People's reactions when you run

Discussion in 'Barefoot & Minimalist Running' started by mandytheartist, Apr 9, 2012.

  1. Wilder

    Wilder
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    Great stories!

    My town of about 8000 people has a very active Facebook Discussion Board, and someone made a post there titled, "Whats up with the barefoot guy running around town?" (me). My favorite comments where "that's probably how you get worms and stuff" and, "Must be a huge Diehard fan, give that guy some glass to not give a sh*t about". LOL

    A couple weeks ago I did a very popular and busy hike near Seattle (Little Si). I was barefoot and the rest of my group was shod. Mostly nothing but positive remarks, at least to my face! My wife was walking about 300 feet behind me with my son and she could hear some comments the other passing hiker groups made about me. She heard a lot of, "look at that barefoot guy trying to be all cool" comments. A very Seattle-ite sentiment.
     
  2. Widefoot Jay

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    yeah stop trying to be cool! lol I wonder what people did before modern day running/hiking shoes hmm. going barefoot allows you to feel the ground and to not go very fast, especially when hiking. it's all natural and strengthens your feet in the process.
     
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  3. BFGD

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    Just back from 7 barefoot miles. About 4 miles in, while running on a sidewalk, a vehicle slowed on my right, female mid-60's with a dye-job driving, looking at me. I ignore, assuming she will turn at the street I am about to cross, but she is still with me after that, now trying to say something. I remove my headphones and, due to no oncoming traffic, I run in the street next to her truck.

    I miss some of her words initially (something about being stupid or crazy) but clearly hear that I'm going to break my ankle running on pavement and that I should run on the grass. Slightly frustrated for the interruption, I wave her off dismissively and yell, "Aah, you don't know what you're talkin' about" as I make my way back onto the sidewalk.

    So she flips me off. Straight up middle finger, right at me. My response, nice and loud of course, is not appropriate for this forum (but would fit nicely into any Quentin Tarantino movie for sure). She drove away with her finger held high!

    So, obviously, awesome run today!
     
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  4. Widefoot Jay

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    Where do you live? Is she the local HS track coach or something? it's very weird that she got that mad at you because you didn't take her advice
     
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  5. BFGD

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    Hi Jay....it occurred to me shortly after that she might have been a bit tipsy? Hard to say. She was hell-bent on advising me in spite of obvious headphones and ignoring her for about 20 yards. Her advice was ridiculous on it’s face as far as I’m concerned. Considering how specific she was about an ankle injury due to running barefoot on pavement, she just seems like one of those people who has never seen, nor heard of, barefoot running and the shock to her system upon witnessing it was such that she lashed out.

    Barring the possibility that she had a good buzz on, my guess is that my existence directly clashed with her brainwashing/programming.

    I’m a New Englander. I honestly don’t think my response warranted a middle finger, but as a New Englander I certainly appreciated the opportunity to share my expletive-laden thoughts about what she could go do with herself, along with my thoughts on exactly what kind of a woman she is.
     
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  6. Widefoot Jay

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    who knows man. some people are just weird and want to argue for the sake of arguing.
     
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  7. gueng

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    A friend just drew my attention to a funny youtube video (see time position 3:43). It shows an American guy who strolls through my home town Marburg trying to find out "what Germans do on Sundays".
    At one point - standing on the school yard of Philippinum High School - he spots me (the guy with the red T-shirt and little green backpack) and realizes that, on a Sunday, Germans obviously go on jogs barefoot :)
     
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  8. BFGD

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    The video was very entertaining in very good ways, but seeing you run by barefoot was the BEST! Thank you for sharing! (Danke schoen)
     
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  9. Mr. Muchacho

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    Had a funny reaction this am while walking to the train. I've been running barefoot for a little over a year now and about a month ago started walking to the train barefoot; I have my flip flops in my backpack and put them on at the train station. Anyways...I said "good morning" to a guy this am and he looked down at my bare feet and he asked if I was in training for the TV show "Naked and Afraid." Normally I'm pretty quick with a comeback but I just had to laugh and congratulate him on a good line. So good in fact, I might use it myself the next time somebody asks me about being barefoot!
     
  10. Ronnie B

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    Today I had my first reaction in a very long time. I was running with my buddy Nero and saw lots of people but only one reaction - other than "good morning" of course.

    "Wow - look at you - barefoot. You're good!"

    Made my day!
     
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  11. Random

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    I still haven't gotten in the habit of running, but there's a dirt road nearby that a lot of people walk, run, and bicycle on. I've never gotten a comment this year (someone did comment a couple of years ago, but I don't recall what it was; pretty benign). I like that it's no big deal that someone is walking around barefoot. I wish every place was like that.
     
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  12. Jaap Francke

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    The most common responses are:
    - Hey! You've forgotten your shoes
    - Hey! You've lost your shoes
    I get these quite often and every time they think they are making an original funny joke.

    I don't mind, I think it's logical that people respond in such a way when you're deviating from what's considered normal.
     
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  13. Jon from PDX

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    I had one person offer me a free pair of shoes.

    Another person, after his companion made a gentle joke about how I forgot my shoes, came to my defense. It was a bit awkward because he seemed to think going barefoot was about toughness, but I appreciated the gesture. I stopped and talked with them for a minute, and since then have seen them around my neighborhood a few times, and we smile and wave at each other now.

    I’ve had a few bad reactions, too, but none that troubled me.

    Many times, going barefoot just seems to draw attention, at which point the kindness or cruelty of their baser instincts seem to come to the fore. I’m pleased that, more often than not, the response is either misplaced sympathy or outright support. Who’d have thought that a side-effect of going barefoot would be a reaffirmation of the inherent kindness of most strangers?
     
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  14. mandytheartist

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    Suppose I should report on how suburbia reacts to a barefoot runner: They seemingly think,"She's a big hippie". (Not really, just a contrarian)
     
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  15. Random

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    I decided to try, yet again, to be a barefoot walker-runner, so this morning, I walked up a short hill near my place and ran slowly down, practicing the short strides and bent knees Ken Bob suggests.

    As I was running a worker (they're building a senior housing complex across the street from me) asked, "Aren't you supposed to be wearing shoes for that?" in a friendly, joking way.

    I replied, "I'm practicing running barefoot."

    I forget his exact reply, but it was something along the lines of, "There you go," like, "Well, that makes sense" type of thing.
     
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  16. Clark

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    Someone called the police on me again. Thought I was drunk. The policeman who took the dispatch found me at Starbucks and was very nice about it. Even asked my opinion on the pros and cons of barefoot running/walking.
     
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  17. Random

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    It sounds like you need to invest in jogging outfits, and to print out the "Get out of jail free" cards that were posted elsewhere on this site.

    I'm glad the policeman was nice.
     
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  18. BareFootHeath

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    I found this when I went to edit one of my favourite running trails on the AllTrails app...
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    ...and LMAO as I’d been out running earlier that day :)
     
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