Hello Everyone!!

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions' started by Anthony Recenello, Oct 10, 2018.

  1. Anthony Recenello

    Anthony Recenello
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    Oct 2, 2018
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    Hey everyone! I'm Anthony!



    I recently began barefoot running about a week ago.

    Three months ago, I started with Xero sandals, thinking that would be basically the same thing. But upon getting Achilles Tendinitis after a six mile run with sandals, I discovered Ken Bob's book and realized how crazy-different it is!

    Now I am running completely barefoot and it feels amazing!

    But I have some newbie questions:

    1. I still wake up with slight Achilles soreness in my right leg from when I ran in sandals. Should I wait until the soreness goes away completely before running again? (I recently bought a massage ball and it does wonders.)

    2. What do you do when its raining outside and all you can run on is asphalt? Is it okay for a beginner to run with wet feet on asphalt? My form is pretty good according to Ken Bob's book.

    Today, because I didn't want to take any risks of ripping my skin with wet feet, I used the sandals again. I realize I hate running with anything other than being barefoot (and I've been only running barefoot for one week!)

    3. What will you do when it's cold outside? Won't our feet freeze in the winter, even with no snow on the ground?

    What about if there IS snow on the ground?

    4. I have extremely large calves and thighs. I wonder if this has any negative or positive impact on my running? Just wondering and thought I'd ask!



    Thanks in advance for all your help!


    If you want to connect on Strava, here's my link! https://www.strava.com/athletes/18453089
    #1 Anthony Recenello, Oct 10, 2018
    Last edited: Oct 10, 2018
  2. Barefoot TJ

    Barefoot TJ
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    Mar 5, 2010
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    Welcome! :barefoot:

    One of the most well known American barefoot runners, Rick Roeber, has big calves...I hope he doesn't mind my saying so...and he's run a ton of barefoot marathons (102): http://barefootrunner.org/history/marathonhistory.htm

    We have a Winter Challenge every year where some of the members not only compete with each other for low temp running and distance but encourage each other and offer tips and advice for winter barefoot running. Please feel free to join: https://www.thebarefootrunners.org/threads/2018-winter-challenge-mile-report.21508

    BTW, it just so happens, Rick, along with many others, has ran a lot of marathons and miles in the dead of winter through snow and ice too: http://barefootrunner.org/winter/winter.htm

    You'll find some good articles about winter barefoot running on the BRS's site too, so please feel free to search for those.
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  3. Tedlet

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    1. United Kingdom

    Aug 25, 2014
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    Welcome Anthony.
    Just some random thoughts on your queries:
    1. I recognise the Achilles/calf aches you mention. For me, I found a couple of trips to the physio for some good sports massage really helped, plus ice therapy as necessary. Happy to say it's not something that's troubled me ever since.
    2. Running in the rain shouldn't cause you too much problem (plus puddles & mud are fun, although the mud can be a bit slippery obviously!).
    3. Winter is ok too if you take time to get used to it and always make sure you keep your core warm. But if you feel it's too cold (anything below minus 5C for me) then maybe its better to go to the gym that day! Seriously you don't want to mess with frostbite -it's not nice...
    4. I have no idea about the impact of large calf muscles, although instinctively I would assume that they'll make really good 'springs' for the extra load you'll be placing on them and hence be an advantage for you if anything...

    Barefoot TJ likes this.
  4. trevize1138

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    1. Minnesota

    Jun 20, 2017
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    I always have issues with my right achilles. The best thing for it if it's really hurting is just rest and then really keep an eye on your form. You're already doing a lot of good in that area going completely barefoot but I do see one major red flag in what you wrote:

    "My form is pretty good according to Ken Bob's book."

    Every time I've thought "my form is pretty good" it's bit me right on the ass. Running form is crucial and it can very well be just as complex and challenging to master as any other sport. If you'd been barefoot your whole life that would likely not be the case. But if you've spent your lifetime in shoes you likely, like the rest of us, learned a lot of very bad habits and those are very hard to un-learn.

    When we were kids we all learned very well how to do two things on foot: walk and sprint. Running long distances at a controlled, efficient pace is an advanced skill and make no mistake about it. When you go unshod the skin on the bottoms of your feet become the canaries in the coal mine warning you early on of danger so that's why it's superior even to the thinnest minimalist foowear.

    As for issues with achilles and calf muscles that is common and some of it unavoidable but too often it's the result of a common over-correction:


    If you naturally contact the ground forefoot first that's OK. If you're forcing what people call a "forefoot strike" you're wasting a lot of energy and risking injury.

    Good luck and never lose sight of what's most important: have fun!

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