All I want to do is drink beer and train like an animal.
- Rod Dixon

I'm feeling rough. I'm feeling raw. I'm in the prime of my life.

The Lifestyle: Barefoot Running

[Still playing with posting via posterous and decifing if I like it]

This is an interesting video explaining some of the science behind the resurgence in barefoot running. I found it on Vibram Five Finger webite, a company that makes, well, uh they make ... I guess you could call them foot - gloves for running? They look like this:

Fivefingers Sprint

I've seen them around and didn't know what to make of them. After watching the video and thinking about it I'm not sold but I also don't think it's bullshit. It seems from a physiological point of view the idea seems to be that running barefoot promotes better form. However, running barefoot is not the only way to achieve better form, though it might be the most "natural" way especially compared to endless form drills.

So VFF products have the potential to be a training tool for those who want to change their form. But this is not a new idea. Back in 2004 Nike came out with their Free running shoe with a segmented sole to simulate barefoot running. While some people were converted most people thought it was just a fad or a neat toy at best. Even earlier at the turn of the millennium there were sprinters at my high school, fast ones even, who would do a few barefoot strides at the end of their workouts to strengthen their feet.


But as a cautionary tale let me tell you what happened to me in college. In the spring of 2004, my freshman year, I decided that I was going to "strengthen" my feet ... because ... I don't know I was in college. Anyway, I walked around campus barefoot for a few weeks (I wore shoes inside). The result was ... *drumroll* ... I had plantar fasciitis the entire summer including for my first trialthlon.

The moral of the story is that running barefoot is how your feet were designed to be used ... unless your feet, like mine, weren't really very well designed for running. Enter the running shoe.

What do you think? Share a barefoot running story if you have it!

Thanks for reading.

Posted via email from alcovia's posterous

1 comment:

  1. i wore nike frees for a while, and liked them a lot. i think what i liked was the combo of light weight, good heal-toe flex and that they were real soft without feeling mushy. i don't know that it felt like running barefoot, but for people without foot issues, i think they're real comfy. also, they say you're supposed to wear them for like 20 minutes a couple times a week. i trained for and completed a marathon in them and had no issues. like everything else, they're good for some, not for others.