Barefoot Runners

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File under: Barefoot Runner Exhuberence Syndrome (Read 648 times)

    My feet are awesome!

     

    More specifically, I think I've crossed threshold or line or something. I can run 3 miles a day, completely barefoot on various rough pavement, with almost no negative impact. I'm running 2 & 3 days in a row, then taking a day off.I really want to run small amounts every day, then gradually add to that length. I haven't had a blister in months. [male, 37, 230lbs, 6']

     

    I bend my knees a lot. I lean into the run more. I take almost all of the weight on the balls of my feet. It feels like my foot is widening and flattening out when I land. I'm not getting a jolting arrest since my forefoot doesn't take impact.

     

    I try to imagine my knees, ankles, hips all pointing forward. I think about transitioning weight and load directly from the ball/big toe back to the ankle, but setting the heel down last.

     

    I had problems with 'top of the foot pain' that I think others have. I think I was taking too much load on the outer metatarsals; when I take most of the weight on the ball/first metatarsal, this pain goes away. Since I started loading up my ball, the top of foot pain has gone away.

     

    In fact, I think I'm going to run now. yippee!


    Petco Run/Walk/Wag 5k

      Question: I've been getting hot spots on balls of both feet inline with the 4th toe after about 2-21/2 mi. Doesn't stop me from going 3-4mi tho, but annoying and bothersome for a day or two. Any ideas as to how to eliminate?

       

      btw: great job!

      bob e v
      2014 goals: keep on running! Is there anything more than that?

      Complete the last 3 races in the Austin Distance Challenge, Rogue 30k, 3M Half, Austin Full

      Break the 1000 mi barrier!

      History: blessed heart attack 3/15/2008; c25k july 2008 first 5k 10/26/2008 on 62nd birthday.

        Are you barefoot or minimal? how much are you bending your knees? can you bend them more? Like sit your butt down another inch...

         

        I read Ken Bob Saxton's book and the ideas that I got from it helped a lot. He says it over and over, but it's true; bend your knees ...when my ankle or achilles is starting to get tweaky, sinking into the step...bending my knees and lowering my center of gravity maybe an inch, helps a lot.

         

        I'm no expert. No idea what you're wearing...if your foot is getting out in front of you, there's a lot more impact and (I think) diagonal/horizontal forces.Are you taking the weight of your body on the first metatarsal and big toe, or out on the foot, like 3-4-5 metatarasals? When I read Born to Run and watched the Dr Lieberman videos on youtube, I thought i should be touching with the outer part of the foot first, and that may be happening, but what I feel is the weight loading onto the ball of my foot and the big toe. If I repeatedly take a lot of weight on the 4th & 5th metatarsal, it hurts later.

         

        I'm trying to keep my foot-landing directly underneath my body weight. Initially this was to save my skin...however I noticed my ankle was better if I bent my knees...it also stretches the achilles as you run.

          Congrats Jimmy!  I think of BRES as a malady that you seem to have avoided (too much, too soon).  Anyway, I'm pretty exuberant as well, although a lot of my running now is in huaraches or VFFs (due mostly to a lot of acorns and the like).

          Well at least someone here is making relevance to the subject.


          Half Fanatic #846

            Great job, Jimmy!  Feels great doesn't it?  BTW, how rough is "rough" to you?

             

            I run BF a lot on asphalt - mostly fairly smooth and some just a little rough. Really rough pavement I can't (won't?) handle. I'm doing a longish run in the morning, but it's on a newly paved and very smooth rails-to-trail that I enjoy.

             

             

            Question: I've been getting hot spots on balls of both feet inline with the 4th toe after about 2-21/2 mi. Doesn't stop me from going 3-4mi tho, but annoying and bothersome for a day or two. Any ideas as to how to eliminate?

            If it's "annoying and bothersome for a day or two", that's part of the transition in my experience. If it persists, you could try less distance but go BF more often for awhile.  I think Jimmy's right about bending the knees helping - I think of it as a slight crouch (but my form might not be as good).  Walk a few minutes BF on days your feet feel good.  I found that generally, I need to run some BF at least once every 3 days or so to keep my feet in good barefoot shape. Also, walking BF a few minutes several times a week helped me - there's no heavy impact to the soles, and walking helps the bottoms of the feet to acclimate.

             

            Good Luck!

            I can do 440 in 220            90% of running is half mental            I ran half of my last race on my left foot!

             

              Great job, Jimmy!  Feels great doesn't it?  BTW, how rough is "rough" to you?

               

              In Seattle, there seem to be several different types of concrete on side walks for traction purposes. I'm assuming that anyway. I'm pretty repetitive on my main loop, and I know the grades pretty well. There is a variety of surface. 

              There is a mile of sidewalk that has smoothish, but has traction rocks sticking up ever 2 inches.  There's newer concrete with groves cut in a diamond pattern, but I mostly see that on handicapped ramps at intersections. There's a fair amount of street gravel from construction sites near some dorms. However, it's pavement, so it's predictable. There's a different area, through a park, that has degraded and uneven concrete that's ~40 years old. That's different stuff entirely. 

               

              Predictability, or more even points to distribute weight, seem more important than roughness...if that makes sense. There is a metal grating over a floating path through a wetlands area that has 1 inch holes (for weight?) and pokey things sticking up, but it's a pattern that I can anticipate, so I go through there ok. There's also an area of wood-chipped mulch mixed with dirt. I thought that would be a problem, but so far no big splinters. 

              On a completely unrelated note, Barefoot Ted lives a mile up the hill from me. My girlfriend saw him last week, presumably giving a barefoot lesson.  


               


              Petco Run/Walk/Wag 5k

                I go barefoot most of the time around my house and DD2's house. Wear as minimal shoes as I can when going out, Tom's and Croc's, and when I run BF I run BF but also have Huaraches, Vibram Sprints, and water shoes. I walk my dogs, 2 Chi's, BF almost everyday and that is up to just over 1mi now. The neighborhood is concrete sidewalk and asphalt streets and we use both. I've logged 87mi BF but have run/walked much more than that for the last two years. Took awhile to stop heel striking even BF and had a few blood blisters along the way. 

                 

                I generally try to run as quietly as possible with "high knees" as a local BF proponent says, I might need to increase it more or sit into it more. I do know I backslide enough and get nosier during most runs, even when walking the dogs.

                 

                Thanks for the ideas! and once again - great job Jimmy!

                bob e v
                2014 goals: keep on running! Is there anything more than that?

                Complete the last 3 races in the Austin Distance Challenge, Rogue 30k, 3M Half, Austin Full

                Break the 1000 mi barrier!

                History: blessed heart attack 3/15/2008; c25k july 2008 first 5k 10/26/2008 on 62nd birthday.

                  I find the various textures of concrete and asphalt interesting (when they're not painful).  Concrete varies a lot depending on its age and quality, as well as how it's been finished.  Asphalt is usually not too bad, but occasionally has a lot of sharp gravel protrusions.  I ran a five mile race BF on asphalt last year without a problem, but I'm faster when wearing VFFs.

                  Well at least someone here is making relevance to the subject.