Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Workout Wednesday: Silly Shoes

I have a love-hate relationship with shoes.  Having size 11 feet means NOTHING is cute.  Ever.   Perhaps that's why I love my workout shoes...they aren't supposed to be cute.  They are supposed to be functional.  They are meant to support and protect - enabling me to achieve.   My running shoes are my best friends most days.   My indoor workout shoes, on the other hand, are a  pain in the arse.  When I am on the bike or doing strength training, they are huge and in the way.   They trip me and cause me no end of strife.  I don't find them comfortable nor do I feel they help my workouts.  It isn't just my current is every pair I've ever owned.  I wish I could just do my indoor workouts barefoot.

But I can't.   As soon as my feet sweat, they turn those rubber mats on my home gym floor into a skating rink.   I slip and slide and risk serious injury.  Bare feet don't feel good on the pedals of my bike.  Bare feet slip and slide on the aerobic step.  You get the idea.

Then, last week, I was previewing the Rip:60 videos and I had an epiphany.  Jeremy Strom (the instructor) wears Vibram FiveFingers.  It was like the heavens opened up and a light shone down on me.   I've always thought of FiveFingers as being silly shoes for crazy runners.  I've had to stifle sniggers when I see someone running in them.  (sorry if you live by them - I just couldn't do it).  They are funny looking, silly shoes.  And I suddenly wanted a pair.

If you aren't familiar with FiveFingers - they are a barefoot shoe. Like a glove for your feet - complete with little slots for each toe.  The bottoms are rubberized to protect your feet and provide traction.  Barefoot runners have embraced them because it makes running "barefoot" outside a safer proposition.   They are also meant to strengthen your feet and ankles and to undo the damage that many "corrective" footwear have inflicted on our feet.
Vibram Fivefingers KSO Water Shoes (Black-Black-Black, 43 M) - M148
Before watching that video - I had never even thought of these shoes as, perhaps, the solution to my indoor workout shoe problem.  I had gotten so one-track-minded about them being barefoot running shoes, that I hadn't seen a different purpose for them.   Suddenly this was all I could think about.   I pictured myself comfortably slipping my feet onto my bike pedals (instead of forcing that strap over each giant shoe).  I saw my feet supporting me as I did my strength training and core work.  I started to look forward to my indoor workouts (which are going to be very important for my fitness when winter arrives) instead of dreading them.  All I needed was the FiveFingers.

So, today at lunch...I'm gonna go buy myself some silly shoes.  I can't wait to give them a try.   I'll be sure to update my thoughts/experiences for y'all, but I am very excited and optimistic.

...but you'll still never catch me running in them*....

*famous last words


  1. LOL....those look hilarious! I've never actually seen someone wearing them, but I hear they are comfy. You MUST post a pic of you wearing the :)

  2. Funny - that is what I said. I bought mine for yoga. I still do yoga barefoot, but now have two pair of VFFs (they stink to high heaven so it is good to have a pair washed and drying and another to wear) to run in.


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