August 1st, 2010
Barefoot Bit: The Runs
Ok, I’ll be honest, my “barefoot” runs for this week leave something to be desire…like more runs. I velcroed on my FiveFingers a whopping two times this week. And the first run cut short too for whatever reason my calves were killing me! They used to be tender when I first started running in the FiveFingers, but this was really unusual. So I canned the run and did yoga instead.
Then my second run was last night on the beach. I ran a speedy (for me) 3 miles with Dave and Jonathan. My Garmin was being obstinate, but we’re guessing an 8:30 min/mile pace. Yes. I ran all of that in my FiveFingers. No stopping.
I know that that sounds a bit hypocritical because I’m always preaching to you to go slow and build gradually, and this is quite a jump for me. But I’ll let you in my thought processes if you’re interested:
1) It’s sand not pavement, my feet will be receiving significantly less impact than usual—if anything was going to hurt it would be my calves (and I was right)
2) Every time I’m at the beach I see so many people running completely barefoot…my instinct tells me the majority of these people (if any at all) do not run in minimalistic footwear any other time they run.
3) I just felt like it. I did 1 mile straight on a track a few weeks ago and had no problems. 3 miles in the sand should actually easier on my feet.
So there you have it. You can scold me if you must, but to be honest, I’m going to be doing most of my runs this week on the beach, in my FiveFingers or completely barefoot. Well, except the 9-miler I have scheduled for tonight (should have been this morning, but it was raining and under flood warnings here).
Barefoot Bit: Bikila
Ya’ll know I love my FiveFingers! If you don’t know that then you’re probably new to Abby Normally (Hi! Thanks for stopping by!)…I own the Sprints, and I covet just about all of the other models of the FiveFingers…except the Bikila.
The Bikila is the only FiveFingers designed especially for running. How so? They provide more padding than other models. They also have a more developed tread on the bottom.
This does not sit well with me. The beauty of barefoot running is that your feet have such intimate contact with the ground that you can adjust your stride and step to remain injury free during your runs. Also, because your feet are so exposed, you find that you strike the ground with considerably less force than in shoes. When you’re wearing shoes, you hit the ground SO hard that you almost need the extra protection of the shoe.
But what about Bikala? Perhaps I need to try them out and speak from experience, but seeing what I have researched, I feel that the padding in the Bikala defeats the purpose of a “barefoot” shoe. First of all, you lose some of that sensory communication when you add both padding and a thicker tread. This means you are not as able to adapt to the terrain as you are in other models or totally barefoot. Another problem that this might cause is that you would hit the ground harder: potentially problematic considering the lack of support in the shoe.
So what are your thoughts on the Bikalas, or even FiveFingers in general? Would you buy them?