Loving it! Barefoot running that is! However transitioning to barefoot running has been challenging and trying, but overall it has been good. It has taken longer than I expected, but I think that it was worth the extra time. Here are some of the benefits that I have seen in the past 3.5 months of running barefoot;
*I have had persistent Achilles issues since beginning to run marathons 4 years ago and the Achilles is getting stronger and less prone to injury. Because my Achilles was so weak going into this transition, it took much longer than I thought for it to get strong enough for me to feel comfortable going longer distances. This morning I went for my longest barefoot run (10 miles) and it went really well. I have 7 weeks until my half marathon and hope to be barefoot ready!
*My gait and stride are improving. I need to shave at least 1 minute/mile to get a qualifying time for Boston. This means a lot of work on my running form, stride and pace. My stride is getting longer which means I can cover more ground with fewer strides. This is a huge advantage when one thinks of going 26.2 miles!
*I have a tendency to run on the outside of my foot at times, especially when I am tired. This is due partly to a weak Achilles. This is beginning to change and I land more squarely on the ball of my foot with no rotation of the foot.
* I will never have feet that look like this;
My feet will not be “pretty” feet, but will have more of a calloused toughness to them. I am ok with that because my feet work hard at carrying me all over the world. I love being able to walk in the Indian Ocean, run the pristine beaches in the Philippines and the city streets of Bangkok with a friend. But most importantly while doing those things, I have the privilege to bring the good news of the gospel to the little ones that I meet.
While my feet may be shod with Vibram five fingers when you look at them, they are really shod with “the readiness given by the gospel of peace”. May I continue to bring peace to all the places I travel to serve the little ones!