I’m sure that you all have seen those crazy people running on the side of the road that aren’t wearing any shoes. Here is the skinny on why they do it. Enjoy.
If you are a pretty serious runner, you have most likely heard and seen people who run barefoot. If you are anything like me, then you probably see these people as crazy. For the life of me, I cannot understand why someone would want to run around on the dangerous road barefoot! I suppose that these people are of the mind set that they are running “naturally”, or the way that Mother Nature intended; which is without shoes. There are a couple of reasons that people may decide to hang up their shoes for good. They believe that shoes will, over time, cause harm to their feet or posture or something to that effect. As crazy as it sounds, people may just do it for the challenge. Take barefoot marathon runners for example, running a marathon isn’t enough of a challenge for you?
I guess the part that makes me the most nervous about running barefoot isn’t the inevitable beating it goes through, but rather the high chance of stepping on some THING! It could be the most harmless thing, but stepping on anything would freak me out. Who knows what could be next to it or under it! Some dangerous looking plant, car debris, or a NAIL! After that last sentence, I don’t know who would even want to go running barefoot. Of course, barefoot runners take all of these things into consideration and they don’t go out there without knowing what they’re getting into. But still, running with no shoes comes with a lot of risks; but if you want to feel more natural, then go right ahead and lose the shoes.
Starting to run without shoes is something you are going to have to ease into. I would recommend starting out just walking or maybe light jogging on a slightly rough surface, not the road yet, but maybe just the sidewalk. I would also suggest that you put off running on a surface as hard as the road until your feet have become “acclimated” to your weird new way of running.
Maybe this style of running intrigues you, maybe it doesn’t. If it does, then more power to you, good luck! If you want to stick with shoes but want to be a minimalist, try the Altra Zero Drop shoes; they make shoes that are really light, and pleasing to the minimalist runner.