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  • Shoes, running shoes

    Hey,

    About running shoes. It seems that we should aim for shoes with no "shock absorbers" whatsoever. Though aren't these shock absorbers useful in preventing injury? I mean.. If I'm running on pavement (side walks etc), It's quite a tough surface and the knees are under great pressure. Wouldn't shoes with no shock absorbers be a little less useful for that purpose?

    I know that primal wise we should always aim for natural, meaning as close as we can get to barefoot. Though that probably applies for walking, wouldn't running be safer with shock absorbers?

    Thanks.

  • #2
    i prefer running in my VFF's, i have lightweight running shoes but I run better in the vibrams.

    I forefoot strike much easier.
    "Today’s technological age is enjoyed by the fattest, laziest humans in the history of humanity." -Mark Sisson

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    • #3
      u should aim for forefoot or midfoot strike first of all.. and its easier to do so with flat shoes or barefoot.. and the simpler your running shoes are (barefoot is best) the stronger ur legs get because they actually do what they suppose to do and are not supported by ur shoes.

      of course the key is to lose the shoes and start very gradually, lets say 5 mins a day for a week or so, then 10 minutes a day.. this lets ur legs build up naturally.. if u will rush it its guarranteed that u will injure urself.

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      • #4
        Well, I probably wouldn't be able to run barefoot (it's freakin' cold XD), but I'll see what I can do about flat shoes.

        Thanks!

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        • #5
          I'm a HUGE proponent of running in minimalist shoes. I'm a "big ol' boy" with a lot of weight to lose and on a whim I entered a 5K that I ran on Thanksgiving day. If I hadn't made the switch from "normal" running shoes to minimal I wouldn't have been able to do it. Once I got used to the minimal shoes I noticed a huge difference in my stride (went from loping & heel pounding to a much softer, shorter stride) and my legs stopped hurting, back stopped hurting, and I've had no knee issues whatsoever...I definitely recommend it but if you go that route you really need to take some time to exercise your feet and gradually work up to an actual run in them...Otherwise you're in for a couple days of the most intense muscle soreness you've felt...Muscles you haven't really used your entire life screaming at you for waking them up cold turkey rather than a gradual buildup.
          Goal: 230 @ 10% BF (preferably less)

          Follow my progress here:
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          • #6
            if you can get off road on some trails also - Grok didn't have pavement

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            • #7
              Originally posted by GrokinOut View Post
              I'm a HUGE proponent of running in minimalist shoes. I'm a "big ol' boy" with a lot of weight to lose and on a whim I entered a 5K that I ran on Thanksgiving day. If I hadn't made the switch from "normal" running shoes to minimal I wouldn't have been able to do it. Once I got used to the minimal shoes I noticed a huge difference in my stride (went from loping & heel pounding to a much softer, shorter stride) and my legs stopped hurting, back stopped hurting, and I've had no knee issues whatsoever...I definitely recommend it but if you go that route you really need to take some time to exercise your feet and gradually work up to an actual run in them...Otherwise you're in for a couple days of the most intense muscle soreness you've felt...Muscles you haven't really used your entire life screaming at you for waking them up cold turkey rather than a gradual buildup.
              Thanks! I appreciate the comment, I'm sure to start gradually after hearing this.

              Originally posted by jedikelly View Post
              if you can get off road on some trails also - Grok didn't have pavement
              Point is, if Grok didn't have pavement, who knows if running bare-foot or close to barefoot on pavement is safe?
              I'm sure that it's safer on softer surfaces (after reading all the comments) but I'm still not sure about running on pavement.

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              • #8
                You can go to the forums at Runner's World or Running Ahead and get tons of info on this. Both have a section of the forum dedicated just to barefoot/minimal running. I'd strongly suggest that. As mentioned above, you need to go very slow, way slower than you even imagine, if you're going to go barefoot/VFF, and I'm not kidding. Met a guy this summer, very experienced runner, many fast marathons to his credit--decided to try a pair of VFFs and see what all the ruckus was about. Long story short, he wore them for a 5-miler, a 7-miler and a half marathon for his first 3 runs in them. During the half marathon, he broke his 2nd metatarsal and was in an inflatable boot until it healed and then looking at a long slow rehab....and he maintains he did nothing wrong, "I DID start out running just a little in them!"

                Anyway, to repeat, check the barefoot/minimal forums at some running sites and also look up some barefoot/minimal sites. There's a lot of info out there.

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                • #9
                  Thanks for the advice!

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                  • #10
                    we have a facebook group about this stuff called barefoot and minimalist runners. lot's of members sharing info and stuff(s)

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                    • #11
                      I wear hand made Huaraches, they have no aggressive sole and I go off road all the time!

                      Find a shoe that suits your foot, don't give into marketing everyones different.

                      As for running on pavement with no shock absorption, your feet are the best shock absorbers in the world! with a little strengthening you can give em' hell and they will thank you for it!

                      But remember if you haven't run for years or have worn shrouded shoes (any type of closed in jogger) for years, go slow and don't overexert. Listen to your body, stop, slow down, or walk if you have to. Pain lets us know when something isn't right.
                      Eat Clean | Train Mean | Live Lean

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                      • #12
                        Minimal is a great idea...most modern shoes, until now, have been a bad idea. The proliferation of minimal and "barefoot" shoes shows clearly that shoe companies are getting the message that the shoes they have been making for the past 20+ years are horrible for you.

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                        • #13
                          All of the other members have offered sound advice, but I'd like to add a couple extra bits of insight.

                          1) As others have said, make the transition to more minimal footwear gradually. In my experience it took me a little over a month to where I felt (literally) strong enough to run in more minimal shoes. If you switch from traditional running shoes to racing flats or Vibram Five Fingers you'll likely end up injured, discouraged, or both. With that in mind, I'd recommend starting with a pair of shoes that offers a heel-to-toe drop in between traditional running shoes and minimal footwear, such as the Asics Gel Hyper Speed 4.

                          Once you get used to such an "in-between" shoe you can transition to racing flats such as the Asics Piranha SP3, Inov-8 Road-X Lite 155, or Vibram Five Fingers - Bikila.

                          2) Ensure you do not heelstrike while wearing barefoot/minimal shoes. Simply put, it defeats the point of using such footwear and will only lead to injury.

                          3) Check out PoseTech for more information on forefoot running. There are other similar running techniques available but I have found Pose Running to be very helpful. The PoseTech website is full of helpful information and instructional videos, too.

                          Hope this helps...good luck!

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                          • #14
                            I am totally flat footed, how would this help or be good for someone like me? I have to do vast walking several times a year in dress shoes and usually by the end of the trip my shins are shot, and my (general area) of my arch is trashed and I will probably limp for a week. When I was in the Marines I had danner ft lewis boots and I could do 20-30 mile humps with combat load no problem. Same for running in boots, the danner has always treated me right but I have never found a shoe that has given me the same kind of relief.

                            I currently run in brooks with a very aggressive arch system

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                            • #15
                              I started out with Nike Frees as a transition shoe and now I wear Merrell Barefoot shoes 90% of the time. I have a pair of homemade huaraches, but I was having issues with the thong between the toes as I had dropped a knife on my foot (a small pairing knife hit point down) and injured the nerve that runs between my toes and it made it uncomfortable to wear them. I also tried the cheap water shoes you get at K-mart, but the soles wear out quickly and I can't wear them to work. Some people like to buy the Feiyue kung fu shoes. They are flat with no cushion and are reasonably priced.

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