Sunday, June 27, 2010

Next Barefoot Run -- Tomorrow -- Really?

Will I really start out barefoot tomorrow?  Will I really continue with this?

My running right now is so modest.  I am building from scratch after six months off with plantar fasciitis.  But even before I was waylaid, I was really only just getting back into it.

So, now, my goal is consistency.  I don't care how far or how fast.  I just made a plan to go out there M - W - F in between Kung Fu days.  So far I'm running a little over a mile each time and it's getting easier and easier.

The last two times were barefoot all the way.

I originally wasn't planning to be up to a mile barefooting yet.  At first I was just doing my little walking warmup barefoot.  Then I planned to walk a warmup and then start jogging barefoot only a few yards or so.  Finally I had worked up to walking about a 1/4 mile barefoot, then running a 1/2 mile barefoot, then running the last half mile in Vibrams.

But the last two times, I just kept running when I was supposed to change into my Vibrams.  I just knew it was all right.  I kept asking myself if I was overdoing it -- "Is this too much?  Am I overdoing it?" -- but my body knew I wasn't.

Anyway, tomorrow is my next running day.  Now that I've done the whole thing barefoot way sooner than I thought I would, do I have to keep doing it barefoot?  I have this weird kind of scrupulosity about running where I feel like I can't go "back."  Once I've run something a better way, I can't go back and do it the way I was before.  I have to maintain my new level.

Do I have to make up my mind ahead of time?  I feel like I have a choice set before me.  On the one side, it looks like the comfort of running shoes.  On the other side, it looks like "the hard way."

But like so many other choices like this, the appearance of comfort is an illusion.  Because plantar fasciitis was definitely not comfortable.

I wasn't able to change my running form while wearing my shoes.  Deep in my heart, I know these shoes had to come off and I had to learn all over again.

Will I be able to transpose what my feet are teaching me to running in shoes again?  That was my original idea:  Use barefooting to learn how to run properly and then put my shoes back on and run the barefoot way in them.  But now I'm wondering if I will ever put my shoes on again for running.

There's something else at work with this barefooting stuff.  It's all trying to tell me something.  Something about giving up planning and control and measuring and having it all tied up in neat little packages.


ac said...

Hey, great blog.
I've been running in shoes for many years, but I am just taking my baby steps with this barefoot thing. I think you are right, it is trying to tell us something. For me it, it is to trust what my body is telling me and not the shoe companies.
Good to see you are having success with it. Keep it up!

Avocational Singer said...

Thanks for stopping by, ac. This is kind of my "secret" second blog, so I didn't know if anyone would really find it. It took me so long to figure out what my first blog would be about (singing) and I can not believe that I actually found a topic for a second blog and that it is about running barefoot!!!