Barefoot running has gained steam in the past few years. Brands have slowly began to put some crazy research into minimalist shoes and their advantages over conventional running shoes. I have jumped on the bandwagon to see what it was all about.
My weapon of choice was the Saucony Hattori. A super light shoe, only weighting in at about 4.4 ounces (male size 9) it is one of the lightest runners out on the market today. They do fit like a sock and because of this, on my first run in them I decided to go barefoot in them. Felt great for the first 2 miles, but after I developed a blister at the junction between my heel bone and achilles tendon. This was caused by the lining of the shoe. I had to take the shoes off and readjust and eventually had to stop my run. In short, the fix was to wear thin socks and tighten the heel lock velcro feature on the back. As of late I have been able to wear the shoe without socks without experiencing any blistering simply by tightening the heel lock velcro very snugly.
Since I have had luck with running barefoot in the Hattori, I decided to try the barefoot approach with my more conventional,.heavy cushioning Nimbus 12. Again, it felt okay for the first few miles. I felt kind of off once I tried the shoe on. I don’t know, it felt like my feet were kind of slipping even when I was walking to my run’s start point. I guess I should have taken that as a warning because after the 4.5 mile mark, I started to feel blisters forming on my insteps bilaterally. I completed my 10K run and when I took off my shoe I did indeed have small blisters on both insteps.
I am confident that this will be fixed with wearing socks.
I realize that blisters are an injury, but I kind of felt that it was part of my initiation as a runner. Kind of a morbid thought, I know.
In the next few weeks I hope to increase my long run to about 10 miles. The 6.2 mile distance has been good so far and I feel like I can do more. Wish me luck.
Onward and Upward!