Barefoot Running II – my follow up

barefoot running

Here’s my follow up on Barefoot Running…

I’ve been doing the barefoot or minimalist running ‘thing’ since mid-summer and first wrote about it back in August.

While barefoot running is not everything I thought it would be, there has been a huge benefit to my practice of running that I probably would not have gained if I didn’t try it.

What I summarize here is purely my own personal experience. I do believe that barefoot running is the way to go for many people and important in terms of foot and body alignment issues that plague so many people.

1) Personally, running in the minimalist shoe or going barefoot can be hard on my joints at times. While I continue to use the shoes or go barefoot on grass or sand, my recovery time (muscle and joint soreness) was higher than if I just wore some regular running shoes but maintained Good Form.

I have a theory about why this is the case. I’m older and I’m a full bodied woman with hypothyroidism (which increases bone and muscle aches) – not a lanky, light weight long distance runner type. Without the benefit of the padding provided by regular running shoes, and despite adjusting my running form to reduce any tendency to strike too hard with my feet, my joints and muscles really felt the lack of padding after a run on many occasions.

As long as I don’t run more than 2 miles at a time, I’m able to maintain my barefoot or minimalist running practice quite happily. But on occasion I pull out the more padded shoe if I’m feeling particularly achey.

That being said, here are the pluses of engaging this process…
2) Learning the Good Form I spoke about in my previous post is the greatest boon to my running! I completely changed the way I run which allows me to run more efficiently and easily. My quicker running times are evidence.

While I love the feeling of minimal or no weight on my feet while running, I will not be using my barefoot shoes on a constant basis.

I’m going to maintain the Good Form I learned when I took up barefoot running, and will invest in a pair of transitional minimalist or performance running shoes that are light weight, have less of a heel to toe drop but maintain some padding, unlike the barefoot shoes or going barefoot.

I still encourage anyone into running to please try barefoot running. It has clearly helped many people who love to run but are plagued with injuries. And it will change the way you look at your feet and their relationship to our environment.

You don’t have to be a runner to reap the benefits of a barefoot approach
And I encourage non-runners to try going barefoot more often! Letting our peds breathe and touch the Earth is very important. I’ll write more about this another time.

In fact, Teresa Tapp has a workout specifically for foot fitness, and a version of the Basic Workout done barefoot.

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Dorothy provides tips and information for staying fit and happy naturally during perimenopause and beyond, using the T-Tapp workout and more.

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