Smart holiday shopping starts with your feet

The holiday shopping season rush is in high gear, and the stretch run looms ahead.

(And what better way to say, "the holidays are upon us," than rushing around crowded shopping centers all day, carrying tons of bags?)

While a full day of shopping might get you closer to the end of your list, it can also lead to foot pain. But holiday shopping-induced foot pain isn't necessary if you take a few precautions.

It's all about the shoes …

Yes, it might seem obvious, but avoiding shopping-related foot pain begins with your choice of footwear. A good place to start would be anything that's comfortable, like sneakers, with plenty of midsole support for your arches, sturdy lacing, and outsoles with enough traction to handle the messy floors of a crowded mall.

What you want to avoid is anything that doesn't supply support and comfort. Flip-flops are a great example of what not to wear. Save those for holiday travels when you'll be forced to remove your shoes multiple times to make it through airport security.

(Actually, don't wear them there, either.)

Another tip? Leave the dress shoes at the office. Same goes for those 9-inch heels. No one will be paying attention to your style game when there's 10 minutes to go before the store closes.

Take a load off

Even if you wear the most sensible footwear, if you go nonstop for nine hours you'll be feeling it later on. The solution is simple – take planned breaks. Sit down for 15 minutes every hour or two. Eat lunch at a table instead of in line. Give your feet time to rest.

Don't be afraid to get some help

I'm not just talking about having someone do your shopping for you (though that is a pretty good idea). Instead, I'm talking about giving yourself some much-needed foot relief at the end of a long shopping day.

Items like the Accurelief Ultimate Foot Circulator aren't just great for relieving foot pain and improving circulation, but many of them are FSA-eligible, to boot (see what we did there?)! So you might even be able to give yourself a well-deserved reward without dipping into your holiday shopping budget!

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