October 16, 2010

First mile in Vibrams

I ran my first mile in my new Vibram KSOs on Thursday. This was on concrete, and the farthest I had run barefoot, prior, was a quarter mile. It is now Saturday and I still feel slightly tender when I press down with the balls of my feet. Running barefoot will certainly take a longer adaptation period than this immediate gratification/ADD girl was originally willing to give! 

Seriously, the run went very smoothly. I ran on concrete, which may be why I still feel it today. I did not feel I was pushing it very hard, but according to my new iPhone GPS app (Jog Log, which I love Love LOVE!) I hit that mile at a 10:30 pace, where I'm accustomed to running closer to 12! I have no idea if it has anything to do with the Vibrams, lack of heavy standard running shoes, the cooler weather, the fact that I hadn't run since Tuesday, that it was only a mile... what I know is I was wearing Vibrams and I ran a 10:30.  Fastest. Mile. Evar! Woot!

Other thoughts on the run: 

I might stick to Vibrams and not go full barefoot, much as I like the idea of sans shoes. My experience so far has been acorn shells, and there was glass in a few spots on my way around the block. The gravel would have worried me as well, if I hadn't walked barefoot all over my neighbor's gravel drive all the time as a kid. I may change my mind as I find other places to run, but in my neighborhood, barefoot may not be my best choice.  

It might be time for me to start doing speed work, as in sprinting a mile every now and again. I may not have been pushing that mile very hard, but I was pushing. It was good to find out I actually can flat out RUN a mile, as opposed to the regulation of resources I do when running farther. I'm now curious to see how far I can flat out run, and how fast I can push it for a single mile. I will be running many more single miles before I pick up the distance in the Vibrams. While my feet become conditioned, I can play with that mile and see where it takes me.

I will have to start running a mile every couple days in the Vibrams, to condition my feet. As I am running the Cleveland Fall Classic half marathon on November 21, I have to run the Vibram miles in addition to my longer distance training in regular shoes. Maybe it's time to work up an actual schedule, instead of winging it the way I have for everything but the long runs.

Until now I have been concerned mainly with distance, and time only when racing. The Jog Log app changes things. I now know how fast I run each mile. I can start thinking about how each pace feels, and start working toward improvement in the speed direction. Not that I ever expect to even compete in races. I just like the idea of improving, and speed is another direction on which I can focus.

I'm still not certain my form is correct, but judging by where my feet are sore today I think I'm getting a lot closer. My knee hurt after Thursday's run though, so I still have things like my ankle to consider. I found some knee exercises that might help, and will start those this week. My ankles have been popping, which to me means they are getting a workout and are not as stiff as before. 


1 comment:

Amy Boukair said...

yay! That iPhone app sounds pretty neat, and I agree in the speed theory you're heading toward. I think it might help overall in your marathon pacing. As for barefoot - you a crazy girl! But that's why I love ya! :)