This is an Incredible Running Moment Caught on Video

This was shared on Facebook by my friends over at RunBlogger and I had to share it.  This young woman did something that I’m not sure I could have done back when I was competing.  A fellow competitor collapsed on the track in front of her and instead of running by she stopped and helped her to the finish line.  This cost her any chance she had of winning the race and even more impressive: she did it at the state meet.  The video and article link are below.  Go read/watch this story and support such amazing sportsmanship!

http://www.springfieldnewssun.com/springfield-oh-sports/high-school-sports/wls-state-champ-lends-a-helping-hand–1385613.html

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Product Review – Inov-8 Bare-X Lite 150

The Inov-8 Bare-X Lite 150 is a shoe that I have had a great interest in for some time.  I love performance shoes, and this shoe had all the appeal of a great performance shoe, so I had to get my hands on a pair.  I’ve reviewed two shoes, the 195 & 155, from Inov-8 on this site, and I’ve like them both.  They each had things that I really liked and some things that I felt weren’t ideal, and the 150 is in the same boat as both of those.  It’s a great shoe that has a lot of positives but still left me wondering if it could have been a little better.  The issues I have with the shoe are also fairly personal so read on to hear more about what could be your new favorite performance shoe. Continue reading

Exercise Might Be Over Thought

I just finished my workout for the day.  It took about 10 minutes, and I feel pretty tanked.  It consisted of four exercises with some warm up and cool-down (the cool-down actually made it go a little over 10 minutes).  Not enough to get a good workout?  Too intense?  Too quick and not enough rest?  How many sets?  How many reps?  Dang that’s a lot of questions to answer when all I did was exercise.  All of this led me to wonder if this whole thing has become over-thought.   Continue reading

“The Principles of Natural Running” Video by Dr. Mark Cucuzzella

I was trolling through a favorite website of mine, www.runblogger.com, when I came across this video on running form by Dr. Mark Cucuzzella.  I have admired Mark for quite some time and even had the pleasure of chatting with him a bit at the Running Event in Austin this past year.  He’s both an impressive mind and athlete so when he talks about form and technique I usually recommend people listen.  This video is no different in that regard as I highly recommend you all take about seven and half minutes out of your life to watch this outstanding video on running form principles.

Mark Cucuzzella is a family physician, a natural running advocate, and the Executive Director or The Natural Running Center where he, with a team of other highly credentialed individuals, spread the word of running in a more natural and healthy way.  You can learn more about his effort at www.naturalrunningcenter.com.

Barefoot Versus Running Shoes: Which is More Efficient?

http://sweatscience.runnersworld.com/2012/02/barefoot-versus-running-shoes-which-is-surprisingly-more-efficient/

This article was brought to my attention by my friends at the Natural Running Store and I, like them, was very surprised by the results.  It’s been assumed for the last few years that barefoot running is more efficient than running in shoes because of the naturalness running barefoot.  Some will tell you though that while they feel lighter and more free running bare that they also feel a lot of muscle soreness in the lower legs than they ever have.  That extra muscle effort means a lot things are happening inside the body that most people don’t take into account.  One of those things that is effected  is the use of oxygen.  When the muscles are working harder they are using more oxygen which means there is room for the idea that running without shoes makes you less oxygen efficient than when in shoes but where is that line?  At what weight is the shoe too heavy?  Is there an adaptation period that barefoot running takes in order for you to move past this oxygen inefficiency and if so how long is that period?  To be completely honest these are questions I’ve had in the back of mind for a long time but since I don’t have a research lab, a lot of money, or ideas on the best ways to test this I have only been able to sit around and speculate.  Thankfully I’m not the only person wondering these things and that is where this article from Runner’s World comes in.  It appears the studies to answer these questions are being done and as always they seem to be presenting some interesting results that many of us may not have expected.

My friends at the Natural Running Store posted on Facebook that this is “an authentic “holy crap” moment for them and I agree.  I love running bare and have done so as part of my training for over half of my life but I’ve also very much enjoyed running in minimal shoes so studies like this really appeal to me.  I have no idea where this all ends or where it will settle but I’m very intrigued to find out.  Enjoy the article and please share your thoughts.  I’m really looking forward to hearing what you think about this one.

http://sweatscience.runnersworld.com/2012/02/barefoot-versus-running-shoes-which-is-surprisingly-more-efficient/

Product Review – Altra Adam

I’ve been asked a lot about this shoe, and I should have written this review a long time ago.  I’ve had a ton of time with these shoes, having gotten my first experience in them over a year ago.  Yes, that is well before they were actually released to the public!  With a recent price drop putting these shoes at $79.99, I figured it was the perfect time to talk about this great (possibly the best?) minimal offering.  There are already some great reviews for the Altra Adam out there, but I’ve got a few things to add to those so sit back and enjoy, my friends, because this is a good shoe to know about.  Continue reading

“Stuff” Barefoot Runners Say

Ok so maybe it’s not “stuff” but this is a family friendly site people!  I’ve seen videos like this one for different topics and my good friend in natural running, Mr. Steven Sashen of Invisible Shoes, made a fun video about the “things” barefoot runners say.  I enjoyed it a lot and thought I’d share it.

Thanks Steven!

Altra Awarded Runner’s World “Best Debut”

You may have heard me talk about the shoes from a company called Altra.  To this point Altra has been a smaller company that is still very new to the market, and industry, but a company that I love.  They are making the shoes that I have wanted for more years than I can remember, and they are steadily becoming just about the only shoe I wear because of that.  The foot-shaped design and Zero Drop sole is, for me, the ideal footwear scenario and those are key points to every shoe Altra sells.  Recently Altra was given some recognition for their innovation by Competitor Magazine in winning the “Most Innovative Shoe of the Year” award which I thought was very deserving.  Still, we all know you’re not quite there until you are noticed by the big boys, and in this case that would be Runner’s World.  Well, wait no more because Altra has been officially noticed.  It was announced this week that Altra is being awarded “Best Debut” for the Instinct and Intuition (that I reviewed here) by Runner’s World in their March Shoe Guide Issue!  That’s pretty impressive for a company that started selling to the public last April.  Yes, that’s not even a full year ago.

The “Best Debut” award is given when “The shoe represents a promising new addition to its category, receiving high marks from the Shoe lab, wear-testers and editors.”  

Congratulations Altra.  You deserve every bit of the credit you are getting, and I can’t wait to see what you have in store for us.

The Latest Study to Claim Nothing

Recently I received and email from the good people at VIVOBAREFOOT that claimed “It’s Official: Barefoot is Best!”.  I want to say I like VIVOBAREFOOT and have some of their shoes.  With that said they have a propensity to really go big on the marketing with what I like to call “somewhat false” statements.  This new statement comes from a recent study released by Dr. Lieberman of Harvard who is also the guy that gave us the first “earth shattering” study about impact force differences in heel striking versus forefoot landing while running.  While both studies are very interesting they are hardly the end all to the debate about barefoot versus shoes.  What they really are is an indication that we are on the right track and in the end it probably won’t be about what’s on your feet at all but more about how your feet are functioning.

I have been writing my thoughts on this study and this advertising statement when I got an email from my friend The Maple Grove Barefoot Guy.  It was his latest post to his highly entertaining blog and it appears he too has some thoughts about both the study and the statement.  He pretty much said everything I wanted to say so instead of cluttering up the world with my thoughts I’m just going to share his.  The link below will take you to his post and I hope you enjoy it.  He’s a bit passionate about the topic, like myself, so you’ll have to excuse his use of some extra curricular verbiage (otherwise known as foul language) but he really did say what I was thinking so here it is.

http://www.maplegrovebarefootguy.com/2012/01/lies-damn-lies-and-barefoot-statistics.html?m=1

Rediscovering My Form: A Concussion Story

A few months ago I suffered a concussion.  I’ve found that this is not a common statement, and typically people are surprised when I say it.  To be completely honest it’s a phrase that has been quite common in my life as I have now suffered through seven of them.  Yes, I just said seven.  For the most part it’s because I’m reckless and don’t protect myself enough, but the other part is that once you have one it gets easier to have another.  Basically concussions are like Lays chips.  That, however, is not the point of this article.  The point is that this concussion has caused more damage to what I think is important than any other.  With other concussions I’ve suffered memory loss, headaches, blurred vision, light sensitivity (which is still there a bit), and even developed a stutter once that lasted nearly two months.  I had begun to wonder if it would ever go away, but still none of that compares to the devastation from this most recent bang to my skull.  This last concussion has cost me my running form.  Continue reading