Favorite Pastime - Resting!

Favorite Pastime - Resting!

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy New Year! - 44 Mile Week

Happy New Year Barefoot Runners,
I hope everyone had as nice a week as I did.  I am truly blessed and it was great to be off work for the entire week!  I had my highest mileage week since I started barefooting and my longest barefoot run ever this week -- 11 miles.  The daily breakdown for the week is as follows:

TUE0.250:03:190:13:1633BAREFOOT - Ouch! Turned around.
TUE6.150:57:220:09:2033in Vibrams
WED6.651:01:070:09:1126in Vibrams
FRI7.051:01:120:08:4146in Vibrams
SAT5.160:46:070:08:5637in Vibrams
The two barefoot days were relatively dry (not counting short slushy run on Tues) and as a result these were my 2 longest runs of the week.  The feet felt really good on both of these barefoot days, although I did sort of develop and then re-aggravate a blood blister on the ball of the left foot.  It still looks pretty bad but doesn't hurt (and it didn't pop, thank goodness).  On the 11 mile run I actually carried my Vibrams in my jacket pockets just in case I got into trouble.  It was nice to have them (psychologically) although I didn't feel the need to use them.  This was a particularly long route down Hwy 38 all the way to the South Harbour Fire Station and then back up through South and West Harbour subdivisions.  The roads in these sub divisions were very rough and weren't exactly dry as they had been snow covered just 48 hours prior.  All in all it was a great test of the feet and I felt very fortunate to hit 11 miles by the end of my first year barefooting!
The other days I used the Vibrams as it was either snowy (Tues) or rainy (Fri) or just wet. 
Even though I hated using the Vibrams, I do love the fact that I'm still able to run on these "bad weather" days and keep up the cardio.  And I really needed them for warmth in the slushy snow on Tuesday morning.  I also appreciate the tread on the bottom of my my particular brand of Vibrams (KSO TrekSport) for extra traction on the snowy hills, etc. 

Once again, thanks to my Garmin 405CX I was able to run 7 completely different routes in each of my 7 runs.  I really think the Garmin motivated me to go longer three different times this week and helped push me to the 44 mile total (incidently, this is my longest week of the year since early Jan 2011.)  It had been a particularly low mileage year even in shoes, prior to starting the barefoot thing in Mid July.  My total annual mileage is 839 miles (lowest since 1995!) while my Barefoot Mileage is 202 and my Vibram Mileage is 70.  The first half of the year was shod but only 560 miles or so, due to hip and hamstring injuries (now completely healed thanks to barefooting!)
Overall this has been a great "start" at barefooting and thanks to the mild winter so far, I've been able to steadily increase my mileage and start going back-to-back instead of skipping days.
Weekly Overall Mileage = 44 miles
Weekly Barefoot Mileage = 19 miles

Stay Safe Out There This Winter Barefooters!
(...because the colder weather is coming!)

(BF) Dan Lutes

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas Barefooters! - 5 New Routes in 5 Days - 28 Miles

Merry Christmas Barefooters!
I'm loving this "warm" December.  I ran 5 times this week and ran a different route each day (thanks to the Garmin).  Only used the Vibrams once and that was for my long run on Wed. which was around the Bear Slide Golf Course for a total of 11.5 miles.  I probably should have used the Vibrams a 2nd day on the Thursday out and back to MacGregor Park but went barefoot even though it was kindof wet for that 3.8 miler.  I don't mind going barefoot in the wet, as long as I know it will be a short route. 
The lowest temperature I ran in all week was today, Saturday, which was 32 degrees but it was Sunny and actually kind of felt warm.  Maybe because it was Christmas Eve!  It was a great run out to Flippins Road and then, since I was feeling so good, an unplanned out and back heading south on Anthony road.  The feet felt great even though it was cold and this had been a "high mileage" week already.  Today's 5 miler was a great way to cap off a 28 mile week.  This was my biggest week yet although the long run was in the Vibrams.  By the way, that is also the longest run yet in the Vibrams.  The other nice thing is that I started pulling the pace down, turning in a 9:14 on the barefoot 6 miler on Mon, an 8:42 for the Vibram 11.5mi on Wed. and another 8:42 for the barefoot 3.9mi on Thurs.  I am looking forward to being off work next week and getting in some good runs in some beautiful weather.  So far, the weather forecast shows dry, sunny and highs in the 40s...you gotta love a mild December in Indiana!!
Merry Christmas to All,
(BF) Dan Lutes

Total Miles for Week = 27.9 Miles (16.4 Barefoot, 11.5 in Vibrams)

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Barefoot in December!

Hello Barefooters,
So far this has been a great December for barefoot running in Indiana.  Temps have been staying in the upper 20s and 30s and we have had several sunny days.  As you know, moisture is the barefoot runners enemy, so I have really appreciated the few sunny days we have had to both warm and dry out the pavement.  I've also been having a blast using my new Garmin 405CX which has encouraged me to go on some longer routes and even go off and discover some new ones.  It is amazing how easy it is as a runner to get into a rut of running the same routes OVER and OVER again!  The Garmin automatically maps out my route on my laptop when I get back so it's great to try new routes just to see how they will look on the map! 
Here is an example of my 10 mile route I ran this past Wednesday.  Also graphed are elevation (green) and speed (blue).  So far I'm really happy with my purchase.  This was a Cyber Monday buy and I got it for only $150!  I had always held off buying a running GPS thinking that I liked the freedom of NOT having all the "infrastructure" and hassle of the GPS and connection to computer, etc.  I like the idea of just getting up and going on the run first thing in the morning...the simplicity of it all.  But this Garmin makes it even simpler, and now I can just go for a run without worrying about staying on a pre-measured course.  And in the case of travelling, I can just get up and go and this model even helps me get back to the hotel if I get lost (if will give "turn by turn" directions to "return to start").  I haven't explored half the features yet, but I'm definitely having fun playing with my new toy!  The breakdown for the week is as follows:  Monday= 6, Wednesday=10 (in Vibrams), Thursday=1, Friday=4.8, Saturday=1.5, both Monday and Friday were dry/sunny so I went barefoot even though it was 32 degrees both days.  The Wed and Thurs runs were wet/rainy (but in the 50s) so I used the Vibrams on Wed and went short (although barefoot) on Thurs.  It was interesting to look at the bottom of the Vibrams after using them and finding several different sized "pebbles" stuck in the treads.
Here is a photo of the collection of "stuff."  I guess this is what always sticks to my feet when they get wet, so I do appreciate the Vibrams in the wintertime.  Now by far the most interesting run of the week was on Saturday.  I was up visiting the in-laws in northern Indiana and we recieved an un-expected half inch of powdery snow this morning.  Since I had already planned to do a short recovery run that day, and hadn't brought along the Vibrams, I decided what the heck and GO BAREFOOT IN THE SNOW!  It was 28 degrees with almost no wind and a fine powder of snow still falling.  It turned out to be really fun.  I fired up the Garmin and went on a 1.5 mile run out on the shoulder of Hwy 120 down to Camp Lutherwald and then turned into their entryway a couple hundred yards before turning back toward the house.  Believe it or not, the feet felt pretty good.  Even though they started to numb a little, I never completely lost the feeling in my soles and could actually still feel the small rocks, especially in the snow covered gravel driveway of Camp Lutherwald.  The Hwy 120 shoulder felt great since it was a very smooth surface, made even softer by the thin covering of snow.  I got back to the house and felt like I could have gone another half mile or so but decided I should just call it quits and enjoy my "triumph" over the snow.  I came back inside and warmed the feet while playing around with the Garmin, downloading the data and showing off the new toy to my brother-in-law John.  I'm definitely looking forward to some more snowy runs this winter although still not looking forward to the much colder temperatures ahead.  Well, everyone be careful out there and stay safe with your winter running.  Enjoy the challenges ahead! 

Happy Barefooting,
(Barefoot) Dan

Total Miles for Week = 23.3 Miles, (10 in Vibrams and 13.3 Barefoot)

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Stonehenge - Barefoot!

Hello Barefooters,
Well the trip to the UK went well.  I went barefoot for the first night I got there (last Thurs) but only went 1 mile.  The sore spot was better, but the pavement was all wet and littered with small pebbles and sticks.  I decided then and there to switch over to the Vibrams for all the rest of my runs on that trip.  I got to visit Bath, Stonehenge, and Lands End over the weekend.
On Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday this week I ran an out-and-back 5 miler from the hotel each morning before work.  The route is along a busy road and the path goes from pavement to gravel and is littered with a lot of sticks and vines.  This coupled with the fact that the runs were all in the dark necessitated the use of the Vibrams.  But it was nice to put in some speed and not worry about the wet surfaces.  Believe it or not the Vibrams actually started giving me blisters on the back of my heels where the upper heel cup squares off.  Other that that the Vibrams were really comfortable and 15 miles on back-to-back-to-back days was a first. 
The weather was nice ranging from 39F to 45F with a little wind and rain mixed in.  So when I got back to the states, I put in a nice 6 miler on Friday (still in the Vibrams) and continued to enjoy the increased speed.  Today, Saturday, I went out and did a true barefoot one mile in the 25 degree Indiana weather.  It was my coldest run yet and a good test of the healing feet.  I could have gone longer but decided to stop and call it a week.  Didn't need any more meatball pictures (oh and thank you all for your concern!!  couldn't believe all the comments I got on the last posting...believe it or not, it wasn't as bad as it looked)
The other nice thing about today's run is that I got to try out my new toy...Garmin Forerunner 405CX, an early Christmas present to myself!  This "watch" tracked my entire run and downloaded it wirelessly to my computer where I could see my avg. speed, heart rate, and even elevation gain/loss all on it's own little web page.  It's quite impressive.  I guess now that I'm not spending any money on shoes, I can spend more on my watch...what is wrong with this picture?!  Oh well, it may give me some more motivation to get out and brave the cold this winter...still not looking forward to those super cold Jan/Feb mornings...Brrr!!

Happy Barefooting All,
(BF) Dan

Feel like I have to leave the "BF" in parenthesis until I shed the Vibrams again!

Total barefoot miles last week = 5.1 miles
Total miles this week = 22 miles (21 in Vibrams!)