Favorite Pastime - Resting!

Favorite Pastime - Resting!

Friday, May 31, 2013

Barefoot in May in Indy

On the Indy 500 Track

Hello Barefooters,
Crossing the Bricks
I hope everyone is enjoying the start of summer and all the great barefoot opportunities out there.  May was another great month which included several interesting highlights. 

To start, on May 4, I was blessed to run my first ever barefoot Mini Marathon in Indianapolis.  This race is a half marathon (13.1 miles) which begins and ends in downtown Indy and includes one lap around the famed Indy 500 Track.  The day was absolutely perfect for barefoot running even though some complained it was a little too humid and windy.  Most of the surfaces were fairly good although the Indy track itself is not really the best for barefooting.  This extremely hard asphault surface is "combed" for traction which doesn't feel too good on the feet because of the rather sharp edges. 

However, for whatever reason, this year the "yellow shirt guys" weren't on the infield at the track keeping runners off the grass. And so myself, and about 100 of my closest friends, ran a single file line on the grass just inside the track. 

Relaxing with Dirty Feet!

 This definitely saved the  feet on the back straightaway and through turns 3 and 4.  On the front, the course takes the runners off the rear pit entrance below turn 4 and then angles back onto the actual track.  I closely hugged the pit wall which was not only shaded but had a smoother surface for about the first 6 to 8 inches away from the wall.  As others knelt down to "kiss the bricks" I floated on by on my way to some of the fastest mile splits of the day.  Coming out of the track the runners hit a head wind but I hardly noticed as I was having such a great day. 

I finished up at 1:57 which gave me a BPR (Barefoot Personal Record) and met my goal of "under 2 hours" with a pace of 8:56 per mile.  I enjoyed hanging out it the finishers area in Military Park afterward and joined several friends at the Club Kokomo Roadrunners tent, an annual tradition.  Although I hadn't run this race for the last couple years, this was my 19th Mini although, again, my first one ever as a barefoot participant. 
I sort of took it easy the next week, although still ran 21 miles for the week and included a 4 mile "Run With A Cop" at the Blue Mile in Carmel with my daughter Megan and buddy Fritz.
The following week, I turned in my highest ever weekly total of 50 miles.  This week culminated with a barefoot run for the American Cancer Society in our annual Relay for Life.  This year, our team raised over $12,000 to help fight cancer.  Thank you all for your donations to this worthy cause!  The next two weeks were 30miles and 25+ which are still high weekly totals and the feet/legs seem to be holding up very well.  Last week I was on business travel out to New York and enjoyed a couple of scenic runs around Roaring Brook Lake just off the Taconic Parkway as I drove between NYC and Fishkill.  It was neat to just pick out a running course by looking a Google Earth on the computer (while still in Indiana!) and then going out and running that course.  On my way up to Fishkill, I stopped and did just one lap (3 miles) but the next day, on the way back, I did two full laps plus a side loop for a full 7 miles. 
Scenic Barefoot Run in New York

The surfaces were pretty rough and this route was hilly, so that was more than enough.  Then this morning, back here in Indiana, I ran 5 miles in a torrential downpour which was quite exhilarating.  Again, the feet held up just fine and got a good washing at the same time.
Next month will include a family camping trip to Ontario Canada and the start of my mission trip to Liberia for Hope in the Harvest.  Looking forward to a few barefoot runs in both of those places.  Hmm...I wonder if my Garmin will work in Africa?

Stay Cool Barefooters!

Barefoot Dan

May Mileage = 140 miles (also included a record 50 mile week)
2013 Mini Marathon - First ever "barefoot" half marathon

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