Meet Lems Boulder, the "Barefoot Shoe" Boot

Meet Lems Boulder, the "Barefoot Shoe" Boot

I got good news from Andrew Rademacher, founder of upstart minimalist/barefoot shoe manufacturer Lems Shoes* ("Light. Easy. Minimal.") — the first batch of the much-anticipated Lems Shoes Boulder Boot are now available for order! I say "first batch" because it's only the first few hundred pairs of production (more to come, of course, within a few weeks).

The release of the Boulder boot marks the first of a new line of Lems hitting the market in 2013! What's so exciting about the Boulder? Aside from it being a "barefoot shoe boot" that is super lightweight, zero drop, minimally and flexibly soled, and a boot, well, what else is there to say? If you've had a pair of Andrew's barefoot shoes, you're expectations are likely through the roof for these boots. We've reviewed the first offering from Lems that hit back in 2011 — the Primal (see reviews here and here) and had nothing but good things to say.

Andrew has a pair of Boulders coming my way, so I hope to share more about it soon, but if you're eager to snatch up a pair without further adieu and want to know the scoop, read on!

UPDATE: I got the boots! If you want to jump straight to my full review of the Lems Boulder boot, go here!


The official Boulder Boot specs from Lems!

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Latest Vibram Five Fingers Reviews 7/26/09

This weeks reviews, including a video review from forum member kakez!

I've seen a huge increase in the number of spam-like sites writing about fivefingers. Tthese are sites trying to game search engine results — you know them because they'll have 10 advertisements plastered around some vague copy that marginally relates to VFFs. Needless to say, I am not going to include their reviews in the weekly write-up. Wouldn't want to encourage bad behavior!

Running a 5-mile race in Vibram 5 Fingers

Running a 5-mile race in Vibram 5 Fingers
Running a 5-mile race in Vibram 5 Fingers
Running a 5-mile race in Vibram 5 Fingers

Above pictured is Ryan (#32), his brother (#31), and friend. The photos were taken during and after they all completed a recent 5 mile race in their Vibram 5 Finger KSOs in Lynchburg, Virginia.

Here's Ryan on racing in V5Fs:

On July 18, 2009 my brother, friend and I participated in Lynchburg, VA’s local 5 mile race. We all ran in Vibram KSO Five Fingers.

My brother and I (the two in the blue) have trained pretty much exclusively in the Vibrams using Crossfit.com as our workout program. My friend in the green trained in Nike Frees or the Vibram Five Fingers.

All 3 of us finished the race in around 40 minutes, which was off the pace, but we hope to improve as this was our first 5 miler. We have run a few 5Ks in the past using the Vibram Fivefingers. Post-race my brother and I were a little sore in the calves, while my friend was sore for a few days post-race in his calves.

Ryan and his brother have been doing Crossfit in their VFFs now for a year and a half. Prior to picking up his fivefingerse, Ryan had tried running a 10K in regular shoes as part of a CF workout when he ran into some knee problems:

Near the end of the 10K I couldn't bend my right knee because of my IT band and I had terrible shin splints. After that I started researching and found "barefoot running" which lead me to VFFs. Since getting the VFFs my shin splints and IT band pain are gone.

I have now done about 10 5Ks in them and the 1 5 miler. I know my word-of-mouth has lead to 2 additional purchases and every races generates a lot of interest. I even did some trail running with the local running shoe store -- they were supportive, but not fans of the VFFs.

Good to hear you're having such success in your VFFs for both the intense-style workouts of Crossfit as well as running races or trails! Thanks for telling us your story.

Robert Explores Grenada in Vibram Five Finger Sprints

Robert Explores Grenada in Vibram Five Finger Sprints
Robert Explores Grenada in Vibram Five Finger Sprints
Robert Explores Grenada in Vibram Five Finger Sprints

click any photo to see a larger version!

In the mailbag from the always-helpful Robert Allaway came his account of exploration (and relaxation!) around a resort in Grenada in his Vibram Five Finger Sprints. Here's Robert:

I went to Grenada WI last week - spent most of my time at La Source Resort. Brought both my black KSOs and blue Sprints, expecting to wear them everywhere. I actually ended up not wearing them very much, because the resort grounds were very clean and I ended up going barefoot 90% of the time! Very cool experience, and it's hard to readjust to wearing shoes to work every day... Anyway, I did wear my VFF's enough to snap a few pictures the couple times I ventured off of the resort grounds to explore the island (which I personally like better than "resort life").

I took a (long, windy) trip to Gran Etang Lake/Park - the lake is a crater of a volcano, and the surrounding area is rainforest (very rainy). From the lake I hiked to the visitors center along a very muddy but nice trail - I was surprised to find such a well maintained trail (after having driven the roads that day). Anyway, the visitors center was closed but I did see a Mona monkey (here it is just before it decided it didn't like the pineapple it was holding - it went for a piece of mango in the end) - the monkeys are very friendly! I also took a picture of my VFFs post hike, for reference.

Also, the camera I brought is waterproof, so I decided to try my Sprints out in the ocean. It was really good! The only problem was sand - the grit got inside of the shoe really easily while on the beach. I found the easiest way to remedy this is to put them on after getting in the water. Anyway, while they aren't as good as flippers for snorkeling, they're still pretty nice, and offer protection from stinging aquatic life (or urchins...)! Oh, and that last picture is one I took while snorkeling - its at an underwater sculpture park...creepy, but cool! Overall, it was a great trip and I'm glad I brought my VFFs so that I could try them out on new terrain - especially hiking as they were extremely comfortable.

Right up there with Michael's fivefinger Sprint testing in Hawaii, Robert's photos and rendition of Grenada make me want to go on vacation, but I may have to settle for the Discovery channel.

Thanks Robert!

Naree combines Vibram Five Finger Sprints with Scuba Fins

Naree combines Vibram Five Finger Sprints with Scuba Fins
Naree combines Vibram Five Finger Sprints with Scuba Fins
Naree combines Vibram Five Finger Sprints with Scuba Fins

A few days back Michael pondered snorkeling in his VFF Sprints on the forum. Lo and behold I got a few photos from Naree who has used his Five Finger Sprints to go scuba diving on trips to both the Bonaire islands and the Turks and Caicos Islands. Here's what Naree had to say:

I've been wearing Vibrams for a little over a year now, and recently discovered that you can even go scuba diving with them (sprints work best, because the strap provides a little cushion for the top of your foot when wearing finds). Here are some photos to prove it - the underwater one is from our trip to Turks & Caicos, the second one is the first day I tried them on with the fins (I was sitting on my NYC fire escape) and the third is from a trip to Bonaire.

Good to know that VFF Sprints work well with scuba fins! Thanks for sharing with the VFF fan community!

Brian Playing the Fife in Vibram Five Fingers

Brian Playing the Fife in Vibram Five Fingers

It's great to continue hearing (and seeing!) all the great things everyone is doing in their Five Fingers. Just in the mailbag came the above photo (Can you spot the guy in the grey Vibram Five Fingers Sprints?) and a note from Brian, who plays the fife! A fife is "a small, high-pitched, transverse flute that is similar to the piccolo, but louder and shriller due to its narrower bore" (Wiki). Think: marching. Like the guy on the right wearing the very uncomfortable boots:

Anyway, here's what Brian had to say about the photo:

Justin,

Last weekend I participated in the Deep River Ancient Muster, an annual fife and drum gathering, the largest of its kind anywhere. About 70 corps marched in the parade down the main street of Deep River, Connecticut, and performed before spectators and fellow musicians at Devitt's Field on the edge of town.

Costumes ranged from formal colonial regimentals and tricorn hats to come-as-you-are shorts and t-shirts . My group was comprised of alumni members of the distinguished Colonial Williamsburg Fife and Drum Corps from Williamsburg, Virginia, and we marched in t-shirts from last year's 50th anniversary of the corps.

I was undoubtedly the only one at Deep River wearing Vibram FiveFinger Sprints. (see picture)

Actually, barefooting seems alive and well in small town Connecticut. There were dozens of people among the crowd in their original birthday shoes, some marching, and at least one whole corps, the Bluff Point Quahog Diggers, who performed barefoot.

Brian

What a great report. It's good to hear about activities like this where people come together to enjoy music and performance — and do so barefoot!

As I write this, I'm listening to a song Brian wrote that I found on his website—it seems Brian sings and plays guitar, too.

Thanks for sharing, Brian!

Sarah Dances and Putt-Putts in her Classic Vibram Five Fingers

Sarah Dances and Putt-Putts in her Classic Vibram Five Fingers
Sarah Dances and Putt-Putts in her Classic Vibram Five Fingers

Got a couple pictures in the mailbag from Sarah. What's great about her "birthday shoe shots" is that they speak to just all the different types of things you can do in your "veebram"* five fingers, including putt-putt or dancing at a wedding reception. Here's what Sarah had to say:

Just thought I would share 2 photos with you. The first is from my sisters wedding that occurred on July 11th. Even though I wore silver shoes for the wedding and bought some dr. scholls silver slippers that were on sale, my vibram's were calling my name half way through the reception so I put them on. Let me tell you, they are awesome to dance in. I wanted to wear them for the wedding but couldn't since they weren't silver.

The second picture is of my brother and I at a putt putt course. Once he saw my shoes he wanted to try some on, luckily we have a store right in our town that carries them. So now we can both be cool together. ^_^ He delivers pizza and isn't able to wear them on the job since they are supposed to where tennis shoes, and he told me how sad he is when he has to wear "normal" shoes since he can't feel the ground with his toes.

Thanks for sharing, Sarah! Maybe Vibram will eventually come out with some bling-ed out silver or gold VFFs with a few rhinestones for extra sparkle. Or maybe some patent leather wing tip fivefingers for the guys. Does kangaroo leather come in shiny black?

* That's the phonetic spelling. Most of us think "V-eye-bram" like "vibrate" but this is an Italian company, so if you want to sound sophisticated, say it, "veeeeebram;" I flip-flop and often say it both ways. It's confusing!