Originally Posted by Grosbard
Here's my theory on the break-in period: You should keep the first few wearings short (2-3 hours) no matter what. That's because it's not about your personal pain tolerance, but it's about your gait.
During break-in, the shoe is adapting to your foot shape and the way you apply pressure during a normal step (gait). While you might be tough enough to tolerate wearing the shoes all day long, you might be modifying your gait a little bit to compensate for the pain. That means you won't be breaking in the shoes with your normal gait, but with a different one. But over a short amount of time (2-3 hours), you probably won't feel much pain, so you'll walk more or less normally.
I think this applies (albeit less so) even if you feel no pain at the first wearing. That's because after a few hours of wearing the shoes, though there isn't pain, the shoes will still feel "different" from your other shoes (cause they haven't yet adapted to you)...and that will affect your gait also.
Feel free to propose any corollaries to my theory.
I agree. I buy shoes that feel comfortable from day one, I'm NOT in the stretch to fit camp. However, I still limit wear for the first couple of times to a few hours and light walking only, and only during dry weather.