I used to have pain in the ball of my foot, and I know some others have reported it. You might have to track back to late November or early December. I used to be a 4-5 mile per day walker. Before my PF really struck, I had 3-4 months of pain in the ball of my foot when walking, also right at the base of my toes -- really metatarsal pain to my mind. But I walked thru it (like an idiot) and it went away after 1 or 2 miles. That was around Feb. -- May 1998. PF really hit me in the middle of the summer -- and when it did, the ball/toe pain stopped. Of course, I wonder if it wasn't a hint of tarsal tunnel syndrome (other curse of the footsies). Sorry this is probably not the help you want -- but dig back through the board. There IS discussion that pertains to your type of pain because I remember taking a small part in it.