For a couple of years now I ve been trying to switch to minimalist running shoes. Sometimes my training ended up in injuries, sometimes it just got uncomfortable and I quit.
Enough of that though. I have spent the last few months training hard to achieve a better running condition using conventional asics shoes. My legs are strengthened and I am positive this time I will succeed switching to minimal shoes.
These are my vibram fivefingers treksport. The only reason I chose this model was its slightly thicker sole designed for running in non paved roads.
I decided to start interval training with the result of swapping my 45 minute to 1 hour runs with 25 minute trainings consisting of a 10 minute warm up run, 4 minute HIIT and another ten minutes of cool down run. Since the routine is much shorter I expected it to be softer on my calves and so it was.
Today I was careful not to push myself too hard as it was my first day but I didn’t need to. As many of you will know by now minimalist shoes equal calf loading and eventually calf pain. During the first ten minutes I focused on proper running technique: landing softly, absorbing impact with my muscles, shorter strides etc… This worked out OK.
Surprisingly enough the HIIT (high intensity interval training) consisting of 8×20 second sprints with 10 second rests in between, which I thought would be the most demanding part for my feet was actually not hard at all. During sprints the foot naturally lands on the ball thus being the perfect training for using minimal shoes.
Lastly during the 10 minute cool down run I started feeling the familiar calf pain associated to these shoes. I was careful to stretch properly and though I still feel some soreness I consider this first day of training as successful. Let s hope tomorrow will be even better.