Showing posts from November, 2010

DAY 21 - My Giddy Ritual

I have this ritual I do after every barefoot run. Something I rarely did when I used to run shod. It doesn't involve sacrificing livestock, or piercing my body with a handful of oversized wooden needles. I don't walk over coals (although sometimes it feels like I have) and I don't don a pair of gloves full of bullet ants that sting. No. That would be all too unpleasant especially after running 5 miles barefoot. 

After logging my run in my Daily Mile account I head upstairs to take a shower. I never look at my feet right after my run. I save this for my pre-shower ceremony while the water is warming up. I don't know why, but I get kind of giddy at the thought of seeing how my feet fared after any given run. OK. I'm not sure giddy is the right word. I don't get all freaky, mad-scientist-like and rub my hands together, but I honestly feel like I'm sort of peeking at an unwrapped present. Will it be an unidentified embedded object? A friction spot? Some peeling …

DAY 20 - First Barefoot 5k Race

Woke up early and crabby this morning. Didn't sleep well. Not because I had the pre-race jitters (I haven't had those in years), but because I watched a very disturbing, mind-bending horror flick last night. Shaking some insanely, deranged images from my mind I focused on the temperature outside. It was a nice crisp 26 degrees with a winter freeze warning. Great. My first barefoot race happens to be on an abnormally freezing morning. Hard to believe we had 80 degree weather not more than two weeks ago. My plan? To wear my VFFs until my feet warm up (usually about half a mile to a mile into my run) then strip them off and finish barefoot. I was excited about my first barefoot race, but bummed that part of it would have to be in my VFFs.

By the time the race started I could not feel my toes. Walking around in the wet grass did not help. Checking out the finish line it looked to be mostly soft and grassy with a small patch of gravel about a hundred yards before the balloons. Total…

Are Our Children Being Left Behind?

I know this is my running blog about my running adventures, but I had to repost this blog article written by a fellow barefoot runner and teacher. This topic is so important. I honestly feel that, in many ways, our public school system has lost its way and has forgot about our children. Something needs to be done. We need to stop producing a generation of robots and start nurturing creative thinkers and intrinsic learners. 

Please read Jason Robillard's latest blog post: National No Homework Week: A Revolution to Reclaim Families and Children

Now. Imagine me walking over to my soap box, taking a large step up, then breathing in a deep sigh. Long exhale. I'm not one for preaching, but I do have my opinions about things that I feel very strongly about. One of which is our public school system and the mindset of American thinking today. Please bear with me while I have a moment.

I think kids are overscheduled and overwhelmed these days and it begins in preschool or even before that…

DAY 18 - Don't make me go all VFF on you!

After taking the first steps of my run today I couldn't help but think, "This stings like a mofo!" Then I wondered how long it would last. Its not like I'm the kilted and caped superhero Maple Grove Barefoot Guy running on freezing snow. I'm in sunny California here where we are currently experiencing our "second summer" thanks in part to global weirding. Frankly, I can't remember when we had a November in the 80s in the valley like this. This morning was unusually cool at about 45 degrees, though (I hear the snickers from all you seasoned and rugged, industrial-strength, winter weather BFRs) and my feet weren't quick to warm up. It took about a mile in to lose the stinging sensation in my feet. I decided to take a route that had more cement as opposed to the normal asphalt I'm used to running on. I thought this would equal less stinging. Apparently not.

I ran about 3 miles completely barefoot. I'm not sure what was happening today. My fe…

Rockin' Out

So its about 1 o'clock am on Friday night and I'm walking through our neighborhood in full 80s glam rock attire. I was all headbanged out, my buzz was wearing off and I was looking forward to barefooting it back home. My friend's birthday party was an 80s glam rock themed costume party. I wore heels to the party, which by the way, KILLED my feet, but completed the look so I sucked it up. Upon leaving the party, I was about a half a mile away from home and I was seriously thinking "Hmmmm. Maybe I can get a much needed barefoot run in." Nearly the entire Rocklin police department lives in our part of suburbia so I usually don't feel too threatened walking or jogging around after hours in my neck of the woods. My big hair was weapon enough to ward off any mugger and the weighted, oversized bag full of a half gallon of cranberry juice and a bottle of vodka (half full) would come in handy if I needed it. But the bag was too heavy for a jog and a good walk bare…

DAYS 16 & 17 - Speaking of Barefoot Running...

So I ran in my VFFs yesterday.The ground was wet and covered in puddles. A stranger ran past me on the bike trail and yelled out "How do you like 'em?" as he's pointing at my feet. I literally have less than three seconds to respond while he runs past. How do I explain that I don't wear the VFFs unless I have to, they're not for everybody, if you're transitioning to something like a minimal shoe you will want to do your research, and they require a lot of patience and a serious introduction to some barefoot running. A little long-winded for a three second answer if you ask me. So I answer him. "Love them as long as I know how to run in them!" What kind of crap answer is that? But, short answer aside, I hate the fact that my quick " I love them!" could be encouraging the regular Joe Schmo to buy the minimal shoes without research or knowledge whatsoever of what he might be getting himself into.

That being said, I finally had a chance to …

Barefoot Running and Relays

I'm in that rare fleeting space where I've caught up with enough sleep to be in a completely functional and conscious state.That will change in the weeks to come when my calendar becomes a living, breathing entity. I've been thinking a lot lately. About schedules, sleep, life, and running. I just haven't had the time to run as much as I would like. And now that the crap weather is engulfing my barefoot running opportunities I could whip out my VFFs but what I really want to do is run barefoot. < sigh >

At any rate, I was happy to see barefoot running given some credibility in the news lately. Yup. I'm part of that group of crazies (the Barefoot Runners Society), but now that Katie Couric has given us the wink-wink maybe people won't be so disturbed by my naked feet. I can only hope.

I've been toying with the idea of doing the Ragnar Relay in September 2011. Thanks to Jen at Lips, Hips and Asphalt I've been inspired to look seriously into this. The 2…

DAY 15 - Barefoot Masochism

I ran at sunset last night.Perfect weather and my longest barefoot run so far at 3.91 miles. Did another mile in my VFFs once it got dark and to make sure I didn't overdo it. The run was a success, albeit a bit tortuous.

I picked a new route just for giggles. The newly-laid-looks-smooth-but-oh-hell-its-not! road route. I learned that newly paved roads look nice, but if you don't have impeccable form that shit will slice your feet up. Well at least that's what it felt like. My plan? To tough it out to keep my form consistent. You see, I'm trying to fix a strange habit I have of curling my toes when running. I often end up with these freaky blood blisters that wrap around the top of my middle toe. Just weird. I guess there's such a thing as relaxing too much when you run barefoot. To correct this, I have to think hard. So hard you can probably hear the cogs and wheels squeeking in my head. I literally have to flex my toes to keep them from getting in the way of my lan…

DAY 14 - Down and Dirty Minimalist Style

"Get down in that mud, NOW! You paid for this!"That's what one of the military race officials screamed at me as I faced my first mud obstacle. I paid for it. And I loved it. I loved every last muddy minute of it. Not only was the Merrell Down and Dirty Mud Run (on Oct. 31, 2010) one of the largest races I've raced in, it was one of the most well organized. It was also my very first 5k in my VFFs. I was worried that the obstacles and trails would be too tough for a minimal shoe, but discovered that my shoes were the perfect match for this race.

It was a very early morning start - we had to be at the venue (Folsom Lake) by 7:30am. The traffic was a bit frustrating, but moved quicker than expected. There was also a bit of a hike from the parking lot to the race start. A good, flat warm-up, I suppose. It was kind of chilly. The sunrise on the lake was absolutely magical and made me appreciate the break in the weather that I didn't think we would get. I was expecting r…