The Inaugural Asheville Marathon at the Biltmore - in Luna Sandals (Venado/original)

The Inaugural Asheville Marathon at the Biltmore - in Luna Sandals (Venado/original)

You're out on a run. Your nose is getting stuffy, so you lean to the side for a quick farmer's blow. It's cold out, but you didn't realize how cold until you go to wipe your nose with the back of your glove to clear off any additional moisture -- only to find that it's already frozen around the edge of your nostril in mere seconds.

Welcome to the inaugural Asheville Marathon, held on the grounds of the beautiful Biltmore estate. "Well," I thought dramatically at around mile 20, "At least I'll die somewhere majestic."

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Five Fingers KSOs in the Klondike

Phillip on Chilkoot Trail
Phillip looks back into a valley and some rocky terrain on Chilkoot Trail.

Phillip, a Vibram Five Fingers fan, and his girlfriend recently hiked the Chilkoot Trail in Alaska and British Columbia. This trail was used by prospectors during the Klondike Gold Rush to reach the Yukon goldfields. It is a 33 mile trail that can takes 3 to 5 days to hike and Phillip did it all in his Vibram Five Fingers KSOs. After the jump, Phillip shares his experience and amazing photos from the hike:

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Gardening in Vibram Five Fingers KSOs

Jason Gardening in KSOs
Jason Gardening in his KSOs

Jason sent us the following message about his search for the perfect gardening shoe:

I've finally found the perfect gardening shoe! I am an avid gardener and have spent years trying to find a shoe that was able to meet the demands of gardening. I tried tennis shoes but they are just too hot and cumbersome. My flip flops are freeing but my toes get all dirty and they cut into my feet when squatting. I've experimented with Crocs, which had worked the best, but once they are wet they start squeaking and squawking and your foot starts slipping and sliding and are just no fun. Especially gardening where you are bound to get your feet wet more times than none. Then I discovered Vibram Five Fingers and it was a match made in heaven. I decided on the KSOs because I am gardening after all and keeping stuff out is important. They keep my feet clean and don't mind getting wet. I have even found that I'm not accidentally breaking plants when I'm walking in my garden beds because I can FEEL where I'm placing my feet. My Vibrams are invigorating and have actually enhanced my gardening experience. Vibram Five Fingers don't have to be just for running and hiking. They are a good fit for any activity.

Thanks,
Jason in Louisiana

Glad to see you have found a match with your black KSOs and thanks for the sending us your story.

New Balance Minimus Running Shoes Marketing Videos [breaking]

Screen captures of the New Balance Minimus Trail "barefoot running shoe" set to be released in 2011 by NB. The video these shots were pulled from features ultramarathoner Anton Krupicka.
Screen captures of the New Balance Minimus Trail "barefoot running shoe" set to be released in 2011 by NB. The video these shots were pulled from features ultramarathoner Anton Krupicka.

Two New Balance Minimus (available Spring 2011) marketing videos have appeared on youtube. The videos feature two versions of the upcoming, Vibram-soled "barefoot running shoes" from New Balance, the Minimus Trail and the Minimus Road.

The first video features ultramarathon runner Anton Krupicka talking about why he runs and why he likes a minimalist approach to running. As marketing videos go, it's a pleasure to watch — and we get some great sneak peaks at the upcoming Minimus Trail (We'd previously had to guess at what the New Balance Minimus Trail looked like!).

Here are the videos:

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KSOs on Killer Hill!

Millikan at Morgan's Little Miami Triathlon
Millikan running up the final 50 yards of Killer Hill and other race pics.

Millikan recently wore his Vibram Five Fingers KSOs in the what is billed as the oldest triathlon in the continental United States. With two man teams and canoes it is certainly one of the most unique triathlons. Sounds like fun! Here is a description of the race from Millikan:

Here are a few photo's of me wearing VFF KSOs as I prepared for the start of Morgan's Little Miami Triathlon located at Fort Ancient State Park, Oregonia, Ohio in June, 2010. It is a two-person team race comprised of a 6 mile canoe, 5.5 mile run, and an 18 mile bike race with over 1,000 teams. Morgan's is the largest triathlon of it's type and the oldest triathlon in the continental United States being modeled one year after the first Iron Man Triathlon in Kona, Hawaii in 1979.

My six-month old KSOs performed flawlessly in the canoe then run segments. I wish I could have used them for the bicycle segment but I was forced to switch to my road bike shoes. A key race feature and KSO test was running up the half-mile Killer Hill from the river trail to the bike transition area with the final 50 yards on wooden steps as seen in the photo. I believe very few have ran the complete hill.

Other than the lightening and rain storm at the race start, it was a great event. I especially enjoyed the quick transition time that my VFFs allowed from the canoe to the run. No worrying about changing into running shoes or wearing plastic baggies over my shoes in the canoe.

Note: Fort Ancient State Park is beautiful and features 18,000 feet of earthen walls built 2,000 years ago by Native Americas as well as the famous serpent mounds.

Six miles of canoeing then Killer Hill sounds pretty killer! Thanks for sending us your story, Millikan.

Skydiving and Running in Vibram Five Fingers Bikilas

Jeremy Skydiving
Jeremy Skydiving

Jeremy, sent us this cool pic of him skydiving in his Bikilas which he mostly uses for running. Here is what he had to say:

The jump was fun. I’ve done it a couple times in the past.

I’ve been running in Five Fingers for about a year now. Originally, I had a pair of KSO treks. Ran about 50 miles in them, then I left those out, and my golden retriever ate them. Then I got a pair of regular KSOs. I put 600 – 700 miles on those before they started falling apart. I got the Bikilas the first day they came out, but haven’t run too far in them; the summer heat here in Houston kills me.

There two things I like better about the Bikilas are: 1.) They don’t give me blisters at the seams on long runs like the KSOs sometimes did. 2.) They seem to have a little better traction. The KSOs were easier to get on, seemed to breathe better, dry out faster, and felt a little better overall.

Jeremy

Thanks, Jeremy! Looks like there will be a dip in the temps this week in Houston. It may be time to take to the road in those Bikilas!