A couple of weeks ago Sports Authority ran a sale on Skechers Shape-ups for $100. Just to the right of the Skechers ad was a $25 off coupon with a $100 purchase. Here, kitty, kitty.…
I confess, I almost went for it. I’d been wanting to try some of those shaper-upper shoes for the longest time. They’re cute and the people wearing them in the ads always have great legs. Besides, it says right there on their website that they boost the number of calories I could burn each day. Win-win!
Three things happened before the store opened and I could get my materialistic little hands on them:
1) I spotted 3 of my 5 pairs of sneakers*lined up along the baseboard in my bedroom. They are not in the closet, which is waaay across the room, because these are my “active” sneakers, meaning I use two or more pairs of them daily.
2) I remembered that I am unemployed. I don’t really need to be spending money on more sneakers. (See point 1.)
3) I realized that the reason I hadn’t purchased these shoes back when I had a j-o-b was that they didn’t make sense to me on some sort of intellectual level. It makes sense that they can help with posture, but can a pair of shoes really help me burn more calories? That suddenly sounded an awful lot like one of those “burn more calories while you sleep” commercials.
That did it. I was out of the game. And with only the teensiest regret. (I waited until Wednesday to throw away the ad. )
I have no idea if Skechers or the other “shaper shoes” on the market actually help lose weight or tone up, but according to Christina Settini, reporting for Forbes, Inc., they’re a rip-off:
Reebok calls it the EasyTone; Skechers, the ShapeUp. These curved-sole shoes, transforming people into human rocking chairs, cost up to $130 and promise to keep you fit even while grocery shopping. During 2009 sales grew 14-fold to $245 million, estimates market researcher NPD. One problem: “They mostly affect the foot and ankle,” says Dr. Michael Ross, director of Rothman Institute’s Sports Performance Lab, which counts the Philadelphia Eagles, Phillies and Flyers among its clients. “There is no evidence they will help you tone better or quicker than a regular shoe.”How to Avoid It: Join a gym.
I’m not criticizing anyone who has these shoes or covets a pair. For one thing, it’s none of my business, and for another, if you like them (they are cute) and can afford them, have at it! And if you see results from them, that’s even better!
For me, though, the 100-150 squats and lunges I do each week at the gym, coupled with the miles of walking and cycling, are probably sufficient for my leg exercising needs. If I need to burn more calories, I’ll add more exercise. So what if they don’t look like the legs in the pictures? My legs are sturdy and well-muscled and suit me just fine (excess skin not included.)
And using the appropriate shopper logic, I now have $75 ($100 minus the $25 coupon) to spend. What should I buy?
Do you have any of the cute-as-hell-but-may-not-work “shaper shoes”? How do you like them? Can you tell a difference after wearing them? SA may run that sale again, after all, and I really could use help with my posture.
*Curious as to why so many shoes? One pair for serious walking outdoors (Asics), one pair for the gym (Asics) and one for zipping about town (Mizunos, formerly outdoor walkers until I wore the good tread off). The back ups in the closet are for muddy walking (my very first pair of Asics, now almost 3 years old) and….well, the other pair is New Balance and they’re not really good for much of anything. Nothing wrong with NB; these just aren’t good for long walks or gym work. I should really donate them. (NBs are now headed to a church rummage sale.)