Friday, January 7, 2011

barefoot running

i first caught wind of barefoot running a little over two years ago from my cousin. she used to run marathons as well and commented how some runners, due to monetary reasons run barefoot. though it was rather a saddening thought for her, i however found the idea quite fascinating really, especially since, living in ghettosville, seeing people run around barefoot is not that uncommon.

i chanced upon my first barefoot runner when i ran my first marathon. i distinctly recall taking a second glance at what i saw, since, you really just have to! he was a middle-aged man running a 10K. i was trailing behind him, running the 5K distance and saw from afar, a pair of surprisingly pale and clean soles. i have to admit, i was taken aback with what i saw at first. then i recalled what my cousin said and poverty was the thought that stuck to me, never mind that his soles looked pristine and that he was running faster than the rest of the pack.

fast forward to last year. i had just finished running the Singapore Marathon and was at the airport waiting for my flight back home. while killing time, i usually loiter at the bookstore, hoping to find something to spend my remaining foreign currency on. i saw this Men's Health book and upon perusing its contents, decided that it was well worth the SG$19. inside was a regimen on anaerobic training, something that, at that time, i was interested in. there was however also an article about this french man named Erwan Le Corre, founder and chief proponent of MovNat. the premise of his practice was achieving a new level of fitness by changing one's lifestyle by going back to how we used to live before we became "modern". his minimalist approach went beyond simply just going back to basics, he went WAY back, coining the term "Paleo Man", or something to that effect. i have to admit, it sounded kinda crazy when you first read it, but again, living in ghettosville and near the pier where people cant really afford gym membership made me reconsider erwan's "insanity". where i live, people are lean and cut, some even buff. what they do? they work in the textile warehouses or are fruit vendors, or in the rice dealers. they haul, lift, sort, carry, throw, drag, all these produce and basically, get the best workout than any gym can provide.... exactly what erwan's training program entails.... minus the tree climbing and free diving courses, of course. o yeah, he also runs barefoot.

so.... we fast forward further to the more recent present. barefoot running seems to be growing popularity now in the local running community. by this time, i had been training for brief periods in my vibrams FF, my oddest pair of footware. i had been reading a lot about the benefits of barefoot running and how it actually strengthens your legs and feet, and even prolong your running career. now, i really can't say i plan to make running a career, but strengthening my legs, as well as preventing future injuries were, as barefoot running claim to achieve, were things i was eager to look in to. so far, besides the strange stares i would get when running around the block, to loud comments about how stupid i looked, i can say that barefoot running, so far, has been truthful to its promise. my legs do feel stronger, sans the blisters and post-running soreness, but that really is expected from a beginner. my ankle injury still bother me but i'm hoping in time, that too will go away.

i'm hoping to run my first full marathon barefoot, or at least in vibrams by the end of the year, either in singapore or next year in HK. i'm also hoping i could incorporate some of erwan's training regimen to my own, well, since gym is getting really old and boring now and that i want to look like these guys as well....

image taken from

jusko.... kung magbubuhat lang ako ng tela at sako ng bigas at maglalako ng prutas sa divisoria, then GOW!!! ahahahaha. erwan is the tallest, eric bana-looking chap in the back row. diba? PWEDE!!!! (pero masgusto ko yung nasa kanang dulo. nyahahaha!)

ehem... sorry. nalurkey lang ako. ONG LILINOMNOM kasi, and i'm fasting rin today... hehehehe

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