On vacation I tend to do the things that I don’t have the time or discipline for back in the real world. This morning I made my first true attempt at barefoot running. I have written before about how much I love barefoot walking and also about the efficacy of barefoot running.
When I run I don’t calculate distance. I usually run in one direction for fifteen minutes and then run back. I run fairly slowly so I don’t think I am covering three miles in thirty minutes but I might (It is pretty hard to run slower than a ten minute mile).
I usually walk for 40 minutes when I do one of my barefoot walks in Prospect Park. So I thought a 30-minute run on a road that seemed fairly soft when I walked it barefoot would be reasonable.
At this moment my feet have a very clear opinion about my brains assessment of what’s reasonable. I am sporting a couple of blisters on the outside of both feet—in the exact same place, which makes me happy.
It is easy to walk badly if you walk barefoot. Not so much when you run. It is amazing the difference that a little forward thrust can make. When I walk barefoot I touch my heel down before quickly moving to the front of the foot. For assorted reasons the ability to use the heel can lead to problems. But running barefoot basically eliminates a heel strike or the heel strike follows softly the strike of the forefoot.
Even though my feet are complaining as I type, everything else in my body feels great. Especially my joints—It is the same thing that I feel after a barefoot walk, my hips are loose and my joints fluid. I felt the same thing after running barefoot for 30 minutes.
When the body is used correctly for running, running for 30 minutes feels like a walk in the park.
Addendum: I wrote this post yesterday afternoon and this morning, as I post this, my feet feel great and my body woke up loose with a little expected tightness in the calves. Life is beautiful. Barefoot running is beautiful.