It’s been good running wise and terribly busy otherwise. The long runs are slowly getting longer and the shorter ones, a bit easier. A barefoot 21k doesn’t seem that huge anymore. Much of running is mind over body anyway and having a regular program works its ineveitable magic. Last weekend was 14k and some patches were really horrible to even walk on. Inspite of it, the run was relaxed and I could have gone on for some more time. No post run fatigue, just a sensation of heat on the soles. Perhaps it was a combination of bad roads and not lifting the feet enough. Useful Fee(t)back!
I have a 3 week vacation coming up in a week and it’s a race against time to get stuff sorted before I go halfway around the world. Besides the excitement and happiness of meeting my sister and her family, I’m also looking forward eagerly to meet a friend I found via this blog!
Running opened the doors to many new experiences. Key among them have been making new acquaintances and friends, exploring other interests and discovering that there are deep reserves within. I feel healthier, happier and more alive than I have ever felt before. Yet, at the same time, it is just one part of my life which makes it possible to maintain the rest of it with relative ease. I see the difference in how I was while working towards running my first half and now. Back then, I’d be stressed if I missed a run or had a break of a few days. The whole experience was driven towards an end. Barefoot running freed me from the need to work towards an end. It has been more about getting strong and healthy feet by just letting them show the way. One of the things that I learned early on was the power of a slow transition. 4 decades of shoe-shod existence does not transition seamlessly to barefoot in a matter of a month or two. Not that I didn’t try, I did and it was a mess.
I had to start from scratch (and that meant no running for me) which worked on multiple levels. Besides allowing the feet to adapt and get conditioned in stages, it also taught me patience, control and discipline and a tiny bit of humility too in letting go of my running ability. Walking or running over all kinds of surfaces is a bit like life, you never quite know how it will turn out. And that has made all the difference.