Saturday, November 12, 2011

Only 8 Laps

During the last lap of my last run (two days ago), a guy approached me and asked me to put shoes on. I figured he didn't know the dress code. He probably hadn't seen too many barefoot runners and just figured it couldn't be within the code. Fortunately, it was my last lap, so I just finished. Also, it was at night, and I usually run in the mornings, so I figured I wouldn't see him again. However, this morning, another guy said the same thing, only it was on lap 8 instead of 10. I said I didn't know it was part of the code and he said it was for sanitary reasons. I looked it up and he was right, it's against code. Darn it.

No more barefoot running in the indoor track for me.

Anyway, it might have been for the best that I ended early. My shins were sore from my speed run two days ago, and my feet felt a little funny. But gosh darn it, I wanted to run 10 laps so I could run 11 next week. I would run 10 my first run next week and up it to 11 for the last run, but I can't run in the indoor track. I could if my stinking Merrell True Gloves were the right size. When my VivoBarefoot Neo Trails come, I can run outside in the snow.

After that guy said that, I realized that unless I get some new road shoes, snow running is all I can do, and I don't think I want to do that every time. So, I thought for a few minutes and ordered a pair of VivoBarefoot Aqua Lites. I hope I don't regret this. I told myself that the Neo Trails were my only Christmas present, but now I'm eating my words.

I've had my eye on the Aqua Lites for a while now, though. They're the most proprioceptive shoes I know of besides ultra-thin huaraches and socks. Their soles are 3mm thick. They have hardly any tread at all. Their toe boxes are plenty big. They're super flexible. Also, they're fairly water-proof, which probably means they'll get hot, but that's okay. They're Lee Saxby's favorite.

The way I see the VivoBarefoot collection (aside from the boots, casual, and amphibious shoes) is in order from road-friendly to trail-friendly:

  1. Aqua Lite

  2. Evo

  3. Neo

  4. Neo Trails

In other words, I'll have the two most specialized running shoes. I want the Aqua Lites because I want to be as close to barefoot as possible. I want the Neo Trails because I need a good winter shoe. Plus, while being the most specialized in function, they are the most conservative in appearance. The Evos and Neos both look funny and would certainly attract more attention than the other two.

From the shoe companies I've looked at so far that aren't 100% hippy, VivoBarefoot seems to be the most barefoot-friendly. Merrell and New Balance are on the right track, but they have a little work to do. Plus, they have a small selection. This is understandable given that they are fairly new in the barefoot business. VivoBarefoot is my favorite. Let's see if that holds up once I start wearing their shoes.

Anyway, my problem is solved. The soles I built up on my feet will likely be gone by spring, but I can still run. When my Aqua Lites arrive, I can hit the indoor track again. Hopefully they come quick. I hate missing my runs.

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