• 29th April 2007 - By adventuresofgreg

    DSC04415-708351PR half marathon 1:27 and 9th place. BAREFOOT

    It’s always thrilling to set new personal records. I’ve been trying to break the 90 minute barrier at the half marathon distance for years and I demolished it today with a 1:27 finish at the Calgary Police Half Marathon. I also moved into the top 10 in my division which I am totally thrilled with.

    Ready for my secret weapon? Here it is:

    Well, It’s not actually BARE foot, but close enough. They are aqua socks – made to keep scuba divers feet warm in the water. They feature a thin rubber bottom that provides some traction (they work awesome on ice) and a small measure of protection for your feet bottoms.

    Would you be surprised if I told you that 3 million years of evolution has provided human beings with feet that we can run with? Gasp!

    There has been plenty of research on the merits of using our built-in equipment rather than something from the Nike marketing division. The short of it is, less injury, better economy. Read this abstract for the nitty gritty.

    My buddy Barefoot Ted runs 100 mile ultra marathons on rocky trails BAREFOOT. Check out this video clip of him running on ROCKS

    How dark the con of man.

    Helen had a great race too with a PR coming off of a really bad hamstring injury. The day was pretty cool with rain threatening but there wasn’t a lot of wind like last year – probably perfect temperatures for a half. Pool test for WiTHiN tonight – hopefully my lucky streak continues.

  • No Responses to “PR half marathon 1:27 and 9th place. BAREFOOT”

    • Anonymous on April 29, 2007

      Actually, Nike HAS come out with a shoe that is designed to mimick the effect of running barefoot.
      Here's the story from Wired (a few years ago)

      I'd heard the same advice from biking buddies. For the past 2 years I've been wearing only sandals and aquasocks. I feel like my feet stay warmer when not confined by socks and shoes too. (This may also stem from the improved circulation on a raw food diet.)

      Good luck at the pool tonite. If things don't go as well as the rest of your glorious week though, you've still had a glorious week! Thanks for the inspiration.
      Nick Hein
      Morgantown, WV

    • Adventures of Greg on April 29, 2007

      Sorry Nike, but in my opinion, the Nike Frees are only a marketing gimmick designed to make traditional running shoes 'look like' something akin to barefoot running. They feature an arch, and a raised heel – basically a pair of regular running shoes with a funny grid pattern in the sole. I had a pair for a day and returned them. NOTHING like running barefoot.

    • Anonymous on April 30, 2007

      Hi Greg,

      That the human foot evolved without shoes present makes a great deal of sense.

      Your new secret weapon jogged lose a memory. I used to wear plain deer skin moccasins on a fairly routine basis, remembering them as providing that barefoot feeling while avoiding the discomfort of sharp rocks and thorns.

      It's a fairly satisfying project to cut and stitch together a pair from a suitable animal hide. Home crafted from Mom Nature's materials instead of store bought helps ensure a perfect fit!

      Though stretching the definition; we could regard footgear as a Human Powered Vehicle.

      John Snyder

    • Barefoot Ted on April 30, 2007

      LESS = MORE

      Congratulations on your PR. However, it does not surprise me. Most of the over-built, orthotic boots that runners wear these days are a disadvantage.

      It IS possible to run without shoes. It is best to build up slowly, but it can be done. Not only will it make you a better runner, it will actually make you a safer runner. At least that is my experience.

      The goal should be running without injury and running as efficiently as possible. Barefooting helps you do this. Unfortunately, it does not cost any money to run barefoot, so it will never be fully accepted in a consumer-based culture. Yet, we are still FREE to choose.

      Yes, there are many products on the market that are now available that come closer to barefooting that ever before. Aquasocks can work, but are often heavy. Vibram FiveFingers have a lot of potential, or you can make your own moccasins or huaraches.

      Checkout http://www.runningbarefoot.org for advice on barefoot running.

      Barefoot Ted's Adventures

    • Anonymous on May 5, 2007

      I'm curious what the weight difference between your aquasocks and running shoes is?

      "Adding 200 grams to your feet (by wearing training shoes instead of racing flats) can increase oxygen consumption by 1-2% (Burkett et al., Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise 17: 158-63, 1985; Jones et al., Ergonomics 29: 439-43, 1986; Hamill et al., Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise 20: 515-21, 1988)."

    • Anonymous on August 17, 2007

      i've been looking at different shoes to try "quasi-barefoot" running in, but the vibram five-fingers and nike free are a little too pricey for me, given i'm only experimenting.

      can you tell me what brand aqua sock you use? my only concern with aqua socks is that they will fall apart after extended running.

    • Adventures of Greg on August 17, 2007

      Hi Anonymous – I use many different brands – DeepSee is good. doesn't matter. Just make sure that they are light, and have a thin rubber bottom to extend life

    • Anonymous on August 19, 2007

      great, thank you very much for the reply (about the make of your aqua socks)

    • Anonymous on August 7, 2008

      but cavemen didn't run on concrete, so actually you're just ruining your knees. even with shoes running is harmful to the knee.

    • Anonymous on June 1, 2009

      Though expensive, the Terra Plana Vivo Barefoot shoes are reportedly very good at giving the feeling of being barefoot. They use a kevlar sole. I'm thinking of getting some to get the advantages of your water shoes with the attractiveness of normal sneakers.

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