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2013-08-28 7:22 PM


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Subject: Barefoot Running
I'm deciding to give barefoot running a go.

I have pronated feet and have cushioned shoes and custom made outhodics for the past 11-12 years but am deciding to give the barefoot idea a try.

I figure if it doesn't work out, the downsides are minimal, I just go back to using the footwear I'm currently using in 6 months time and go back to what I have been doing.

I have a lot of ankle, achilles, knee and hip trouble. I'm 24 years old and weight 74kg so I'm not on the heavy side.

My questions are:

How do I get started?

Should I get minimal type shoes first then develop into five finger or running sandals later on? Also what work shoes should I look to wear? What about cycling shoes?

Love to hear from anyone that has tried it.


2013-08-28 7:44 PM
in reply to: Flying Kiwi

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Subject: RE: Barefoot Running

"I'm deciding to give barefoot running a go."

"I figure if it doesn't work out, the downsides are minimal"

"I have a lot of ankle, achilles, knee and hip trouble."

I'll be the first to say that "barefoot running" is probably a terrible idea for you.

2013-08-28 9:27 PM
in reply to: Flying Kiwi

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Subject: RE: Barefoot Running
Barefoot means no shoes! VFFs are shoes. Start slow and short. You won't regret it.

http://barefootrunning.com/

Good luck!

Ted
2013-08-28 10:14 PM
in reply to: Flying Kiwi

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Subject: RE: Barefoot Running
To transition to barefoot, start slowly ... and slow is slower than you think.

Rather than going to minimal shoes or VFF, try first some running shoes with low heel drop. Then focus on your running form, strike, stride and cadence. You may want to take a look at chi or pose running. To keep good running form you should run shorter distances, this can be frustrating if you're used to lots of long runs.

To go barefoot, it's better to be barefoot rather than use minimal/VFF shoes, you have more ground feed back. When you go on your run then take of your shoes and just walk a few 100m, to feel the contact with the ground. Then take on your shoes and run as normally. Next time, you may run lightly barefoot a few 100m. Then take on your shoes and run normally. Increase the barefoot distance very slowly.

Run/walk barefoot on different surfaces, you may be surprised to find that asphalt is very smooth and nice to run barefoot because you don't have to worry about stones and holes.
2013-08-28 10:31 PM
in reply to: Flying Kiwi

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Subject: RE: Barefoot Running
Find a nice grassy field. Go run around. Don't screw yourself up and whatnot.



2013-08-28 11:56 PM
in reply to: Goosedog

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Subject: RE: Barefoot Running

Originally posted by Goosedog Find a nice grassy field. Go run around. Don't screw yourself up and whatnot.

Wise words.



2013-08-29 1:47 PM
in reply to: GMAN 19030

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Subject: RE: Barefoot Running
Originally posted by GMAN 19030

"I'm deciding to give barefoot running a go."

"I figure if it doesn't work out, the downsides are minimal"

"I have a lot of ankle, achilles, knee and hip trouble."

I'll be the first to say that "barefoot running" is probably a terrible idea for you.




Agreed.
Your Achilles and calf muscles will hurt at first. Since you are already prone to Achilles injury, you could do some damage. On the other hand, if you do it smart, it may strengthen that tendon and fix the problem.
2013-08-29 3:55 PM
in reply to: dfroelich

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Subject: RE: Barefoot Running

Yeah, lots of good responses here.

I don't think it's very realistic to expect to do all of your running barefoot, as we live in a world where asphalt, broken MD 20/20 bottles, dog poo and a variety of other things exist. Shoes can be rather helpful.

What I do is use barefoot running as a tool. After a hard track workout or even a long run I to strides in the grass. 

2013-08-29 8:06 PM
in reply to: Flying Kiwi

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Subject: RE: Barefoot Running

A lot of the 'barefoot' running has turned into 'minimalist' running.  i.e. shoes that are a little lighter, more flexible and lower drop (heal to toe) than before.

so- you could go 'all the way' and get yourself a pair of VFFs.  Start slow... like 1/4 mile runs.  I'm a flat footed pronator with lots of injuries- and was able to train up in them.  it took a few months before I was doing 5-7mi runs, and my feet and arch were absolutely getting stronger, and my achilles managed as well as it ever does.

but- then I kept hitting rocks, and it was really hurting the bottom of my feet.  And when I needed to ramp up my running for marathon training, I just found it way easier to run in running shoes.  

I think some of the more cushioned, more minimal shoes might be a safer compromise if you want to move in that direction.  there's a big difference between a VFF and a nike free, kinvara or brooks pure project shoe.  It's an experience.  you may learn something about your body. you may like it.  you may get hurt.  Unlikely that you'll do any permanent damage that a few weeks of laying low won't cure- so go for it.

as for cycling shoes.... I don't think there's a minimalist revolution going on there.    yet.

2013-08-29 9:35 PM
in reply to: morey000


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Subject: RE: Barefoot Running
Yes I intend to get a pair of "minimalist" type shoes. Looking at new balance minimus or something similar.

There is just too many rocks on the trail I run and too much glass when I run on the street at night or early morning.

I'll do drills etc on grass frields or running tracks in bare foot.

Five fingers just look rediculous!
2013-08-29 10:35 PM
in reply to: Flying Kiwi

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Subject: RE: Barefoot Running
Originally posted by Flying Kiwi

Five fingers just look rediculous!


I'm not particularly an advocate of barefoot running (I've done it a bit, and...meh) nor VFFs, but if you're worried about looking ridiculous, you are in the wrong sport.


2013-08-29 10:42 PM
in reply to: Flying Kiwi

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Subject: RE: Barefoot Running
Originally posted by Flying Kiwi ... Five fingers just look rediculous!
True. But in Vibram's defense- there is something to it.  Being able to splay your toes out while you run, makes a real difference in how you use the muscles in your feet.  I felt a real difference.
2013-08-30 9:43 AM
in reply to: morey000

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Subject: RE: Barefoot Running
I have a pair of Merrell trail gloves (good for road and smoother trails).
Sure, you cannot splay out the toes as much, but it does have a pretty huge toe box that mimics that effect.
I do not wear them much anymore. They require too much staring at the ground, scanning for foot punishing gravel. The Brooks pure drift are super nice and can be worn without the sole for a zero drop shoe, but with a little more rock protection.
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