Sunday, October 17, 2010

96.5 Barefoot Miles -- Not Yet Time For Shoes

Well, with all the worry about what's going to happen to my bare feet come winter, it sure wasn't time to worry about that today.  It was a gorgeous, crisp, beautiful, sunny Fall day, and the pavement I run on was near-perfect temperature. 

I wasn't going to go out today because I have to run tomorrow to get back on my consistent M-W-F schedule.  But some thoughts I read on the Hunter-Gatherer blog (by John Durant) this morning about fractals ("Don't Be a Toaster: Why Fractal Geometry Matters to Your Health") got me thinking a bit, and I began to consider the idea that maybe it's not so crucial to get back on my regulated, consistent schedule as I think.

The idea put forth in the fractal post, is that a "machine-like regularity" might not be the optimal approach, since life and nature are not as regular as all that.  When I think back to my 11th barefoot mile and that post I wrote about the picture of consistency I remember how sure I felt that I was on the right track.  I was convinced that the principle of consistency was important in getting one's body into condition.  Maybe the only way I could tell if I was being consistent was if I could measure it somehow.  I had felt very proud of the fact that I had managed to achieve some consistency over what was then a 6-week period.

I have remained pretty consistent since then, with some Sunday races mixing me up a bit.

Here's the new and updated picture of consistency:

As you can see, I have been pretty regular and faithful all summer.  In fact, this chart might be almost an exemplification of that "machine-like regularity."

But once I ran my first barefoot 5K race on a Sunday, my consistency started to unravel.  I still need those recovery days.  I'm not quite ready to run on the in-between days.  So, I had to rest after the 5K.

Then there was rain and cold, and I kind of waited it out, seeing if I could run on the in-between days, which kind of affected my Kung Fu cross-training, and caused me to miss a few classes.  But maybe that's part of the problem with "machine-like regularity" as well -- there's not so much flexibility, and if something goes off, the whole thing gets thrown off.

Then there was the 1st Annual NYC Barefoot Run, and the sore throat-headache day, along with the stirrings of that self-sabotage thing.

All this has led to a kind of spotty October.

You can imagine that a person like me -- quite attached to going around and around in this consistent manner -- might be a bit anxious to get back on her regular schedule.

So, after reading the ideas put forth in the  "Don't Be A Toaster" post, where the thought of not being so predictable and regular is proposed, I'm beginning to wonder -- have I done it all wrong?

I don't think I've done it wrong.  I am pretty convinced that this regularity and consistency was needed for me to fashion myself back into a runner.  Maybe the "consistency" can be looked at and re-worked now that I am able to run a good 3 miles.  Maybe I can go more with the weather, run two days in a row, and stuff like that.  But I still feel pretty good that I was able to achieve that consistency over the summer.

I hope I can find a way to be consistent, even if a more fractal way of being consistent, as the winter months approach.

1 comment:

Ewa said...

As much as I would like to have my life and training to be free flowing, I have to be consistent and organized or everything will start falling apart.
There are some people who manage winter barefoot running. Obviously they have better model feet than mine.