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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Saucony Grid Type A4 Racing Flat Review

Saucony Grid Type A4
The Saucony Grid Type A4.

A Minimalist Alternative

Back in April, I started running consistently after about, uh, a 30 year layoff. I learned about barefoot running here on Birthday Shoes and I decided to give it a try. I had tried running on and off through the years, but was an old school heel striker and always gave up due to back and knee pain. These days, when I run "barefoot" in Five Fingers Bikilas I don't have these problems and running is fun again.

Starting out, I focused on taking it slow and developing a proper forefoot strike. All went well for the first couple of months and my perfectly fitting Bikilas are just great. However, due to either pushing myself too hard lately or perhaps the inherent frailty of my middle aged body, I have developed a mild case of achilles tendonitis.

So, what follows is my search for a shoe that I could alternate with my Bikilas to relieve some of the stress on my achilles tendon...

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Relaxing in Vibram Five Fingers Bahamas Style

Relaxing in Vibram Five Fingers Bahamas Style

In the photo above, Paul and Janette enjoy some beach time in their Vibram Five Fingers while on vacation in the Bahamas. Paul sent us this message:

My wife and I, took a trip to the Bahamas this July and of course we brought our VFF's (SPRINT and KSOs). We have been wearing them almost everyday since we got them three months ago. They are great for running but we can't believe how good they are for water sports! We got so many compliments about the shoes. They all wanted to know how to get them and all I said was go to BIRTHDAYSHOES.COM.

Ah, the water sure looks nice. Maybe it is time to organize a Birthday Shoes cruise. Ha, it rhymes! Thanks for the kind words, Paul.

Merrell Barefoot 2011 Collection Sneak Peak!

Merrell Barefoot 2011 Collection Sneak Peak!

Thanks to our friends at The Shoe Mart, we've been given a sneak peak at the upcoming 2011 Merrell Barefoot line-up via some photos they've shared with us. The new Merrell Barefoot's feature a Vibram sole and will come in three varieties each for men and women (The Trail, True, and Tough Glove for men; the Power, Pace, and Pure Glove for women). We take a first look at this line-up after the jump!

» Read about the 2011 Merrell Barefoot line!

Finnish Girls Hike Alps in Toe Shoes

Finnish Girls Hike Alps in Toe Shoes

Sara and Eeva were ready to get the heck out of Finland after graduation, so it was off to the German Alps where they could hike through the snow in their Five Fingers. They sent us some pics and a summary of their trip:

We are two Finnish girls who after graduation wanted to travel somewhere and decided to go hiking, not in Finland, but in the Alps! During four days we hiked a total distance of 75 km from the village Lenggries to Garmisch-Partenkirchen.

Because of the rough terrain + an additional 12 kg on our backs we mostly had to wear hiking boots but when the trails were more road-like we didn't hesitate to slip into our Fivefingers and the change was a great relief to our feet!

The day the pictures were taken we did a 10 km downhill hike, in the middle of the otherwise 12 h long stage, Eeva wearing her Classics and me in my KSOs.

We also wore Fivefingers when we were at Germany's highest mountain, Zugspitze, and the glacier Zugspitzplatt.

75K in four days! Now that is a whole lot of hiking through what looks like tough but very beautiful terrain. Thanks so much for sending us your story from Europe and congratulations on graduating.

New Women's Vibram Five Fingers Trek Sport Available at CitySports!

New Women's Vibram Five Fingers Trek Sport Available at CitySports!

We've just learned that the new Five Fingers Trek Sport for women has been released and is available for purchase from City Sports! Not only that, but it is available in both colors: Champagne (pictured above) and Black (note the strap is likely more gray than black as in the picture).

The Trek Sport is a cross between a KSO and a KSO Trek. It combines the functionality of a fabric upper with the ruggedness of the Trek sole, which, up until now, has only been available on the KSO Trek. The upper is made of super comfortable and breathable Coconut Active Carbon material. This is an excellent choice for comfort, yet tough enough to take to the trails! Also, check out the "close up" review of the Five Fingers Trek Sport last week if you want to see what you get with his new model.

If you're looking to pick up the women's Vibram Trek Sport here are the links:

They sell for $99.99, which is over the free shipping threshold at City Sports!

Go to City Sports!

The 2011 Vibram Five Fingers Komodo Sport, Bikila LS (Laces!), and Jaya

The 2011 Vibram Five Fingers new toe shoes: Kids KSOs, Jaya, Jaya LR, Komodo Sport and Bikila LS!
The 2011 Vibram Five Fingers new toe shoes: Kids KSOs, Jaya, Jaya LR, Komodo Sport and Bikila LS!

Last week was the 2011 Outdoor Retailer conference in Salt Lake City, Utah. Word has it—from various sources who scoured the booths—that the whole place was buzzing with talk about minimalist footwear. We recently heard about Merrell Barefoot and the New Balance Minimus (plus the aptly named Skin ... I mean, Inov-8 EvoSkin) — apparently other big names may also be working on their entries into the minimalist footwear fray. Stay tuned.

What's particularly exciting for us Vibram Five Fingers fans is that Vibram was showing off their 2011 line; specifically, the new fitness-oriented Vibram Five Fingers Komodo Sport; the larger-foot-friendly Five Fingers Bikila LS (It's got laces!); and the women's only lightweight fitness toe shoes, the Five Fingers Jaya and Jaya LR (Jaya with some leather).

Though Vibram wasn't letting anyone take photos at their booth at OR, I'm excited to share with everyone a sneak peak we're getting here at Birthday Shoes of this 2011 line-up. I've gotten my feet into some of the new 2011 models — sales samples / pre-production versions (also the women's models!). By extension, this week, I'll be posting tons of photos of these new 2011 models as well as some initial thoughts on them. As each goes up, you will be able to click through below to an information page (For now, you can click the other images to see big stock photos).

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