I started running barefoot in June of 2009. This allowed me to increase my mileage and train without injury.
I PRed in my 5k time as well as run a half marathon last October faster by over 25 minutes than a 20k that I ran in the spring with shoes on.
Going barefoot has let me train more often so I lost some weight too. I weighed 161 last summer and now weigh 146-147ish ( am 5' 9"). I have cut calories and use Livestrong's Daily plate to keep track of my calories taken in as well as burned. The accountability has been crucial to weigh loss.
I am cross training and I can tell that my core is stronger. I don't get the tired slump in my shoulders at the end of a long run. My legs keep on moving even when before they would be screaming to stop.
After my long run of 21 miles on Sunday, I started thinking about the Des Moines Marathon in October (Boston Qualifier). I could run a marathon now. I could finish it albeit slowly but I could push through. I have done that before and I hated running for years after. I don't want to just bull head it.
I want to run a marathon smart and well and at the end love the journey and want to repeat it.
I will run a marathon barefoot. It is a bit of a novelty and makes me feel unique but honestly its just what works for me. I think that running shoes are hurting runners and that minimal or bare is best for everyone. We all have feet and ankles, knees ect and they are a beautiful example of perfect mechanics. I think that running shoes screw up the design of our bodies and lead to injuries. You don't support an arch. The nature of an arch is to support itself. I am human and the shoes were a disaster for me so I am led to think that its the same for most other people especially when 75-80% of all runners suffer from injuries every year.
*Before the Des Moines Half Marathon Oct. 09
I started slowly and added distance quarter mile by quarter mile for a couple of months before being able to run 10 miles or more. It took patience and then some more patience but it has paid off with me being able to log 42 miles last week and feel better than ever.
Now that I am thinking about my marathon as well as a 50k this year too, I am thinking that my feet have adapted and its not my feet I am worried about its a whole body training and my feet are just as capable as the rest of me to hold up.
That being said I also think that the less fat I have on my body the more efficiently it will work. If I had 10 lbs less fat to lug around for 21 miles, how much faster could I go. Much like loosing the shoes, loosing the extra poundage is a slow going life change. Its adapting and listening and waiting and pushing through sometimes.
Its not easy and sometimes it hurts and I want to just say "eff it all and give me a HoHo!!"
Loosing weight has been significantly harder than learning to run naturally. Once I got rid of the shoes and saw immediate improvements it was easy. I just had to put in the miles and since I loved running again it was easy to put in the miles.
Food however is tricky. It was modeled to me by my parents that food is a form of self medication and coping mechanism. I was rewarded with food growing up. Good times were always centered around food. Because there was an inherent lack of communication, food was an easy way to hang out without real dialog about subjects of substance.All of my family ,aside from my father, are over weight and not by just a few pounds. When I went gluten free, I felt as if I had lost a friend. Now that I am gluten and casein free, oh my, it hurts my heart and I don't like that I have that subconscious response to food. It is not a functional approach and it is destructive to my goals and dreams not to mention the negatives of it from a parental perspective. I have to be vigilant about my positive eating and how I view my eating both mentally and emotionally as well as change my subconscious reactions to food into positive healthy ones.
I started thinking of all this after getting bloated after my long run. I think the run disrupted my digestive system and I feel huge. It is starting to go down and go back to normal and I was told by an ultra runner friend that my body will get used to it so I am not too worried but I don't like to feel like I am going backwards.
The way I see it, if I cut calories too much I don't have energy to do the exercise and there is no improvement and only minor weight loss. I also need to be aware of my immune system and the risk I take getting sick by cutting calories especially since I live in a germ factory with my 4 male spawn. I feel stuck and need to jump start my body.
So back to my first barefoot marathon. I want to loose weight as well as get faster. What if I could qualify for the Boston Marathon as a barefoot runner! As a neurotic blogger, that would be fodder for more followers!!
I feel stuck right now with so much going on in my life. The more I exercise the hungrier I get and the harder it is to keep the calories down. My plan for this week is to get some miles in tomorrow and Friday to stay on track with doing 30 this week to make 400 at the end of April. I want to catch up on Glee and Lost anyways! In my mind I am already planning out a Sunday morning 20 or more miler.
Tonight is Plyometrics in P90X. I am still keeping up with that and looooove ab ripper X!! Today I am looking into Marathon training plans. Anyone have an old Garmin maybe the 305 that they want to get rid of???
Oh morning run, why can't you be my friend. Why can't it just be easy to get out of that warm bed in the mornings. You may very well be the key to my success, morning run. I didn't run this morning and I so could have used it after a very full and stressful day.