Sunday, June 27, 2010

Five Fingers

About two weeks ago I wrote about my break-up with running.  The break-up had occurred a few weeks before I wrote that post, so it's definitely been awhile since I had gone on a jog. But I broke the streak this past wednesday with a 5k... and it was FUN!! I just focused on the scenery around me, enjoyed the feeling of running, and started to pay attention to my form.

In the book Born to Run it really talked a lot about how our form as runner's isn't all that great. We tend to strike on our heels, which is good for walking... but not so much for running. So I was really paying attention to striking the ground on the balls of my feet and kicking my heels up... and low and behold I picked up the pace... by about 45 seconds for the last 1.5 miles, and it didn't wind me as much as it would've before! I was PUMPED! And honestly it did feel good to run, but I'm still going to give it some time before I go full fledged.

Another idea that was presented in the book and seemingly everywhere in the running world is the concept of barefoot running, or minimal footwear running. Because I enjoy running, and I enjoy testing out theories I thought it be a fun little experiment to try.

Now I've actually been wanting to try this since last summer, but 1) running barefoot in korea would not be good. There is glass EVERYWHERE and I know I would slice up my feet real fast. 2) I was going to grab some vibram five fingers, but just decided not too. And I regret that decision every day.

However, Amanda and Ian's mom bought them some last year and Amanda has been gracious enough to let me try hers out.

The Verdict: I LOVE them. I enjoy being barefoot, quite frankly shoes and socks are the bane of my existence...but these actually felt like my bare feet.. with just a little padding.

I've borrowed them a few times for some walks and even tried out a little run in them.

Everyone says to start slow, and I'm happy I did. I didn't have any soreness the next day, but I could still feel that I'd worked the muscles in my feet.  New theories are showing that by putting our feet in shoes it's like putting them in a cast. The muscles atrophy, and they aren't as strong. Which is why a lot of times people have so many issues with their feet! To me it makes sense. Shoes do all the work for us and our feet aren't "worked". The Vibrams... work your feet.

Plus they're fun :) And it's a way for me to spice up running and working some more muscles that haven't been worked in a long time!

What do you think? Would you give "barefoot" running/walking a try?


Laura said...

Cool! I don't run but I'd love to wear these for a walk and see how it went! What's the website for them? I'm guessing they're spendy, but it's an interesting though!

The Stainbrooks said...

They run about 70$ I think... which is a bit pricey (and why I'm still debating picking up a pair :) ) but they are really fun. They're like those toe sock things, but so much more fun! I think if you just typed in Vibram Five Fingers in google you'd get a few websites. I've seen them in some running stores as well.