12 Weeks to Barefoot Running: Week 1: Growing New Skin

Week 1, The Plan:
Pace: Easy Jogging
Distance: a few hundred yards to one mile
Objective: Stimulate feet to grow new skin
So, due to some ankle and heel issues, I decided to take a few weeks off, let myself heal, and start this whole barefooting thing fresh. Towards the end of the 2 weeks I added a bit of spinning on the bike, but otherwise did nothing beyond start walking my dog barefoot.
Last week I began anew and, while I’m still not a huge fan, can see the value of adding this to one’s training. Two big changes, after reading Barefoot Ken Bob’s book, were adding an exaggerated knee bend and picking up the feet rather than pushing off.
  • Tuesday tempo run: 4 mins BF, 23 shod, 4 mins BF. First run in 2 weeks,felt good. 25% BF, wore calf sleeves, really worked on knee bend and picking feet up, not pushing off.
  • Thursday Hills: Possibly the first hill workout of the year, yes, in June. 6 mins BF, 21 mins hills and tempo, 3 mins BF.
  • Saturday LSD Run: 8 mins BF, 40 mins LSD, 2.5 mins BF; barefooting seemed to tenderize the foot a bit and made me cut the run just a bit short.

One other thing I picked up from Barefoot Ken Bob’s book is that it appears, according to him, that 25% barefoot training gives you most if not all of the benefits. On this go-around I used that as a guide and tried to split it up between the warm-up and cool-down portions of the runs.

3 thoughts on “12 Weeks to Barefoot Running: Week 1: Growing New Skin

  1. There's a fine line between being intellectually curious and drinking the Kool Aid. I must admit you are navigating these waters well.

    I just don't understand why this is such a sexy topic, though. I use swim paddles in a portion of my workouts. Paddles are also a bit of a controversial subject. Supporters point to the added resistance by saying it strengthens swim specific shoulder muscles better than any other method. Protractors point to the risk of overuse injuries. However, to my knowledge there has never been a book written about this.

    I need to find an obscure Indian tribe from the Amazon River basin that for centuries has been tying strips of bark to their hands to help them outrun alligators and pirahnas while swimming. Only then will this topic get the attention it deserves.

    Either that or find a swimmer who uses the paddles all the time injury free AND resembles Jesus.

  2. I just can't do it… I don't know why. I'm anxious to hear how this all plays out for you as you keep running barefoot. 🙂

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