Barefoot Runners

1

VFF Recommendation (Read 1006 times)

    Well, I think my Christmas present from my wife will be a new pair of VFFs  I have yet to run barefoot, but want to work it into my routine.  It is tough around here......I just ran 5 miles this AM at -9 degrees F with snow on the ground......and I am even a real pussy when it comes go going barefoot on a regular summer day in the park.

     

    In looking at options, I really think I need some guidance and advice......

     

    VFF Flow and VFF KSO.....I just don't think I would like these.  I have a pair of Keen shoe/sandals and I absolutely HATE how they feel......the neoprene I just hate!!!  For them to feel comfortable, I need socks.  Sweat / unbreathable.....rubbing / blisters.......etc.  I am afraid that the Flow and KSO would be similar and I would just hate them.

     

    The Sprint seem to be more appealing to me than the Flow and KSO.....but still the straps just scare me.  I see several posts here on RA that seem to indicate lack of enough adjustability to make these optimally comfortable.

     

    The last option.....the Classic.  This one looks ideal for me......minimal uppers, no neoprene, etc.

     

    Can I get an opinion on what other VFF owners would recommend?

    ✔ Think of setting 2013 goals.

    Stop being a fat slob.

    Run more miles than last year.


    Imminent Catastrophe

      Check out the Treks--leather, they are super comfortable, I wear them all the time. The classics are nice too but more like a slipper, they kind of grip the heel to stay on and IMO aren't quite as comfortable as the Treks. I prefer to wear socks with the classics. Both are just fine to run in, with or without socks.

      "Able to function despite imminent catastrophe"

       "To obtain the air that angels breathe you must come to Tahoe"--Mark Twain

      "The most common question from potential entrants is 'I do not know if I can do this' to which I usually answer, 'that's the whole point'.--Paul Charteris, Tarawera Ultramarathon RD.

       

      √ Tahoe Rim Trail 100M 20/21 July 2013

      Boston Marathon 21 April 2014

      Tahoe Rim Trail 100M 19/20 July 2014

        I'd rather be barefoot, but... damn it's cold out -7F Wind Chill here today.  And so... from my experiences of what I own:

         

        Classics: I like the idea of these the most, but the application is lacking for me. The elastic around my Achilles doesn't feel good. So I removed the elastic, and not they are just a touch too "loose". I still wear them all the time (or did until the snow) but more of an everyday (non-running) shoe.

         

        Sprint: I like these because of the strap they have on the top. It's much better for me than the elastic. The problem is, if you get dirt under the strap, it acts as sandpaper.  I still have two scars on the top of each foot from this.  Not sure how it'd work with socks, but you'd probably be OK.

         

        Flow: I've settled on these babies for my winter running. After a mile my feet are warmed up.  They are more shoe than I'd like but the alternatives have not panned out.  They are also very grippy on the ice (as grippy as one can be), so I've enjoyed them.  I wanted something I didn't have to wear socks with, so these fit the bill perfectly.  I made it 6 miles in -7 wind chill with no socks, so I know these will do the job all winter long.

         

        Each VFF feels and fits differently, so if you can try them on, by all means, do so.

         

        I can't comment on the other types of Vibram's but if you're going for a winter shoe, I would think you'd want something that covers the top of your foot, otherwise you're going to be getting snow in the sides, socks or no socks.

          Thanks for the feedback, guys!  I think I am just going to have to go try on the various models.

           

          As for running in -7F and snow.........I have done that several times this week and it wasn't fun, even in shoes.  Even if I do give this a try, I envision only doing it when roads are dry.  I also only see me doing one or two runs per week barefoot if I find I like it.   Who knows.....maybe I'll find I love it enough to throw out the cushioning shoes altogether.  Not holding my breath, but you never know.....

           

          Cheers!

          ✔ Think of setting 2013 goals.

          Stop being a fat slob.

          Run more miles than last year.

            All the best, let us know how it goes.
              Tried them on today....VFFs, that is.  Hated them.  I should have expected this.  I cannot even wear a pair of flip-flops with that stupid strap between the toes.  I just know I wouldn't be able to get used to them with crap packed between my toes.  Oh, well, maybe I will have to look at doing actual barefooting instead.........

              ✔ Think of setting 2013 goals.

              Stop being a fat slob.

              Run more miles than last year.

                Tried them on today....VFFs, that is.  Hated them.  I should have expected this.  I cannot even wear a pair of flip-flops with that stupid strap between the toes.  I just know I wouldn't be able to get used to them with crap packed between my toes.  Oh, well, maybe I will have to look at doing actual barefooting instead.........

                 

                If you can't take VFF, how in the world can you take having you feet wrapped in socks, then in shoes?

                 I must admit though, they can feel a little funny at first.

                 

                Going barefoot is a good option, perhaps not in the snow.

                DrNirenberg


                  VFF's are a great minimalist shoe once you have some experience barefoot running.  I have a review of these on my blog --  http://www.americaspodiatrist.com/2009/08/consider-wearing-this-shoe-if-you-want-to-run-barefoot/
                    I thought this was interesting, it's the first  time I heard of it:


                    There's a new running specific VFF model coming out, the Bikila: http://birthdayshoes.com/index.php/five-fingers-bikila-information-resources-2010

                      I thought this was interesting, it's the first  time I heard of it:


                      There's a new running specific VFF model coming out, the Bikila: http://birthdayshoes.com/index.php/five-fingers-bikila-information-resources-2010

                       

                      These will be interesting, albeit expensive.

                        Now they are just getting gimmicky. I don't see the point. And I am not liking the price.

                         


                        Imminent Catastrophe

                          Yes, it's expensive but not compared to a premium traditional running shoe, and it will last 10x longer. I may get a pair of these. It looks like it's designed to be very flexible (with the segmented sole) but protect from road hazards.

                          "Able to function despite imminent catastrophe"

                           "To obtain the air that angels breathe you must come to Tahoe"--Mark Twain

                          "The most common question from potential entrants is 'I do not know if I can do this' to which I usually answer, 'that's the whole point'.--Paul Charteris, Tarawera Ultramarathon RD.

                           

                          √ Tahoe Rim Trail 100M 20/21 July 2013

                          Boston Marathon 21 April 2014

                          Tahoe Rim Trail 100M 19/20 July 2014

                            From my understanding they have a total of 7mm sole. I am definitely not liking that. They also have made the whole shoe more complicated.

                             

                              From my understanding they have a total of 7mm sole. I am definitely not liking that. They also have made the whole shoe more complicated.

                               

                              • The sole is 4mm of "podded" Vibram TC-1 rubber. (Comparison point: standard VFF thickness is 3mm razor siped)
                              • The arch portion is EVA. The intention here seems to be to reduce weight. It reminds me of the KSO Trek's sole in that the arch section is the most slender as it pertains to the rubber.
                              • There is 3mm of polyurethane insole that is most thick at the ball of the foot. Note that this is different from the KSO Trek, which has 4mm of EVA midsole.

                              So you are right, it sounds like a total sole of 7mm, which is large, but I'm not sure if I can tell a mm here or a mm there, considering they are all covering my feet.

                               

                              As for making the whole shoe more complicated, that may end up being a great boon, or a great failure.

                               

                              Regardless, it is intriguing that they are even attempting this. I for one shall hold my opinions off until I get to see and hear about them in action.