebody put thumbtacks in the heel of your shoe. The problem is not your shoe (although arch supports sometimes help it). The problem is inflamed tendons.
I had it in my early 50s. My doctor prescribed a shoe insert, I told him I was too young to be using 'aids for living'. He got kind of testy and told me his 37 year old wife used one. Anyway, it went away in about a year and never came back. It was bad enough that I limped for awhile but I never did get that insert.
It helps to wear Dansko or Sanita clogs. No cushioning (as so many of us have in the squishy "running" or walking shoes many people think will help). In fact, the shock absorbency of many of these deteriorate fairly quickly if one walks an average of 5 miles a day, but one has got used to landing more heavily on heels than one would in traditional leather soled, non-cushioned shoes.
I spoke once to a shoemaker who worked as a reenactor at a historical village making all the leather shoes as they would have worn them in the mid 1700s, and he said that when he first began doing it and wearing them himself for his costume, he had a bad case of plantar fasciitis. The first few days he was in agony, but it was work, so he persisted. After the initial few days, his foot pain decreased a lot, and he realised that he was walking differently. Since then he has never had a recurrence (no, he does not wear silver buckled shoes, but he does wear shoes with LESS arch support and cushioning. Think of Greek and Roman soldiers marching all those miles in sandals....). Think also of all those Ethiopian runners barefoot....Altho they are thinner than most middle aged American sufferers from this condition, obviously, there MAY be something better for our gait about FEELING the ground more as we walk or run.
The clogs help, with bunion problems also (a more modern foot doc told me) because one rocks on their curved soles as one walks and doesn't have to bend the foot and snap tendons painfully with every step. Also, no cushioning, so one learns again to stand and walk more normally. Tho clogs make arthritic knees MORE painful (any extra weight on feet increases knee troubles).
Suffered from this for the longest time.
A buddy of mine showed me an exercise recommended by his podiatrist.
Place the balls of your feet on the edge of a stair step, sliding back as far as you can go. Lock your knees and slowly lower your heels as far down as possible. This stretches the Achilles tendon that's attached to the plantar. Hold for about a minute or so then relax. Repeat this several times a day.
After about a week the pain began to subside. After a month the pain was gone. Kept up the stretching and the pain never came back.
Hope this helps someone.
My middle daughter studied for a year in Senegal. She and her fellow Americans noticed that they wore through sandals in no time, but the locals' sandals lasted a year or so. She said the difference appeared to be the way Americans walked--the local Senegalese women seemed to walk by stretching the foot forward and and striding off the ball of the foot, while she had a heel-first stride. But she didn't do any detailed study, and isn't a kinesiologist, so may not have observed all the relevant details.
I thought all of the commercials were quackery, and then it hit me hard for about a year. It changed the way I walked and my feet were very stiff in the mornings. I put high arch insoles (cheap ones, not the high dollar ones from commercials) in all of my shoes and it went away. I now only have the insoles in my cowboy boots and work boots. The dress shoes seem to have more support than the boots.
I have had PF and still get shin splints with street shoes (or walking on streets?). For PF frequent exercise to the point of pain was the solution. For both PF and splints, heel lifts or over the counter orthotics in hiking boots help a lot and after hiking I can tolerate a few days in shoes. Fitted orthotics work even better. I cannot wear sandals, but earth shoes are ok. I now hike/walk at least 12 miles/week.
I suffered from it and mentioned it to the Chiropractor I was seeing. He adjusted my ankle and this cleared it up in no time at all. I recommend Chiropractic care for everyone who tells me they are suffering from PF.