I have been a runner most of my life. I have run marathons, half marathons, 20k’s, 15k’s, 10k’s, 5k’s and practically every distance in between. In that time, I’ve had a lot of running shoes. I’ve become pretty loyal to a brand or two and haven’t varied that much in brands since high school.
Other the past few years, I’ve noticed that the barefoot running phenomena has come into vogue and I’ve been very intrigued, however, never took the plunge. I know that running form is more natural with barefoot running and can prevent some of the most common injuries that runners are plagued with. Would I love barefoot running as well as I loved my brand of running shoes?
Recently, I got the opportunity to try a new product that was on the television show, Shark Tank. They are called Xero Shoes and I knew immediately that I MUST HAVE THEM! They are sandals that are the closest thing to barefoot you can find and they come in the coolest colors. You can really make them your very own. They are customized specifically to fit your foot and NO ONE ELSE’S!
(Please excuse my extreme need for a pedicure. But, aren’t these absolutely ADORABLE?)
The first step to getting your pair of Xero Shoes, is to draw the outline of your feet on a blank piece of paper. You make a small dot between your big toe and second toe, scan the drawing and send it to the fabulous people of Xero shoes, with your choice of sole and laces. VOILA, they get to work making your very own sandals and within a week or so, you are on your way to barefoot running.
I chose the thicker sole, to protect my feet from the road. Then, I chose black for the sole and pretty pink for the laces. Within a few minutes, I laced them up, in my own special style and off I went. Easy peasy!
I wore them around town first, to get used to them. There is a sweet spot to lacing them. I didn’t want them too tight, nor too loose, sort of like Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Within an afternoon, I had the laces just right and went out for my first run—-BAREFOOT!
My first time out, I did have a little discomfort under my toe, where the string comes out, but after consulting the directions on the website, I realized that I only had to turn the knot under my toe and it was fine. Additionally, I had the strings on the top of my left foot a little too tight. With a little tweaking, everything was resolved quickly and easily.
I was a little nervous at first that they would not give me the sort of support I needed for my ankles and my feet, but I found out very quickly that it wasn’t an issue at all. I had made all the adjustments just right and they were super comfortable! With the Xero Shoes, I didn’t have to worry about rocks or debris on the road and ran my favorite neighborhood route. I also tried them out on the treadmill. They are absolutely fabulous!
One of the things I noticed right away that my calves were not tight after a run, like they normally are. My form felt more natural and not as forced as it sometimes feels when I go for a run. I ran up hill and downhill and there wasn’t near as much sliding around in my shoes as I normally experience. It’s springtime here in San Diego and these shoes are so much more comfortable than having my feet shoved into my smelly sneakers. I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE them! If you are looking for a way to break into barefoot running or just want a cute pair of sandals, it’s Xero Shoes, all the way!Laura Lohr has been married to her best friend for nearly ten years and they have a beautiful 7 year old daughter. Laura is a marathon runner and stay at home mom in the San Diego suburbs, with 2 dogs, 7 fish, and a cat. She loves long walks along the beach, reading as much as possible, writing, blogging, unsweetened iced tea and way too many trashy, reality t.v. shows.