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!

Why I Chose $99 Red Bikilas over a $1,000,000 Red Ferrari to Solve my Mid Life Crisis.

Running in my Bikilas
Running in my Bikilas
Me running in red/grey Vibram Five Fingers Bikilas. (All photos by Kent)

The Birth of Birthday Shoes

Over a year ago, when Justin mentioned to me that he was starting a blog about Vibram Five Fingers and minimalist footwear, I thought it was interesting, but after looking at a pair of VFFs, I didn't really think they would catch on (wrong!). We ended up tossing around ideas for a domain name and I came up with BirthdayShoes.com as a play on "Birthday Suit". He liked it! Then, Justin went off to build his blog and I wasn't involved in Birthday Shoes at that point.

I occasionally peeked in at the site and a year quickly flew by. Then, a few months ago we were talking how Birthday Shoes had really taken off and how Justin was overloaded with other work duties and we agreed that I would help out with the blog. He even sent me some Classics so I could feel like part of the club. Now, after seeing how passionate folks are about their Five Fingers and wearing mine for a few months, I can see that the phenomena of VFFs is here to stay.

What follows is how I went from skeptic to regular Five Fingers runner...

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Women’s Vibram Five Fingers KSO Review

Rachel in her KSOs
Rachel wearing her KSOs on a recent trip to Spain (Picture taken by Rachel's friend, Jodi Campbell)

Guest Post by Rachel

The women's aqua Vibram Five Fingers KSOs a hit? ...
... or a case of "fit" or miss?

I never thought I would own a pair of Vibram Five Fingers KSOs. I started out with the Sprints, planned to get a pair of KSO Treks eventually, and contemplated the Classic for dressier use. The KSOs struck me as redundant and I worried about getting my feet into them. I have high arches and tall, muscular feet, and I rarely can find closed-top shoes like clogs that fit. I also don’t like bright colors on my feet; indeed most of my wardrobe overall is earthtoned with a few spots of color.

Yet here I am, happily wearing a pair of bright aqua KSO Vibram Five Fingers - with the camouflage pattern on the soles no less.

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Fantastic Father-in-law Favors Five Fingers!

Mike and his father-in-law
Mike and his father-in-law on the left in their blue Bikilas after running the San Diego Rock N Roll Marathon, and on the right, Mike runs in a pair of red and white Bikilas while his father-in-law strides along in his KSOs.

Mike is a lucky guy to have a hip father-in-law who encouraged him to try running in Vibram Five Fingers. He shared his story with us:

I started running this spring due to my Father in Law's influence and it's been a great experience. He introduced me to running and what would be my Five Finger addiction. I was surprised to learn a little shop in our little city sold VFF's, so I went down and bought my first pair of Treks. Not long after, I was running in those AND a new pair of Sprints! My FIL had a pair of KSOs and we were off running. When I heard the Bikila's finally were released in Boston, thanks to Birthday Shoes' quick reporting, I asked a forum member if he would be willing to buy me a pair and ship them off, and with the kind people who frequent your website, he did! Not long after that when City Sports had a limited release I bought a blue pair also, and one pair for my FIL.

I ran my first half marathon with him at the San Diego Rock N Roll Marathon in our Bikila's and it went great! We spotted a few more pairs of Bikila's and a few other VFF's and we both actually had conversations with other runners inquiring about our VFF's during the run. It was AWESOME! We now have lined up 5 Halfs each month from September to January '11. Thanks for putting out such a great site full of good information and members, and thanks Marty (my FIL) for the inspiration!

Thanks for telling us about your extra cool father-in-law and good luck on knocking out those next 5 half marathons in your Five Fingers.

New Women's Vibram Five Fingers Sprint Colorway Available at CitySports!

Light Grey-Blue Sprint
Women's Light Grey-Blue Vibram Five Fingers Sprint

We've just learned that a new Light Grey-Blue (The color combination is called Colorway) Vibram Five Fingers Sprint for women has been released and is, surprise, available for purchase from CitySports!

The Sprint is one of the original Vibram models and has the signature open-top with a single strap. Also, like it's strapless cousin the Classic, the Sprint has no midsole (The KSO has a 2mm midsole), so it's the most minimalist Vibram that is suitable for outdoor wear. In this summer heat, open-topped Vibrams are the way to go!

Historically, the Sprint has been the preferred model for women and I'm glad to see this cool (sorta icy!) new color.

The sizes available (as of right now) are 36 - 42 and they sell for 80 bucks! Remember: you can get free shipping on these by using the coupon code BIRTHDAY. Go to City Sports!

Official Vibram Five Fingers Bikila Microsite: You Are the Technology dot com

Vibram has just (via an 8AM press release today, July 26, 2010) launched a Vibram Five Fingers Bikila micro-site at the domain YouAreTheTechnology.com! I didn't make that link active for a reason:

Before you go madly rushing off to YouAreTheTechnology.com, let me tell you just a wee bit more!



I'll be "brief:" it's an awesomely provocative website: bold, brazen, edgy, and bare. For you office dwellers: it's NSFW (Hence, the warning). I'll show what I mean via a screencap of what you'll find at YouAreTheTechnology.com after the jump!

Note: The screencap is also NSFW, but at least a little smaller, so office dwellers proceed with caution!

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Mizuno Wave Universe 3 Racing Flats Initial Review

Wave Universe 3
Mizuno Wave Universe 3 racing flat.

Guest Post by Lindsey

Racing Flats as a Minimalist Alternative

I'm no marathoner (far from it!), but lately I've been looking for the best alternative to Vibram Five Fingers. I've been running in VFFs for several months now and throw in a little barefoot running as well.

Since I have to wear a conventional looking shoe for my upcoming military training, I needed to find something that would suit my needs. I wanted a shoe that was light, flexible, and as minimalistic as possible. I had long considered the Mizuno Wave Universe 3 flat, but its price tag made me consider other options first. So instead, I decided that perhaps cross country (XC) flats would be a good substitute as I could find them cheaper than the Mizunos. I tried the Saucony Shay XC 2 first as it met all the basic requirements. Unfortunately, I had to send them back twice for the proper size (they run small), and once I did get the proper size, I disliked the molded sole around the arch, and the general narrow fit of the shoe. I can imagine the Saucony Shay XC 2 as a great trail shoe, one that excels in its purpose, but the aggressive tread and fit of the shoe made it inappropriate for my needs.

I also purchased a pair of Saucony Kinvara on a whim. Unfortunately, these are more like reduced running shoes than actual minimalist shoes. They do promote more of a midfoot strike as advertised, but I didn't really enjoy running in them. I think they might be a decent transition shoe (akin to the Nike Free, perhaps), but they are somewhat stiff and way more shoe than I want to run in. I believe that their cushioning might be beneficial for me as a marching shoe. I found if I took the insole out, the shoe felt much flatter, more neutral, and more along the lines of what it should have been in the first place. I will be playing around with these more to see if they will fill the role of a marching/drill shoe while I am in training. Unfortunately, they just don't suit my needs as a running shoe. Nevermind the fact that that they're fluorescent pink. Yikes!

Enter the Mizuno Wave Universe 3

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