Barefoot Runners

1

sole wear with minimalism and mid foot strike (Read 1295 times)

Jeremy W


    I decided to make the transition to more minimalist running, and because I'm a relatively big person (6'1-180#) I decided to try out the ProGrid Mirages first. I feel like I'm naturally tending to a more midfoot strike (which is something I worked on even in traditional trainers), and I can definitely feel a big difference between my "natural" gait in the Mirages and a heel strike. Running in the Mirages also feels very similar to running barefoot in grass for me, at least for stride and foot strike. I'm also loving the more neutral stride--I seem to be running faster with less effort, which is a nice thing. 

     

    However, I've been noticing that the outside edge of the heel is wearing down, and I wanted to see if any of the more experienced people could tell me if this is typical or if it's an indication that I should try to land further forward on my foot. Some of the videos I've seen of mid foot strides seem to show significant heel contact so I'm just looking to see if what I'm experiencing is normal. 

     

    Thanks! 

      Your heel should be showing some wear.  After all, you should be landing on the outside of your midfoot first, then the ball, then the heel. 

       

      What part of the shoe has the most wear?  Is the wear uniform to both shoes?  Any soresness/pain? 

       

      For what it's worth, when I started transitioning to minimalism (FiveFingers, in my case, then sandals, now a mix or minimalist shoes), I was 6', 205 (though I am 175 now).  Even though there's not much of a heel drop in the Mirage, it might have enough padding that you're not getting the feedback you need for proper foot strike (that happens to me--it takes sandals or totally barefoot to really check my form, which I do once a week or so).

       

      If you were to stay on your fore/midfoot WITHOUT your heel ever touching down, you'd hurt yourself! 

       

      Good luck--hope it keeps working for you.

      "When a person trains once, nothing happens. When a person forces himself to do a thing a hundred or a thousand times, then he certainly has developed in more ways than physical. Is it raining? That doesn't matter. Am I tired? That doesn't matter, either. Then willpower will be no problem." 
      Emil Zatopek

        " the Mirage ... might have enough padding that you're not getting the feedback you need for proper foot strike"

         

         

        It's true the Mirage is a significantly lighter shoe, but due to its cushioning and stability I would rate it as "approaching minimalism" (mostly due to being lighter).  You've got the right idea - starting the transition with less shoe.  Before BF I had sore heels, PF, and shin splints.  I always got the most cushioned and padded shoes I could get "to protect me from injury".  But in retrospect I found that what I really needed was the opposite, so I gradually transitioned.  So for me at least, I do really well with no cushioning, no stability, no motion control, no arch, no heel rise, etc.  With built-up running shoes, my sole wear was always uneven and especially worn thru on the outside edges, but with truly minimalist footwear, my wear pattern is fairly centered and even.

         

        Good luck!

        "I can do 440 in 220"    Half Fanatic #846    "90% of running is half mental"    If I collapse, please pause my Garmin

         

          I'm seeing heel wear on the outer corner of my huaraches.  Don't know whether I should be concerned.  Pretty happy with my running at the moment.

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

            I'm seeing heel wear on the outer corner of my huaraches.  Don't know whether I should be concerned.  Pretty happy with my running at the moment.

             

            I was working on a promising scientific fool-proof formula for determining the effect that cambered roadways have on minimalist footwear...but then I woke up.  Anyway - the good thing about huraches is you can reverse and trim the soles, switch 'em to the opposite feet, & even flip 'em over (with a couple of extra holes for laces in new places), thus evening out the wear patterns to your own personal satisfaction - there are several different combinations you can try this way... Wink

             

            You've got almost 500 miles on the huraches alone LL - awesome!

            "I can do 440 in 220"    Half Fanatic #846    "90% of running is half mental"    If I collapse, please pause my Garmin

             

            DanB


              I'm the opposite.  I have heavy wear on the toes, especially on my left foot, of my VFF's.  It's driving me to distraction.  I try and run BF once a week or so for 1/2 to 1 mile, but haven't been able to correct to flaw in my form...I wore through the left big and second toe of my KSO's in about 250 miles.Disapprove

              2013 Goals.......

                I was working on a promising scientific fool-proof formula for determining the effect that cambered roadways have on minimalist footwear...but then I woke up.  Anyway - the good thing about huraches is you can reverse and trim the soles, switch 'em to the opposite feet, & even flip 'em over (with a couple of extra holes for laces in new places), thus evening out the wear patterns to your own personal satisfaction - there are several different combinations you can try this way... Wink

                 

                You've got almost 500 miles on the huraches alone LL - awesome!

                 

                My cost per mile is what's awesome on the huaraches, even without flipping 'em over, turning them inside out, etc.  Not a good as barefoot, though. Smile

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

                  I'm the opposite.  I have heavy wear on the toes, especially on my left foot, of my VFF's.  It's driving me to distraction.  I try and run BF once a week or so for 1/2 to 1 mile, but haven't been able to correct to flaw in my form...I wore through the left big and second toe of my KSO's in about 250 miles.Disapprove

                   

                  I wore a hole in one toe of my first pair of VFFs, but kept running in them.  Still using them, in fact.  A good 400 miles of the 925 are after the hole appeared.  The toe that's unprotected just developed a callous approximately as tough as 4mm of Vibram material.  Not saying your case parallels mine, though.

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

                    [6'1", 230 lbs, 37, male]

                     

                    Before I switched to only running barefoot, I had about 300 miles on invisibleshoe huraches. the only wear I noticed was under forefoot. I just passed the 200 mile mark barefooting. 

                     

                    I would differentiate between where you land or touch first, and where you take the weight of the landing. I read born to run, and watched everything I could on youtube (Lieberman, et. al.), and came away with the idea that the 4th/5th metatarsal need to touch first. Maybe they do, but I don't think you need to focus on it.

                     

                    I had two bouts of 'top of the foot pain' that locked up one foot for 2 weeks and caused me to miss about 2 months of running (1 per foot, respectively). I had the first one x-rayed, no fracture visible. The x-ray machine was newish and the review was on a very large digital screen, so I'm pretty sure it wasn't a fracture.

                    After reading KenBob's book, where he suggests taking the weight of your body on the ball of the foot, I was able to increase my mileage, go completely barefoot on pavement & concrete, and do away with the top of the foot pain. I've also run 3-4 days in a row, barefoot, 100% pavement, with no injury. 

                     

                    What I think is important is the part of your foot that takes the load when you land. In my case, when I shift any weight-bearing to the outer edge of my foot, I get sensations reminiscent to the top of the foot pain. When I take all the load on the balls of my feet, I can run without injury. If you're in some type of shoe, it may be helping to distribute the weight over a wider area and avoiding pain, but I'd be suspicious of it. 

                     

                    I suspect bending the knees will help with changing the wear pattern. However you're running now, try bending your knees so that your butt is 1 inch closer to the ground. I've found it's harder to run badly when you bend your knees. Conversely, it's easier to do weird crap when you're torso is farther from the ground--there's more room and time for you to get your feet out in front of you, which leads to other weird things. 

                    primer


                      I wore a hole in one toe of my first pair of VFFs, but kept running in them.  Still using them, in fact.  A good 400 miles of the 925 are after the hole appeared.  The toe that's unprotected just developed a callous approximately as tough as 4mm of Vibram material.  Not saying your case parallels mine, though.

                       

                      527 miles in my VFF and I just noticed wear through holes on both the left and right "pinky" toes.