Welcome to the start of what will hopefully turn out to be a great success. This is my little challenge to see if I can go from running in shoes to running the way nature intended: BAREFOOT.

Now this isn't just a whim, it's something I've been considering quite seriously for quite some time and I'm set to begin my journey on...

Monday 13 October 2008

Just a little short of 10 years ago, I moved over to the UK from South Africa to see how life in Europe is. It was essentially a new start for me. At the time, I was running a lot in South Africa, and actually ran my last 10k road race the week before I flew out. That was the last time I officially ran a race.

On arriving in the UK, the whole prospect of finding a place to live, a job and generally settling in took priority, and as a result, running took a backseat. Actually, backseat is the wrong word: it was left out of my life entirely. I did try keeping up the running, but no matter how hard I tried, I just couldn't get myself to run with any sort of regularity with the weather being the biggest deterrent. Instead I opted for joining the gym, only after a few too many beers and far too much food 😉 .

Joining gym had the right effect and soon I was losing fat and gaining muscle, and lots of it. As part of my gym program I tried to get back into running again, and well, let me just say running on a treadmill has got to be the most boring form of running in the world. On sunny days I ventured out into the woods or on the road, but my aspirations were short lived: I went too far, too fast and too soon and ended up injured. Time and time again I tried getting back into running, and each time I spent more on running shoes and still ended up injured. My heart could take the challenge, just my knees and bones couldn't.

I then turned to correcting my running style, after all I'm a lot heavier now and "fixing" the shoes wasn't having any effect and that's when I discovered the POSE method and so far, I've been pretty injury free since I started using this method of running.

I've also now got myself a pair of Vibram Five Fingers and absolutely love the natural feel of running in them. This is pretty much where my desire to move to running barefoot has come from, and the thought that thousands of African runners can't be wrong.

So, I've set myself the goal of moving from running in shoes to running barefoot and running my first 10K race in the UK barefoot. My current goal is for the middle of summer 2009 and I hope to document my progress and training as I go along.

At the moment things are hectic at work and home as I prepare to go away on my honeymoon, but things are all set to get going when I return. My first step to running completely barefoot will begin on Monday 13 October 2008.

Until then, I'm not running one step. I want to be sure all my joints and bones are ready for the start of my new running career.