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#5417 - 08/23/02 11:16 PM shoes
Chooch Offline
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Registered: 11/15/99
Posts: 1184
Loc: South East PA
Wear special shoes for trail running?
I bought a pair a few years ago and used them a total of 10 times.
Im not much of a runner but am always trying to fit cross training in between boulder burns.

Just curious what REAL runners wear.
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#5418 - 08/26/02 01:00 PM Re: shoes [Re: Chooch]
d-elvis Offline
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Registered: 04/26/00
Posts: 3650
Loc: Central PA
Salomon Raid Race is my favorite.
Used a lot by competitors in the eco-challenge races. Has a plastic piece on the back of the heel which really helps with side to side support. Kevlar "one pull" lace system (shoes can't come untied).
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#5419 - 08/26/02 06:32 PM Re: shoes [Re: Chooch]
buzzardboy Offline
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Registered: 04/24/02
Posts: 105
Loc: Pennsylvania
This is a difficult question to answer. You will probably have to try some shoes out till you find what works best for you. Trail shoes offer a lot of protection for running on gnarly terrain, but you sometimes lose some "sensitivity". I guess it's kinda like wearing a condom. Many people I know run the most rugged of trails in road shoes because they like the "feel" they provide. I think Montrail makes the best trail specific running shoes. They have several different models. I like the Vitesse--it offers a lot of protection but it's still light. Also, Montrails fit is second to none. You just have to experiment. Kevin Setnes, an unltra-running guru who does a lot of writing on the subject calls us all, "an experiment of one."
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#5420 - 08/29/02 09:55 PM Re: shoes [Re: Chooch]
LesterLeBlanc Offline
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Registered: 03/06/02
Posts: 1916
Loc: Los Angeles
I was thinking about getting the Salomon Raids, but wound up with the top end North Face trail runners. Very good shoes. But I do a lot of mountain running/hiking in them and they are starting to get beat to hell. Time for a new pair -- and I'm thinking of getting the Raid Races. Though I was hoping they were coming out with a higher ankle version -- it was in a few catalogues -- but apparently the shoe has gone back to the drawing board.

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#5421 - 07/18/03 02:22 PM Re: shoes [Re: Chooch]
Chas Offline
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Registered: 03/22/01
Posts: 1754
Loc: Flagstaff
Chooh, can't answer what a real runner would wear since I'm only a two bit hacker (except my wife says I'm a decent runner but a two bit hacker climber- damn her). For trail running I just wear my road shoes (Nike Pegasus). Always have, and probably always will. Just have an extra pair for trail running.

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#5422 - 07/28/03 05:39 PM Re: shoes [Re: Chas]
tico Offline
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Registered: 12/12/00
Posts: 416
Loc: Gardiner, NY
I've run 100 milers in 5.10 mountain masters and regular adidas running shoes; i've run a 50 miler in birkenstocks. My fastest marathon was in them little 5 oz. New balance RC150's, though I ran one only about 2 minutes slower in a pair of borrowed trainers (though at the time 2 minutes was the difference between finishing in and out of the money).

I've never actually owned a pair of "trail running" shoes, they're just marketing and hype. Just like with everything else pertaining to any sort of activity, just find something that fits.

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#5423 - 07/28/03 05:49 PM Re: shoes [Re: tico]
JoeKayak Offline
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Registered: 06/21/02
Posts: 970
Loc: Manhattan
Quote:

I've run 100 milers in 5.10 mountain masters and regular adidas running shoes; i've run a 50 miler in birkenstocks. My fastest marathon was in them little 5 oz. New balance RC150's, though I ran one only about 2 minutes slower in a pair of borrowed trainers (though at the time 2 minutes was the difference between finishing in and out of the money).




Yes, but clearly you are not normal. We'll be needing you to help fight off the computers after the war of the clones.

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#5424 - 08/07/03 11:23 PM Re: shoes [Re: tico]
LesterLeBlanc Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/06/02
Posts: 1916
Loc: Los Angeles
Quote:

I've run 100 milers in 5.10 mountain masters and regular adidas running shoes; i've run a 50 miler in birkenstocks. My fastest marathon was in them little 5 oz. New balance RC150's, though I ran one only about 2 minutes slower in a pair of borrowed trainers (though at the time 2 minutes was the difference between finishing in and out of the money).

I've never actually owned a pair of "trail running" shoes, they're just marketing and hype. Just like with everything else pertaining to any sort of activity, just find something that fits.




Sounds to me like your feet are made of Kevlar.

I agree with you in general -- it's the fit that matters the most and, generally, experienced runners can run in almost anything.

But it's also important to remember that everybody has different feet and different physiology. My wife has really high arches and for any sort of rugged hiking she needs more than just a light weight hiker. My feet are flat and can take a fair pounding in most shoes, but I can tell the difference between different kinds of shoes. And terrain makes a big difference as well. The trails I run in the San Gabriels start off fairly sandy and then become progressively rockier as you gain altitude. And of course, mileage makes a big difference as well. I can hike 6-7 miles in my Guide Almightys, but around mile 10 my feet start to feel like mush. Trail running shoes are not just hype and marketing. There will be some differences between them and a basic running shoe -- most signifcantly torsional stiffness across the sole -- and the heel will be usually be cut lower to the ground to keep the ankle from turning.

I've liked the North Face Ultra 100s so much I bought another pair after the first ones wore out.

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#5425 - 08/11/03 05:46 PM Re: shoes [Re: LesterLeBlanc]
tico Offline
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Registered: 12/12/00
Posts: 416
Loc: Gardiner, NY
I've found there is really only one feature found in trail shoes that is not found in a "road" shoe, that's some sort of foot-plate for preventing stone bruises. The hype and marketing is making people think they need a trail shoe (with it's dark color and aggressive lugs) rather than a properly fitting road shoe. The torsional stability difference between shoe of the same genre are negligable.

Not only did I do my 140 mile weeks, but I also worked in a running shoe store for a couple of years. Granted, this was some years ago (before this whole outdoor boom), but I still feel that for the average runner, it doesn't matter if they're in a trail shoe or not. And things like flat feet (i have zero arch) or high arches don't have to be detriments; the weakness they're a symptom of can be erased with a gradual, progressive system of training. Like i "fixed" my flat feet with a lot of barefoot running.

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#5426 - 08/12/03 01:48 AM Re: shoes [Re: tico]
cranken Offline
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Registered: 10/27/01
Posts: 122
Loc: the south, the north, the east...
So tico, do you know some brands that have the build-up to prevent the fatigue and beating that the stones (and other trail oddities) give my feet?

I love to trail run far more than flatland but my feet take a beating from the stones underfoot and my ankles are often sore.

I agree that most trail runners I pick up seem just like special marketed regular runners.
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#5427 - 08/12/03 05:17 PM Re: shoes [Re: cranken]
tico Offline
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Registered: 12/12/00
Posts: 416
Loc: Gardiner, NY
Shoes with a urethane midsole, rather than EVA or blown EVA, are good (enough) protection against stone bruises, for most trails.

The problem is that these shoes are usually heavy. I'm a fan of New Balance because they offer a lot of widths in a couple of their models (also they used to give me shoes for free, and they're more made in the US than the other companies).

An alternative, that I recommend, is to buy the lightest pair of racing flats that you can imagie running in, then start running very low mileage and gradually increase. Recall that humans are built to travel on trails, with minimal shoes. We've just been weakened by years of being supported by shoes instead of sinews. Go to the track and run a couple of miles barefoot once a week or so as well.

The foot strength gained also translates well to climbing.

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#5428 - 08/15/03 07:41 PM Re: shoes [Re: tico]
GeeVee Offline
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Registered: 11/14/00
Posts: 4403
Loc: Brooklyn, NY
An alternative, that I recommend, is to buy the lightest pair of racing flats that you can imagie running in

Been there, done that, and I wouldn't recommend it. Racing flats are not built to take the kind of pounding that they'll encounter in trail running, and you'll blow through them in no time at all. Not to mention the kind of beating your feet are going to take, especially on rocky trails (try the stream bed start on the Greylock Gallop if you don't believe me). You're just inviting injury. Flats are fine if you're running something as benign as the carriage roads around Mohonk and Minnewaska, but not much good for anything rougher than that.
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#5429 - 08/15/03 10:29 PM Re: shoes [Re: cranken]
LesterLeBlanc Offline
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Registered: 03/06/02
Posts: 1916
Loc: Los Angeles
I have to deal with extremely steep and rocky mountain trails and I've found the North Face Ultra 100s to hold up really well under these conditions. There's no way I would run these same trails in regular road runners ... tried it once ... will never try it again.

I think overall training will beef up most people's tolerance for pain when trail running, but things like high arches are not "fixable" through training and is a potentially dangerous course to take for some people. There is no substitute for a properly fitted shoe with support for the arches. Flat feet is often a different story. Many people with "flat" feet simply have low arches and this rarely creates any problems for running. People with true flat feet have gait issues and this should be addressed specifically.

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#5430 - 08/18/03 07:35 PM Re: shoes [Re: GeeVee]
tico Offline
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Registered: 12/12/00
Posts: 416
Loc: Gardiner, NY
You systematically ran gradually progressive longer and rougher distances in flats? Or did you just run your normal distances in lighter shoes, and get hurt?

I ran the Massanutten Mountain 100 miler (it's _all_ rocks. for 100 miles) in a pair of adidas racing flats. They worked fine for about 80 miles, then i would've liked to have a small toe-bumper.

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#5431 - 08/18/03 07:40 PM Re: shoes [Re: LesterLeBlanc]
tico Offline
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Registered: 12/12/00
Posts: 416
Loc: Gardiner, NY
High arches, which pose a shock absorbtion issue because the foot won't deform enough to absorb the stress of imapact, can be addressed though nominal gait modification, as well as the tretching and strenghening of the musculature of the feet.

Have either of you actually tried a regimented training program including barefoot or light-shoe running? Or are you just talking? It's worked for me, as well as the dozen or so people i've trained with for marathon and above.

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#5432 - 08/18/03 08:17 PM Re: shoes [Re: tico]
Mark Heyman Offline
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Registered: 12/23/99
Posts: 1123
Loc: South Jersey (Pinelands)
Have either of you actually tried a regimented training program including barefoot or light-shoe running?

tico,

Are you kidding - Should I start out at three steps or four. Seriously, I struggle to walk the half dozen across my stoned driveway. I can train barefoot on a clean beach - but that’s not available to everyone, nor does it help me much anywhere else. It is kind of fun and uses different muscles - but then just changing shoe brands does that. Don't know how some of you don't see much difference!


Mark

PS: I wish I was better off barefoot - but when I take my shoes off I am faced with reality.

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#5433 - 08/18/03 10:41 PM Re: shoes [Re: tico]
GeeVee Offline
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Registered: 11/14/00
Posts: 4403
Loc: Brooklyn, NY
Have either of you actually tried a regimented training program including barefoot or light-shoe running?

What for? I think I missed the point of this somewhere. Why mess with your feet when a pair of perfectly good pair of sneakers will keep them comfy and happy?
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#5434 - 08/19/03 04:12 PM Re: shoes [Re: GeeVee]
tico Offline
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Registered: 12/12/00
Posts: 416
Loc: Gardiner, NY
Simply put, you'll run faster and farther with stronger feet, no matter what shoe you're wearing.
Stronger feet make edging easier as well.

But I think your sentiments are exemplary of why I don't race anymore. Too many people like to fix things with money rather than work. I've been running in the same pair of sneakers for nearly 4 years now, because my footstrike is light, because I trained barefoot for years. Go ahead, buy fancy, overbuilt, petrolium product, sweatshop-built shoes for your underdeveloped feet. Buy them every 500 miles like the companies tell you to. Buy them with gore-tex so your tender feet don't get moist when it rains. Then get into your AWD car (because you feel uneasy about driving in snow), drive up to a trail, run a few miles, drive down to a bar and have a $10 sandwich and a $5 beer, then fill up you car with gas and drive back home and get on the internet and spray about it.

Later, send the access fund and amc and nature conservancy some money and feel confident in what a appreciative-of-nature envirnomentalist you are.

you like how you just want to wear shoes and i've painted you as an evil oil-baron slaver? goddamn hippies get you every time like that.

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#5435 - 08/19/03 10:09 PM Re: shoes [Re: tico]
GeeVee Offline
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Registered: 11/14/00
Posts: 4403
Loc: Brooklyn, NY
You forgot the tirade about the nasty petro-chemical helmet when you climb, which shouldn't be necessary anyway if you gradually ease into a regimen of bare-headed climbing, slowly building up the ability of your head to absorb the force of falling rocks, starting with small pebbles and in time coming to withstand chunks of rock the size of small cars (or better yet SUVs).
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#5436 - 08/20/03 01:06 PM Re: shoes [Re: tico]
Mark Heyman Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/23/99
Posts: 1123
Loc: South Jersey (Pinelands)
Simply put, you'll run faster and farther with stronger feet, no matter what shoe you're wearing.
Stronger feet make edging easier as well.


Sure – My feet get stronger running with shoes too.

But I think your sentiments are exemplary of why I don't race anymore. Too many people like to fix things with money rather than work.

It sounds as if you are preparing for a different race than everyone else. They expect to wear shoes. Most people run faster in shoes and when racing they expect to wear them. Really helps them avoid injury too.

I've been running in the same pair of sneakers for nearly 4 years now, because my footstrike is light, because I trained barefoot for years.

I’ve been training for years too, but it has and will not get me to the level of running you have written about. None of your last statement guarantees that you have not caused yourself significant damage that you will feel as an elder. Truth is that not may people can run the kind of distance you write of without causing themselves damage from repetitive motions, normal and unintentional impact. I wish I could run as far as you – barefoot or no, but I am sure that I would cause me damage that I would strongly regret. I actually limit the time and distance I run, as well as the surfaces I train on for his purpose.


Edited by Mark Heyman (08/20/03 01:48 PM)

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#5437 - 08/20/03 02:06 PM Re: shoes [Re: Mark Heyman]
webmaster Offline

veteran

Registered: 01/06/00
Posts: 1273
Loc: New Paltz (Kerhonkson, actuall...
Hey Mark.

I just want to chime in on this barefoot subject. Though I don't run nearly as much as Tico, I was intrigued by his suggestion about training barefoot. So yesterday, while hiking around the Preserve, I took off my Tevas and walked barefoot for about a mile. It felt pretty good. I even ran a few short sections, though my feet are still pretty whimpy and sensitive. But the experience was enough to take a deeper look into it. I've resolved to toughen up my feet a bit and find out if what Tico's saying bears out.

I don't know why you say you're "sure" it would cause you long term damage. It's seems a premature assumption. Why write it off before trying. For myself, I'm going to slowly try building up to it and see what happens. I'm really shocked at how weak and overly sensitive my feet have become wearing shoes all the time.

If I was apply the state of my feet to my whole body, I could see myself as some overweight couch potato sitting watching the TV listening to a program (sponsored by Frito Lay) about how getting in shape only causes long term damage.

We could just as easily apply this reasoning to climbers--causing long term damage by not wearing gloves!!

-em

Wisdom is the intersection of knowledge and experience
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#5438 - 08/20/03 03:39 PM Re: shoes [Re: Mark Heyman]
tico Offline
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Registered: 12/12/00
Posts: 416
Loc: Gardiner, NY
Do as you see fit. I'm just trying to impart some of my experience to runners who may not have acheived everything they've desired from their running career. Though you remind me of this 71 year old guy who I trained from walking a 5K to running a sub 4 hour marathon. Every step of the way it was "i can't do long runs, i'm old; i can't do speedwork, i'm old; i can't run with a group, i'm old; i can't run barefoot, i'm old".

Think of the barefooting as bouldering for your feet. It's more stress than normal for a short period of time, that translates to better biomechanical efficiency over a long period, because the effort of running in shoes is reduced with the better footstrike you'll develop. I think maybe you don't understand this; barefoot running is a tool that makes you run faster and farther and easier _in shoes_.

It's kind of funny how vehemently you two are against this inncouous little training method. When I was competitve, I'd try _anything_ to keep up with the Kenyans. They told me about barefooting (which is fun) so I did it. They told me about ugali (cornmeal mush, it's not very tasty) so i ate it.

Why are your minds so closed? What's the point? We're animals, why would walking around in a natural state impart long-term damage? Better build a bubble and get into it if that's your take on "life".

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#5439 - 08/20/03 08:24 PM Re: shoes [Re: tico]
LesterLeBlanc Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/06/02
Posts: 1916
Loc: Los Angeles
I know two people with high arches that created significant damage to their feet because they thought they could "train" their feet so they could run without footwear that gave them appropriate support.

Despite that, I would give Tico's suggestions more credence if he hand't launched into an odd diatribe about wearing shoes. (Has he eliminated all petroleum products or all products made in Thrid World countries from his life?)

I run about 4-5 miles a day ... on asphalt. I trail run and hike on very steep, rocky trails 6-10 miles once or twice a week. My feet take plenty of pounding. I ain't going barefoot.

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#5440 - 08/20/03 08:34 PM Re: shoes [Re: webmaster]
LesterLeBlanc Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/06/02
Posts: 1916
Loc: Los Angeles
If I was apply the state of my feet to my whole body, I could see myself as some overweight couch potato sitting watching the TV listening to a program (sponsored by Frito Lay) about how getting in shape only causes long term damage.

We could just as easily apply this reasoning to climbers--causing long term damage by not wearing gloves!!


I think you're oversimplying the issue and not considering that we're discussing situations that involve people that have foot problems like extremely high arches. Most people don't have feet that will give them any significant problems. People who believe they have high arches or flat feet don't actually have them to the degree that they cause gait problems or pain. Some, though, do have pronounced foot problems and while there's a possibility that training can make these issue moot, there's also the possibility that without the proper footwear these people can sustain injury.

If you don't have any real foot issues, sure, go out and run barefoot. Who cares? Personally, I don't see any signifcant advantage to training barefoot. I mean, there's no way I can train for my mountain hiking by going barefoot. My trails are far too rocky. That sort of training would end all my hiking.

And your climbing metaphor ... why the switch to the hands? Why not stay on the feet? Do we climb with climbing shoes on? Yes. Do we train for climbing by climbing barefoot? No.

Yuki used to climb barefoot at Rat Rock. So he could train his big toe to become stronger? No. Just so he wouldn't wear out the old pair of hand-me-down Fires he had. When the CCC chipped in and bought him a new pair of climbing shoes, he never climbed barefoot again.

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#5441 - 08/21/03 01:34 PM Re: shoes [Re: webmaster]
Mark Heyman Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/23/99
Posts: 1123
Loc: South Jersey (Pinelands)
Evan,

I don't know why you say you're "sure" it would cause you long term damage.

I wasn’t saying (intentionally) that running barefoot would necessarily cause damage except from the toe stubbing and resulting breakage that would occur when I get tired. I was referring to lots of mileage, especially if they are on hard flat surfaces. I believe that Tico’s mileage on a regular basis would cause me damage. My father also warns me not to run too much because he sees lots and lots of hip and knee replacements. Personally I use pain as a judge of how much is to much. I think that if I had time, I could train to be able to run a very occasional marathon.

I broke a big toe over ten years ago in shoes and it still causes me problems. It’s also the cause of my problems with performance climbing shoes. The likelihood of this kind of damage alone is enough reason for me to wear shoes on most runs. I occasionally get the chance to run on a beach, and then I do enjoy running barefoot.

I'm really shocked at how weak and overly sensitive my feet have become wearing shoes all the time.

Sounds like my feet are similar to mine. I’m not shocked about mine cause they have been that way since I can remember. Can’t take heat on blacktop either.

We could just as easily apply this reasoning to climbers--causing long term damage by not wearing gloves!!

Naw, under normal circumstances skin grows back. Joint damage can be permanent

Lester & Tico
Despite that, I would give Tico's suggestions more credence if he hadn’t launched into an odd diatribe

I agree here.

I try to run 5+ miles three times a week on soft ground. IE pine barrens trails, hard sand covered with pine needles and roots. My knees and ankles do not like asphalt, and cement even less. I take every opportunity I get to run rough rocky trails as far as I can without getting to tired 5-10 miles. If I run when I am tired, I cause a lot more hip/knee/ankle/foot pain. But these opportunities are rare. This weekend I will get to run on the AT around High Point NJ. I found that I do enjoy running for runnings sake, and that realization (not now new) was a surprise to me.

I want to say that I respect Tico’s running experience, and that if I had the time I might willingly let him act as a trainer, unless I became sure that I was causing myself to much damage. I never thought I could become a real runner, I just started because I found it a very efficient form of exercise time wise. I also find that it works my upper torso and upper body far more than most people think. In other words being in shape running wise always helps my climbing, and not just legs and feet.



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#5442 - 08/21/03 04:43 PM Re: shoes [Re: LesterLeBlanc]
tico Offline
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Registered: 12/12/00
Posts: 416
Loc: Gardiner, NY
Let me simplify this, since there is some obvious misunderstanding: you TRAIN barefoot on a smooth surface, then PERFORM shod, on whatever surface. You do NOT TRAIN on rocky surfaces barefoot.

Your friends with high arches, maybe their program wasn't well thought-out?

The significant advantage to training barefoot for trail applications is the development of a proprioceptive reflex that encourage flowing over terrain, rather than ploughing through it. Also encourages a more efficient footstrike (i.e. initial midfoot strike, rather than the heel strike, which is actually a braking motion.).

Every heard of Bob Murray, Nick? Like Center El Murray (V8), Left and Right El Murray (V6), the Murray Lunge (V6) (all at hueco. Also see countless other hard problems in the southwest)? All done barefoot. Lonely Bob (who started climbing at my alma mater, Livezy rock) often noted how he thought many of his problems would be hard with shoes on. I started climbing barefoot, and still do. It's fun, and on steep rock it gives you a better idea of how to use your feet. the gunks is an ideal place to try this.



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#5443 - 08/21/03 04:57 PM Re: shoes [Re: tico]
Mark Heyman Offline
old hand

Registered: 12/23/99
Posts: 1123
Loc: South Jersey (Pinelands)
Let me simplify this, since there is some obvious misunderstanding: you TRAIN barefoot on a smooth surface, then PERFORM shod

OK Makes much more sense. Sorry guess I was expecting anything from a guy who can run 100 miles. As I wrote I can run barefoot on a beach, but I would have a hard time barefoot on any hard surface.

The significant advantage to training barefoot for trail applications is the development of a proprioceptive reflex that encourage flowing over terrain, rather than ploughing through

Agreed

Also encourages a more efficient footstrike (i.e. initial midfoot strike, rather than the heel strike, which is actually a braking motion.).

Good point. I can work with that even with shoes. I've felt what you are saying barefoot and that helps too.

I started climbing barefoot, and still do. It's fun, and on steep rock it gives you a better idea of how to use your feet. the gunks is an ideal place to try this.

Question is do you use chalk on you feet? Oh, never mind you aren't going to pay for it, are you?


Edited by Mark Heyman (08/21/03 06:29 PM)

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#5444 - 08/21/03 06:18 PM Re: shoes [Re: tico]
empicard Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/29/01
Posts: 2957
Loc: LI, NY
Quote:

because I trained barefoot for years.



just curious, how are your knees and back?
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Time flies like an arrow. Fruit flies like a banana.

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#5445 - 08/25/03 06:35 PM Re: shoes [Re: empicard]
tico Offline
addict

Registered: 12/12/00
Posts: 416
Loc: Gardiner, NY
Quote:

Quote:

because I trained barefoot for years.



just curious, how are your knees and back?






I ruptered my L4 and L5 discs in a 25 foot bouldering fall several years ago, and then didn't get it looked at for a couple of years (during which i ran a 100 miler). The back's fine now (after some cortisone shots), though it bothers me when i climb long slab routes.

I had some IT band syndrome while i was running 120 mile weeks, but everyone who runs 120 mile weeks has someting hurt.

My chronic problems got better as my gait got more efficient as i ran more quality barefoot miles (i.e. i started to do most of my speedwork at the track shoeless).

You have to stretch a lot as you add barefoot miles. Yoga helps as well.

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#5446 - 08/26/03 07:15 AM Re: shoes [Re: tico]
LesterLeBlanc Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/06/02
Posts: 1916
Loc: Los Angeles
Tico:

Sure I've heard of Murray. Impressive accomplishments. But I'm not sure what your point is.

How many people climb barefoot? How many people specifically train by climbing barefoot?

I've climbed barefoot several times -- mostly for fun. I once climbed an 11c barefoot. It was interesting. But I had to climb substantially differently than I would have with shoes. I wouldn't climb barefoot to improve my footwork.

There's a guy in the Gunks who climbs 12c/d in his socks.

What does that mean?


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#5447 - 08/26/03 12:17 PM Re: shoes [Re: tico]
Mark Heyman Offline
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Registered: 12/23/99
Posts: 1123
Loc: South Jersey (Pinelands)
a more efficient footstrike (i.e. initial midfoot strike, rather than the heel strike, which is actually a braking motion.

Tico,

Besides using different muscles in different shoes which is often more apparent after I run, I find that different shoes cause/force different heel strike. I decided that not only do running shoes have to fit your feet, but that they need to fit your gait. I guess any podiatrist could have told me that.

It seems to me that when I am running well (for me), I am often taking longer strides. I think the longer strides and increased efficiency come from rotating/swiveling my hips more. It seems that I am bound to have more or harder heel strike then. What do you think I should be striving for?

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#5448 - 08/26/03 04:42 PM Re: shoes [Re: LesterLeBlanc]
tico Offline
addict

Registered: 12/12/00
Posts: 416
Loc: Gardiner, NY
Quote:

Tico:

Sure I've heard of Murray. Impressive accomplishments. But I'm not sure what your point is.

How many people climb barefoot? How many people specifically train by climbing barefoot?

I've climbed barefoot several times -- mostly for fun. I once climbed an 11c barefoot. It was interesting. But I had to climb substantially differently than I would have with shoes. I wouldn't climb barefoot to improve my footwork.

There's a guy in the Gunks who climbs 12c/d in his socks.

What does that mean?






So you're saying that because people don't train a certain way, it's not a viable way to train? That's just ridiculous.

Barefoot climbing may not make your footwork as a whole better, but it will make your feet stronger. Foot strength is a facet of footwork.

How many people run barefoot? Not many. Who does run barefoot? East Africans. Who dominates distance running at any level? East Africans.

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#5449 - 08/26/03 04:56 PM Re: shoes [Re: Mark Heyman]
tico Offline
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Registered: 12/12/00
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Loc: Gardiner, NY
Quote:

a more efficient footstrike (i.e. initial midfoot strike, rather than the heel strike, which is actually a braking motion.



It seems to me that when I am running well (for me), I am often taking longer strides. I think the longer strides and increased efficiency come from rotating/swiveling my hips more. It seems that I am bound to have more or harder heel strike then. What do you think I should be striving for?





So if you look at an olympic or world champs performance for any distance above 800 m, you'll notice that the runner is taking about 180 steps per minute (+/- like 2). It's really consistant that way. So the only variable in the speed of running (for the best runners, so you should try to emulate them) is stride length. This is something you can practice, running slow and running fast using the same cadence (~180 steps/min) and changing speeds by lengthening strides.

But you don't want to really be landing on your heel, even when you stretch you stride out long. You want your foot to land on the outside of the foot in line with your hips, then push back. Your heel will touch down, but you won't actually strike the ground with it first. That would produce a braking effect and transmit shock up the leg.

Think of the running motion as a continual fall forward, but you keep sort of catching yourself and prolonging the fall.

This running form doesn't work well unless you keep a fairly high cadence. To increase your cadence, think of your leg as a pendulum; a pendulum with a shorter string will oscillate faster at a given energy, right? so shorten your leg by folding it up after the push-off. This means just try and get your heel close to your ass after each step.

This is all much easier to show you than to write about. Are you climbing this weekend? Anyway, i think if you work on higher cadence at a given speed things will begin to work themselves out naturally. Don't be surprised when you initially feel like you're working harder to run slower; you've been running the same way for years so it takes some time for a different form to become efficient.

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#5450 - 08/26/03 08:30 PM Re: shoes [Re: tico]
LesterLeBlanc Offline
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Registered: 03/06/02
Posts: 1916
Loc: Los Angeles
So you're saying that because people don't train a certain way, it's not a viable way to train? That's just ridiculous.

Is it? If no one trains for footwork by climbing barefoot, why would I think it is a viable way to train?

Barefoot climbing may not make your footwork as a whole better, but it will make your feet stronger. Foot strength is a facet of footwork.

I'm willing to keep an open mind, but I've never seen or heard anything that would suggest that barefoot climbing improves footwork. My own experience with barefoot climbing leads me to think that one has to climb very differently without shoes and thus renders any foot strength issue moot. In addition, by your own admission, barefoot climbing may not significantly improve footwork and beyond that, I'm not sure that barefoot climbing makes your feet any stronger than climbing in shoes.

And then ... there's crack climbing ... Ow!

How many people run barefoot? Not many. Who does run barefoot? East Africans. Who dominates distance running at any level? East Africans.

1) Do you believe the only reason the East Africans dominate distance running is because they run barefoot? (I have no idea. But I'm suspicious the only reason is because they run barefoot.)

2) Where are the barefoot climbers that dominate some (any) particular facet of climbing?

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#5451 - 08/27/03 12:55 PM Re: shoes [Re: tico]
Mark Heyman Offline
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Registered: 12/23/99
Posts: 1123
Loc: South Jersey (Pinelands)
So if you look at an olympic or world champs performance for any distance above 800 m, you'll notice that the runner is taking about 180 steps per minute (+/- like 2)....This running form doesn't work well unless you keep a fairly high cadence. To increase your cadence, think of your leg as a pendulum; a pendulum with a shorter string will oscillate faster at a given energy, right? so shorten your leg by folding it up after the push-off. This means just try and get your heel close to your ass after each step.

All the above (including the deleted) makes sense to me. The only question is, how high a cadence does one need to have to make this useful.? I will try and see if I can make it work for me.

This is all much easier to show you than to write about. Are you climbing this weekend?

I wish – I have to work hard just to get in a couple of local runs. Saving my next climbing trip for Wallaface- can’t wait either.

Anyway, i think if you work on higher cadence at a given speed things will begin to work themselves out naturally.

I run for exercise – not performance. But, the more I do, the more I am able to do. I think speed work is the area where I could benefit most. It would extend my range for fixed amounts of time on longer trails that I enjoy most. It’s probably my weakest spot, and maybe it’s time to address it.

Is there any reason I can’t do “speed work” on the trails I run combined in a regular perhaps shortened run? They are mostly softer than the tracks. Except for worrying about roots they would even e easier than a track barefoot. I run trails because it motivates me. Running on a track could bore me enough to stop running

I’m won’t follow anything blindly but as I wrote a lot of this make sense to me so I will try and see what works for me. Guess I ought to pick up a book on running.

Thanks


Mark

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#5452 - 08/27/03 05:33 PM Re: shoes [Re: LesterLeBlanc]
tico Offline
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Registered: 12/12/00
Posts: 416
Loc: Gardiner, NY


Is it? If no one trains for footwork by climbing barefoot, why would I think it is a viable way to train?


Look at the track and field traingin regimens of the 1800's.
People didn't do anything they do today. and they were slow.

Let's hit closer to home. When you were a 5.12 climber, 5.12 was hard because noone pulled on plastic. Now people train in rock gyms and climbing 5.12 isn't exactly as newsworthy as it used to be.



1) Do you believe the only reason the East Africans dominate distance running is because they run barefoot? (I have no idea. But I'm suspicious the only reason is because they run barefoot.)


It's a facet of their training missing from the regimens of non-dominant runners. to be great, emulate greatness.


2) Where are the barefoot climbers that dominate some (any) particular facet of climbing?


Do you know that no dominant climbers train barefoot? The key word here is TRAIN. Climbing barefoot is _usually_ harder than shoe'd climbing. Just like barefoot running, you TRAIN barefoot, then PERFORM shoe'd. And I've already told you about Murray and his domination in the past.

Let's try eine kleine gedankenexperiment:

ClimberX does the boxcar traverse almost every day. It close to his bouldering limit. He wants to be able to do two full out-and-back laps, but simply doing the problem over and over again isn't getting him closer to that goal. He starts to attempt the problem barefoot. Wiring the problem barefoot leads to strength and technique advances, because it's harder to climb V5 barefoot than in shoes. _This also leads to the problem feeling much easier in shoes_. Reworking and wiring the problem barefoot is the additional training stress needed to do the laps in shoes.

Now, what part of the thought experiment do you refute? Where does barefoot climbing not produce a training effect?

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#5453 - 08/27/03 05:39 PM Re: shoes [Re: Mark Heyman]
tico Offline
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Registered: 12/12/00
Posts: 416
Loc: Gardiner, NY
Quote:



All the above (including the deleted) makes sense to me. The only question is, how high a cadence does one need to have to make this useful.? I will try and see if I can make it work for me.

I run for exercise – not performance. But, the more I do, the more I am able to do. I think speed work is the area where I could benefit most. It would extend my range for fixed amounts of time on longer trails that I enjoy most. It’s probably my weakest spot, and maybe it’s time to address it.

Is there any reason I can’t do “speed work” on the trails I run combined in a regular perhaps shortened run? They are mostly softer than the tracks. Except for worrying about roots they would even e easier than a track barefoot. I run trails because it motivates me. Running on a track could bore me enough to stop running






It's not about hitting certain numbers. If you can't spin at 180 steps/min, just work on hitting 120% of you current steps/min. It's also not about performance in a time sense. Running more efficiently makes running _easier_, more fun, more comfortable, etc.

Yeah, do speedwork on trails. Like go 1 min hard, 1 min easy, 2 min hard, 1 min easy, etc. The swedish call it fahrtlek, or "speed play". It's absolutely essential to be able to change speeds quickly and without a ton of stress.

Track work sucks and it hurts. Don't do it unless you really want to hit certain times at certain races.

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#5454 - 08/28/03 12:01 AM Re: shoes [Re: Mark Heyman]
GeeVee Offline
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Registered: 11/14/00
Posts: 4403
Loc: Brooklyn, NY
Mark:

A few more comments from an over-the-hill runner...

While I still don't buy tico's "Shoeless Joe" notion, much of his commentary on gait is applicable to mere mortals such as you and I. His pendulum analogy is good - one of the easiest ways of lengthening your stride (and ultimately going faster) simply entails picking your knees up a little higher. A fairly relaxed lower leg will naturally swing out further and you'll tend to land with a flatter foot plant (reducing that jarring heel strike which simply slows you down and transmits a boat-load of shock back up your leg with every step) which sets you up for a nice roll forward and push off from the ball of the foot. It's the faling forward thing tico referred to (but note - that's the sensation of falling forward, not leaning forward, which you absolutely don't want to do). My wife was totally sceptical about the knee lift thing, until I convinced her to try it one day and she was amazed at how her speed increased almost effortlessly as a result. Bill Bowerman used to do a lot of drills with his runners which involved bounding exercises to work on lifting the knees. If you're looking for a book (and lord knows there are so many of them out there) on running, look for somebody who espouses Bowerman's techniques (or something by the man himself). Don't know if tico would agree with that suggestion - this was the man who invented the waffle for Nike shoes after all. Oh, on the leaning forward thing... one of my favorite visualization techniques was to imagine I was like a puppet, with strings holding me up, pulling my weight up and off of my feet... oops, probably shouldn't get into visualization stuff here, we're already way off topic. As for tico's comment about track work... yeah, it sucks, it hurts - but it can also be a huge amount of fun, and often triggers a big post-workout endorphine rush. It helps to do it with others, particularly when you're new to it, so you can get some help with the whole pacing thing (it's kind of hard to stand on the line and say to yourself that you're going to run a 1/4 in xx seconds) but be careful you don't go out there with folks who are a lot faster than yourself - you may well hurt something. I was frequently too stupid to back off and ended up pissing blood one night after running grudge-match sprints against kids 15 years younger than me - yikes. The flip side of that was one of the trippiest workouts I ever did, running flat-out quarters solo on the old Queensborough Community College cinder track in near darkness - I swear it felt like I was flying!

One thing that really helped me was having someone critique my running style on videotape (my old coach was a big exponent of this). Once you get past the initial shock of watching yourself you soon start to pick up on the nasty nuances of your style.

There you go, my 50 cents for the evening, for what it's worth.
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#5455 - 08/30/03 11:05 PM Re: shoes [Re: GeeVee]
Mike Rawdon Offline

Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 11/29/99
Posts: 4276
Loc: Poughkeepsie
More $0.02 from an OTH runner who was never any good in the first place.

I don't know what kind of trails you run on, maybe they're groomed and covered with fine wood chips, but the trails I ran would be the last place to be moving fast. I'm talking about real trails, the kind that go somewhere. Sure it's fun but if you really don't want to twist an ankle, use the trails for long runs or strength (uphill) workouts rather than speed. Find a rubberized track instead.

I always got a kick out of that stride length idea. basically it goes like this - the only difference between the X runners that win and the back of the packers that don't is stride length, so work on increasing that. (I'm not trying to quote tico, but rather parroting back countless Runners World pablum) Which of course would send weekend warriors off with exaggerated motions more likely to create biomechanical problems than anything else.

The fact is that moving faster at a given turnover e.g. 180/min, will naturally and necessarily produce a longer stride length. Distance divided by number of strides, ya know? It would be just as accurate (and pointless) to say the only difference between those guys and you is that THEY RUN FASTER, so go try to run faster.

Of course my other problem with the running mags were the "Anyone can run a 32 min 10K" articles (BULLSH:T) and the advice from elite runners to - for example -start every workout with 3 to 5 miles at an easy 5:45 pace.

Mike - who has never run or climbed barefoot, and hasn't been convinced otherwise

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#5456 - 09/10/03 02:17 PM Re: shoes [Re: tico]
strat Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 04/30/01
Posts: 4242
So, I did it last night.
Didn't feel like driving over to the gym and use the stairmaster so I went next door and did laps on the High School track. I took my shoes and socks off and ran the last two laps barefoot. I am not a runner, but, I can benefit from stronger/tougher feet so, what do I have to lose?

Anyway, the observation that I made instantly was that my foot was landing and taking off differently without the shoes on then they were with the shoes on. With shoes, it seems like my heel strikes the ground first and the ball of my foot leaves the ground first. Without shoes, the ball of my foot hit the ground first and toes were leaving the ground.

Was I faster? no clue,
Will it help me? no clue.

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#5457 - 09/10/03 03:19 PM Re: shoes [Re: strat]
Judge11 Offline
old hand

Registered: 03/28/01
Posts: 1152
strat, I had to chuckle at the mental imagine of you running barefoot around the track.
The thought of every other step striking a small object on the ground... Ouch...OOoohh...Yikes....ouch....damn....Aaahhh.....sonofa@#$^$......manthathurt.....oohhh....ouch...!!!
Then, doing that little dance we all do when we stub our toes.

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#5458 - 09/10/03 03:45 PM Re: shoes [Re: Judge11]
MurphysLaw Offline
gumby

Registered: 03/12/02
Posts: 2308
Loc: Hudson Valley, NY
Judge - LOL.

And for additional mental imagery, how's about strat's shoes sitting on the side of the track, with a greenish-brown noxious vapor wafting up from them, and every other runner who passes by them keeling over and passing out.


I don't think I've ever seen strat's bare feet, but I hafta imagine they look kinda similar to those of a Hobbit.
_________________________
"Flailing?" "Flail on!"

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#5459 - 09/10/03 03:49 PM Re: shoes [Re: MurphysLaw]
strat Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 04/30/01
Posts: 4242
They are brand-new sneakers and they don't stink, much.

What's a Hobbit? Is that a character in Dungeons and Dragons?

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#5460 - 09/10/03 07:27 PM Re: shoes [Re: strat]
GeeVee Offline
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Registered: 11/14/00
Posts: 4403
Loc: Brooklyn, NY
What's a Hobbit?

Well... a hobbit is something which you do without thinking (and probably shouldn't be doing). An example of a bad hobbit would be you jogging.

Strat on the running track, huh? What kind of surface was it?
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So long as you can boogie you ain't too old.

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