Being ill, skin disease and other stuff (667,5K to go):

W024

Coming from 3 consecutive weeks of being almost back to my normal short weeks of 30-40K a week adn thun run head first into first a skin disease issue, the disease is a know issue, but it atacking my feet happens rarely and made me miss out on the opportunity to run barefoot while in Rome.

Add a case of the flu and high fever and I was out of business with no running and no workout at all for a week and a half. That just plain sucked, especiall as it hit right after having visited my running coach.

A visit that was both inspiring and deeply humiliating (in a good way I might add). It was a most welcome reminder to keep my running form compact and to run lighter. quite a wake up call to see one self on video after a while.

SOmething everybody needs to do regularly I think.

Anyway, Thursday I managed to Squeeze in an afternoon 10K in my wonderful Greenlandic surroundings, I truly love running the hilly sections and the fact that the only flat section is my own porch, my skin disease kept me from going completely barefoot, but just running again after a week and a half of being ill was absolutely amazing.

Pace was deliberately slow, but cadence and form seemed OK, still need to work a lot with posture and heel pull in particular, as that is where a few bugs have been sneaking into my running style.

Zoom forward today.

W025

I am back in Copenhagen and the weather has been absolutely fabulous for a couple of days. It is time for one of those super cosy partner runs, usually around 5K with my girlfriend. She is new to running, but putting in a massive effort and running together is something that really makes me feel very privileged.

As I came home from the gym, I looked at the soles of my feet, looked outside, looked at my soles, looked outside and though “Ohh, what the f***”, showed my Five fingers in the running drawstring bag and set off with no shoes at all. RUnning totally barefoot is something that one has to experience to believe and I would guess that most people will get truly addicted. At least I have become so in an instant. The tactile sensation of running totally barefoot is nothing short of amazing.

5 gorgeous and wonderful kilometres later we are back home. the still not completely healed skin on my soles had taken quite a beating. No blisters or wounds as such, but as the skin has still not fully recovered from the disease, it is more beaten up than five leisurely paced kilometresd would normally justify.

That said I was and still am high from running barefoot again.

Tomorrow I will continue my travels towards Madrid and Barcelona in Spain for 10 days and hopefully lots of barefoot running πŸ™‚

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Along wet run…. and more… (682,5K to go):

Been a while since my last update and not surprisingly I have been running πŸ™‚

It startede out thursday with a 6K completely barefoot run in Copenhagen, a run where I felt fast and everything was good. I just forgot that one important thing…. To listen to your soles.

As I got home I had 3 major blisters on the ball of my feet, not friction blisters as such, no more like blivers from running too fast on a too hot surface. It really was a tough lesson learned for me and something I need to be very aware of as summer arrives.

Sunday I got the silly idea to run to my moms place, around 20K depending on route, weather the day before had been amazing and the forecast was not overly bad.

In fact it was such a nice forecast that my girlfriend decided to bike the trip keeping me company and all.

Just as we were about to leave it started raining and not just a little. opted for a switch to a waterproof jacket on me and the long sleeve in the bag

The first couple of kilometres was mainly about getting wet and into a nice rhythm and to get used to running and having a bike to factor in. At 5 K the rain really started to pick up and we went from wet to drenched in a matter of munites. At 10K the weather turned for the worse and we were in the middle of a real downpour. Luckily the seeyas do not have a lot of shoe, thus there is not a lot to get wet and pick up weight.

At 10K my legs still felt great Β and I really had to focus not to burn of way too much energy off too soon,I kept focusing on technique and on to stay warm and in a good constant pace.

15K passed Β and I started to feel a little burned and wet and cold, but I kept my thoughts on the last stretch home and on a good running style, which at least for me means a fully occupied πŸ™‚

At 20K I was tired, but at least I was in know territory and that meant that I knew that it would be roughly 2,5K home. I picked up my pace slowly and started running faster. I got to admit that it felt great arriving at Moms place.

22,5K and my longest run to date in barefoot style shoes and I felt great afterwards.

Right now I am waiting for a flight to Rome, so look out for a round of running in Rome soon πŸ™‚

Barefoot in Budapest (711K to go):

W020Sunday around midday I boarded a flight from Copenhagen to Budapest.

Two and a half day of very interesting conferencing ahead of me, but I had the good fortune to already around my arrival at the hotel to sneak in a run.

Knowing nothing about budapest and much less around where to run, decided to run to The Danube river and follow it for a bit while taking in the view of the “pest” part of Budapest. Call it a quick run around attractions such as the chain bridge and other interesting stuff.

Weather was perfect, a little cloudy, but warm and pleasant. It begged for me to stick to the good old black soles, but I did not know anything about what I would run into in terms of conditions, thus I grabbed my seeyas in the hand on the way out. turned out they were totally unnecessary. While I spotted a fair amount of unpleasant looking glass of the broken beer bottle variety (particularly on the route from the chain bridge to the opera), then it was generally not enough to pose any threat to my feet and was quite easy to navigate.

Plan was for a 5K, but at the natural turning point it said 4K and an average pace of 5:30 Min/K, not bad, given that I really felt good and my feet had no signs of hotspots nor other friction issues.

The surface was generally smooth concrete or paved road, walk/bike lane, but some some fun stuff such as pebbles, cobble stones and even a few obstacles to jump here and there πŸ™‚

The run home was just as pleasant as the run out, Developed a bit of a hotspot on the inside of my right forefoot (see the picture below it is clearly visible). It puzzles me a bit, but it is a general issue when running completely barefoot. My own guess is that my right foot is not quite strong enough in the muscles supporting the arch of the foot, allowing it to sag a bit towards the end of my run, but it is only a feeling. On that note I am glad I have a meeting with my style coach soon, hopefully he can pinpoint the problem.

W021Fast forward to late afternoon today and the second run in Budapest.

Weather spoke for a pure barefoot experience and having done several evening walks after dinners and in between conference days, I had a pretty good feeling of what to expect. I planned for a slightly different and possibly slightly longer route, thus the seeyas came with me in my hand as I put the good old black soles to work.

One of the things that struck me while running the first half of the route, was that I much like Sunday, got an unusually large amount of startled looks and comments in Magyar, English and even a few Swedish ones. I very much doubt they are used to seeing barefooted runners in Budapest or even barefoot style runners. At least I saw none.

 

Pace, cadence and running style all seemed very good, I have noticed that I need around 2-3K to lock into my running style. Not that it is bad the first couple of kilometres, I just have to focus on the flow until I am in the “zone”

The “pest” side of my run was a fun surprise, a mix of huge cobble stones, and flagstones with a fine layer of pebbles sort of embedded in the surface, lots of construction work going on and, plenty of urban obstacles to run around, avoid or jump, not to mention a massive amount of pedestrians, cars and buses. All in all a load of fun.

As i reached the Hotel the watch said 9K, a 5:31 pace and a cadence of 198 SPM. Ok I am running fairly flat terrain, but I find it quite promising that I am able to run a problem free 5:30 average on completely bare feet, seemingly without compromising my style and that is Improvement to me πŸ™‚

Overall Budapest comes highly recommended to barefooters I think and I had a ball here πŸ™‚

A 13K barefoot and Seeya combi (800K to go):

I am now officially past the first 200K of full time barefoot running or barefoot style running that is.

While I still have a long way to go, then it means that the journey I unknowingly started in September 2011, slowly has come true. I still have a tremendous amount of work to do, especially on my true barefoot running style and being in Copenhagen where the temperatures are better makes that a lot easier.

I embarked on todays run without a fixed distance in mind and of course barefooted, why would you really do anything else, when it is like 15C and the sun is shining.

What is a standard part of my true barefoot running kit is a small drawstring running sack with my seeyas, tweezer, a few sterile alcohol wipes, a needle and a bit of kinesio tape. it is just that tiny bit of gear neaded in case of either a blister or a piece of glass/stone whatever should find its way into my feet.

The shoes are important still as my feet are far from ready to log long runs kompletely barefoot, the skin under my feet is simply not strong enough.

However as I sat out today in my normal long distance pace, my feet felt good. It is remarkable how quickly the skin adapts and the sensory feedback from running a wide variety of surfaces is simply amazing.

Cobblestones are still among my favourites, as is the huge wooden porch in front of the Royal Danish Theatre.But in reality I guess I am just slowly getting addicted to feeling the surface I run. I am rambling though.

Anyway 5K from home I decided to call it quits for the totally barefoot and sneak back into my seeyas, my skin needed a break and I had a friction blister forming on my right foot. Getting back into the seeyas, while still nice was kind of a dull experience and made me aware how much even a very minimal shoe lake the seeya mute the ground feel.

My way home took me on the long stretch along the lakes and here I just happened to arrive just at the same time as a very competent marathoner I have seen before and I chased him for 3 K along the lake and clocked consistent averages in the 3:50 range while doing so.. yay πŸ™‚ so much fun πŸ™‚

I also passed 3 other minimalist runners around the lake. Or I noticed 3 that really stod out with massive ballarina running symptoms. I have not witnessed how dangerous barefoot running style can look before. They were murdering their Achilles tendons and feet. It made me realise how much of a need there is to kill the term “forefoot running”. I’d like to think that “barefoot running style” or “minimalist running” is a better definition of what we do.

Anyway, the GPS rounded 13K practically at my doorstep and that made me accidentally complete the first 200 full time barefoot style kilometres.

Now I just need to find my way back to the point where a 40K week is easy πŸ™‚