Anyone out there into minimalist shoes? Whether it be Vibranms, New Balance, Merrell etc.
It seems like there are a lot of pros. I am just hesitant because I get footsore easily due to the fact that I have bursitis in my feet. I am nervous how me feet will do without arch support as well. I know that if I walk, run or stand barefoot a lot my feet get really sore.
Unintentionally got a pair of Nikes that were modeled after barefoot technology and regretted it. They hurt my feet and didn't give me enough cushioning, which obviously I need. Ended up donating them and getting another pair of Nike Air shoes that work better for my foot issues.
Got a pair of Nike Frees and I LOVE them. I also have neutral feet/stride, so running in them is not an issue for me. They are not a shoe to wear around all day if you have specific issues, though--the idea behind them is to work at strengthening your feet and using them slowly. I also got my boyfriend a pair to run in, and he has flat feet and is bow legged--as long as he takes it slow and works up, he runs just fine in them. He also loves wearing them to work on hard concrete floors, but I wouldn't advertise them for that to anyone
I've got vibrams five fingers. <3 them! I do run in them... and while they do make your leg muscles hurt at first, now I'm not bothered at all. Would definitely suggest slowly increasing the time spent in them every day... don't just GO for it and wear them all day lol. Hubby has already started to wear his out (he runs quite a bit more than me though) so he'll probably get a new pair for xmas this year lol.
I got a pair of Nike Free's and love them, but only for short distances. I find they have just enough cushioning to keep me from feeling truly barefoot, but not enough that it doesn't change my stride to make it more efficient. I still maintain my long runs with my trusty Asics, but I consider the minimalist shoes good for cross-training.
“Thoroughbreds are the best. They’re lighter, quicker, and more intelligent.” -George Morris
I bought a pair of Vibram FiveFingers after reading about barefoot running in Born to Run. They're great but you need to slowly build up time in them. These days I won't run more than 3 or 4 miles in my Vibrams, even though my long runs are about 10 miles. They have changed my stride for the better and my legs have gotten stronger. Basically, I find them a great training tool, but not a replacement for my "padded" running shoes.
Love, love, love my Vibram FiveFingers. I wear them all day long, every day. Once I got used to them, my feet changed for the better, and my back pain went away as well. The only time I wear anything else is when I'm around the horses and/or riding.
I have a bare of the NM Minimus trails. Got them to use mainly for CrossFit. Love them, they really give a great ground feel and have changed the way I run for the better. Definitely need to work up to them though-the first run/WOD I did in them, the tops of my feet were sore for a day or so. The second time, my calf muscles were pretty sore. But now, no soreness. Just takes some time! I think its worth checking out though. And if you decide to get NB and you can buy from a store, they have a 30 day return policy where you can return for any reason.
Oh, and wanted to add that I think the whole running barefoot movement is similar to the barefoot movement for horses. Works for some, doesn't work for others.
I have the Reebok Realflex shoes and love them. They are so comfortable and light, but still have a bit of padding and stability. I agree though that you have to slowly start off in them. I've been running 2-4 miles in mine so far and my calves are SO sore after. I'm hoping the soreness lessens as I get used to running in them (or running in general, which I slacked off on all summer...).
Quite honestly, I don't trust the vibrams to run in but that's just me. I didn't buy my Reeboks because of the minimalist technology (which I haven't decided if I believe or not). I bought them because they were very comfortable and light while still having enough padding and support to feel like I can workout without too much of an increased injury risk.
"People ask me 'will I remember them if I make it'. I ask them 'will you remember me if I don't?'"
I have a pair of Five Fingers that I love. I don't use them for running (not much of a "runner" ), but I do love to wear them around town, doing errands, etc. They make my chronically cranky back happy and help me stretch out the interval between visits to the human chiropractor.
Flip a coin. It's not what side lands that matters, but what side you were hoping for when the coin was still in the air.
I do have a cranky back as well due to some previous issues. I may buy a pair of Vibrams when I get the cash. I am just nervous about spending that much on a shoe and not knowing if it will cause problems for my easily footsore feet.
What I'd like to do is go to a good athletic shoe store and have them help me pick out a good shoe both regular and minimalist. However, I do not know of such a place around here. I can think of a bunch from where I used to live in MA...but down here in DE, not so much. I'll have to do some more research and see if I can locate a place to try some on and whatnot.
Thanks for the input so far. Looks like they're worth a try.
I've been running in Vibrams for at least 3 years now. I did not find that you had to "adapt" to them, and I can easily switch back and forth between "regular" shoes (when it's really cold out) and the vibrams. I find running in the vibrams to be almost effortless in comparison to regular shoes- I can run much further in them without fatigue than in regular shoes. And bonus, my knees never ache after running in vibrams and often ache after running in regular shoes.
And big bonus: vibrams cost about the same as a pair of good running shoes, but running shoes you have to replace every 3 to 6 months; vibrams you only have to replace when they fall apart, which hasn't happened yet. So I've saved the price of at least 6 pairs of running shoes.
Other people I know: someone who regularly runs marathon-type distances kept injuring and re-injuring his ankle until he switched to vibrams, and has never yet re-injured it while running in the vibrams;
another person had repeated episodes of plantar fasciitis (heel pain) until he switched to wearing vibrams most of the time (both for running and non-running activities); and many people report their chronic pains in the lower limbs and even the back kind of went away after they switched to vibrams (or other similar shoes).