So my foot has mostly healed from an injury I had picked up a while back (and promptly ignored for 4 months) after a week off. The physical fitness test I have been training for was postponed due to the injury. While I would like to get this done and over (in a passing way), I can’t complain about a few more weeks to train! So Although my running for the physical fitness test is only 1.5 miles, I have mixed distance into it – as I view myself as a distance runner. Saturday I did 10 miles, 3 miles longer than I have run in the last 16 years. (my knees still hurt from this stupidity).
So this week I have limited my running, 2 five mile runs earlier in the week, and a 3.5 mile run yesterday, with the last half mile in bare feet. The times haven’t been horrible – but a 45 minute five miler, or a 29 minute 3.4 miles are certainly not the sub-20 5k I would like to get back to. They say slow and steady wins the race, so I will keep my progress going – even if it is slowly.. Though with fall here, and winter approaching, it means the race season is mostly done. This bodes well for next spring if I train all winter. I did my last 5k in sub 24 minutes.. Perhaps I can shave 4 minutes off over the winter?
So, the last 1/2 mile last night was in bare feet. I have been doing alot of reading on barefoot running and the benefits that it can offer. The problem being my feet have been in shoes for 35 years, so I need to build the muscles and tendons up to the idea of doing their actual job. All of the sources online for barefoot running, or for running in the vibram fivefingers – That you start out VERY slowly. Hence my 1/2 mile run. For the record, most of the sites I read DID mention 1/4 of a mile, not 1/2… And my calves are certainly quite tight and sore today..
Running barefoot was interesting. Down hills seemed far less controlled, possibly due to my paranoia of foot-pain… But I imagine as my feet toughen up and I get over my mental blocks – that aspect will become far less of an issue (I hope.) I don’t know yet if I plan on actually going with the whole barefoot running concept, or if I am just building up strength for Vibram Five Fingers, or just to make my feet stronger. But I have to admit, IT would be pretty cool to line up at a local road race with no shoes on.
On a funny note, I headed out for my run last night, and right at the beginning I went by the person who runs my kid’s after school program. On the way back (in barefeet), there she was again! She asked why I didn’t have shoes – so I showed her they were in my hands!!!
She may think I am a bit odd…