Friday, July 15, 2011

My First Bad Run

OK, so today after two days off I went out and practiced some of the drills posted yesterday. I was surprised at how little you have to lean forward to begin forward motion when bouncing on your toes. Otherwise I'm not really sure what I'm supposed to gain from doing the drills, I'm not seeing a direct connection to actual running or form...

After drills I tried running a bit while keeping my knees bent slightly more and not reaching my foot out as far, keeping it totally relaxed. It felt . . . wait for it . . .

Thursday, July 14, 2011

My Aching Achilles

I've managed to get in three real runs now and they felt pretty good. On each of them I started getting a hot spot on the outside edge of the ball of my left foot but no other issues at all. On Monday I ran one mile BF then later that evening played a two hour long softball game that pushed me to my limit. The great news is that by not using my orthotics in my cleats I didn't experience any of the "normal" pain that I used to while playing! The bad news is that I strained my Achilles tendon in my right leg. I didn't know it at the time but I woke on Tuesday morning STIFF. I took the last two days off, trying to stretch things back out and I think I'm going to be ready to get back to a little run tomorrow.

Friday, July 8, 2011

First Barefoot Mile!

I couldn't help myself!  Two days ago I went on my first "real" barefoot run, 1/2 mile at the local high school track, and it felt really good. It felt so good that even though I know that I'm not supposed to increase my mileage more than 1/8th mile every run and there should be a rest day between each run I went for it anyways and hit the mile mark! I know that one measly mile isn't that far in the traditional running world but for me to be able to do it barefoot and pain free felt wonderful! I could tell that the last 1/4 mile my muscles were starting to get fatigued and my form probably started to suffer a little but I'm no worse for the wear. I was actually pretty worried that I was going to be crippled up today after consecutive barefoot runs but I feel pretty good. I have one achilles tendon that was a little tight this morning but I don't have any pain and not even any significant soreness. I'm ready for my run tomorrow!

I did have a justification for the run though. I had to get my girls to the beach in 10 minutes to watch the three armed librarian read for story time on the beach! So, not only was it my first mile but I was pushing a two seat jogging stroller and I got to see a three armed librarian! Totally worth it!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Feet Pictures - Day 19

I took these pictures back on day 19. Not a lot of visible change, when I put the Day 0 pictures next to them I think I can see some slight changes in my arches but nothing drastic. I know that I'm feeling great though! I just ran my first .5 miles BF and finished pain and blister free!

Foot Length: 29.4mm, no change

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Why Am I Running Barefoot?

In the last three weeks following my decision to bare my feet I've had a lot of people ask me "Why aren't you wearing shoes anymore?" and "What's with the barefoot thing?” In as few words as possible I try to explain to them my reasoning while not sounding completely crazy… and I'm pretty sure I fail at the latter part. Honestly, that's fine with me! Let me explain why...

Friday, July 1, 2011

One Step Forward, Two Steps Back...

Two days ago I posted that I had gone for a 2.5-mile barefoot walk and everything went well (except the little hot asphalt incident...). So yesterday I decided that it wouldn't hurt to just take a little jog down the street and back. If I could handle a 2.5-mile walk surely I could handle a 300-meter jog, right? . . .Wrong! I must have had the WORST barefoot running form ever witnessed. In just 300-meters I managed to turn the hot spots on the balls of my feet into blisters and I also managed to bruise my left heel from "setting" it down to hard... I was not heel striking in the traditional sense of running but in an attempt at being completely loose and not forcing my feet I let them be too limp and found a new way to heel strike... Fortunately my heel is already starting to feel much better and the blisters have gone down and aren't noticeable, it's mainly my pride that got hurt in this one.
In hindsight I think I must have been reaching forward with my feet instead of setting them down directly under me. When I run in place and set my feet down directly under me it seems almost impossible to hit my heel that hard. I guess the pain that I experienced from poor form is a good example of the kind of feedback that even minimalist shoes can mask. That being said, I'm grateful to be beginning my running career barefoot learning proper form rather than setting myself up for injury down the road... (Yes, that was a pun.)