Tuesday, September 28, 2010

The Barefoot Running Book

Looking for some advice on Barefoot running, you might want to check out "The Barefoot Running Book" by Jason Robillard. 

Jason has a website called the Barefoot Running University.

Injinji, Toe Socks

When the temps drop, Injinji might be just the ticket.  Barefoot running can be a little cold during the cooler months, so it would be nice to have something to cover those feet.  Injinji makes Toe and Split Toe socks. 

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Born To Run

Here is an excellent book to get you pumped for barefoot running.  Born to Run presents a philosophy of exercise that is as old as the human race, but somehow has been forgotten. 

The essence of running is not grim determination, but sheer enjoyment.

Anatomy of Barefoot Running

Here is a great picture of why barefoot running can be better than using traditional running shoes.

Luna Sandals, Barefoot Ted's Adventure

Here are some more Huarache Running Sandals known as Luna Sandals produced by Barefoot Ted's Luna Sandal Company.  They are made in the Pacific Northwest of the U.S.

Leadville - Luna Sandals ($84.95)

Luna Sandal with Copper Brown Suede Top ($64.95)

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Hyper Vest

The Hyper Vest by Hyper Wear is a fantastic product.  The first run I did with the vest was an hour.  The vest was awesome.  It felt like a second skin.  I next wore the vest on an extremely hilly 5 mile run.  Again the vest worked perfectly.  I found given the same workout I lost about a pound more in weight.  The next day I ran without the vest and I felt like I was flying.  Nothing like instantly loosing 5lbs.

The Pros
  • Side Slide Cords allow for a lot of adjust-ability
  • Ability to increase weight of the vest from 5lbs to 20lbs for the small and medium vests and 5lbs to 40lbs for the large and extra large vests.
  • The vest acts like a second skin once zipped up and adjusted.
The Cons
  • The vest gets a little warm on hot days. Not much you can do about this.
  • It sometimes is hard to zip the vest back up if zipped down during hard workout sessions.
What I Would Change
  • Add Slide Cords to the shoulder area for more adjust-ability.
  • Add some type of hooks to the front, which would allow the vest to be unzipped yet still secure.
My Modifications
  • None
Usuful Tips
  • Get the base model first with 5lbs. You may find that is all you need in your workouts.
Overall Evaluation
  • 9 out of 10

Friday, September 10, 2010

Nathan Sports HPL #020

Nathan Sports' HPL #020 is an amazing hydration vest. I say vest because it is worn more like a vest rather than a pack. I had heard many great things about the Nathan HPL hydration vest, so I being new to Ultras, was ready to give it a go. The first run I did with the vest was a short, but hilly 10 miler. The vest felt great and seemed to move with me as I ran. When I needed some fluids I simply grabbed the bite valve and sucked some fluids in. One thing that stood out immediately for me, was how noisy the water was sloshing around. It became pretty annoying after a while, but at some point I tuned it out. The 2nd run I did using the Nathan vest (20 miles), I decided to swap out the Nathan badder for a Camelback one that I had laying around. This was an immediate improvement and drastically reduced the sloshing noise. Now on some of the other Nathan vests they have included pegs to hold the Nathan bladder more securely in the pack. I am not sure why this was omitted from the HLP, but it would be a welcome addition.

The Pros
  • Front pockets allow for easy access to GUs, Power bars or whatever nutrition you carry.
  • Shoulder straps really feel comfortable.
  • The shoulder straps are wide, but still lightweight and breathable.
  • Having bungee on the back of the vest allows for extra storage of cloths.
The Cons
  • The vest gets a little warm on the back.
  • The Nathan bladder makes a lot of noise when running. This could be reduced by including the bladder pegs.
  • The actual pack (not the vest) needs to be more durable. The pack materials seem cheap in comparison to a Camelback.
What I Would Change

  • Redesign the Badder to be more secure in the pack. This would reduce the sloshing. You could do this in two ways, either redesign the pack with some type of compression mechanism or redesign the bladder.
  • Raise the pack off the back to let air flow. Adding small ridges or some other design to allow airflow between the pack and a person's back would make using it cooler.
  • Add two more pockets to the front. Having additional pockets would allow for more food/trash.
My Modifications
  • Nixed the Nathan bladder and replaced it with Camelback bladder. Another option would be to go to Michael's and buy some bungee cord and some wooden pegs. The HPL bladder has holes where you can pass the pegs through to secure the bladder to the bag.

    Useful Tips
    • Keeping a front pocket empty is perfect for holding trash, such as bar rappers and used GUs/Gels.
      Overall Evaluation -
      • 9 out of 10

      Vibram - FiveFingers Bikila

      Vibram just came out with a running FiveFinger shoe called the Bikila.  The Bikila retails for $100.

      Sunday, September 5, 2010

      Invisible Shoe - Huraches Running Sandles

      I came across a great site called Invisible Shoe.  They sell Huaraches, the running sandals worn by the Taruhumara and give you the freedom of barefoot running while protecting your feet.