START wearing barefoot shoes now !

What are barefoot shoes ?

Barefoot shoes have 3 main attributes:

  1. zero drop = means no elevated heel  (no, not only women wear those, you all are !)
  2. wide toe box = your toes should be able to move freely, be aware that not all manufacturers have models which are “wide feet friendly”, in my reviews I always mention for which foot type they fit (therefore always measure your lenght and width before buying any barefoot shoes)
  3. very thin flexible outsole (3-5 mm) = allows the foot to move through a full range of motion, which can naturally lead to stronger muscles and ligaments, but it also differs model to model, as I will explain in different article it is not that wise to look for very thin outsole for winter boots, trail running or hiking shoes will have lugs to provide you with better grip so it will add few mm 


Why run, walk and workout in barefoot shoes

1) Your body has to work a lot more 
Is this really a benefit you might be asking ? For me it definitely is. I go running because I love being outdoors, move and challenge myself at the same time, therefore I do not see any reason why would I run in cushioned “high heel shoes” that make it easier and are not good for my overall health and body posture. You and I want our feet and knees to be healthy, strong and resilient.
I see benefits on myself that running in barefoot shoes helped to strenghten my feet, legs and body overall and this transforms to all other sports that I do.

2) You’ll  find out if you really can run that far and what your “real” form is
Now that I run in barefoot shoes without insole only, I see it as simple cheating, running in cushioned shoes.  When running or walking in barefoot shoes, no matter what brand or model I wear, they are very similar when talking about sole thickness. That means at least from my point of view, that what distance can I run in barefoot zero drop not cushioned shoes is actually accurate and my actual form, and it won’t differ from shoes to shoes, or model to model. Try to run the same distance you used to run in cushioned shoes in barefoot zero drop ones and you’ll feel the difference. I remember first time I went for a run, when I came home, I was done. I did the same distance I usually do on that particular trail but if felt to me like I ran 5 times more. Over time it got better, my muscles got stronger and feet adjusted and now it feels completely natural to walk and run in barefoot shoes.

3) Your toes will finally have enough room
When you’ll put on your barefoot shoes, the one thing you’ll notice right away (if you measured your feet correctly), is that your fingers can move and you finally have enough room for them. What I find strange, that I used to and most people still wear, shoes in which we don’t have enough room for our toes but it doesn’t seem weird to the most, it is the way is “supposted” to be. 

4) Your health problems and typical runner’s/hiker’s feet and knees pain might finally go away
I personally know several people that had knees problems, feet problems and pain and after transitioning to barefoot shoes, problems are gone. “Typical” shoes people wear today are obviously affecting the way you’re stepping on surface, your stability and overall body posture. And now add to it that you might have discovered barefoot shoes after 40 years of wearing “typical” ones, no wonder that people complain all the time that their knees and feet hurt ! 
You might be surprised, but in a lot of countries nowdays your doctor can prescribe you barefoot shoes as a “medicament”.

5) Stability while working out !    
I would like to work out in the gym being barefoot completely, but so far I’ve been to one gym only that allowed that. It is usually forbidden. The good news are that we can do our gym workouts in barefoot shoes ! And finally feel our ground and have a solid foundation for those heavy lifts. It feels so natural to workout completely barefoot, so do that if you can, otherwise barefoot shoes are the solution !


When are you ready to transition to barefoot zero drop shoes ?

You have to try for yourself, our bodies are not the same, so what feels good for my body does not have to be the same for yourself. There are people who advise to take it easy, meaning you’ll wear them or run in them for a specific short period of time, and you repeat this pattern until your feet and muscles will adjust so you’ll be able to wear them all the time. This might be good for some people, but for me it was just going all in. I transitioned from cushioned shoes to barefoot ones “over night”, first 3 weeks were hard in a sense that my muscles had to work more, I felt more exhausted and of course I had to change the way I walked as once you’ll transition to barefoot shoes, you’ll find out that your typical “over – heel” step is not the right way how our bodies should move and walk. (for more information google “how to walk in barefoot shoes”, there are many great informational videos from physical therapists that explain this in detail).

I run and walk in Freet barefoot shoes, I absolutely love that they are intended for us with wide feet and their running model “Freet Feldom” is the best barefoot trail running/hiking shoe you can buy.

Disclaimer: Author talks about his experience only, when thinking about transitioning to barefoot shoes for yourself, you’ll need to see and try for yourself how your body responds and decide if walking and running in barefoot zero drop shoes is for you or not. This web site is provided for educational and informational purposes only and does not constitute providing medical advice or professional services. The information provided should not be used for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, and those seeking personal medical advice should consult with a licensed physician.

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