Barefoot Running

Is the barefoot running craze making a comeback?  I’ve been pondering this question for over a year when I saw a coworker padding around the office in her pair of Vibram Five Finger Running shoes.  I’ll admit I could not help staring at this intriguing footwear.   Then I began seeing people wearing them in the gym and every now and then a runner on the trails with a pair.  I ask myself, are we destined to return to our pre-historic days of footwear, or I mean lack thereof?  The five-finger craze is supposed to “fix” our running form and get us back to proper biomechanics but I wonder how it doesn’t hurt to run with them over rocky surfaces. 

In the last year I had a shoe salesman watch me run in the store so that I could be fitted for the best pair of shoes that suited my arch type and gait.  So as someone who needs that extra cushioning in the heel, I wonder if the Five Finger shoe, which does not have the support my feet are used to having, would suit me.  I took a look at Vibram’s web site and found the answer: “If you are a traditional heavy heel-strike runner or walker, you might have a biomechanical change to make, but this change is likely a good one. Humans are not meant to heel strike heavily, particularly when running…Running barefoot with a strong heel strike will send you to the sofa to let your bone contusion or fracture heal. One of the goals of Vibram FiveFingers footwear is to encourage forefoot striking, meaning your forefoot will contact the ground first then engage muscles in your feet and lower legs as your heel touches down. This style of running may be safer and lead to fewer injuries…” (

So until I decide to take the plunge and try these “lizard-like” shoes as one hilarious reviewer referred to them as (,7120,s6-240-400–12828-0,00.html), I’d like to know if you have tried them or are likely to consider making the switch as well.  Give me some insight in this uncharted territory I may consider entering.

About mileoneandcounting

I'm a young professional living in the Washington, DC area. Since moving here in 2007 I have honed a passion for running and fitness. Growing up I played soccer and softball (and tested track & field for one year). After college I ran a few 5K races, but running was really only a means to staying in shape for me. Never in my wildest imagination had I thought I'd ever run a marathon, let alone three. Nor did I think I'd get the running bug after doing so, but I'll admit I'm hooked! Over the years my blog has grown into so much more than a running blog though. Sometimes I have deep thoughts. Other times I'm simply sharing a training story or a review of a product. Here's the place where you'll learn about me through my many adventures--even I enjoy going back to re-read some posts from time to time. I've also been able to hone my love for health and wellness through my business called IDLife which stands for Individually Designed Life. I'd love to help inspire you to live your best life yet so please don't hesitate to reach out to me and may my words resonate with you. See you on the trails...
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2 Responses to Barefoot Running

  1. Brandon says:

    Funny I just got back from REI where I purchased my normal asics. I have a desire to run barefoot as I had two good friends do it last summer for a 5k. I was walking away from the shoes having the urge to do it go barefoot until my brain clicked in to say Boston marathon barefoot your stupid. This summer I am going to try it, as I’m in the process of making my new running style 2nd nature. Btw cool blog

    • Thanks! I’m glad you like the blog. You’ll have to keep me posted (and my readers) on how you like barefoot running. I am thinking that’s a good idea not to try it for a marathon, but a shorter distance instead. How is training?

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