Barefoot Running Highs

Note: I am not advertising for this company or the shoes here and have absolutely no affiliation with them…but maybe I should after reading my own post! I am simply using my awesome running shoes as a jump start for this blog.

Have you seen these cool shoes yet?  The hubby and I got a pair last summer and since then I have gotten many questions when I where them:
* Are they supportive? – this one makes me laugh
* Are they comfortable?  Surprisingly very!
* Can you feel the pebbles and rocks when you run?  I haven’t actually been on trails yet with them 🙁 but I bet you can!
* How often do you have to replace them? Considering you don’t have all that cushion you pay for in other shoes that gets worn down …I’m assuming I won’t have to replace them that often…I think I heard a figure of 1000 miles and counting(?) – but don’t quote me on that.
* Where can you get them!? – Actually I just pulled this image from the company’s website and they are great prices on there! 

And I am sure there have been others over the months.  At the end of the summer, I was wearing them everywhere I possibly could…on the bike pulling the Burley, to the grocery store and beyond.  Of course winter came and they are not the warmest shoes to wear in the rain – so they have been reserved for BodyPump classes…where I had instructors tell me maybe I should wear a more supportive shoe (again, just have to laugh!) and they are afraid I am going to drop the weights on my toes (which I shrug at since unless you have steel-toed shoes on, any shoes aren’t going to protect you from the force of a weight being dropped on your foot!).

Yet – recently – I have decided that I want to aim at completing my first Tri in, hum, 3 years or no 4! and want to do it “barefoot”.  So I pulled out my Vibrams the beginning of the year and hit the treadmill.  I have slowly been working my way up the ladder of minutes I can run comfortably in them.  Being a fitness professional – you would think I would have done some research on barefoot running before starting.  But, as a mom and busy American woman – who has time for research?  So, I went off the only 2 pieces of info I have heard – 1 about barefoot running and the 2nd from an old coach.

1) Start with only 5 minutes at a time.
2) Only increase your distances (running, swimming, biking) by about 10% a week.

With these two tidbits, in just a couple of weeks I was able to work myself up to two barefoot workouts a week, and up to a full 14 minutes of running at one time.  This all before I got sick a couple of weeks ago – and am now home nursing one of my kids.

Yet, in all this sickness – I was jumping at the bits to take a few minutes to myself and get back out there in my Vibrams this afternoon. 

Now, I will tell you I have never really been a runner.  Even though one of my past teammates nicknamed me the Gazelle because of my run – hinting that I might have a run of a runner – running has never been my game.  While I have learned to enjoy it for the mere fact that one of the 3 legs of a triathlon is completed in this manner,  I rarely obtain that “runners high” emotion after one of my training sessions.  To me, running usually feels more like a chore – especially outside where I have no monitor of how fast or how long I am going.

I feel, though – all of this is about to change.  Seriously, I have run outside in my Vibrams now a couple of times – and I can’t believe the sensational feeling I receive from this simple act.  My form feels fluid, my legs thriving on the forward motion, my feet absorb the push back from the ground and I am propelled forward without hardly the effort I usually have to muster to start running.  With my “Fivefingers”, I am the African runner who can run from village to village without growing weary to deliver my message.  I am the Jamaican track star who runs to bring my country honor.  I am one with the Earth in a way that God intended me to be – taking and receiving from His creation in a way that only He could have designed the body to do.

Never again will I enshroud my feet with the trappings of a Nike or Adidas running shoe.  Never again will I allow technology to triumph the Creator’s engineering of our body’s design.  And maybe, just maybe will I never say again that running is a chore… all thanks to my Vibrams!

So while I say good-bye to my days of barefoot and pregnant – I happily say hello to my days of barefoot and running!  I only wish it wasn’t almost 10 at night right now – for I have so inspired myself that I am longing to go running as I write :-).

Do you care to join me for a “high”?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *