How To Survive A Broken Foot While in a Walking Boot

As I mentioned last week, I recently broke my right foot and I’m wearing a walking boot (some call it an AirCast) for the next 3 or more weeks. Some links in this post to items that are helping me survive are affiliate links that earn me a commission if you purchase through them.

This isn’t my first rodeo with a foot in a boot. I suffered a broken foot in an equally embarrassing manner when I lived in Wales. However, it was has been long enough since I’d last worn one that I had forgotten what a pain in the backside it is – and how easily you fool yourself with all that you think you can do when you’re sent out of the doctor’s office sans crutches.

Walking in the boot is awkward and clunky, deceptive at the start with its sweet taste of freedom (because yay, no crutches), and I have some tips* for you to make it more tolerable.

*I am not a doctor; I don’t even play one on TV. I’m sharing my tips to make the healing process a little more tolerable, and they cannot replace medical advice from your doctor. If wearing the boot is painful, please reach out to your doctor’s office.

Slow your roll. The Ortho Fellow I saw first said “wear the boot as much as you want, or as little as you want. If you want to run a marathon tomorrow, you can! But it will slow your recovery.” (No shit.) “If you’re in the house and don’t feel like wearing it, don’t.”

Whereas the more experienced orthopedic doctor said “yes, you can take it off to swim/bathe/sleep/drive, but keep the boot on otherwise and rest it for the first week or so. You know you’ll try to overdo it. Don’t.”

So spending a day standing to film a soccer match, walking a long distance to an MLS match, trekking around the stadium, up and down the stairs to your seat and then back to the car, and then shlepping around the house to get laundry done and the house tidied was NOT a good idea.

Rest means just that. REST. (And be aware that you might need crutches and be non weight bearing in that air cast, so don’t even try to walk until you get the go ahead.) JUST. REST.

RICE, RICE baby. That first week (or at least the first few days, as much as you can) follow the injury protocol “RICE”, which stands for Rest, Ice, Compression, Elevate:

  • Rest, as in stay off of it as much as you can for a few days.
  • Ice your foot for 20 minutes, three times a day. Stock up on a couple of nice ice packs with a cover because I promise you, it’s a hassle to try to keep it wrapped in a dish towel AND you’ll likely forget to put it back in the freezer on occasion. (Or is that just me?)
  • Compression means, at the start, wear the boot, and use the little air pump to make it comfortably support your foot. A compression sock is a great thing for swelling unless you have a bone moving around because pulling on that tight sock can move it. OUCH. My doctor said to hold off on a compression sock until I could press on the area I injured and it didn’t hurt (meaning the bone was starting to heal), and then I could put on a compression sock.
  • Elevate means prop that foot UP, and by up, I mean over your heart. Yes, you have permission to lie down! Hello, Netflix.

Consider A Fitness Tracker Time Out. I LOVED my Fitbit then, and I am kind of obsessed with closing the rings on my Apple Watch now. If you are a person who is driven to get to 10,000 steps (or 20,000 or more), the first week or so is going to be stressful when you look at that step counters and see a lowly 3,000 steps. YOU know you are supposed to take it easy but your brain says “lazy”. I swapped out my Fitbit for a favorite watch until walking was more comfortable.

Arnica Is Your Friend. If you haven’t discovered arnica cream (or gel), you must not bruise as I do. I like Boiron Arnicare, a homeopathic remedy you can find at any health food store or crunchy supermarkets like Sprouts or Whole Foods. It helps to reduce pain, as well as swelling and bruising. Where my foot could have been black and blue (as it was the last time I broke it), my bruising was at a minimum and the swelling went down quickly.

Broken foot

Free Your Toes. It’s hot here in Texas, and it’s only May – and this boot is lined with a black foam that doesn’t really breathe. When you put the boot on, your toes go into a pocket at the front of the shoe. Now, you may have discovered this already, but if your tech was not as kindly as mine, let me tell you that you do not have to put your toes in that pocket. Just lay it flat, put your foot on top of it and let the piggies fly free. When I stepped in line to check out at the doctor’s office the three people standing in front of me – all in boots (it must have been a rough weekend) – stared at my pink painted toes, and then at their own wrapped up feet, and back at me, looking up with faces painted in surprise.

I guess I won in the med-tech lottery that day.

broken foot

A Tisket, A Tasket, I Love My Woven Basket. Or a good tote bag. I have a god-awful set of stairs in my house, and while I’d like to just say “forget it, kids, I’m not coming up until the boot is off” that is a very risky venture.

I have a gorgeous market basket and it is perfect for hauling what I need up and down the stairs and leaving one hand free to grasp the railing. It’s also perfect for gathering up everything I need from my room/office/wherever to haul to wherever I am going to be in the house, so I don’t make multiple trips: phone, tissues, Arnica gel, Advil, my insulated water bottle (with a screw top, so it doesn’t tip), book, and laptop. (It’s pretty enough to sit at the foot of my stairs collecting all the goodies that need to be taken upstairs later.)

Broken foot, basket

A collapsible tote basket with a longer handle is another choice that you’ll use long after you’re healed.

If you are on crutches (or just don’t want to be unbalanced on the stairs), a backpack is another option, as is this crutch bag pouch.

Wear the Right Shoe. (Or the left shoe at the right height.) That boot has a platform sole with a bit of a wedge so you NEED to find a shoe for the other foot with enough of a sole height your hips are level or you will experience back/hip pain. (I like a wedge shoe more than a flatter sole with a heel. Guys, you might want trainers with a thicker sole.)

This may require a shoe shopping outing! I was getting by with my trainers but honestly, the height still wasn’t right and my chiropractor was my best friend until I found a shoe to put both feet at similar heights.

Tip: measure the height of the boot at the heel and at the toe. After trial and error, finding a shoe with the same heel height was important but from a comfort standpoint, having the toe at a similar height meant I was standing more even-footed.

Yes, I just gave you permission to go shoe shopping. The correct heel height really will make a difference in how your body feels at the end of the day.

Broken foot
I might not wear the sandal on an all-day outing (because I broke my foot standing up) but for around the house and shorter excursions, this sandal’s wedge is the perfect height.

Don’t Forget to Exercise and Stretch. My doctor said I could ride a stationary bike and since my foot still aches, the thought of pedaling on it just yet is not appealing – but apparently, you can do it in a boot. (It should be interesting to try. Any bets that I fall off the bike? Maybe a recumbent bike is a better idea for me.)

Swimming is another option if you have a pool available – just use caution getting to/from the changing room. My pool is too small for swimming laps, but I can hold on to the side in the deep end and kick to get my heart rate up.

Thankfully, there are plenty of exercises you can do in a boot – just think back to all those great “Jane Fonda” exercises of our youth. Most floor exercises – even pushups – can be adapted. Clamshells, leg raises, kickbacks, pushups on your knees, crunches – even one-legged planks are possible. Seated you can do weighted lateral raises, bicep curls, etc.

I’ve found a few videos to give you ideas (both go too fast to follow along for a full workout, but you’ll get the idea). Holistic health vlogger Sarahs Day has a great mini session in the middle of this video – fast forward to 7:13 for the start of it if you don’t have time for her chat. Have a pencil and paper nearby to make note of each exercise the first time through as she only demonstrates moves.

Alternately, just hit pause on your laptop or phone as you work through your set, then resume for the next move. Vlogger Heather Frey has a great Footless Workout here that targets the upper body and chest using dumbbells or bands and provides cardio as well.

Have a Good Story. I do not have a good story; I have a boring story bordering on embarrassing. You will be asked OVER AND OVER AGAIN how you came to be in the boot, so go ahead and create one humdinger of a story if you don’t have one. If it is outrageous enough, people will know you’re telling a whale of a tale. It’s all good.

broken foot, story time

Maintain Your Sense of Humor. Six weeks to eight weeks (or longer – and if so, I’m sorry!) isn’t long in the bigger scheme of things, but it will feel like forever, especially after the first hundred rounds of being asked how you injured yourself. The boot is hot, it’s awkward, taking shorter steps in the boot means it takes longer to get around, and it just gets frustrating.

I entertain myself by playing it up for my kids so they do more stuff for me (not that they aren’t typically helpful but…). I’ve decided to make the best of it, and dedicate more time to things I might not make time for. I now have more time for writing, reading, and watching some TV – while cutting out sugar and carbs because this is going to put a serious blow to my weight loss plans if I sit around eating Oreos in self-pity.

(Which I did the first week. And then I stepped on the scale. Then I really needed to find my sense of humor.)

Wearing a boot for your broken foot is a major pain in the backside, but it beats a plaster cast and crutches, hands down. Taking it easy at the start and giving your foot time to heal will go a long way towards minimizing your time in the boot.

Remember, you can probably do a lot of things without the boot, but doing so could extend your time in the boot.

Have you ever broken your foot?

Do you have any other tips for surviving a broken foot while in a walking boot?

Share in the comments below!

Want the real story on how I broke my foot?
A Dancer’s Fracture? Oh, the Irony


Another laugh on my behalf? Yes, I’ve broken both feet – this is the story behind how I broke my foot the first time.
On Clumsiness And Being Careful What You Wish For…



  • Snewz

    I broke my foot, and I’m in a boot AND crutches, they told me NO weight on the foot. I’ve never broken anything other than my nose and baby toe and crutches are a cosmic event for me. Apparently my break is torqued or something weird all from tripping over cord to my blow dryer which I obviously did not put away. I don’t know how I’m going to get through the next 4 to 6 weeks…. This just sucks. It doesn’t even hurt that bad, as long as there’s no weight on it…here’s hoping it heals quickly!!!!

    • Jenn

      Oh, no – I’m so sorry! I’ve had to be on crutches twice with a broken foot (yes, I’ve broken both) and I’m TERRIBLE with them. Is a knee scooter a possibility for you?

      Coincidentally, I broke my pinky toe AGAIN and I’m back in a book because I broke it badly at the base and I can’t fit it in any shoes, so the ortho said the boot would be best. Here’s to fast healing for us both in 2024!

  • Sherri

    This is such a useful post–thank you!!

    I was hit by a car about 2 months ago and ended up with a broken second metatarsal (and yes, I had to look up to see exactly what that was!). And, it wasn’t a nice clean break, it was angulated and displaced (or something like that) so I needed surgery. Luckily, they put me in a boot since I absolutely despise crutches.

    I’m 5 weeks post-surgery, the wound has healed nicely and the doctor gave me the okay to start walking some with the boot while at home. I was overjoyed! But, after three days, I started to notice bruising on both the top and bottom of the foot.

    Has anyone else run into this problem? If so, what did you do? I’m a bit worried about this.

    And, thanks again for this post–it’s fantastic!

  • Sabine

    Thanks for all your stories. I’ve fractured metatarsals 2,3 and 4. Slipped on a mat and kicked the coffee table just for good measure! I’m week 4 of 6 non weight bearing, I’m so uncomfortable in my air cast, feel like my foot is being strangled…..when I left hospital after getting the boot fitted he did it so tight I was crying with pain by the time I got home. Been told to start weight bearing in 2 weeks but I’m so nervous it won’t have healed, my next hospital appointment is 2 weeks after that! My whole body hurts from imbalance and although the knee scooter has helped me get around I’m not getting a pain in it. Although no one in this group chat has the same injury it’s so comforting to hear your stories. Onwards and upwards everyone

    • Jenn Belden

      I’m so sorry! Hoping you get to start weight bearing soon – I feel like I had a lot of chiropractor adjustments and did a lot of stretching on the floor because you’re using your body so differently than usual.

  • Kathy

    Seems I’m late to this game. Please, please, please some tell me how to stop that irritating squeak that my boot is making. On another note, I kept kicking my good ankle with my boot, so I decided I needed a counter weight. I’ve been using an ankle weight on my good leg and it works. Might as well build the muscles in both legs. But, please tell me how to stop that squeaking sound.

  • Rebecca

    I know this is a old post but honestly I’ve been so depressed I broke my ankle in a roll over accident about a week & half now & it’s been stressful an my mental health is so bad. I can’t even use my crutches yet because it hurts my broken foot so bad . I can’t walk for 3 months an after that I have a appointment to take the pins maybe the hardware out my foot n if he does that’s another 4/6 weeks I can’t walk & when I’m able to actually steps on my foot I have to see if I ca do it if not I have too another surgery it will be my 4th one to take something out like ugh it’s confusing & so draining. But reading what you wrote put a smile on my face that I haven’t had sense my car accident

    • Jenn Belden

      Oh my goodness, that sounds terrifying! I’m glad you’re ok (aside from the broken foot) – and that does sound painful and exhausting! I’m so sorry – I took it to be a lesson in patience, and figuring else what ELSE I could do while I was laid up.

      Do you have a little scooter or something else helping you move around? I’m glad I could make you laugh a little – I find if I can find a way to find the humor in a situation, it helps me put it in perspective. Sending you healing thoughts.

  • Clair

    Day 5 of a cast up to my knee. Broken foot and ankle. It’s so heavy! Going to the fracture clinic on Weds and praying for a boot as it’s got to be lighter, right? Am actually paying the children to run errands cos they’re so lazy! Lol
    Please tell me it gets better!

    • Jenn Belden

      Oh, that boot WILL feel like freedom when you move from the cast to the boot— but I think you need to work it to your advantage and keep the kids helping (although maybe at a reduced rate).

      Sending healing thoughts (and creative ones, so that you find a less expensive wait to keep the waifs helpful)

  • Claire

    I’m 30 weeks pregnant and have broken my foot in 2 places devastated. But thanks for this advice defo needed.

    • Jenn Belden

      Oh that’s dreadful, not what you need as you reach the end of your term with a wee one on the way! All the more reason to have a rest with your foot elevated and have someone else wait on you a bit!

      Best wishes for speedy healing!

  • Kelly

    Thank you for the great tips! I have a severe sprain and ankle fracture that doesn’t require surgery, but 4-8 weeks (estimated) in this boot right as spring arrives is killing this normally active senior. My injury occurred at the dog park when a group of fun-loving (i.e., rowdy) doggos, playing as they do, “tackled” me from behind. I was caught completely unaware, lifted off both feet, & slammed to the ground. Major ouch! On your recommendation, I’m going to get some Arnica Gel as well as Vit D/Calcium. The boot instruction booklet recommended getting a shoe lift to balance out the leg height and I found the brand EVENup shoe balancers had really great reviews so I just ordered one of those. ( I usually power walk/jog 5 miles daily so to be sidelined like this is infuriating. I’ll check out your upper body workout video suggestions and might look into renting a “knee scooter” to use where I normally walk. That way, I can still workout my good leg, haha!

    • Jenn Belden

      Oh, no! Bad doggies!! The shoe balancers look like a really clever idea – thanks for sharing.

      I’m currently dealing with plantar fasciitis in my left foot (the one I broke in this post) and it has cobbled my daily walks as well – something desperately needed during the pandemic, in particular. The upper body workouts kept me from getting too complacent (aka lazy). Wishing you a speedy recovery!

      • Shelly

        Hi loving your story I broke my foot thebone that connects to the little toe so the side of the foot and toor my ligaments in my ankle I’m a very active person finding it hard to sit about I’m now on week 3 had a horrible experience at fracture clinic they were so rude basically said because I don’t need surgery it’s now upto me to sort my ankle they won’t fund physio so feeling quite deflated I rang my gp who explained what I need to be doing and is book me in physio! I’m a hairdresser so long hours on my feet I need to get this foot sorted I’m in a boot with crutches but struggling to get rid of the crutches and weight bare on the foot it’s like I’ve forgotten how to walk on my foot
        My story is boring out lovely Labrador puppy put a stone by the back door I stepped on it and wham there goes by foot and I heard the snap .
        Shelly xx

        • Jenn Belden

          Oh, no! I can’t imagine that standing on the foot all hours of the day will help it heal more quickly. Can you get access to a knee scooter? It might be awkward at the chair but it would definitely take the pressure off of your foot.

          Wishing you speedy healing and hope that the physio provides some relief!

  • Susan

    This is a old post but I needed this..thanks everyone! I have a 5th metatarsal stress fracture…It did show up on X-ray at the Podiatrist-but I still am not sure how I did it..he said it is an overuse injury..but I have always injured myself all my life(59 yrs )…and feet always hurt and who knows how long I had it..but I could not walk all of a sudden as I was doing my exercises….
    I was in a boot for 3 weeks..and still in pain..he said start walking in your sneakers(they were wide toe box)…and 3 days later I fell tripped with my senior dog and I hurt my other leg trying not to hurt my dog. Other knee black /blue and ankle..(I would laugh if I was still not in it) Hmm…Is funny…Well my original fracture started really hurting again walking in a doc over phone said go back in boot..(now my shin is killing me ? hmm)
    AAAAHHHH..could always be worse…
    I will let you all know how long this takes..I am in week four now…

    • Jenn

      Oh, I’m so sorry (and I won’t laugh other than to say this is entirely something I would do. I mean – look how I broke my foot!!!)

      It felt much better walking in the boot than in soft-soled shoes! Wishing you speedy healing!

    • Sue

      I think I have the same stress fracture as you more X-rays might show it up. Bone density low after chemotherapy 14 years ago. I don’t know how it happened Have a moon boot now, went Thursday to podiatrist and worked Friday. Standing up most of the 7.5 hours was not good. With girls off on holidays it’s hard but I need to be strong and just tell manager i need a week off. I work two days a week cos I’m on pension ( nearly 70 yrs old). Young ones don’t realise we could take longer to heal. Oh well just getting on with it. What’s done is done

  • kath

    Thanks for the super helpful tips to a novice boot-wearing mom. Can you tell me how high the wedge shoe is that balanced your boot? My back is already starting to hurt with just a Keds on the good foot…

    • Jenn

      I measured the wedge on the boot, but in the end I hobbled into Target and eyeballed wedges, and tried on a bunch until I found the one that made my stride feel normal and comfortable. If you can bear going into a store, it’s probably worth it.

      (I’m an oddball and I have a tiny bit of scoliosis, so one hip is already higher than the other – so it turns out that the exact height wasn’t what felt best for me, since i probably need a lift in one shoe anyway.)

  • Nicole

    I’m an Australian living in Dallas and was diagnosed with a fractured foot and put in boot today. Great advice, thank you. I am counting my blessings the heat has cooled off!

  • Jenny

    Thanks for the Blog, your insights and humour! As we know all needed when we damage ourselves! I’m 65, live in Melbourne Australia and currently into week 3 of our 6 week (2nd) lockdown. Today is Friday, Tuesday I slipped on carpeted stairs and have a Weber B distal fibula fracture. Thankfully at my daughter had crutches and a moon boot (non inflatable one). Having to have a weight bearing X-ray and follow up at the hospital next week.

    Just from my short sucks! Hobbling around, having a chair shower with boot removed, takes 35 mins to accomplish. I read to sleep in the boot, which I have done (apart from the first night before I had read up). Tried the pillow, it’s the sheets that are annoying, but don’t want to go out and get satin to make my boot slip easier. So throughout the night, even though after taking strong pain killers, having to wake to basically grab my leg and pillow to change position, as I’m a side sleeper. The mornings are the worst, pain wise, which is normal I guess, from not much circulation.

    I was diagnosed with slight OP in my hips and OA. My thinking is this fall would have possibly broken anyone’s bones, however my GP is pushing for me to start Fosomax or similar. Others have said see an Endocrinologist. I’m having a left hip replacement next year and dreading knowing the performance, rehab to go through after doing this to my foot. Only other break I’ve had was my T6 when horse riding and landing heavy in the saddle when the dear lad turned sharply!

    Sorry I’m raving now, so I’ll stop. Just so frustrated with the whole thing and being in lockdown as well. Good advise on the same height other shoe, however would need a sock for my Birkenstock as we are in winter

  • Kathy

    Thanks so much for this article and the humor. I slipped at home, in the hallway, 2 days ago (after playing tennis and looking forward to well-priced group tennis lessons all of August), wasn’t sure if it was a sprain, Friday x-ray revealed a broken 5th metatarsal. Broken at base and ‘not displaced.’ Dr said that it’s a pseudo-Jones, not a Jones (Jones would require surgery, he said), and to come back for an x-ray in 4 weeks. He was ready to let me leave in the ortho-shoe, but that shoe didn’t feel helpful, so I asked for the boot. Have the short one. It’s heavy and odd, but I’ll take it, because I can actually move around with minimal pain. I did pilates today on the mat (zoom class) and couldn’t do all the exercises, but it felt amazing to do some; then slept for 3 hours. It hurts when I walk, but not as badly as it sounds like others are hurting. Hope we all heal soon. Guess I will not be wearing my new cute summer shoes this summer. Worrying that I’ll be one of those people whose bones don’t reunite, but I always worry. Have a bit of moving around to do tomorrow, but otherwise, will just be pretty much at home, minimal walking, leg up.

    • Jenn

      I’m so sorry! Take it easy the first few days and make sure you have some time with it elevated. Also make sure you don’t have the boot over/underinflated.

      It’s definitely frustrating to deal with in the summer. Best wishes for speedy healing!

    • Mona Zaidi

      My doctor diagnosed me with a 5th metatarsal Jones Fracture. It is a transverse fracture but it is not a displaced fracture and the bones do line up. It happened 2.5 weeks by me rolling my left ankle.
      Initially I was placed in a temporary plaster of Paris cast and then 1.5 weeks ago I was changed into an aircraft boot.
      I am having alot of difficulty wearing the boot as it weighs down on my injured area and causes me alot of pain.
      As a result, I find myself only wearing it for sleeping overnight but I don’t wear it all day.
      Bc I have help, I tend to stay in my bedroom all day And only maneuver from my bed to a recliner next to my bed with help. I go to the washroom with the help of my friend who helps me onto a wheely type chair and wheels me to the toilet. I use my right foot and hands to maneuver on off the toilet.
      I keep my foot elevated most of the day and otherwise I keep it extremely steady. I don’t allow my foot to flex at all.
      I have not been wearing the aircast boot.
      My question is do I need to wear the aircast boot during the day ?? Or can I just do without it if I continue as mentioned above ?
      Will not wearing it during the day affect my healing ?

      • Jenn

        I’m not a doctor so I can’t comment on if you *need* to wear it – I was told that going without it would significantly lengthen my healing time.

        Honestly, I would call your doctor and let them know the aircast hurts/is putting pressure on the tender spot on your foot. I know it definitely took some playing around to find the right amount of inflation – they might be able to guide you with that, and then you can get a better answer for the amount of boot wearing. Wishing you speedy healing!

  • Julie

    Hi Jen
    I can’t tell you how happy I was to find your blog! I’ve been googling life in a cast and air cast boot for the past two months!
    Mine was a trauma corkscrew fracture of my fibula and a break on my inner ankle. So two incision and metal rods and screws.
    7 weeks later, My Ortho has told me I’m healed and can stand in my own two feet, he made me do it. I sweated a lot, LOL. I’m now into my 2nd week of wearing an amazing Air cast Air Select tall boot but haven’t walked much outside yet although I tend to start today. Ortho said I will be 6 weeks max in the boot but he feels I’ll be out of it in 4.
    All great, but how the heck do you pluck up courage to start walking out of the boot? And when do you think is a good time to do it?
    Heel height on the other foot I found is essential. I bought very soft leather wedge sandals with a 4cm heel.
    Hopefully, you’re still allowing posts

    • Jenn

      It was definitely nerve wracking at first. I also found that some shoes hurt a bit, so I had to play around with which ones felt more comfortable. Once the bone is healed though, you really will be fine. Hang in there!

  • Ceca

    These are all greata and helpful tips! I had my follow xray today and found out that the bone (yep, 5th metatarsal) shifted somewhat but does not need realignment just more time in the boot and a lot less walking. I was super bummed that it had shifted as the injury was initially more of crack, a long one, but anyhow it’s another two more weeks and then a followup X-ray. Of course, we have quite a lot of cases of Covid-19 and the x-ray service is a risk located building. Needless to say I hope by two weeks that this is healed enough so I can move to the ‘speacial’ shoe. As for the fall, it was for art! A mis-step from the orchestra seating of a theater after a rehearsal into the aisle towards the stage, and down I went. I performed in the concert and then had the appointment the next day as I needed to fly abroad in three days. Phew!

  • Tina

    I am 6 weeks post ORIF surgery. W metal plates and 10 screws. This is my 5th day weight bearing in a boot. LOTS of pain and I can’t take steps without holding onto something. Trying to get back to work. What am I doing wrong?

    • Jenn

      Oh sweetie, I am SO sorry!
      Your injury is on a whole different level than what I have been through, and I am NOT a doctor.

      What does your doctor and physical therapist say about the pain? They would be the first people I ask.
      Sending you positive thoughts for speedy healing!

      • Julie Harmon

        I’m exactly the same as you right now. In fact I’m 8 days into my air cast and just managing to try walking without the air of crutches. My pain levels are very high so that thankfully isn’t a problem. I’m presuming you’re ok now?
        How and when did you start the transition out of the boot and onto your feet first then with shoes. That scares me.

  • Gail

    Thanks for that recent post. I thought I twisted my ankle hiking in Hawaii Dec. 8, 2019. I could bear weight on it, so it couldn’t be broken, right? Although the freakish bruising and swelling went down, the pain continued. So I had it checked Jan. 8th, and it turns out to be a mildly displaced fracture of the the fibula, and a non-displaced fracture of the tibia. Have been in a very uncomfortable boot with crutches for a week, and was feeling quite depressed. I am 66 years old, very active, and I just bought new cross-country skis. My fitbit is shaming me, although I quickly reduced my goals substantially. I go back to a specialist later this week. Instead of telling him I won’t wear the boot and won’t use crutches, I’m going to buy new shoes, and listen carefully to what he has to say. I’ve already figured out multiple machines at the gym I can use. It’s not forever…

    • Jenn

      The boot is frustrating BUT you will heal so much faster. Excellent tip to reduce your fitbit goals -quite honestly, I took mine off while I was healing.

  • Tina Moore

    Loved your tips!!! Well my stupid broke foot story happened when I was sliding my kitchen table over and I have a farm house (50 pd) bench didn’t want to slide with it!! It fell over on my foot (with no shoes on of course) 2 weeks before Christmas!!! It broke the big toe joint up the metatarsal bone. 6-8 weeks to heal. No lower body working out for 3 months!!! I just cried and cried when I was back in the car!!! I love to workout!!!! I workout 6 days a week!!! I thought to myself how am I going to do this?!!!
    Well I guess the Lord was telling me I need to slow down!!! It’s been almost 3 weeks in a boot and crutches! Non weight bearing on my left leg at all!! I stay positive and look at it as well at least I’m not in the hospital and have cancer or something horrible!! I do have my bad days I do cry but I get over it pretty quick! I have to look at it like this, it’s not going to be forever right? It is definitely a mind game you have to stay positive! I just started using weights for upper body, at least I can work out my upper body right?! Go to the doctor Thursday they’re gonna take more x-rays and we’ll see from there. Hope it’s healing quickly! Anyone that’s going through this you will get discouraged but it’s not gonna be forever I promise!

  • Charlie J Bordeaux

    how are you supposed to keep in the boot? I wore it for time last night md I kept waking up every 2 hrs hot as hell.

    • Jenn

      Hopefully, someone has an answer for you! honestly, I slept with that foot OUTSIDE the covers. It’s heavy, and it’s hard to roll over with.

      I was lucky, and I didn’t have to wear it 24/7 for long before the doc let me take it off overnight. Until then, I had a sock on my healthy foot and I kept the bottom blankets untucked, with a fan pointed at the foot of the bed (hence the sock on the other foot, lol.)

  • Cheryl

    Any advice for sleeping on your side with a boot on? I broke my 5th metatarsal last week and my foot is most comfortable when I’m on my back but that makes me snore and when I wake up my sinuses are a mess.

    • Jenn

      Yes! Try a pillow between your knees, or better yet, a body pillow! My chiropractor told me to put a pillow between my legs but it was hard to hold in place – i found that hugging a body pillow (while crowding the bed a little) helped make space for the boot and kept hips in alignment.

      Otherwise, I found that adding another pillow to elevate my head and diffusing an essential oil mix of peppermint and eucalyptus (or something like Doterra Breathe helped with my sinuses – I had the same issue, minus the snoring.)

      Good luck!

  • Dev O

    I recently broke my foot and in an AirCast. I removed the liner to wash it and now I’m letting it air dry. My foot is killing me

  • Tara Lareau

    Wonderful advice! I had a car accident and crushed my cuboid bone and calcaneus bone into mush. Had to have surgery Aug 27 this year getting 2 plates and 7 pins. I just got my walking cast this week. I have found it extremely awkward and was wondering if they didn’t mold the bottom of the cast properly but apparently this is normal. I will be looking for a taller shoe for my good foot for sure and start trying smaller steps to see if that will help

    • Jenn

      Oh, OUCH!!!

      The walking motion on the boot IS more of a heel-to-toe roll, and I did find that shorter steps were easier.
      My normal (and much too fast) stride felt awkward, for sure.

      Wishing you speedy healing and happy shoe shopping!!

  • Shelly Jamison

    Thank you!! I just fractured my foot and the boot is no joke. I need a higher shoe on my other foot for sure. And the exercise ideas are great. I injured my foot by working out so taking a break is not ideal. I’ll do what I can but this article was more informative than my dr visit!

    • Jenn

      I’m glad I could help! Not being able to exercise was so frustrating (and even though I was given the ok to try a recumbent bike, I was terrified to try it.)

  • Cheryl

    Love this advise – was trying to figure out how to get a bit more balance in terms of height – I guess I’m going shoe shopping!

    • Jenn

      A silver lining to a crappy situation! My tip?
      If you are stuck deciding between a cheaper but “they’ll do” pair and a pricier but “I LOVE THESE SHOES” pair – go with the “I LOVE THESE SHOES” pair.

      My inexpensive pair ($22 at Target) worked fine but in the end, weren’t something I’d wear again and I wish I had let myself spend the extra on the really cute but pricier pair (since I don’t treat myself to shoes like I used to!).

  • Mrs Brenda M Austin

    Good article but I have have Achilles tendinitis and would like to know how other people are fairing with that in a boot. I had to have a back slab plaster cast for 6 weeks and am now likely to be in An Aircast boot for 3 to 4 months. I would like to know how much walking people actually do in a boot a day. I’m allowed to take it off indoors as long as I don’t rush around and still use my crutches. I can sleep without it too.
    I’ve had a few sores from the sides of the boot on the ankle where it’s damaged anyway I wish I knew how many times you press the pump up button to make the bags inflate enough it’s all so much trial and error

    • Jenn

      I did a bit of walking in mine, but did minimize longer outings, and I made sure to elevate and ice at the end of the day when I was walking on it a lot.

      I had my boot in the summertime and I DID get a bit of rubbing on the inside of the boot so I slipped on a pair of fuzzy socks to protect my ankle. The pump up button IS a bit of a gamble, isn’t it? I didn’t feel like I got much instruction other than “what feels comfortable”. I took to carrying the pump with me so I could adjust if my feet started to swell and it felt a bit tight.

      Take care of yourself and wishing you these last few months just fly by.

      • Mrs Brenda M Austin

        Thank you for your reply re my Achilles Tendon problem and wearing a boot. My pump is integral in the boot itself and you have to stick your fingers down the sides of the boot to see how much it’s pumped up which doesn’t seem to be very much at all after several pushes on it both sides. I now wear a ski sock on that foot to help cushion it and strategically place a couple of plasters where it rubs the most! It’s amazing what ideas you come up with to help!

        I have started walking more in it as it’s so hard not going out much but as you suggest don’t do too far for too long in one go. I plan where I’m going to go before I take anything on but still haven’t got the confidence to go round any shopping centres on my own.

        The other problem I have is that my crutches slip when they are wet and I can’t find anything to stop this happening so my warning to everyone else is be extremely careful in the wet weather. I’ve also bought an Aircast raincoat for it as there’s a lot of material in it and used a waterproof spray on the padded bits to doubly ensure it doesn’t get wet.

        Hey ho only another 3 to 4 months in it to go!


  • Gay Price

    Thanks, Jan
    Yeah, it was a welcome and pleasant surprise to get rid of the cast and move on to a moon boot. I was so over it!
    Hopefully four more weeks and I can lose the moon boot and get on with my life!
    Being a good girl, resting it (but not too much) and taking calcium, Vit D and magnesium supplements.

  • Dana

    Can’t tell if I’m laughing or crying at your advice. I badly sprained my ankle and fractured my foot six days ago and I feel like maybe you wrote this just for me. The doctor looked at me like I was crazy when I asked if I could keep walking at lunchtime to get my Fitbit steps in. Today I decided I was done wearing the boot (again, six days in) because it is so frustrating and my hips and back are killing me from the very little bit of walking I have had to do. Thank you for sharing your experience with the world. I am literally saving this on my phone as a bookmark so I remember to re-read it until I stop imagining myself more knowledgeable that the doctor. 🙂

    • Jenn

      Oh no! I’m so sorry!!! You have a break AND a sprain!
      What an awful combination – I’m so sorry.

      Go find yourself a shoe for your back and treat yourself to a massage (or a chiropractic adjustment if you’re into that kind of thing) – or both.

      The inactivity really stinks and honestly, I took off my Fitbit and tucked it into a drawer because I felt like such a slacker.
      You’re not. You’re injured. Check with your doc about riding the recumbent bike – mine said I could do that (still not sure how that was supposed to work with a boot, lol, I had visions of my falling off the bike and hurting myself further.)

      Just be patient with yourself!

  • DeAnn Saenz

    Thank you for your blog. I just got into a boot 3 days ago for a stress fracture. I know everyone says it could be worse, and I did break the ankle on the same foot three years ago, but it still sucks. We leave in one week for a 9 day trip to Disney World. Perfect timing . Just trying to figure out how to make the best of an unplanned situation. Research on how to be comfortable in a boot is hard to come by.

    • Jenn

      If you have a DSW or some other LARGE shoe store, grab a friend (it helps with all the grabbing of shoes from the pile) and find yourself a comfy pair of sneakers (or even a wedge pair of Crocs sandals or Tevas or something of that sort that you can walk in) with a sole the same-ish height. Seriously.

      Normally I’m the thriftiest girl alive but just find a shoe that evens out those hips. Disney is a shit-ton of walking, even taking breaks and trams and such. (And make sure your Doc has given the ok for rides!)

      If you’ve broken the boot you’re probably familiar with it, but just keep the heel-to-toe rolling motion in mind. Good luck!!!

  • Connie

    I fractured my ankle and also 2 hairline foot fractures. I cannot walk with my boot. Trying a supportive shoe this. I literally froze before I tried to walk with my boot and no crutches like I forgot how to walk.

    • Jenn

      Oh, OUCH. The boot takes some getting used to – you really have to learn to walk with a heel-to-toe kind of roll.
      It’s weird to think about how to walk because it’s such an automatic movement, isn’t it?

      Wishing you speedy healing!

  • Karly

    This is amazing and makes me feel SO much better. I broke both my feet, 2 years apart, both times in flip flops. I thought the first time was bad (boot for 2-3 months) until I broke the other one and ended up in a cast and on crutches! 4 months out and I’m still in a boot with no end near in sight.

    Thank you for sharing, from one clumsy girl to another.

    • Jenn

      Thank you for coming to comment and share! Flip flops are my nemesis and I don’t wear them on stairs in the house any more, lol.

      Wishing you speedy healing!

  • Greg

    I broke the 5th metatarsal in my right foot on August 20th. I wasn’t sure it was broke until I still went to a MLB baseball game the same night and it was so painful I knew something was just broke so I went in the next morning for an X-ray. Sure enough it was broke and the 5th metatarsal is a tough break to heal so they put me in a cast for 25 days. It was horrible. I thought no way am I going to be able to do this. My leg felt trapped , my mind was playing tricks on me, and the whole ordeal was just depressing. I didn’t mention I was unable to drive at all so mommy was always coming over to drive me places. The one good thing is that I could order groceries through apps which was a blessing. Anyway, I’ve been using a knee cart the entire time instead of crutches and that has also been a blessing.

    So it’s now September 22nd and I’m cast free and I’m now in a boot. I will wear it when I’m out and about but at home I’m still using the knee cart to move around the house. I have taken it off to drive and that’s a blessing since there is no pain at all in the foot so it give me a slight sense of freedom but it’s all still a hassle to go anywhere. I’m starting back to work in 5 days…. I’m a PE teacher so we’ll see how it goes with my boot , my cart, and my positive attitude. Haha. So that’s where I’m at currently. I have a appt in 3 weeks and he says to start walking a tiny bit in 2 weeks. For instance, to the bathroom slowly, to the fridge, and to the bedroom. I will keep you all posted in 2 weeks.


    • Jenn

      Oh, that sounds like an ordeal! It’s so freeing when they say you can take it off to drive, isn’t it?
      Thank goodness for things like grocery delivery and Amazon.

      Your positive attitude is inspiring! Best of luck on your return to school!

    • Mona Zaidi

      My doctor diagnosed me with a 5th metatarsal Jones Fracture. It is a transverse fracture but it is not a displaced fracture and the bones do line up. It happened 2.5 weeks by me rolling my left ankle.
      Initially I was placed in a temporary plaster of Paris cast and then 1.5 weeks ago I was changed into an aircraft boot.
      I am having alot of difficulty wearing the boot as it weighs down on my injured area and causes me alot of pain.
      As a result, I find myself only wearing it for sleeping overnight but I don’t wear it all day.
      Bc I have help, I tend to stay in my bedroom all day And only maneuver from my bed to a recliner next to my bed with help. I go to the washroom with the help of my friend who helps me onto a wheely type chair and wheels me to the toilet. I use my right foot and hands to maneuver on off the toilet.
      I keep my foot elevated most of the day and otherwise I keep it extremely steady. I don’t allow my foot to flex at all.
      I have not been wearing the aircast boot.
      My question is do I need to wear the aircast boot during all throughout the day ?? Or can I just do without it if I continue as mentioned above ?
      Will not wearing it during the day affect my healing ?

    • Jenn

      Oh, girl. That’s doable – and you’ll be out in time to switch to fall shoes! Good luck and best wishes for speedy healing! Thanks for stopping by!

  • Ashlee Gunby

    I have a 5th metatarsal fracture at the base and I’ve been in the lovely boot. I have tried to find the joy thru all this, but my patience are wearing thin. I started bearing weight last week and the pain is so bad, I have gone back to nonweightbearing. The doctor seems so unaffected by my complaints that I think I’m a wuss. I saw him last week and X-rays were fine 1 month post-fracture. He said wear boot for 3 more months.
    Just wondering, has anyone had to have surgery this far out post-fracture? Dr has not mentioned surgery.

  • Teri

    This post saved my entire day! I’ve got a fresh break (foot) and it’s only day 2 !!!

    This post gave me info, made me laugh and have me hope too.

    Thanks for writing this and being so funny to boot (no pun intended).

    I’ll be referring to this often in the next month or so..

  • Podsy

    So glad I found this article. My story is so boring – i dont even see how I could break my foot. I have a stress fracture just from walking lots at a festival! My back and hips are now playing up so will definitely look at getting some better shoes on my other good foot, not just trainers. The worst bit is not being able to drive and the expensive completely wasted gym membership I am still having to pay.

    • Jenn

      Have you asked if you can get a medical deferral at your gym? With a doctor’s note, I’ve been able to pause memberships until I (or my injured child) can return. It will extend the length of the annual membership, but worth looking into.

      Stress fractures are no fun! I recommend finding a good, comfy shoe with a heel height that puts your feet at even heights – it really made a difference. I got a foam roller to roll out my legs as the muscles just got tight.

  • Kelly

    I have a broken big toe and a fracture, on the top of my left foot. Two heavy Italian dinner plates fell on my foot and it hurts like heck. I do have the walking boot and the walking shoe. The tech, who fitted the boot for me, ended up pressing down on my broken toe. That hurt! Then, when I got home, one f my dogs jumped on that same toe. Needless to say, I can’t even wear the boot for too long. I’m wearing the shoe more, but my big thing is the pain, in the bottom of the foot. Can I use Dr. Scholl’s with it? All I know is that the rest of my summer is ruined.


    • Jenn

      OUCH!!! I’m not a doctor so I can’t answer that; I would follow up with your doctor (or their PA) asap and let them know that you’re feeling pain on the bottom of your foot in the boot. (I”m hoping by now you have resolution)

      I’m surprised they gave you the boot and the shoe at the same time – did they tell you to wear either or? I’m really curious.

  • Julia Johnson

    I just got an avulsion fracture to my right ankle. And no joke, I’m getting married in a month!! It was so dumb how it happened. I just simply rolled it for no reason. There wasn’t anything on the ground to have caused me to mis-step. Now I’m sitting here sweating from the boot and elevating it. Your tips and humor are giving me some hope I can get through this. I just hope I can walk in semi-heels on my wedding day!!

    • Jenn

      HOping you are back in regular shoes for your big day!!! Maybe cute comfy flats for the reception??

      I roll my ankles all the time so now I’m terrified of rolling it!

      • Rachel Hollander

        I have an avulsion fracture of the distal fibula. I have been in a boot for 2.5 weeks now. My ankle still hurts if I rub it wrong. Is that normal? I still ice it daily. Should I continue that? My question is, when you wear the boot, do you have an ace bandage on with a sock and then wear the boot? Do you feel that it helps if you do that, or are you solely wearing the boot with a bare foot?
        Thank you for all of the advice! Helpful!
        I’m going on vacation in a month and my fear is that I’ll still be in a boot.

        • Jenn Belden

          I can only speak to personal experience – I wore my boot with a non-constricting moisture wicking athletic sock (It was summer in Texas and sweating in the boot was making the foam hard and itchy). I didn’t further wrap it – I let the boot do its job.

          As I’m not a doctor – it might be best to make a call to your doctor’s PA regarding the ankle pain and use of an ace bandage. I promise you, the PAs are used to all kinds of questions and they can generally happy to clarify this over the phone.

          You’re still in the initial healing stages so it can still get inflammation! Ice is fine. So is elevating it if its swelling.

          Definitely put in a call to the PA or doctor and ask about the ace and the pain and let me know how you make out! (And I did a walking tour when I got out of the boot, but I brought it along for the trip.Just in case.)

  • Ashley

    You walked right away on a 5th metatarsal fracture?!? I keep reading horror stories. I have the jones fracture.(dancers) nonweight bearing for a few weeks then walk as my pain allows I’m just so scared to displace it plus it still hurts to put much pressure on it!

  • Deb Wallace

    Hi, thanks for all your good information! I fractured my 5th metatarsal at the end of April and my dr has cleared me to transition to a athletic show with good stability. Do you have a particular shoe or type/brand that you recommend while my foot is essentially still on the mend.

    Thanks so much!

    • Jenn

      Honestly, I think it depends on your foot.

      I found that shoes with a firmer insole and arch support that hit in the right place caused less discomfort – so the super lightweight, barely-there athletic shoes were NOT my friend. Neither were the ones with an arch support that didn’t quite hit where it should. (The ones that you might be more forgiving of because they are so damn cute…)

      My feet tend to pronate, so I broke down and bought a pair of running shoes with the type of soles to counteract the pronation.

  • Jessica Ayers

    I know this is an old post but found it while googling something boot related. It is oh so true and hilarious! I’m a momma of 5 boys with a hubby who works out of town during the day and have been in a boot for 2 days. I have at least 3 weeks to go. I was in crutches and a cast for 2 days and thought I was going to die! My real story is I was helping my hubby move our grill out of the shed while he was home over the weekend and stepped out of the shed and my foot gave out. Thought it was just sprained and limped on it a few hours before I decided maybe I should get it checked. I fractured it in 2 places!! Technically both my foot and ankle are fractured! I’ve really enjoyed having the boys help me more and dinner and groceries that have been brought to us, haha. I’m so ready for this to be over though. Oh and Tylenol (yes just Tylenol) knocks me out!

    • Jenn

      Old but relevant (because I broke the other foot last summer!)

      The one real positive outcome was that my family (and I) realized they were capable of SO much more than they were doing. The trick is to keep up the help when you are healed!!

      Hope you are out of the boot soon!

  • Charlotte

    Thank you! I broke my foot this weekend! For Father’s Day my husband wanted to rent a 22’ water slide for the backyard! It was so much fun until I rolled my ankle and broke my foot! Luckily we have several orthopedic urgent cares in the area and saw a foot/ankle specialist. I have the shoe- not full boot. With two small children this is challenging and I appreciate your advice! After it heals, will the foot feel normal again? This is my first broken bone

    • Jenn

      I can only speak to my injur(ies). My left foot (which I broke in this instance) DOES feel fine, although it ached a bit in the first few months after it was officially healed.

      My second break (because I’m awesome) was a dancer’s fracture, and it still gets sore if I have walked a lot and am wearing less than awesomely supportive shoes.

      However, the doctor tells us that the bone will be like before when healed (neither stronger nor weaker) so I’m going to favor it feeling normal when healed. The shoe is almost as awkward as the boot – you will feel better when you can progress to your own shoes!!!

        • Jenn

          OUCH! All I can say is follow doctor’s directions. Elevate and ice/heat (per DR orders) if it is still aching (mine did for a while). Do your best to stay off of it. Are you in a boot? Life is easier once you are in the boot but it gets hot/sweaty/itchy.

          My doc told me I could run on it if I wanted – but it would take longer to heal, and the more I could stay off of it the less it would delay healing. Go splurge on a pair of shoes with the same height wedge as your boot (for your free foot) – with your hips the same height, your back/hips with thank you!! Did he tell you to take Calcium/Vitamin D, too? If not, check back in with your nurse to see if that is something you should add in.

          When I finally got out of the boot, squishy soles hurt. I did better with a firmer soled shoe, firm soled sandals (cork vs my comfy padded Clarks).

          Let people wait on you if they are offering.

          Sending healing thoughts your way!

          • Ashley

            Thanks for the reply! I have the stiff soled shoe and I have the aircast walking boot for when I start walking. Dr said to wear the stiff soled and can transition into walking boot. It’s been 7 days since the fracture and I still haven’t walked in the fear of displacing the bone. I tried once but it hurt and if it hurts it’s not ready to be walked on. I have starting taking vitamins. I ice a lot. Dr said 5th metatarsals can be hard to heal because of poor blood supply there so I’ve been using a heat pack to attract the blood lol. Do you think that is beneficial? At what stage of the game we’re you able to walk? I would love to return to work on week 3 but I have to be able to ambulate. I really can’t do surgery!

            • Jenn

              I was walking on it right away – I was the opposite, I started off in the walking boot and transitioned to the stiff soled shoe (I left the orthopedic office in the boot both times I’ve broken my foot.) That said, he told me to walk on it as little as possible at first.

              Your fracture sounds like it was worse than mine if you still aren’t yet bearing weight on it. I’m so sorry!

              I can’t speak to whether the heat is beneficial NOW as I’m not a doctor. My release instructions said to ice it while there was swelling and THEN switch to heat (google heat vs ice to understand what they each do) – but as your doctor is approaching it differently, I would defer to his instructions.

              The doctors PA is usually very helpful – I would call the doctor’s PA to see what else you can do (heat vs cold). Keep it elevated and rest. Good luck!

  • Faith Wilson

    How do you make the Velcro noise when you walk go away? People look at me weird when I’m walking down the halls In school because my boot is so loud.

    • Jenn

      I don’t know!! That was annoying. I think because it was so new…maybe fiddling with the velcro at home so it’s not so stiff? My boot SQUEAKED on clean floors. It drove me crazy.

      Good luck to you!

      • Aimee

        I was in Walmart Saturday and this little old lady looked, smiled and said, ” thats a special pretty little shoe your wearing “.
        I had to laugh because I hate this thing and its driving me nuts.

  • Aimee

    Ty for all the tips
    Mines a boring story lol
    Back in Jan I slipped on ice, really bashed up my left leg and didn’t really feel anything major in my right foot except I figured I had twisted it or maybe mild sprain. I have broken my foot 2 xs before and didn’t know it until couple days later it turned black and blue.
    I was off work 2 weeks as my left leg healed, the right foot swelling went down and I figured it was healing from being twisted.
    Easter I noticed it had been getting extremely sore more and more, instead of feeling better, it was feeling worse.
    Went to my Drs next day he xrayed and said that I had a Avulsion usually caused by a break, but I had no break.
    Gave me a script for a $200 compression ankle / sock, wore it faithfully but after 5 weeks it was worse then ever.
    Would be fine all day, then by dinner I couldn’t put any weight on it, felt like bones were clicking, sounded like someone cracking their knuckles.
    Went back this past Monday, he sent me to Fracture Clinic / Specialist, after dragging my butt out of bed to be there at 5:30 AM!!!
    The specialist used exact same xray that my Dr took in April and within minutes he found a fracture and a chip
    So I’m in a boot until end of July.
    How the he** did my Dr miss those ?
    Not his first miss of broken bone or other injuries.
    3 years ago I tripped over a kitten and fell, right away I knew there was something.
    Went to emergency they said nothing wrong just badly bruised inside.
    Went to him 4 xs telling him that there was something wrong, I literally had to lift my right arm with my left to use it.
    Finally 5th time ( in 6 weeks ) I went in my Drs partner was in and sent me for more xrays and an ultrasound on that arm.
    Turned out there were 2 breaks and a torn rotator cuff

    • Jenn

      The urgent care here has missed more than one broken bone, including my son’s clearly broken elbow!
      We recently had an orthopedic urgent care center open up, and anything we suspect could be a break sees that location (and not the standard urgent care.) It’s SO frustrating though, isn’t it!!!

      I’m so sorry!!! Hope you heal faster now that you are in a boot! Get yourself a cute pair of sandals with a wedge to meet the boot and save your lower back. Momma says you have permission to buy new shoes! You deserve them!!!!

      • Aimee

        TY hope you and your son heal / healed quickly.
        This boot drives me nut, I take it off and wear my compression gel so when I go into work a couple hours a day.
        I dont know how the ones that have to wear it 24 hours do it, I would go nuts lol.

  • Jill Petersen

    I missed a step on the stairs and fell hard o to my foot breaking it in 2 places on Mothers day! I appreciate your words of wisdom. I totally overdid it today and I’m in a lot of pain. I’m just not sure how much is too much activity. My doc says weight bearing to my comfort level. I use my crutches *most of the time but I own a cleaning business and the work must go on! My daughters have had to step in and help clean. I guess i just need to take it easy. I’m worried I will delay healing time if I don’t cool it!

    • Jenn

      Please take it easy! My doc said I could run every day if I wanted – but it would just delay healing!!!

      Your situation is so much harder with a job on your feet. Maybe a knee scooter to take the pressure off of your foot so you can get some stuff done??? I still took time to elevate every day – I’d say if you are ending the day in pain, it’s too much so maybe continue to cut back (or just have your daughters step in for a week or so and just let it HEAL.)

      Wishing you speedy healing!

  • Donna

    So glad I found your article, broke my foot last week and changed from a cast to a boot today. Living in Thailand so a similar situation with the heat and I’ll be taking full advantage of working from home in the air con.

    I’m going to be flying in 5 weeks so if anyone has any tips in terms of how soon you can start to put weight down.

    • Jenn

      I would think that your doctor and/or physical therapist will be able to give you a better idea of that. Good luck, and I’m glad I could help!

  • Liz White

    Thanks for invaluable advice. Ordered some arnica cream and wedge trainers from amazon so husband sending you the bill lol. Found an invaluable youtube 20 min yoga with broken foot workout which has kept me sane. Good healing to any subsequent subscribers.

    • Jenn

      Glad I could help but please tell your husband he is welcome to the bill.
      What you save in not needing chiropractic adjustment from walking with your hips off balance should more than make up for the cost of the trainers. THOSE you can probably wear later if you were clever in your shopping!

      Sending wishes for speedy healing!

      • Pat Willard

        Here’s a good story. Fell into a two feet deep drainage ditch on the 3rd day of a long planned for trip to Indonesia. Lateral break from third toe to butter edge. We never go anywhere so the trip was deeply longed for and planned (and we’re in our early 60s, kids finally the hell out of the house, etc) so after a day in various medical facilities that ended with a funny surgeon giving me a boot and telling us to keep traveling, I came back to the hotel where we simplified the trip down and I cried and found your post. THANK YOU! We are going (slowly) on to Laos making a party of it all.

        • Jenn

          Oh no! I’m glad you finally got things sorted out (getting injured while traveling where the medical care may be questionable is always a concern) and good for you for carrying on with your trip! If your boot is foam lined, I can tell you (from living in Texas) that it gets very hot and the foam can get scratchy if it gets damp, then dries. You may want to wear a tall sock of that happens (I cut off the toe so my piggies could breathe).

          Best of luck to you!

  • Chris

    Great info! Thanks! I sprained my ankle a few years back playing softball…I know it’s not quite the same thing but these tips would have been a lifesaver back then. Bookmarking just in case 🙂

  • Derek Miller

    You will be sore after taking boot off. Your Achilles has not been used so stretch.ankles will hurt too


  • Derek Miller

    Just went to surgeon two weeks after the break and I get to take boot off and can drive yeah!!! Still 6 weeks to go to normal activity

    Tremendous news

    If you have to be in the boot wear it maybe take off for an hour while watching tv

    Put a garbage bag around it take quick showers get a temporary handicap parking sticker

      • Melanie

        I broke my fifth metatarsal at the base. It is displaced. I didn’t go to a doctor for 4 weeks after, the first one said sprain, you will be fine. When I was still limping went to s Pidiatrist where he did an xray and said, broken, get in the BOOT. I feel like I am carrying around a bowling bowl. I don’t want surgery but might have to get a pin put in. I understand it is harder to heal the fifth metatarsal because the blood flow is not good in that area.

        • Jenn

          Oh, I’m so sorry! I have a soccer player and we’ve had so many missed breaks – by habit we head to urgent care to rule out a break (because xrays). They still missed breaks. Now we go straight to the orthopedist (or the orthopedic urgent care) if we think an X-ray is needed.

          That boot is SO awkward! Wishing you quick and complete healing.

      • Gay Price

        Yep. On 2 Oct. Went to Dr the next day as I originally thought it was just a bad sprain. She sent me for x-rays immediately. Fractured 5th metatarsal. Off to Emergency Department at Hospital. Put me in a plaster cast from my toes to my knee.
        Back one week later. Removed the cast, thank goodness and put me in a moon boot. Yay! six weeks for x-rays and hopefully no more moon boot!

        • Jenn

          Congrats on getting out of the cast and into the boot. Its awful if you are starting out with it but moving from the plaster cast, it feels like a bit more freedom, doesn’t it!!

          Take those calcium and Vitamin D supplements, rest up and best wishes for speedy healing!

  • Ter

    Enjoyed your spin on this dilemma! I broke my foot Nov 3. Boot, crutches, no weight bearing for 6 weeks. Saved by a borrowed scooter from crutch difficulties! Now walking in boot but finding I get sore in many other places quickly. Frustrating to be more free but still not completely! I have a few more weeks in the boot I think Totally agree with letting others save me steps! Wishing us both speedy healing!

    • Jenn

      I’m healed, but I do feel some pain if I’m not wearing the best shoes or walking too long! I wish you a very speedy recovery, and yes – let people help you. Pride and self-sufficiency is great – but tiring!

  • Derek Miller

    Just got my cast 4-6 weeks will seem like hell! I am going to go stir crazy in my house how
    Much tv reading can I do? Thank goodness for Uber drivers take me to do stuff that has to be done

    • Jenn

      Oh, that’s a long time. I hope it’s waterproof. I saw it as a good time to catch up on all the Netflix series and all those books I’d been accumulating. Good luck!

  • Helena

    The closest I’ve come to a broken foot is a broken big toe and that was bad enough for a couple of days. But I can’t imagine the inconvenience of being in a boot, especially with my job at school, running around with Middle School kids! You’ve got some great tips here, packaged up with some great humor and tidbits of personal life! Makes for a great read, even if I’ve never had a broken foot. But I’ll know what to do perchance I ever do!

    • Kathryn Evans

      It truly sucks! I just broke my ankle and I’m stuck in a boot for 7 weeks. Broke my lower tibia the 15th of this month and it sucks big time.

      • Jenn

        I won’t lie – it’s HOT in that boot. Did they show you how to lay the foam piece that covers the toe flat on the base and set your foot on top of it so your piggies can fly free? IT’s cooler that way.

        Here’s another tip – if you sweat INSIDE the boot, that foam lining can get stiff. As much as it sucks, if you can wear leggings or something on hot days to collect the sweat…I ended up cutting the toes off a pair of tall socks and wearing them like leg warmers underneath the boot.

        • Misty

          I do this too! Its especially helpful after the boot too when u have a brace but wanna wear sandals cause it’s hot in the south. I have had “The Boot” too many times to count. At least fun funky cute knee highs & pretty toe nails are a consolation. This time I got the plastic air cast which isn’t as heavy as the metal one – so thank goodness for that!

      • Denys

        I broke my foot 2 weeks ago. I’m always worried of making it worse. I was told I can start putting weight on it next week. I am so scared! I also ate Oreos in bed in self pity lol!

    • Desiree Nelson

      Try having a tendon issue that required using a boot for 6 months prior to surgery then on to non weight bearing in a cast for 6 weeks. Finally I am back in a boot and just starting PT post surgery. Been in this boot for 8 months so far and not looking forward to having it any longer! You have some great advise about dealing but best advise is to have a shoe the same height on the other foot! Sure does wonders!

        • Jenn

          Honestly, I did, if only because it was a hassle to get the boot pumped up to where it was comfortable (over and over again) when taking it off.

          That is something I would check with your doctor. Mine said I could take it off and walk on it but had to realize that when I did it would lengthen the amount of time I had to wear it. I just kept it on – but I’m lazy.

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