Favorite Pastime - Resting!

Favorite Pastime - Resting!

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Barefoot in Bangkok, Thailand

Hello Barefoot Runners,
This has been another eventful month.  I'm happy to report a good amount of increased mileage.  I actually turned in two of the longest runs since my foot injury (8 miles and 10 miles) and the feet feel pretty good.  Slow and steady comeback has been the key.  I am also still employing the "at least one rest day" philosophy between runs which has helped tremendously.  The key once again is to let the skin on the bottom of the feet dictate both the length and speed of the run.  Once the blisters or "hot spots" start, you should consider your run complete and live to run another day.
At the end of the month, I was able to take a business trip to Thailand.  My first day there was a Sunday and a rest day.  I booked a temple tour of Bangkok and was happy to find that BAREFOOT was the rule at all the temple sites.  And even though I wasn't running, it felt good to explore the different surfaces in the temples barefoot...from hot, to cool...from smooth marble, to rough concrete, to plush carpet.  It was a cornucopia of barefoot stimulation which felt great after flying for 24 hours the day before.  It's amazing how stiff and cooped up your feet can feel after swelling up at 36,000 feet for hour after hour on these long flights.  It was good to get "grounded" the day next walking around barefoot.   This next photo shows me (barefoot of course)  along with my new found friends Bob and Margo from Sydney Australia.  They too were there on business and enjoying a free day before starting the work week on Monday. 
Bob works in the weather industry and is an "ex-runner" due to some chonic injuries earlier in his career.  I told him that I thought he would be great candidate for the changeover to barefoot running.  He has been doing a lot of biking as it is "easier on the legs and back."  I think so many of us out there have given up on running altogether due to injuries caused (in my opinion) by our poor choice of running attire -- i.e. the "best" shoes money can buy!  So if you're reading this and THINKING about trying it...well...it's time to take the next small step and actually TRY IT!  What's to lose?  Except your diginity.  Life is too short to be worried about some out of shape smart aleck driving by and shouting something about forgetting to put on your shoes before you went out the door!  Nowadays, that kind of stuff just makes me smile as I run!

The rest of the week in Thailand was pretty much non-stop meetings and dinners with customers and suppliers.  This meant each night not arriving back at the hotel until way after dark.  So all-in-all, not too conducive for barefoot running.  So it really was truly a recovery week after my 10 miler on Wednesday the week before I left.  I got back home last night and woke up this morning (Sat. June 30) feeling fine and went out for a short 5K.  It had been raining earlier so the pavement was a little wet in spots but not too bad (and Indiana really needed this inch of rain as we are in one of the worst droughts on record).  And once again, it really felt great to "do something" in the first 24 hours after a long flight.  Plus it was a great way to get in a little mileage before the end of the month and not have to turn in a ZERO week!  Still looking forward to slowly increasing my mileage over the next few months with my eye on the Monumental Marathon in November (barefoot?...maybe...we'll see how this "slow but sure" training method works out)

Well, keep up the good work out there and enjoy those early morning runs ('cause the pavement is too hot if you wait much past 8am!...at least here in hot & dry Indiana)

Barefoot Dan

June Mileage = 34.55 Miles

Week 1= 14, Week 2= 7, Week 3= 10, Week 4= 3

Friday, June 1, 2012

Barefoot Quarter Marathon

Hello Barefooters,
Hope your summer is starting off well.  I have been enjoying getting back into it slowly.  Trying my best to keep the feet fit while not overdoing it.  My key to the month of May has been to never run two days in a row and always have a good rest day (or 2 or 3) afterward.  The highlight of the month had to be my Quarter Marathon for Relay For Life on the track at Westfield HS. 
The Relay was run on May 18th and brought together teams from all over Hamilton County (Indiana) to raise money for the American Cancer Society.  A couple of my girls and I decided to take the "UP ALL NIGHT" Challenge so I was able to wait until 2am to run my self imposed Quarter Marathon (6.55 Miles) on the track.  I was blessed to have my 11 old daughter Megan run with me for the first 2 miles.  She then alternated running/resting each quarter mile lap.  Oh, and did I forget to mention, Megan also did it barefoot!  Using this method, I was able to get in my 6.55 miles and Megan got in 4.25 miles.  This was a full 26+ laps on the rubberized track.  Time was just over one hour, so this was a good first test of the foot since the injury in February.  The cool part was the reaction we got from other walkers and runners on the track that night, very uplifting and encouraging.  We even inspired Nick, a shod runner, to kick off his shoes and run the last couple laps of his 4 miler with us.  I warned him to take it easy since the first barefoot run can be painful afterward.  He seemed to do fine, but I'm sure his calves were screaming the next day. 
I had a small blister on the ball of each foot (I think from the rubberized surface of the track) and Megan had some extremely sore calves for about a week after.  Here is a picture of my foot afterwards, hard to see the blister due to all the dirt from the track.  To get our legs back we did a couple hikes on the trail in MacGregor Park as recovery.  I continued taking it easy the rest of the month and won't begin increasing my mileage until mid summer, God willing.

Oh, and the Relay did raise over $100K and our individual team, Christ UMC Holy Rollers, raised over $10K for Cancer Research.  It was a good fund raising year overall despite the shaky economy.  And, it's never to late to donate:  Here is the link to Barefoot Dan's Fundraising Page.

Well, enjoy the summer and watch out for hot pavement!

Barefoot Dan

May Mileage = 42 Miles
Week 1= 5, Week 2= 9, Week 3= 12, Week 4= 7, Week 5= 9