Hi Everyone--I'm new to the club and wanted to see if anyone does minimalist or barefoot style running?
I've been running in Vibram FiveFingers since last summer and they've been great. I had some issues with my IT band while training in running shoes and the Vibrams cleared up all the issues! I went from not being able to go 3 miles in June without excruciating pain to finishing the Marine Corps Marathon in October!
I just wanted to see if anyone else out there uses them?
Hi, and welcome to the club. I don't use them, but I have been very interested in trying something like that out because I am a crappy runner and constantly plagued by injuries. So did you complete the MCM while wearing them? I've read about them a lot but didn't know if people were doing long distances with them or not.
Just started w/ the vibrams. First run (2 mi) produced pretty sore calf muscles, just like most folks from what I read. I'm not trying to run a marathon in them, though, just reduce some foot and hip pain through improved form.
Tim - obviously you're a fan of these, but was it just IT band struggles, or did you have other issues? And when can I expect the muscle soreness to abate?
@Carolina: They are great for helping out with form as they give you a more natural gait. I ran the MCM in them and while my feet did hurt, they probably didn't hurt any more than anyone else who was doing the 26.2 in running shoes. My time was pretty slow because my "A" race was Nations and I didn't start doing long runs until after that was over (About 6 weeks of long run training.)
@Jason: 2 miles is more than enough to start running in them. I had a tendency to heel strike in cushy running shoes whereas the Vibrams don't allow you too (you really feel the impact all the way up to your skull if you do). It was just IT band for me, but I'm sure pain can manifest itself differently for different people (hips, back, etc...).
It uses your soleus muscle (long muscle that runs underneath the double headed gastrocnemius muscle) to help in cushioning your landing much more so than if you are wearing running shoes. It took awhile to build up that muscle, probably about 6 weeks, before things got comfortable but your ability to adapt may vary if you are already doing a fair amount of running. Stair runs or steep hills helped in conditioning. Let me know what you think as you get farther along in them!
Congrats on your MCM finish in the VFF. What style did you get - Classic, KSO, Trek?
I've been gradually moving towards minimalist running - doing workouts/short runs in Chuck's and just walking around barefoot as much as possible. A lot of my trail running friends wear VFF for shorter runs ( < 5K), but I do have a friend who finished a 50k trail run in VFFs out in Illinois. Crazy dude.
I've just about worn holes in my Sprints and have a pair of Flows on order for the colder weather.
I always wear Injinji socks with them to keep from getting blisters and I think it keeps them from getting smelly so quickly.
I have a pair of KSOs and i love them i use them for just about everything. Running, working out, riding around the metro... wanted to get a pair of the sprints for warm weather running. anyone with experience with the Flows let me know how much they keep the cold weather out? ive tried running in the KSOs this winter and i come home with numb toes.
I've also started running in FiveFingers (KSO model) for short (3 miles or so) soft-surface runs. For now, I'm still wearing my regular training shoes and orthotics for longer runs on pavement. I definitely like them so far.
I didn't want to go all the way to Vibrams, so I got some Nike Frees. They have a sole with deep deep cuts all over so they're really flexible (in all directions)
I'm still breaking my foot into them (strange thought) but it is really different from a regular shoe. To me they offer the best compromise. Full flexibility for the barefoot experience, but some cushioning and protection.
@ant753 - I've tried the Flows on at the store and they definitely feel warm. Probably even warmer than most running shoes!
@DoggyBrown - I've heard good things about the Frees, although when I tried them on they were still too much "shoe" for me. But whatever you find works for you! To each his own...
Even Inov-8 has some good road and trail shoes for those who don't want to make the jump to Vibrams.