Friday, April 23, 2010

Totally Inspired

My third week of not running is coming to an end and I must say it has been hard. I have really tired to not complain and have even been happy and encouraging to all my friends that have told me about their awesome runs. I have been impressed and in awe of my friends who have run their first ultra, adventure race, and even Boston. All through it I have had the fear that I will never be able to do any of those things because every time I get my pace up or my distance up I get hurt. I have been feeling like I must just be a recreational runner who can only go out and do a couple miles a week and then sit on the couch and watch as everyone else gets to push themselves to see what they can do. Needless to say I have been miserable.

Then the most amazing thing happened. I read this post by one of my favorite bloggers Barefoot Angie Bee. I truly believe that life gives you what you need but sometimes we are just not ready for it, this time it hit me over the head with a brick. I have heard about barefoot running (I mean come on who hasn’t by now right) I even read the book “Born to Run”. When I gave it a shot for a one mile run on the treadmill my shins protested greatly, so I said this is not for me and went on my never ending shoe hunt (to which I still have not found a pair of shoes that does not hurt yet). After reading Angie’s post and chatting with her a little, I truly think that this barefoot thing might just be what I need. When I tried it, I already had bad shin splints so that could be why it hurt so badly. And this time I will be coming off of a 6week break so I am feeling very optimistic about it right now.

Angie suggested that I start walking around barefoot to get my feet use to it since I still have three weeks off. Then I will start off very slowly and increase my barefoot mileage a little at a time. Since I live on a dirt/rocky country road I will drive in to town and run on the track to start (I wonder if I could bring my dog with me on the track, anyone know?) I am feeling very optimistic and excited by the chance that this could be my answer to running. You see I love to run and not running just makes me sad and miserable. Angie I am so thankful to you for your support and advice, you have given me hope.



Aimee (I Tri To Be Me) said...

I tried barefoot running (on the treadmill) too and actually really enjoy it. I'm waiting to get a pair of VFF, because I can't imagine myself being a true barefoot runner! But, just make sure you start slowly. I started with just 1/4 mile and then gradually increased the mileage. I also transitioned to a minimalist running shoe to make the transition a little easier. Good luck!

Marny said...

Awesome! I know exactly how you feel about the injury. I have so many goals I want to reach and I want to run HARD to reach them but alas, I keep getting injured. I promised myself that after the ultra I was going to "start over" as a barefoot runner. So I'm working on that now too. So far I only do treadmill and track. I just don't know what to do about the rocky trails around here. Maybe I should go pay Angie a visit!

Bethany said...

Good for you, Tracey...I know sitting on the sidelines can be really hard! But I'm impressed with your optimistic attitude and even more happy that you're hopping on the barefoot bandwagon!! I hope that it works out for you (but I'm totally sure it will!!)!!!

Barefoot AngieB said...

I am so glad I could inspire you!! You have much to gain right now that you have nothing to loose! Its a great place to start. Same as where I started and it has been really fun!
Try picking things up with your toes and go barefoot as much as possible during your time of rest.

As far as tracks go..I have heard varying opinions on track surfaces. You want a surface that will give you the optimal feedback. When the surface is springy it can change your form. Avoid grass as well. It is wonderful under your feet and cool but it poses a risk of hidden dangers.

I think the best place to start is on a sidewalk or the roads. I love running in the cemetery. Hardly any traffic and clean roads.
You feet are built to be springy so don't worry about the hard surface just focus on your form and relaxing! You will fall in love with running again!

Don't hesitate to ask questions either. I will help any way I can!!

jill said...

i don't know if i'd ever give this a try, but i do think there is much to the concept. i hope that this is the key you need to unlock your foot-mystery! and it certainly is the mood boost you've needed. keep us posted on the progress!

Anna said...

Just think of all that money you'll save on running shoes!