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    Friday, March 19, 2010

    Google Talk on "Born to Run" and Barefoot Running


    Had the pleasure of giving a Google Talk recently and would like to share the video with you.  When I look back on videos of me talking, the sentence below always comes to mind...Christopher's description of me in Born to Run:

    "Barefoot Ted talked the way Charlie Parker played the sax: he’d pick up on any cue and cut loose with a truly astonishing torrent of improvisation, seeming to breathe in through his nose while maintaining an endless flow of sound out of his mouth."

    In the end, I truly love telling the story of my barefoot journey, primarily because I think that it is a journey worth taking for any sophisticated, 21st century, highly evolved primate with human ancestors.  Done well, running makes us happy and fit...and if done thoughtfully and presently, running reconnects us both to one of our greatest fundamental physical capacities and to the earth.  We are ultimately rewarded with joy.

    I say don't obsess about distance and speed...rather seek out that sweet spot of joy in running and let that be your guide.  In the end, joy is a great teacher...of both your mind and body.

    BFT

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    Tuesday, December 29, 2009

    My Barefoot Running Partners: Edgar & Hiko

    Hiko, me and Edgar

    I've been busy. The last month has been an amazing adventure for me.

    In November, Leah and I adopted another Siberian Husky (and Samoyed mix?) from the Seattle Purebred Dog Rescue organization. His name is Hiko (a name that means ice in the Inuit language). He was a dog slated for euthanasia.

    The Boys: Edgar & Hiko

    He had some problems in Oregon...killing chickens and also is on medication for epilepsy. Not a big selling point for most adopters. We would be his third owner in his short 3 year lifetime. But, we knew we would all get along just fine, that he would quickly fit in with our pack and get what he needed most: lots of love and lots of exercise. He got it and he's now thriving!

    Urban Mushing in Volunteer Park

    I am fascinated by the co-evolution of humans and dogs. I have become an urban musher taking the dogs out on running adventures every afternoon. Leah runs them every morning and then another walk before bed. Lots of movement. Lots of play. Lots of sleeping. Lots of happy dogs and humans!

    Barefoot Running!

    Hiko has become a permanent member of our little tribe. I am amazed by his intelligence and charm...his depth of soul...and his running strength. 6 weeks ago he was a dog with an uncertain future. Now he is a strong and happy dog, full of life and radiating good cheer to all whom he encounters...with a little help from his friends. Amazing how the universe works.






    The new year and decade are upon us all. It has been an amazing year for me. I look forward to sharing my adventures with all of you and hearing your stories as they unfold in 2010. Be well...and see you next year.

    Barefoot Ted


    Order Vibram FiveFingers KSO Treks by clicking here. Thanks.




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    Wednesday, October 14, 2009

    Paradigm Shifting Trojan Horses - Vibram Five Fingers

    So, it has been nearly 4 years since I got my first pair of Vibram Fivefingers...several months before they were launched to the public in March 2006. I have been testing the next generation prototypes ever since then...and it has been amazing to watch as they have grown in popularity, and greatly satisfying and validating to be playing a role in their popularization.

    (photo to right, Boston Marathon 2006)

    I remember how excited I was to get my first pair...they were the first shoes that I felt came close to a true barefoot feel and would also allow me to run more comfortably on tough mountain trails. Furthermore, they were the first minimal shoe that I tested that didn't fall apart after 20 miles of hard trail running.

    My progress with the FiveFingers came fast and furious, but keep in mind, I had already been running for nearly 2 years barefoot, and had already completed several road marathons barefoot.

    Some of the firsts I was privileged to do wearing Vibram Fivefingers include the first marathon, first Boston marathon and Boston qualifying marathon, first ultra marathon and first 100 mile trail race in VFFs.

    I really felt that I was playing a small part in facilitating a stretching of our collective imaginative boundaries of what is possible and looked forward to seeing others stretch their own boundaries, carrying our fundamental human capacity, to run, further along while at the same time more closely mimicking the way our ancestors moved...on foot.

    (photo left Los Angeles Marathon 2006)

    I still think that barefoot is best, but barefoot is free..., and I always knew that the only way barefooting was going to become a true, mainstream hit was that there was going to have to be a product...something people could buy. And the VFF is that product..., or from my perspective, Trojan Horse.

    The Vibram Fivefinger is a foot glove. No support, no real cushioning. Yet, it is a thing I can buy. A solution that can be purchased. Consumer cultures feel comfortable with it. But what is its real message? It seems the real message of the VFF is that your foot is just fine AS IT IS! That regaining strength and range of motion in your foot is a worthy goal. That you are not broken by default.

    Furthermore, I wanted to see the concept of barefoot running enter into the dialogue of contemporary popular culture. The publishing of McDougall's book "Born to Run", from my point of view, was a pivotal, paradigm shifting moment in the re-awakening of the American consciousness about barefooting and our capacities as humans...before the addition of the padded shoe.

    So run free if you wish, or buy a pair of VFFs or other minimal shoe, but always remember, you already have the best pair of shoes you will ever own...and they are the only ones that are self-nourishing, self-healing and get stronger and smarter with use...the only ones you can grow...by eating.

    (photo left by Luis Escobar, 2006 Copper Canyon Ultra Marathon)

    Viva barefoot.

    Barefoot Ted

    PS.
    Order Vibram FiveFingers from here and smile :-)




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    Friday, September 18, 2009

    Living Barefoot Show Interview


    From the www.LivingBarefoot.info website: We Interview Barefoot Ted: An avid barefooter, Barefoot Ted tells us the story about how he became a barefooter, started his own line of huarache running sandals, and was featured in the best selling book, Born to Run by Christopher McDougall.

    Duration: 60 minutes


    Powered by Podbean.com

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    Monday, August 31, 2009

    Leadville Trail 100 - 2009

    Order Vibram FiveFingers KSO Treks by clicking here. Thanks.

    What an amazing experience...running 100 miles in 25 hours and 54 minutes up in the Colorado Rockies in the town of Leadville, Colorado, 10,000 feet above sea level (how many meters is that?)

    From my point of view, this year's race was blessed from the beginning...sporting my new Vibram FiveFinger KSO Treks (to be released this month)...and some sponsorship money to pay for the race and some travel...thank you Vibram...I was also blessed with a fantastic crew and pacers...a luxury I did not have last year...made all the difference being part of a team! Thanks!

    (Please click on image to right to read Michael Sandler's excellent report on the race.)
    Boulder Barefoot Running Club Report
    This was my third summer in Leadville: 2007 crewed Caballo Blanco and paced Chris Labbe from Mayqueen to Tabor. 2008 my first LT 100 in 28:33. Each year I stayed part of the time at the (in)famous Labbe Compound...Mas Loco Chris "Cabro" Labbe's family's Leadville vacation house. Lots of stories being made and shared there. Thank you!

    My crew was headed up by Dave "Rem" Remy of Mercer Island, WA. Dave was one of my Introduction to Barefoot Running clients who got the itch to see what an ultramarathon looks like. When he asked me if he could help, my first inclination was to say no, just seemed to logistics oriented and more trouble than it would be worth, but I thought about it for a moment and realized that it would be an excellent way to share my experience...expanding all our boundaries...for the better. So, I agreed to have him crew. Did he know what he was getting into?

    I left Seattle on the 14th and headed to Boulder. Michael Sandler of the Boulder Barefoot Running Club picked me up at the airport. He hosted me on Friday and on Saturday morning I Nick Lang and BFT on Hope Passhad a blast giving a on-the-fly barefoot running workshop to the members of the club. At this meeting, I was lucky enough to meet a bunch of great folks and share what I had learned about barefooting. The next day, Sunday, a group of us headed for Leadville and a day hike up the famous Hope Pass...barefoot! What an experience...and great training.

    (Click image to left to see my Facebook race report entry. Image on right is me with Nick Lang on Hope Pass)

    Lucky for me, several of the hikers up Hope decided to come back to Leadville the following week to pace and crew with Dave. Wow!

    I spent the week hanging out at the Labbe Compound and acclimatizing...eating Buffalo burgers (you heard me right...free range, grass fed, live-free-until-the-end critters...thank you!) and making sandals.

    Dave showed up on Thursday, took a tour of the course with Senor Labbe on Friday and was ready to play by 4am on Saturday morning, start of the race. Thanks to Cabro, I had a spreadsheet with all the cutoff times at all the aid stations that I would need to get to in order to run under 25 hours and get a big silver buckle :) Thanks Cabro! I really wasn't training for speed or anything...just trying to maintain good overall fitness...and running well within myself and with excellent form. Perfect practice makes perfect.

    Boulder Barefoot Running Club Members Scott, Dennis and Joey joined Dave on Saturday to divide up crew duties and get ready to start pacing me after the 50 mile point at Winfield. We agreed to have Dennis take me back over Hope Pass and Scott to take me to wherever it would be that Michael would catch up after giving a book presentation in Boulder. The race was on.

    Started out by chatting with Ladislav Lettovsky who happened to be THE last out of Winfield last year who made it to the finish in time...after me. It was a coincidence that he had just read "Born to Run" so we had a great conversation.

    Met my crew for the first time at Hagerman, and was running a bit too fast...after all I saw Cabro there...and he should have been way ahead, so I walked up Sugarloaf and took it fairly easy coming down. Was about 15 minutes ahead of schedule at Powerline, but the heat was starting.

    Got to Treeline in good form, got my cap and bandana and headed out through the new course section heading to Box Canyon instead of Half Moon due to a military helicopter crash. It was a hot section and I found myself filling up my bottles in streams as I found them.

    Got into Twin Lakes feeling good and ready for my big climb. Felt good to "baptize" myself in the river crossing. Headed up Hope Pass with just one bottle with the idea of filling it up in the streams as I went...a great plan until the bottom of the other side where I had to run the entire 3 mile dusty road, in the heat, with just a swiggle left in my bottle and no streams. Ouch! This was a mistake that I would pay a little upon my return climb...feeling a little dehydrated.

    Got into Winfield in good time, still on schedule and left with Dennis as my pacer/mule. Dennis tried to keep me amused climbing the backside of Hope, but it was taking a lot out of me and I could only answer with forced and not very energetic one-word grunts. But we finally got to the top and started running down. Dennis stuck it out and helped me a bunch. Great experience.

    Got into Twin Lakes inbound feeling ready to run 40 more miles. Picked up my pacer Scott who was sporting red VFF Sprints...and off we went. Just before we took off, I downed a Chili Chocolate Mocha from Proven Grounds in Leadville...it was delicious...but it didn't mix well with the other stuff I crammed down my throat, so Scott's first taste of ultra nastiness was me upchucking the coffee just after climbing out of Twin Peaks. Vomiting while walking-running is a ultramarathon skill. Scott was a bit taken aback, but we soon got in stride making our way to the finish.

    Scott ended up staying with me all the way to Powerline...25 plus miles on his first pacing adventure. What an amazing job. Excellent company the whole way. Thank you!

    At Powerline I picked up Michael who had spent the afternoon in Boulder giving a presentation on Adult Attention Deficit Disorder...only to follow it with a run/walk into the night of the last 25 miles of the Leadville 100. Tragedy struck us after we reached the top of Sugarloaf...ready to run down the steep, rocky backside...our lights were dimming...and we did not have backups with us.

    The aburdity of not having enough lights is big...I had been sent 20! lights from Princeton Tec...all excellent, bright lights, but we only had two...one dying, one dim...and it really hit me like a ton of bricks...I was not going to be able to run down...and I was most likely, therefore, not going to make the 25 hour, big-silver-buckle cutoff. Crap! Took me a bit of time to adjust to the new reality. It is amazing how hope can keep wind in sails...and hopeless...not so much.

    After getting to Mayqueen and pretty much resigned to my over 25 hour destiny, Michael and I had 3+ hours to hobble our way to the finish...and having Michael there started paying off. He is a very interesting person with a lot of great stories and we shared and walked and hobbled our way to the never ending finishing line....which seemed so far away...the last 12 miles.

    Finally we found ourselves climbing the last stretch of the rocky "Boulevard"...two miles that seems more like 6 at this stage of the race, but alas the asphalt road leading to the finish came into view...1 mile to go...uphill.

    As we ran the final stretch, Michael had the presence of mind to suggest I pick up the pace to finish under 26 hours. He stretched the truth a little when he said there were 7 minutes left and I had to pick it up. There actually were 9+ minutes. And I picked up the pace big time...running the last 1/4 mile and finishing in 25 hours and 54 minutes. Wow!

    Ended up in the medical tent getting checked and souped up on chicken noodle soup! Did I mention how AWESOME the volunteers in the race are...well they are!

    All said and done a big team effort...a success.

    Barefoot Ted

    PS. I want to thank ProBar for sending me some of their latest organic fruit bars that have both black and white chia seeds in them. They definitely helped. Also, thanks to Amanda McIntosh for sending me Hammer Gels...I love them too. When I ran out, it sucked sucking on the PowerBar gels...YUCK! Can't handle sweet like that. Also, thanks to Princeton Tec and Extreme Outfitters for providing me with lights...if I had only had some extra with me at the top of Sugarloaf. Next year!

    WE made it!
    My crew: Dennis, Joey, Rem, me, Scott, Michael and Jessie! Thank you!

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    Saturday, July 18, 2009

    FiveFingers KSO Trek – New for Fall ’09


    Order Vibram FiveFingers KSO Treks by clicking here. Thanks.



    BFT running with the new Treks in the Dalles

    From the upcoming Vibram trade catalog:

    The Men’s KSO Trek is a more rugged version of our popular KSO. The Kangaroo leather upper and sock liner are soft against the foot, yet strong and tear resistant, with outstanding breathability.

    A 4mm EVA midsole offers plating protection from stone bruising, and a lightly cleated 4mm Vibram performance rubber outsole delivers improved traction on trails and over more rugged terrain.

    KSO Trek is best for: Light Trekking, Trail Running, Fitness Walking, & Travel.

    Vibram Five Finger Treks...trail running shoes...bitchen!!!

    My experience:

    When I first put these shoes on, I knew that I had finally felt the most comfortable VFF yet. The kangaroo skin's soft side is INSIDE the shoe...so your foot is encased in smoothness. Under 6 ounces. Rugged. Breathable. Thank you Gawd!

    These are the shoes that I am going to use for this year's Leadville 100 mile trail race. As many of you know, I have done trail ultras in FiveFinger Classics, Sprints and KSOs, but this seems destined to be my favorite 100 mile trail shoe. Thank you Vibram!

    My favorite footwear for everyday running? My bare feet.

    My new favorite footwear for 100 mile trail running? VFF Treks

    BFT

    NOTE: Two most asked questions in the comments section...answered:

    From Tony Post, President of Vibram USA

    To answer the questions for your website:

    Suggested retail in the US is $125 for the KSO Trek. Premium Kangaroo hide is not cheap.

    The shoes can be machine washed (be careful here as the leather can bleed, so wash alone or with dark colors on a gentle cycle). The shoes should be air dried out of direct sun and away from a heat source (strong sun or drying near a heater source could cause the leather to shrink and pull away from the bottom, causing sole separation or de-lamination).


    PS.
    Order Vibram FiveFingers from here and smile :-)

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    Friday, July 03, 2009

    Minimalist Runner - Barefoot, Huaraches, FiveFingers...

    Howdy Folks

    You may have found your way to my blog after reading "Born to Run" by Christopher McDougall. If so, welcome.

    Many of you are probably looking for answers to the question how to run barefoot or with Vibram Fivefingers or with huarache sandals. You can learn from my experiences over the last 5 years recorded in this blog or participate in one of my coaching seminars.

    However, to be up-to-date and part of a larger and growing community of footwear minimalists and barefoot explorers I suggest you check out the Minimalist Runner Google Group I started a couple years ago. You will find many like minded folks who are sharing their insights from a growing body of research and personal experience.

    The mission of the Minimalist Runner Google Group is to share experiences running with minimalistic footwear, footwear that allows the foot to feel and to develop strength naturally, barefoot being the gold standard.

    This group seeks to dispel the
    myth that you need an overly supportive, cushioned, orthopedic shoe-boot in order to push the limits of human potential in running and exploring the world. As a matter of fact, many in the group like me suggest that not only do you not need them, you are better off without them.


    Please feel free to join and share YOUR experiences and YOUR adventures, big or small.

    BFT

    PS. The photo above ALMOST became the cover of "Born to Run" but I did not have a high enough resolution photo of it...a kind of self-portrait taken in the Verdugo Mountains near Burbank.


    PSS.  Learn more about making or buying your own huarache sandals at Luna Sandals www.lunasandals.com

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    Wednesday, October 22, 2008

    Leather Lined Vibram FiveFinger Sprints

    BUY VIBRAM FIVEFINGERS

    Leather-lined Sprints

    So, I finally tested out something I had been wanting to do for a long time. I lined a pair of Vibram FiveFinger Sprints with upholstery quality black leather and glued it in. Oh my Gawd! These feel nice...

    Vibram, let's hear it for a beautiful leather FiveFinger in the future!

    I prefer to wear my FFs without socks. Most of the time that is just fine. However, I always wondered what it would feel like to have a soft leather interior. Now I know, and I like it.

    Leather-lined would not be good for situations where you would be dealing with a lot of water. It is just a fun experiment to try...to see what is possible.



    Perhaps I will start offering kits to line your FF too. Basically, a couple strips of fine leather and a special shoe rubber cement, so you too can give it a try.

    BFT
    My Neighbor and His Leather FiveFingers
    Copyright BFT's Adventures

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    Wednesday, August 20, 2008

    2008 Leadville Trail 100 - 28:33

    Photo by Lorraine Gersitz, leaving Winfield

    I did it! I may have set a record for lateness leaving Winfield and time back to finish. I actually had one of the 13th best Looking forward to getting the data (Note: check out Chris Labbe's website on Leadville statistics for some very interesting data and charts, LT 100 Data Project).
    Actually, the data is now available here.

    Ran most of the course in Vibram FiveFingers, some with huaraches and quite a bit barefoot!

    BFT

    Highlights:

    1. Spending a week in Leadville acclimatizing and meeting old and new friends.

    2. Doing the entire race carrying all my own gear from start to finish except for food which I had in drop-bags at the various aid stations.

    3. Running over half of the trail from Half Moon to Twin Lakes barefoot and going up to Hope Pass aid station barefoot...just too muddy for shoes and finding a great hiking stick somewhere along the way.

    4. Dealing just fine with freezing cold wind, slippery mud, icy rain, hail so thick the trail was unseeable and snow. Crazy.

    5. Being treated like a king by the best volunteers ever at each and every aid station. Thank you!

    6. Feeling strongest while leaving Half Moon on the way back, running and running and running.

    7. The joy of putting on my VFF KSOs after running and hiking for so long barefoot.

    8. Staying consistent with my nutrition all the way through the race. Every aid station I would mix up my sports drink (maltodextrin, hemp protein, green magma, rehydration salt), chewed two Clif blocks and slurped some of my Hammer Gel with shelled hemp seeds. Never felt nausea, never felt low energy.

    9. Realization that huaraches DO NOT work well in mud and rain!

    10. Seeing the finish line after 28+ hours of adventure.

    ____________

    A huge thank you to Vibram Five Fingers for getting me through this race. Five Fingers are the ultimate footwear for those who want to learn to run with the trail. It is not about beating oneself up or enduring more pain, no, not at all. Rather, it is about learning to run gently and thoughtfully through a rugged environment. Learning how to feel the trail and respond to it. It is about subtle balance that the toes need to be part of. It is about freedom and elegance and simplicity. Give them a try.

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    Monday, July 14, 2008

    Seattle to Portland on a Skateboard: STP 2008

    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    The Seattle to Portland Bicycle Classic, or STP, is an annual one and two day supported bicycle ride from Seattle, Washington to Portland, Oregon in the United States. The STP "is considered one of the 10 biggest recreational bicycle rides in the country, drawing riders from across the nation and from other nations", and has been operating for more than 25 years and is organized by the Cascade Bicycle Club.

    It is approximately 200 miles (322 km) in length. Most riders complete the distance in two days; however, about 15% complete the ride in one day. Only two have completed it on skateboards (see below).

    James Peters of PavedWave.org (see excellent Seattle Times story here) and Barefoot Ted
    Photo by
    Dave Nottingham around mile 165

    James Peters and I did the entire STP course on skateboard. What a trip!!!

    Photo by Dave Nottingham

    Many folks took photos of us and we are looking forward to receiving photos to add to our blogs and record the history.

    TOPICS (to be expanded on?):

    IT'S THE JOURNEY DUDE: SPIRITUAL ENDURANCE

    ALIEN TECHNOLOGY: THE BICYCLE

    LONG DISTANCE PUMPING: NATURE'S ANALOGS

    NUTRITION | HYDRATION | ELECTROLYTES | FRUIT

    FOOT POWER

    THE ROLE OF HUMOR IN TRAVEL

    EXPANDING THE POSSIBLE: THE IMPORTANCE OF INSPIRATION

    MEDITATION FOCUS AND THE EVER CHANGING ROAD

    SYNERGY: THE MAGIC OF FRIENDS

    Photo by Craig Howard somewhere near Spanaway, WA

    Skateboard from Subsonic Skateboards in Portland, Oregon

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    Tuesday, June 17, 2008

    JUNE 14th, 24-HOUR ULTRASKATE IV - World Record Set

    See a list of skateboard world records here. See newly added video clip below...

    Photo by Taylor Barrett, more of his photos here.

    Beyond my expectations...I set a new world record for 24 hour distance skateboarding...242 miles at this years Ultraskate IV... Find more information at PavedWave.org...

    from PavedWave.org forum...

    Howdy Folks

    Slept a lot yesterday, but feel fine today.

    Went skateboarding over at Volunteer Park. Really enjoyed it...even feeling stronger.

    A HUGE HUGE thank you to James Peters and all the crew in Seattle. It is hard to believe that I had never even heard of Long Distance Pumping before April 1st this year! What a blessing to have met James on that day at Green Lake.

    Couple weeks later, James lets me borrow that magic board. My gawd what a beautiful, magical thing it is...Subsonic Pulse 40.

    After James let me borrow the board, I rode like a maniac for days and days...crashed...took a couple weeks to recover...went to LA for some healing sun and great training rides...and then back to Seattle.


    I am going to write down more about my experience during the ride, but just to let everyone know my secrets:

    1. Be sure you have an excellent LDP (long distance pumping) board...I did (see
    Subsonic Pulse 40).

    2. Train yourself to run an ultramarathon...i.e., learn how to pace youself for a full 24 hours

    3. Study about 24 hour nutrition and hydration and electrolyte needs. Nutrition is key. In my case, I relied on my own special sports nutrition drink mix which includes maltodextrin, soy or hemp protein powder, Green Magma powder and Rehydration Salts. I also ate GU's and Hammer Gels and drank some coffee. I also took two Advil during the race and 1 Succeed! S-Cap every 2 hours.

    4. Have strong healthy feet...and let them have the freedom to move around to get blood flowing everywhere...that's why I wore my Vibram FiveFinger shoes...allowed my foot to do what it does best.

    I went into the event just trying to see what it would be like to go 100 miles..., but the weather was perfect and the energy strong. I just could feel Eric Lowell's energy and his energy got me inspired to keep going too. I was determined to go the full 24 hours and Eric helped me have someone to follow.

    After some rest and some skating today, I have come to the conclusion that someday, someone in this sport is going to achieve 300 miles in 24 hours. Before yesterday, I would have said that 220 is impossible...


    So all you out there, live strong and push the envelope of the possible...

    Look forward to seeing you on the giant paved wave...

    BFT

    PS. A big thank you goes out to my cousin Robert Renfro and SCI, Technology Without Intrusion for sponsoring my travel to this event.

    Photo by Taylor Barrett, more of his photos here.





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    Friday, June 06, 2008

    FiveFingers as a Skateboard shoe

    BUY VIBRAM FIVEFINGERS

    The biggest problem with using Vibram (pronounced vee-brum) FiveFinger barefoot shoes as skateboard shoes is if you have to do a lot of foot braking (foot braking involves using the shoe sole to slow down the skateboard). Foot braking can quickly wearout any skateboard shoe and it is especially true with the thin soles found on the FiveFingers.

    The solution is simple.

    I have been using Sure Foot stick on sole patches. They fit perfectly on the ball of the FFs and help slow down wear and tear.

    I have been doing a lot of skateboarding (long distance pumping) with and without FiveFingers. If I am on a course the will require no foot braking, I go barefoot. It is the purest way to skate.

    BFT




    Long Distance Pumping in San Pedro, California
    see map below


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    Sunday, May 11, 2008

    Skateboarding and FiveFingers...duh!!!

    BUY VIBRAM FIVEFINGERS

    Thanks to James Peter's of PavedWave.org for inspiring me to reignite my skateboarding passion. Visit his website to read about his amazing feats of long distance skateboarding (known as long-distance-pumping or LDP), including world record 24 hour distance rides. He currently has given me a loaner to use. I am burning it up!!!

    The board is a Subsonic Pulse 40, essentially a handmade longboard. It is a magical thing...being able to tranfer pumping motion into forward momentum.

    Volunteer Park, Seattle...Pushing

    Yes, muscle memory is real. Yes, barefoot is best for balance sports. Yes, Vibram FiveFingers make a lot of sense for skateboarding.

    from the www.northwestlongboarding.com forum:

    Thanks to Shane and volunteers and sponsors for putting on this event (the Seattle Push Race, May 10th, 2008)

    I think I found out about it yesterday (or the day before) from James.

    Very inspired by James' pursuit of long distance and 24 hour riding. I enjoy trying to push the envelope. This race and ride was like the 3rd time I had been on a board for any time in over 25 years!!! But I loved it.

    I had to take the downhills VERY conservatively because the shoes I had on (Vibram FiveFingers) are paper thin and not great for foot braking. It also turns out I rode the board James let me borrow...backwards!!! Felt a little odd. Oh well. Still made 8th place. Not bad for an old fart like me.

    My quads were burning during that race. I definitely need to learn to push with either leg.

    Look forward to seeing any photos, especially showing my FiveFinger shoes. I want to send them to the company and suggest they do something about making a skate shoe. I really do think that a lot of flexibility in the foot is good for balance and helps make the foot strong...do what it does best. I really am not a fan of these huge, heavy shoe-boats that are the rage for most skaters these days...at least for pushing on flat surfaces and pumping.

    I have a lot to learn about skating these days. I have never seen so many DIFFERENT kinds of boards and wheels and trucks!!! Too much for my old-man head to take in all at once. Some sort of skateboard renaissance seems to be happening.

    The downhill and slalom era came and went pretty quickly in my day (mid to late 70s). We got a taste for pools and the world changed and I've got scars and brain damage to prove it...we didn't wear helmets much...

    So, thanks again. Hope to be out there riding for 24 hours next month and see if I can break 100 miles or more.

    Barefoot Ted

    PS. Make sure you ride with a HELMET (I have one now) and other protective gear. It is well worth it. The only downside to skateboarding for older riders is the unfriendly feel of pavement on the falling body!

    PSS. The idea of barefooting and skateboarding and FiveFingers is cropping up here and there. Check out this post on the Paved Wave Forum, click here.

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    Thursday, March 06, 2008

    Caballo Blanco Copper Canyon Ultra Marathon

    BUY VIBRAM FIVEFINGERS

    Passing through the middle of Urique

    Race report by Race Director Caballo Blanco see www.CaballoBlanco.com
    Photos from Josue Stephens and Chris Labbe
    Click here for all photos

    Primary result: Beauty

    The seventh running of the Copper Canyon Ultra Marathon, and the fourth annual running of the CCUM in the Urique canyon had about 100 starters and 37 finishers. There is nothing quite like it, anywhere. I am just the RD horse. What do I know?

    Leading a group to Los Alisos two days before the race

    There was almost $6,000 in prize money spread among the top 10 finishers, $1,000 of that for the top three women, and all finishers split 30,000 pounds of maiz accordingly. ALL participants will also be awarded maize.

    A big thanks to all who care enough to read about it, and especially to those who have participated over the last few years and have become Mas Loco!

    Caballo Blanco


    1--JOE GRANT--EL TORTUGA--OREGON--6:24*
    2--JOSH BRIMHALL--EL ANTILOPE--NEVADA--6:42
    3--Isidro Lechuga--Piedras Verdes, Urique--6:49
    4--Florencio Quimare--Ocorare, Batopilas--6:58
    5--Arnulfo Quimare--Chepatare, Batopilas--7:11

    6--Cervando Gutierez--Huisuchi, Batopilas--7:14
    7--Antonio Luna--Munerachi, Batopilas--7:19
    8--Silvino Cubezare--Huisuchi, Batopilas--7:32
    9--Dolores Estrada--Huicorachi, Urique--7:35
    10--Corpus Estrada--Huicorachi, Urique--7:36

    11--Arnulfocito Mendoza--Santa Rita, Batopilas--7:42
    12--Silverio Ramirez--Tatoguichi, Guachochi--7:51
    13--Ignacio Nacho Palma--Chawaloco, Batopilas--8:04
    14--JOSHUE STEPHENS--EL LOBEZNO--TEXAS--8:08
    15--AMANDA MACINTOSH--LA YEGUA NEGRA PELIGROSA--TEXAS/COLORADO--8:23
    First woman!

    Second River Crossing

    16--Leanardo Cleto--Piedras Verdes, Urique--8:38
    17--PETER MARSTON--EL PUMA--ARKANSAS--8:40
    18--FRANCO MARCHETTI--El AGUILA ALPES--ITALY--8:42
    19--Epitanio Quimare--Chinivo, Batopilas--8:52
    20--Santos Reyes--Basiguare, Guachochi--8:56
    21--Sebastiano Gutierez--San Jose, Batopilas--8:57
    22--Sergio Mancinas--Urique--9:01
    23--ABI STEPHENS--LA LINCE--OREGON--9:07---Second woman!
    24--Enrique Moreno--San Rafael, Urique--9:09
    25--THERESA DO--LA PALOMA--COLORADO--9:15---third woman!
    26--CHRISS LABBE--EL CABRO COLORADO--9:25
    27--TED MCDONALD--EL MONO--CALIFORNIA--9:29
    28--Luis Cleto--Piedras Verdes, Urique--9:32
    29--Jose Cruz--Piedras Verdes, Urique--9:32
    30--Arnulfo Gonzales--GUadalupe Coranado, Urique--10:00
    31--LEAH JUREK--LA ALMA HERMOSA--WASHINGTON--10:23--fourth woman!
    32--PAUL CHARTERIS--EL KIWI SALVAJE--NEW ZEALAND/CALIFORNIA--10:23
    33--Lorenzo Catsro--Guadalupe Coranado, Urique--10:31
    34--Margarita Lerna--Panalachi, Bocoyna--10:38---FIRST TARAHUMARA WOMAN, fifth woman overall!
    35--Jesus Perez--Munerachi, Batopilas--10:38
    36--Carlos Concheno--Urique--11.00
    37--GABI STEPHENS--LA LAGARTA--PENNSYLVANIA--11:30--sixth woman!
    38--GORDON MONTGOMERY--EL CHANGO--IRELAND/TEXAS--11:45

    Race Brochure in Spanish

    Sunday, March 2, 2008 was just another beautiful day in the deep canyon country of La Sierra Madre.

    On the previous Wednesday they came, 4 gringo runners and El Caballo Blanco walking over from the deep canyon town of Batopilas, encountering 14 Batopilas canyon Raramuri en route, and walking together over la Sierra then down into the 6,200 foot deep canyon town of Urique, where we encountered more Raramuri and the rest of the gringo runners, men and women.

    There were 136 running participants, of which about 100 started the
    47 mile ultra. 36 local townspeople and a few international runners
    participated by running one of the two 18 mile loops with us, either
    the first loop upriver, or the second downriver loop. Many excited
    children ran short distances with us when we were entering and
    leaving the deep canyon small town of Urique beginning and ending
    each loop. EVERYBODY participated!

    The ultra run finishes with an 11 mile out and back after the two
    longer loops.


    Out of the 100 or so ultra starters and 38 finishers, 15 were from
    the United States, France and Italy, 6 Mexican runners from
    Chihuahua, and one local Urique Mexican man, whom finished near to
    last, and was awarded $100 for being the only towns-person runner to
    do so.

    First place went to a humble and relatively unknown young Oregon Man named Joe Grant-
    -El Tortuga Lluvia--Rain Turtle. The 24 year old turtle does not run, nor looks
    much like his animal helper. In Fact, the Turtle broke Scott Jurek's-
    -El Venado, the Stag Deer, course record of 6:32, lowering the
    record to 6:24!

    Nevada speedster Josh Brimhall--El Antilope Desierto, Desert
    Antelope, was second, followed by 8 Raramuri--Tarahumara runners
    rounding out the top 10. ALL United States, and our new Italion friend, Franco--
    El Aguila del Alpes, Eagle of the Alps, finished.

    The first place woman was Amanda McIntosh--La Yegua Negra
    Peligrosa, Dangerous Black Mare, from Texas and Leadville, Colorado. Amanda
    generously gave her $500 winnings to the 3 Tarahumara women
    participants. Yes, Raramuri women came, And the bridge between
    running cultures has now been constructed and crossed by our lovely
    Mas Loca women runners, acting as the messengers--Andale!

    Josh and Joe also gave their combined $2,500 winnings back to the
    Raramuri people in the form of sharing some of their winnings with
    the 8 Raramuri rounding out the top 10, and putting the rest into
    the CCUM Seed Farm--sustainable agriculture project we have begun in
    cooperation with Native Seeds Search. Nobody had to do that; and
    they Did!....Korima.

    Theresa Do--La Paloma--Dove, won cash and corn by finishing 3rd woman.
    Abigail Stephens--La Lince--Lynx, finished second and
    won $300. Yes, we have prize money for the top 3 women. There was a
    grand total of about 9 women ultra runners....not bad odds -:

    As well as the cash prizes of about $5,000 for the top ten overall
    and another $1,000 for the top 3 women--who have a chance to
    double their winnings when taking a top 10 overall spot, a ton of corn is
    awarded to each of the top 5 finishers, and a half ton to the 6-10th
    place finishers. ALL finishers after that are awarded 500 pounds of
    corn.
    All gringos gave the corn back to the people however they wanted to do
    so, and we now have to deliver, I can only guess at this early point,
    about 30,000 pounds of corn....A horse`s work is never done -:

    Thanks for mucho help and support in many ways from Chris Labbe-
    -El Cabro Colorado--Mountain Goat, whom also printed up beautiful
    calenders from last year`s race event and gave them to the Urique towns-people.

    The CCUM is sponsored by this kind of generosity, called Korima in
    the Raramuri language--sharing, a gift, unconditional and beautiful,
    the reward for giving being whatever may come back around in the
    circle. And what does, along with whatever else, is always beauty.

    Andale...

    May the Raramuri and all of us contunue to run free.

    Caballo Blanco de La Sierra Madre - see www.CaballoBlanco.com

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