Monday, November 1, 2010

1.5 More Brrrr-foot Miles – and trying out Vivo Barefoot Shoes for Choir Practice

Back out there today after the HoBooken 5K this past weekend.  I’ve got pictures at the bottom of this post, so if you’re good little blog-readers, you get to see them at the end.

It’s November now.  I’ve been completely barefoot since June.  How long can I continue to run barefoot?  This is the pressing question on my mind. Over at the Barefoot Runner’s Society, Barefoot Ken Bob has a post about Starting Out Barefoot In the Cold. which I read with great interest.  Essentially the not-too-much-too-soon rule applies with barefoot running in the cold as well.  In a way I was glad to hear that.  It means that I’m not so bad off, and maybe I’ll be able to extend my barefoot running season eventually.  If I want to, that is.

-----Part I where I talk way too long about my thermal running shirt-----------

But for today, it was 46 degrees.  I dressed warmly.  Not in my usual bike-short type bottoms and T-shirt top.  I wore long tights and a great Nike Pro thermal long-sleeved shirt that I had bought at Fleet Feet in Hoboken a few years ago.  It was a man’s shirt because they don’t make the women’s shirts in my size.

I like this thermal shirt so much that I googled Nike Pro to see if I could purchase another one.  I found a page full of thermal long-sleeved compression kind of shirts probably like the one I have.  They have a line of “stay warm” clothes. This is probably the one I have, only mine is white. I really love this shirt.  It is so warm, and it is so comfortable.  It doesn’t even feel like I have anything extra on.  While I was still in the house, I was actually getting too hot while wearing it and all I had on over it was a cotton T-shirt.

They had some really funky colored in the women’s version.  I really l liked this purple one.  But, alas, they do not carry this one in plus sizes.  I have to commend Nike for carrying some plus sized items, but it is very limited, and the colors are dull and boring.  And there was nothing in the Nike Pro Warm line for plus sizes.  When I searched for plus size warm, they just showed a couple of jackets.

This does bother me.  It would be nice to have them design some more fun styles for plus size.  I guess they figure we can have that as a reward for losing weight later or something.

-----------Part II where I talk about the actual 1.5 mile barefoot run---------------

Two big issues on my run today.  First was how cold my feet were as I stepped out.  It actually hurts to walk on the stuff when my feet are cold.  They get all melty, like warm wax, once they’re warmed up and kind of meld to the stuff beneath them and kind of squish and fill in the cracks when they’re warm, but when they’re cold they’re kind of hard and every little pebble hurts.

As I walked out to the boulevard, I asked myself, “Do I like this?  Do I really like this?  I think I told a few people I liked this.”

But once out there, where the sun was shining on the terra cotta tiles, all was good again. I was very happy.  Okay, here’s one more day.  I’ve run in November and I’ve run 46 degrees and I’m still barefoot and I still like it and it’s good.

I felt so good and planned to run further, but ended up having to go to the bathroom.  It didn’t feel too bad and I thought I could just keep going, but I remembered that other time when I got really sick, so I decided to respect the “call” and head home early.  And – without going into detail – it’s a good thing I did!  Called that one right!

So, my after 5K run was not so exciting.

----Part III where I realize have to put on shoes for choir practice------

Well, although I was able to still run barefoot today, I realized that I was going to need something warm for choir practice tonight.  All summer, with the exception of Kung Fu class, I’ve been in my flip-flops or Tvas.  But it has been getting cold at night.  Plus when I sing I perspire and that makes my feet kind of cold and clammy and I really don’t like that.

But what to wear.  I decided to dig out the pair of Injinji socks they sold me when I bought my Vibrams last spring.  (What did I know back then when I was buying my Vibrams.  When they said, “Don’t you want the socks to go with them?” I figured it was part of it.)

Getting them on was tricky, but not too bad.  I like the way they feel.

Vivo Barefoot 9723a

Next, I planned to wear a pair of Kali shoes from Terra Plana’s VivoBarefoot line.

I had purchased these shoes back in July to wear when sang Mozart’s Requiem with the Westminster Chamber Choir, which I wrote about here, here, and here. (Do I really think anyone is going to click and read all those posts?)

My feet always really hurt in choir concerts because we stand for really long periods of time.  I had thought, being that I was getting into barefoot philosophy and all, that these shoes might be a good choice for a concert.  In the end, I couldn’t go through with wearing them, however.  I was in the front row, and all the ladies were wearing heels. So, I chose a different shoe with a heel and let my feet hurt unhealthily.

So, I’ve got to make use of these shoes and they shall be the first shoes of cold season, then.

Vivo Barefoot 9725a

I wish I could say that these shoes were wonderful, especially for the price I paid for them, but one of the reasons I hadn’t worn them much was that there are little problems with them.

The first problem was the top of the shoe digging in to the top of my foot.  The clerk at the Terra Plana store in Manhattan had told me that removing the insoles usually took care of that problem. It did.

The other problem was that the heel dug in.  But I thought it would make a difference if I was wearing socks.  The other times I was trying to wear the shoes without socks.

I definitely had the right size.  That’s one of the reason I had gone directly to the store rather than ordering online.

So, I wore these to choir practice tonight and they felt pretty good.  My feet hurt a little while standing, but that is because my feet have been conditioned for barefoot running, not standing.  And standing takes a different kind of strength and stamina.  I plan to be standing barefoot more for longer periods to condition that.

 Vivo Barefoot 9730a I really do feel sad about wearing shoes again.  But I really do not like cold feet and I will have to do this sometimes from now on.  It’s going to be tricky to figure out my shoe life.  I was wondering about Uggs.  Anyone have any experience with Uggs in the winter?


Vivo Barefoot 9726a


Ewa said...

I have sam injinji socks, nice rainbow. One comment though - they are not best for cold weather though. It is like having mittens and gloves. If you keep your toes separated, they won't be warming each other up.

Avocational Singer said...

You make a good point about keeping warm, Ewa, but keeping warm is not the only objective I have. Besides barefoot running, I have also been influenced by a lot of what I read in Daniel Howell's book The Barefoot Book. Although he does not really mention much about socks, I have noticed that my socks are tight and pull my toes into the same kind of shoe shape that a shoe does. The reason I wanted the toe socks is so that my toes would splay and not be bound by tight socks. The VivoBarefoot shoes are designed so my feet will spread naturally inside, like they are barefoot.

I might be off about this notion, but I don't want to continue with things that inhibit or deform my feet any more, but am a little too cold to go as a completely barefooted person in the winter. So, I'm looking for a second best option.

Cynthia said...

Have you tried wearing Vivo Barefoot Evo? I've been using it for quite some time now especially in cold weather. So far so good. What I like about this shoes is that it's very light and comfortable to wear. Plus, the feeling of "barefoot" is amazing. You can take a look in detail at this site here.