Sunday, January 3, 2010

Thinking About Trying Barefoot Running?

Whether you want to try to run barefoot, in minimal shoes, or you just want to know what all the fuss is about you might check out this for starters. If you are interested in going barefoot you might want to start with 30 minutes of barefoot running / walking each day to allow for a thickening of the sole and to develop the foot muscles and allow the tendons and ligaments to adapt. Begin with walking barefoot at every opportunity and when you find time to jog barefoot gradually increasing the time and pace. At first, I would not rely too heavily on the minimal shoes such as the Vibram Five Fingers (VFF) until you get a base of barefoot running. Then use them only after you've gone a few miles completely barefoot even if its cold. The VFF's can give you a false confidence and you can easily overdo it so be cautious. Don't get me wrong they are a great piece of gear. If your one of the Peoria natives help support the local running scene by getting them only from Running Central. After 3-4 weeks, the plantar skin will become sufficiently robust letting you go longer and more frequently barefoot. You'll be able to run a bit faster. To facilitate adaptation, do some strength drills for the foot and ankle, including foot inversion, toe flexion, and walking on the balls of the feet. Walking on uneven surfaces will also help stimulate the plantar surface and provide increased sensory feedback.

Good luck! Enjoy your barefoot running.

1 comment:

southofthecliff said...

I would also recommend reading http://runningbarefoot.org/?page_id=455

Also feel free to ask any of us barefooters on the blogosphere questions!

Josh
barefootjosh.com