Am I Born to Run?

As I have continued through my trek to convert to minimalist running I am not finding it as pleasing as I once thought.  I love the shoes, I love the idea, I love everything about it except for my pain in transitioning.  

I put in a couple miles in my Five Fingers over the last week or so.  It kills me not to run over a mile.  The last time I ran things were different.  I quickly started noticing some pain in my tendons and the arch of my foot.  These were different then the “soreness” I have been experiencing.  I couldn’t make it a few hundred feet without having to walk.  Let the frustration begin.  I want this to work but I am not sure it will.  

I put in two fast miles yesterday in my standard clunky Nike’s and it felt pretty good….no arch pain…still some soreness in the left tendon….but nothing like running in my five fingers.  I don’t know what I will do yet.

On a totally different note I have an area to work on my bikes, hopefully more riding will ensue soon.


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You should be afraid of my calves next time you see me….

I am serious….my calves are going to be killers.  Well at least I hope this pain and soreness I am going through are going to make them that way.  I have run my second actual run in my Vibram Five Fingers.  They continue to excite me and I enjoy wearing them, but I get kind of bummed out when I can run as far as I was before.  I know the transition takes a while but I want to be ready now.  My calves and Achilles tendon’s are definitely getting a work out. 

I am second guessing if I will be ready for another 10k in June.  I know I can make it happen if I were to run it in my shoes but the VFF’s feel so much better.  I really like feeling the ground when I run.  I am hoping to run the Hospital Hill 10k and if I don’t feel I am ready then it will be the 5k.  All this will be working up to the Kansas City Half Marathon in October.  I have always said that I didn’t want to do that much running, but I am finding myself enjoying it.  

I do hope to get my bicycle out this weekend and start putting more miles on that.  It probably has been lonely since last October.  

The Transition Begins

I stopped by Garry Gribbles Running Sports to get sized for some Vibram Five Fingers.  I can say that initially they do feel as weird as the look but once you get used to them they feel pretty nice. I have been doing a lot of reading about other people’s experiences with them and must say that there are few people out there that have had a bad experience with these shoes.  

I was able to get out for a brief run to test them out.  Immediately I had to correct my running form.  One thing I noticed is that I did not heel strike as much as I thought.  I ran about 1/3 of a mile and could definitely feel my calves and ankle muscles being worked more than they have been in a long time, in fact I can still feel them as I am typing this.  

I am optimistic as to the effect these will have on my running.  I look forward to conditioning my legs so I can get back up to my mileage.  Maybe, just maybe, I will shoot for the Half-Marathon in October.

Minimalist Shoes

I recently finished the Rock the Parkway 10k and sent a new PR for myself.  It was a fairly flat and fast course.  I have been training in the mornings fairly consistently and my long runs were getting up to 5 miles.  I have felt good during most runs but recently started having some outside knee pain.  Nothing severe but enough that I knew I should take a break before the race.  

During the race I felt great.  My legs were good and I was definitely happy with my results.  Afterwards my right knee was very sore as where the muscles in my foot.  This led me to consider some things as shoe changes.  Currently I am running in a Nike Structure Stability Shoe.  I begin to question myself Am I running wrong?  Are my shoes causing the problem? What is the deal?

During this time of questioning and searching for answers I began to consider the idea of minimalist running.  It is not that foreign to me.  As a High School track competitor I spent much of my time in racing spikes which do not have much cushioning or support.  I have found articles laying out the pro’s and con’s of minimalist running http://www.runnersworld.com/article/0,7120,s6-240-400—13691-1-1X2X3X4X5X6X7X8-9,00.html.  Also the book that seems to have sparked the revolution:  Born to Run.  

I believe I want to try it.  The research makes sense to me.  The idea of running the way our bodies intended to run makes sense to me.  But can I make the giant transition to the Vibram Five Fingers?  or do I need something in between such as Nike’s Free 3.0?  I know the transition is time consuming and I will be retraining the way I run.  It is my hopes that this will prevent any future injuries and I will be able to run for years to come.  

With that being said…over the next few weeks I hope to come to a decision and begin training for another 10k (or maybe a Half Marathon by the fall if I am ambitious) while transitioning to a minimalist shoe.