"Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming -- WOW-- What a Ride!"

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Embracing Minimalism

After several suggestions to give minimalist running a try to see if that doesn't help my form improve I decided to give it a try.  I did enough reading first to be moderately dangerous.  I also learned that I should start slow.  Indeed, I should start by just walking around.

So, this evening I headed off to the Y in my minimalist shoes (my pool shoes).  I did 30 minutes on the elliptical and then a 15 minute walk on the treadmill.  Wow, I never realized how much I heel strike even just walking.  As I walked my foot and calf muscles were getting fatigued.  I expected this and stopped my walk.  I wanted to try it, not get hurt.

I learned that I should mix some minimalism in with my normal running for the foreseeable future.  I can see where it will help my form.  I can also see that it will take awhile for my foot and calf muscles to get strong enough to actually run in minimalist gear.

To those that suggested I give barefoot/minimalist a try:  Thanks!  It will help me in the long term.  Just don't look for me to be the weirdo out running in the snow in a pair of five finger shoes :-D

Something else I learned today:  My Asics Cumulus shoes may actually be too cushy to my legs liking.  I definitely have a neutral gait and am a slight supinator.  I love how soft the Cumulus are.  Especially on longer runs.  However that softness may actually be allowing my form to break down as I run.  It seems my legs might prefer a neutral show with a little firmer padding.  So, next time I will try something on the firmer side.

Have you given any thought to trying minimalist walking/running?  Tried it?  How'd it go?


Jen said...

I've thought about it, because I am out of my shoes every chance I get, but I am such a major overpronator, I'm a little afraid of running without the support. I'll be interested in hearing how you do.

Life as a Convert (Khourt) said...

Right now I have stability shoes which are almost a little too much stability for me.. Im a pretty neutral runner.. Id love to try something more minimal but not really sure it would work for me.