Doing the Ultimate Hike in FiveFingers - Help Alejandra Out!

Doing the Ultimate Hike in FiveFingers - Help Alejandra Out!

The following is a guest post by Alejandra Aldana

On May 4, 2013, I will be participating in Ultimate Hike, a 28.3 mile hike benefiting CureSearch for Children's Cancer. My goal is to not only complete this very long hike in one day, but also help raise awareness and $2500 in funds for CureSearch.

CureSearch for Children's Cancer, a National Childhood Cancer Foundation, funds and supports targeted and innovative children's cancer research with measurable results, and is the authoritative source of information and resources for all those affected by children's cancer. CureSearch funds both local and national research, ensuring that a cure will be found as quickly as possible.

I have decided to take this challenge for a number of reasons. I want the opportunity to help give back to those affected by cancer as well as improve my life and fitness. Part of what I hope to accomplish other than raising funds for children in need is becoming part of a community and pushing my boundaries.

I plan on completing the 28.3 miles completely in my Vibram Five Fingers and while many people are advising me against it, I just don't see myself doing it without them. It is going to take a lot of building my feet up, but I am more than confident I will be able to do so. If you are able to donate to my fundraising that would be great. If not that will be fine, too. What I would love to get out of this, is the opportunity to share my journey with others. There is nothing more powerful and exhilarating than a sense of community for a great cause. If you are interested in joining me on my minimalist journey please let me know as soon as possible (we have already started our first training session). If you would like to help follow and share me and my cause you can do so at 10littlepiggies.tumblr.com.

You can also donate directly by following this link.

Thanks again for your support and encouragement!

Tripp's 5K in Vibram Five Finger Classics

Tripp's 5K in Vibram Five Finger Classics

Got an update from Tripp in Austin regarding his Five Finger Classics. He recently ran a 5K race in them - the 5K for Clay. His conclusion: VFF Classics are fun and raceworthy!

Here's Tripp:

Hey Justin,

You'll recall that when I first got my VFFs, I said I might "eventually" think about doing a 5K later this year. Well, call it enthusiasm about the shoes (or just stupidity), but less than a month after getting my Classics, I decided to race in them.

The good news is that the race itself was fun. Didn't get a PR or anything (more on that later) but my feet, ankles, achilles and calves all feel relatively good. Amazingly, I wasn't the only one in the race wearing VFFs. One of my fellow Crossfit athletes ran in his KSOs, and did pretty well too.

I was particularly pleased that running on asphalt wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. (I typically run on the golf course in our neighborhood). But I think it was just because the pavement was a welcome relief from the gravel path we ran on for the second mile.

Now, the VFF's are great on jogging paths with cinders or fine grain gravel. But I'd never tried to run at a good pace on sharp, golfball-sized gravel. Gotta be honest: my soles took a beating. I'm convinced that, because I was dancing around the rocks, it added about 2 mins to my second mile split. (That's my story, and I'm sticking to it...)

As you can imagine, there were a lot of furtive glances at the shoes and a few folks asked about them before the race. After I finished, though, people were much bolder about asking what they were, where I got them, and of course, how did they do on the gravel! But, as you can see in the photos, I really enjoyed the run.

All in all, I'm sure I'll be a bit sore tomorrow, and I will probably have to get more work on trails in the VFFs. But these shoes definitely proved themselves to be race-able.

I'll be in touch!

"Tripp In Austin"

Thanks, Tripp!

Hiking Bethabara Park in Vibram Five Finger KSOs

The above photos, which I assimilated into a collage (click the image for a larger version), were taken by Calvin on a recent hike through Bethabara Park in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Calvin wrote in about the experience:

Hey Justin, I went for a hike through Historic Bethabra yesterday, and I took some pictures during parts of the walk. ...

This was actaully my second hike in my KSOs, I find hiking in them to be extremely eye opening — the feelings of the cold dirt, the warm pavement, the crisp grass its all very natural, very right. I love hiking in them.

Yesterday I played paintball in them, it was an interesting experience, the field where we were playing has a small stream running through the middle but the way thw "valley" was worn it left the wall at about 75 or 85 degrees and that was easily scalable with the KSOs, the only thing I don't love is sharp rocks; I landed on a few in the beggining, after a while I got used to watching my periphery and adjusting my selected path accordingly.

Thanks for sharing the experience. "Fivefinger view" hiking photos seem to capture the experience of covering varied terrain in VFFs — you really do feel the ground and experience the hike in a new, more elaborate and sensational way through the lens of your feet.

Sidenote: I think the smidgeon of EVA material in the soon-to-be-availble Vibram KSO Trek fivefingers is intended to help reduce "stone bruising."

The primary way to minimize the potential for hurting your feet while barefoot or VFF-shod when trekking over hard, rocky, rooty, and varied surfaces (like gravel) is to relax, take more steps, feel light and nimble, and let your feet (and knees and hips) handle the shock-absorbing calculations rather than trying to brain it and think your way through the terrain*. That's my take, anyway!

Feet are powerful pieces of equipment. Our goal is not to impede them from doing their job!

* this requires having logged some hours minimally shod or barefoot on varied terrain. I say this because most of us have learned a great deal of bad habits with regard to walking, running, etc. thanks to the "foot casts" that are modern footwear. These bad habits have to be unlearned and/or we have to reteach our feet how to handle shock absorption.

Latest Vibram Five Fingers Reviews 8/16/09

Another week goes by and we get a bunch of new reviews, including a "big one" by crunchgear.com.

  • Review: Vibram Five Fingers Classic at CrunchGear [Classics]:

    However, running barefoot in Brooklyn is a bad idea. So I ordered the Five Fingers Classic for about $75 - I bought 44 for my size 11.5 foot and they fit very well - and waited. I ran. My knees were screaming. My ankles hurt. Then, a few minutes later, all the pain was gone. I was running normally and, thanks to the light weight and comfort I could run longer than I ever could. I could run without stopping, which was a big change for me. I could run for quite a while. The only limitations were the blisters I got during the first few runs. Even those went away.

  • Vibram Five Fingers Product Review at MadetoRun.com [KSO]:

    It’s thin, lightweight, offers little to no arch and heel support, and only sports a then rubber sole meant to prevent cuts and abrasion wounds and a breathable mesh top to keep out dirt and rocks. In this video I review the Vibram Five Finger running shoe and point out it’s strengths and areas of improvement. Enjoy!Video after the jump!

That's it for this week!

Kettlebells and Vibram FiveFinger Classics

Kettlebells and Vibram FiveFinger Classics
Kettlebells and Vibram FiveFinger Classics
Kettlebells and Vibram FiveFinger Classics

In the mailbag came the above photos from Bob Garon, who does a "Kettlebell Boot Camp" in Gilbert, Arizona. Bob wrote:

Great site and awesome VFF exposure! ...

I've had my Classic VFF's for almost 2 years and I also have a pair of KSO's as well. The attached mountain pic was me sitting at one of South Mountain summits in Phoenix, Arizona.

The other is when I was first Kettlebell certified by Steve Cotter at the International Kettlebell & Fitness Federation.

The last one is me teaching my Kettlebell Boot Camp in Gilbert, AZ. I never leave home without my VFF's baby! :)

I've watched a few of Steve Cotter's kettlebell training videos. The guy is a machine — a by-product of training with kettlebells, I'm sure.

The last photo was from one of Bob's boot camp classes (like here), which take place at local parks. Looks like a great way to get outside and get in shape!

Interview with Vibram USA President Tony Post [Video]

05.06.10 - The Vibram Five Fingers Bikila is out!

Raw Food World TV did an impromptu interview with Vibram USA President Tony Post on Monday, August 10. Check it out:

[video:youtube:Yxuo8tOB_ew]

In the interview (about eight minutes long) Tony Post hits on:

  • the success of Vibram FiveFingers (1:14)
  • the various current models available (1:40)
  • a video glance of various VFF offerings, including what appear to be some new color options as well as the new October models, the KSO Trek, Moc, Performa (2:20)
  • a shot of the Bikila, which is slated for release in February 2010 (2:45)
  • a close up of the KSO Trek as Tony is wearing his VFF KSO Treks in the interview* (3:20).
  • how shoes "cast the foot" and VFFs enable your feet to work more naturally (5:00)

Nice to see an interview with Chief VFFer Tony Post. His office looks jam-packed with fivefingers — it's like a VFF shoe store in there! No doubt it's also fun to have an office environment where "foot gloves" are the norm rather than the exception!

* Tony notes he runs in his VFFs year-round. Back in 1990, Tony worked at Rockport and ran the Boston Marathon in Rockport DresSports.