Category Archives: Vibram Five Fingers

Vibram Five Fingers

Reward

This morning I headed out for a pre-dawn run. I struggle with running before day light. I wouldn’t consider myself scared on the dark but goose bumps creep across my arms the moment I look through the sliding glass door to behold the back yard camouflaged in the dark blue light.

After a lengthly (read stalling) warmup, I vacated the family room through the glass door and inched into the scarcely detectable morning. I proceeded to run a completely (as expected) uneventful run. No boogy men. No monsters. I didn’t even find dog poop. On the other hand, I came to the conclusion that if I continue in engage in morning runs as the light recedes, I will need to exploit my VFFs or Pacers because I am already straining to locate the stones.

The stalling for daylight left me with limited time to run. Which was a shame as the legs, lungs and belly were feeling passably hardy and I wanted to keep running. So, I decided to reward myself with a slight detour around the inner circle neighborhood.

This reward would be awarded provided I could roll into the entrance to the neighborhood by a certain time. This meant speed. I needed to run fast enough to have time to remunerate myself with a little more distance. Although this is me, and I understand my basic instincts, I realize there are millions of people who shake their heads in bewilderment that running, nay, running farther could be considered a reward. Not to mention, i didn’t give in to petty fears of darkness.

What’s that phrase?

Your sport’s punishment is my sport.

I love to run farther.

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Filed under Barefoot, minimalist shoes, running, Vibram Five Fingers

Another Shoe

It’s hard for me to compare one shoe to another as I am in a different place and made adjustments as I moved along this path.  I am unable to determine if the difference is in the shoe or in me.  Perhaps that is why Dr. Craig Richard’s proposal to study running shoes makes sense after all.  

Neither here nor there, I am going to tell you about my new shoes.  For the most part, I like to go barefoot.  There are places like work, the store, Monster Truck Jam when I feel (or am required) that wearing shoes is necessary.  I find it most interesting how self-conscious we are about shoes or no shoes.   No matter how crazy, or different, or daring we are, even us barefooters, are programmed to feel self-conscious about going without shoes.   I have yet been reprogrammed.  Thus, I bought another pair of shoes. 

When I went barefoot, I kept my Adidas shoes for casual wear, turning the compost pile, or other emergencies.  This past winter I resigned to the fact that I had no tolerance for sub-freezing temps and slushy, icy roads when wearing my VFFs.  I sunk to wearing my Adidas for winter runs.  Bah.  I am fairly certain wearing those Adidas lead to the flare up of tendonitis that I have yet to resolve.   Even wearing the Adidas for casual wear began to make my feet hurt more and more.  As a result, I began my hunt for a minimalist shoe that I could wear for winter runs.  Now that it is summer, I need a shoe for casual wear. 

My latest purchase…. Merrell pace glove.

I do not intend to wear these shoes for the purpose in which they were designed, at least, not very often.  I purchased these shoes for casual wear in the summer.  See all the nice mesh upper?  I have not had a stinky foot since purchasing them! This is very important because I tend to take my shoes off all the time, like, in the car.  The 5 hour Memorial Day car ride was a bit unpleasant until I covered up my stinky feet. 

I also tried on the Merrell Pure Glove.  I was mad for the red ones. I have wide feet so I was very pleased with the fit of both shoes.  However, I have to note that I fit into a 9 for the Pace but an 8.5 for the Pure based on width alone.  It is not often that I have to go down a size due to width.  Although, I went to the store for the Pure, I chose the Pace just because it seemed to feel better. 

I was going to wait until I actually took them for a run before writing about them but the best you are going to get is a half hour of playing tag at the park with the Cub Scouts.  I did a lot of short sprints and twists and turns.  The shoes did well.  They have a little bit of tread in them as you can see below.  You can also see the dirt on the front of one shoe.   

I’m already tired of writing this review as you are reading it.  I’ll cut to the chase.

Things I like: 

  1. The sole follows the curve of your foot.  I feel like it hugs the ball of my foot. 
  2. The width is fantastic
  3. They seem easier to walk in than VFFs.  Not sure if this is a real benefit or if I have just learned how to adapt a barefoot stride to shoes.  I do remember feeling awkward trying to walk in VFFs last summer.  I have no problem waking barefoot but I seem to have a brain-shoe connection with my stride.  This seems reduced when wearing my Paces. 
  4. Love the look.  They just look good plus they draw less attention to my minimalist style. 
  5. The back hugs up around your heel.  It is a fabric covered piece of elastic.  Because I am going casual in these shoes, I leave them tied.  The elastic heel allows me to just slip them on.  I had a bit of irritation from rubbing on the heel but I think that would be reduced if I was tieing them as I’m supposed to be. 
  6. When riding my bike, the grated edges of the pedals are less noticeable in the Paces than in the VFFs.  I won’t wear the VFFs when riding my bike.  The Paces are perfect.
  7. The sole is completely flexible unlike a lot of other shoes I have looked at. 

Thinks I don’t like:

  1. They might be considered barefoot, but they are a shoe. period.   They are not the same as going barefoot.    
  2. I agree that it seems a bit silly to spend so much money on a shoe that is supposed to feel like it’s not a shoe but I’ve tried going with cheap shoes.  I wore a pair of Payless ballet type tennis shoe last summer.   I don’t know why but if you are going to wear a shoe, maximus or minimalist, you do get what you pay for. 

In all, the Merrell Pace Glove is almost exactly what I was looking for in a casual minimalist shoe.   I’ll keep my Miminus Lifers for cooler weather when my feet won’t stink so much.  I’ll keep my VFFs for running on extreme surfaces.  I’ll try to go barefoot as much as possible and stop spending so much money on shoes!

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Filed under Barefoot, cycling, Vibram Five Fingers

Head Spins

I just read the blog post and response from Asics on Zerodrop.

I have to say, “Wow!”  I didn’t realize how passionate people could be about shoes.  Oh, wait, I forgot about Imelda Marcos and her 2700 pairs of shoes.   Or Vogue Editor Anna Dello Russo with 4000 pairs.

Anna Dello Russo

Why is Anna wearing granny pants with this outfit?? 

I don’t have evidence.  I’ve never been interviewed.   If I ever go back to running in shoes, I will buy Asics.  I hate my Adidas shoes that were recommended to me by a running store so much that I’d rather go barefoot.  (pun intended, as it always is) I wear VFFs at times but I prefer barefoot. 

I have tendonitis in my heel and foot.  It is neither getting better or worse from running barefoot.  

Just like with my ‘religious’ beliefs, I am not going to go out and convince anyone which way they should run nor do I want them to shove their beliefs down my throat. 

I have a mind.  I’ve already considered things.  This is what I believe.  This is how I run. 

Yes, I still wear 3 inch heals when given the opportunity. (I really am a podiatry doctor’s nightmare)

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Filed under Barefoot, personality flaws, running, Vibram Five Fingers

Small Town

1.9 miles in VFFs, 1.1 miles barefoot on asphalt and concrete sidewalks.

Well I was born in a small town
and I live in a small town
Prob’ly die in a small town
Oh, those small -communities

This time if year is fantastic. There is a small part of me who is beset about how soon the longest daylight day of the year will be here. I love the early morning daylight. I delight in stepping out when so many remain snuggled in their beds. I am so attached to the 5 am run that I get up at 5 am on my rest days. I can not bare the days when I am too tired to get up.

Tuesday was hot and muggy. The sun was just rising over the trees at 5:30 am when I reached my predetermined turn around spot. I live in a small town but that doesn’t mean we don’t have great sites to see. I’m proud of my early morning runs that let me enjoy my small town sites without many distractions. My small town let’s me be a barefoot runner just like I wanna be.

Pride and Smiles

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Filed under Barefoot, running, Vibram Five Fingers

Mile Post

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The local library is the one mile marker on my run. The most direct route to home is one mile from the library. On Friday’s run, I put the VFFs on for the first 1.86 miles. At the library, I slipped them off to finish the run on warmed up bare feet.

I am still recovering from the tendonitis so the runs aren’t covered in Joker smiles but I’m running so that gives me a little smile.

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Filed under Barefoot, running, Vibram Five Fingers

Stubborn Rhymns

I moved those bare feet a little further on down the road.  My last bare run was 0.4 miles. Today, I went 0.85 miles.  I wasted time donning the VFFs at the bridge limiting how far I could go in my 30 minute run.  Tally of 2.74 miles. 

Wait, didn’t I just promise the other day to start making my runs more fun and less concerned about distance?  Ahem…

Seriously, running in the VFFs was a lot of fun. 

Light on my feet

Running through the street

Listen’ to the beat

Oh, man, light on my feet

 

..which brings me back to the barefooting…strangely,  I felt labored and leaded during the bare portion.  Once I had my VFFs on I was all foot loose and fancy free.  (Pun totally intended)

This reflection upon my bare run brings me to a decision.  If I intend to spend my summer trying to have more fun with running, am I able to … do I want to struggle to go bare? 

How many times does stubbornness rule your day?  I’m beginning to realize that I am much more stubborn than I give myself credit for. 

I really want to get back to, no, I’ll be honest; I really want to brag about going barefoot. 

How to do that?

In a conversation at work, someone asked another co-worker how far he runs every day.  It was like 6 or 10 miles.  They asked what he does to warm up for those runs.  I looked at the co-worker, he looked at me.  We said simultaneously, “Run a mile or two”.   I, myself, have experienced when the later miles were better than the former miles.  I was training for my first half marathon.  I recall miles 1-5 had sucked but the next 2-3 miles were fantastic.

Perhaps it wasn’t the barefooting that caused me to drag in the beginning of my run.  Perhaps it was just the general warming up part.  So, I’ve decided to rearrange my running plans.  I will run bare through the last mile instead of the first mile. 

Yeah, I’m stubborn as a mule

I take carbs and protein as my fuel

I fight my brain in a duel

Using my feet as the tool

Conquer the mental game so I can rule.

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Filed under Barefoot, running, Vibram Five Fingers

Trying to keep up Run Smiley Viral

I’m putting in a link to a great blog on running for fun.  My one reader can check it out and keep a good thing viral.  (My stats say I have about 5 readers but I’ve been here long enough to know not to trust stats.)

The Best Accessory

Changes in Attitudes, Changes in Latitudes (I can’t say change in attitude without singing the song)

Thanks to Barefoot Angie Bee for keeping it viral

I used F.U.N. as a running accessory last year.  I got to say, Kate is right.  My summer runs last year were really good runs.   How did I get there?  I think it did happened for me when I went minimalist/bare too.  Because my goals were no longer the hard and fast distance, speed, and miles.  They were soft and fluffy like a cloud or a pillow.  Who doesn’t like pillows?  Anyway, with a goal of transitioning to barefoot, I got really excited about just completing the run.  About doing something a lot of people thought was CRAZ-ZY.  I kept it up and just kept going.   I was feeling good about accomplishing a run rather than obsessing about the data that went with the run.  It was like falling in love all over again.

Thanks for the reminder, Kate.

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Filed under Barefoot, personality flaws, running, Vibram Five Fingers