Barefooting: It’s mostly fun and games

Lacerations, irregular tear-like wounds caused by some blunt trauma. The term laceration is commonly misused in reference to incisions. (Wikipedia)

My left foot after some blunt trauma... photo is misleading as the actually injury occurred on pavement, not gravel.

So as it turns out, bare-footing may have a learning curve… and it might be mostly fun and games, but it’s not all fun and games.  Apparently every 2 miles or so my left foot gets lazy and I get what you might call a little “toe-drag on the up-stroke.”  1st two times on the run it just kinda bruised me, the third time was a charm, however, and caused a blunt force laceration, leaving a pretty red trail all the way home.

But seriously, now that I have your attention, here is the run down on barefoot running, why its better for you, and a few resources.

Barefoot running provides a solution to physiological problem.  As pointed out in “Born to Run,” studies have shown a direct correlation between the price of your running shoe (read “amount of padding therein”) and your chances of getting a running injury.  The idea is that the more padding you have, the more likely you are to run with a high impact gait, and the more trauma is introduced into your feet, ankles, knees, back and neck.  When you take off your shoes, you are forced to adjust your gait in response to an instant feedback mechanism known as “pain.”  You will eventually find your self adjusting the bad habits in your running gait in order to achieve pain free, impact free running.  Just take it slow, as you can see above there is a learning curve.

Barefoot running provides a sustainable hobby.  While most hobbies these days require 500$ worth of start-up gear and at least 100$ maintenance or area use fees per month, barefoot running can be done on the roads for which you already pay your taxes, and the only gear you need is a pair of running shorts and shirt (if thats your thing).  Looking for a minimalist hobby that puts the least amount of trash to the Great Pacific Garbage Patch? This is your gig!

Barefoot running provides a psychological analogy and sandbox.  The major capacity you will learn to use while barefoot running is the ability to 1) listen to the messages your body is sending you and 2) to adjust your behavior in response to these messages.  This lesson can be carried into the emotional/social/psychological realm as well.  Once you experiment with tuning your behavior to bring about physiological peace, balance and homeostasis you can experiment with applying this capacity towards bringing about psychological peace, balance and homeostasis.

So there you have it, barefoot running and some applications in the physiological, social and psychological realms.  Now obviously there are some down sides, such as incurring lacerations, but there again, nothing worth having is free.


Paleo Delight

Leg o' Lamb

Leg o' Lamb

Ingredients: Leg of Lamb, Broccoli, Red Onion, Red Bell Pepper, White mushrooms, Mint, Basil, Ground Black Pepper, Lemon

Lamb: Dice mint  and basil, grind rough black pepper, add lemon juice/pulp and mix.  Rub on lamb, roast covered in oven, remove and switch to broil for last 15 minutes to crisp lamb.

Brocolli: Steam

Veggies: Slice all and stir fry, no need to add flavoring.

Letter to a friend

The following is an email I wrote to a friend who wanted to know what I’ve been doing to get in shape.  I read over it and thought that it may be a good starting point for a FAQs page on my diet… but I thought I would post it here in case others were wondering the same thing. (Name omitted for privacy sake)


Hey ***** good to see you on the road.  So here is the basics of this diet:

No grains (bread, pasta, rice, tortilla, cous-cous, corn), no legumes (beans, peas, soy) and no potatoes.  Also no sugar so no candies, no sodas, etc.  Beer and wine can be drank on the diet but it is going to have to be in moderations (no more than a few drinks a week, at least at first).  What you do eat alot of is vegetables and meat.  The vegetables ought to be colorful (bell peppers, avocado, lettuce, spinach, tomatoes, mushrooms, these are good as salads or stir fry). Basically any and all kinds of meat that you want is ok and encouraged.  Dairy products are also allowed in moderation, but not milk.  So butter/cream and cheese is ok but shouldn’t be a staple. Nuts are also good (macadamia, walnut, pecan, etc) but no peanuts! Peanuts aren’t actually nuts they are actually legumes (beans).  Also fruit is on the diet, but not alot.  Small berry type fruits are better because they are lower in sugar than big sweet fruits like melons, apples, etc.  Basically fruit is ok but should be thought of more as “desert” than the meal itself.

The science behind the diet is that you are turning your body from a sugar burning machine into a fat burning machine. Grains/beans/potatoes/sugar/sugary drinks basically make your body produce alot of insulin.  Insulin’s job is to take sugar out of your blood and put it somewhere else (either your muscle cells, brain, or fat cells).  If you are not running 100 miles a week, the typical american diet of pastas/breads and sugar is going to have the insulin packing your fat cells full of the extra energy from sugar, making you fat even though you are dedicated to running and going to the gym. So by taking these out of your diet you are turning off the insulin mechanism.  When your body becomes accustomed to receiving very low levels of dietary sugar (from grains/beans/potatoes/sugar) it will stop producing so much insulin and it will start using up dietary fat as well as stored fat.  There will be an adjustment period of 1-2 weeks where your body is still expecting lots of sugar so your will be hungry after you eat a low sugar meal, but thats ok, just eat more meat/fats/vegetables.  Eventually when your body stops making so much insulin you will be fuller faster and longer on the low sugar diet.

Thats it!  No more starches and all the veggies meat and fat you could want.

I’ve arrived at this diet from a few different sources that i’ve listed below if you want to check them out for yourself, but i’ve tried to cover the basics.  Oh yeah, and keep in mind, this diet is made to be a lifetime diet, one that you can enjoy and be on forever without feeling deprived.  The idea is that this is the optimum diet for human being to be on and there is no need to eat anything else… of course the occasional treats from outside the diet are allowed but once you are mainly eating this diet the occasional divergences won’t hurt you.


I’d recommend that if you want to try it out, try it out for 30 days before expecting results.  After an initial period of adjustment you should start enjoying the diet.  Let me know if you have any questions!