Rubberized Track vs. Asphalt/Concrete

Discussion in 'Barefoot & Minimalist Running' started by Justin Lamb, Aug 13, 2014.

  1. Justin Lamb

    Justin Lamb
    Expand Collapse
    Barefooters
    1. Washington

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2012
    Messages:
    18
    Likes Received:
    42
    Is it my imagination or does it take more effort to run on a rubberized, soft track? My pace is usually slower on a track yet I feel like I'm working much harder. Is this because it doesn't cause as much rebound as a hard surface?
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  2. Dan Krulewich

    Dan Krulewich
    Expand Collapse
    Barefooters
    1. Missouri

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2014
    Messages:
    42
    Likes Received:
    71
    I hadn't thought about the effort level, but I have avoided running on rubberized track, because I find they generate much more friction against your feet.
     
    JEFF CT and barefootn like this.
  3. SI barefoot

    SI barefoot
    Expand Collapse
    Barefooters
    1. Illinois

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2014
    Messages:
    163
    Likes Received:
    277
    Yeah, the softer the surface the more potential energy that is lost.
     
  4. JEFF CT

    JEFF CT
    Expand Collapse
    Chapter Presidents
    1. Connecticut
    2. Massachusetts
    3. Presidents

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2013
    Messages:
    133
    Likes Received:
    179
    With the rubberized track, I feel the pores and it has taken some time to get used to. The colder it is, well, actually, it wasnt that much worse. But it is worse in the cold. For these tracks, reclaimed shoes are often used, so do what you will with that information.
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  5. paraganek

    paraganek
    Expand Collapse
    Barefooters
    1. Oregon

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2010
    Messages:
    784
    Likes Received:
    943
    Makes sense. :cool:
     
  6. Justin Lamb

    Justin Lamb
    Expand Collapse
    Barefooters
    1. Washington

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2012
    Messages:
    18
    Likes Received:
    42

    Okay, so I'm not crazy. (Or maybe it's that I'm not the only crazy one...? ;))

    I don't mind the pointy/porous surface feel of the track. However, now that I'm used to running without shoes on harder surfaces, running on a track feels similar to running in normal/modern running shoes - so squishy!

    I don't mind using the track for the sake of mixing things up a bit but I will say that going around and around and around again is about as interesting as watching paint dry. ;)
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
    scedastic and SI barefoot like this.
  7. paraganek

    paraganek
    Expand Collapse
    Barefooters
    1. Oregon

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2010
    Messages:
    784
    Likes Received:
    943
    Right on. Hit some trails instead. Plenty of them in Washington state, am I right ? ;)
     
  8. Sid

    Sid
    Expand Collapse
    Barefooters

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2011
    Messages:
    2,791
    Likes Received:
    3,415
  9. Justin Lamb

    Justin Lamb
    Expand Collapse
    Barefooters
    1. Washington

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2012
    Messages:
    18
    Likes Received:
    42

    Oh, yes. Lots of them. I don't have as much time as I'd like to get out on the trails though.
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  10. scedastic

    scedastic
    Expand Collapse
    Barefooters
    1. Michigan
    2. Minnesota

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2011
    Messages:
    2,023
    Likes Received:
    4,179
    I would think this is a less extreme version of the difference between running on muddy grass, or slushy wet snow, and cleared pavement. In the slush, I work like crazy for what feels like zero forward progress, whereas on plowed, smooth road, it's easy to go.
    Also, I feel like my FEET work harder the softer the surface, whereas my LEGS work hardest on a harder surface. In other words, too much grass/mud/squishy surface for too many days in a row, and I can get a little TOFP or just sore foot muscles, whereas there is no such effect on a firmer surface.
    Does that make sense to anyone?
     
  11. scedastic

    scedastic
    Expand Collapse
    Barefooters
    1. Michigan
    2. Minnesota

    Joined:
    Oct 7, 2011
    Messages:
    2,023
    Likes Received:
    4,179
    One last thought: I do think there is a bit of difference in form on squishy surfaces, at least for me, but I can't decide whether it's from the softness or the work I have to do not to slip and slide. I notice it most while transitioning (ex: running on snowy slushy trails when I encounter some cleared pavement for a few hundred yards. the first few steps of the transition onto flat hard pavement make a lot of noise, then they quiet back down, as though I've been putting down my feet more heavily in the slushy stuff).
     
  12. paraganek

    paraganek
    Expand Collapse
    Barefooters
    1. Oregon

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2010
    Messages:
    784
    Likes Received:
    943
    Exactly, have been noticing the same thing for some time. There is quite a bit of adjustment I feel the body is making automatically when switching abruptly from a soft muddy trail to a hard pavement and back.
     
    Justin Lamb and scedastic like this.
  13. OneBiteAtATime

    OneBiteAtATime
    Expand Collapse
    Moderator
    1. Illinois
    2. Missouri

    Joined:
    Aug 18, 2013
    Messages:
    399
    Likes Received:
    646
    The harder the surface of an all weather track, the faster.

    Of course, I haven't ran on a track in 19 years.
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature
  14. Chaserwilliams

    Chaserwilliams
    Expand Collapse
    Barefooters
    1. Texas - Dallas
    2. Texas - Austin

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2010
    Messages:
    866
    Likes Received:
    114
    I don't notice a difference in pace between a synthetic rubber track and some good crisp asphalt.

    But I can tell a difference in the 2. On asphalt you know when your foot hits the ground and is at the bottom of your"cycle", on a softer surface this is harder to establish.

    The longest I've ran on a track is 25 miles, the longest on asphalt was just shy of 27. The longest in muddy, squishy trails was 50.
     
    Collapse Signature Expand Signature

Share This Page