That's it, I've decided I will NOT be running in shoes ever again, if I can help it. By shoes, I mean those heavy, expensive things with huge wadges of foam and rubber and laces - not Vibrams or other minimalistic "foot protectors".

The reason is plain and simple: it hurts.

Now for a bit of background into this decision. Monday was a bank holiday here in the UK. It started off a bit dull and grey, but the sun soon prevailed and it turned into a glorious day, so the wife and I went out for a nice long walk in the sunshine around some nearby lakes. I've been wearing my Vibrams more and more recently, not just for running, but also for things like cycling into and walking around town, and I thought I'd wear them for our long stroll. Brilliant idea. As expected, it felt great and no complaints after over 3 hours of continuous walking on tar, gravel and grass.

As can be expected in the UK (we measure summer by hours, not months), the next morning was grey and very wet. Instead of a run, I thought I'd hit the rower for a bit of indoor fitness. This only lasted 13 minutes as the fire alarm went off. I was a bit naughty here: instead of dropping everything and getting out of the building to stand in the peeing rain whilst someone walked into the kitchen to confirm that the catering staff had forgotten to turn off the smoke alarms over the cooker, I snuck into the change rooms, grabbed by ID badge and took a run round the office block - in my trainers. Hey, if I'm going to be in the rain, I may as well take advantage of the time and do something useful 🙂 . Bad idea - the shoe part that is.

I didn't actively try and run any differently than usual. I just ran and quite enjoyed the short run too. No problems during the run, but as the day wore on, the pains started to appear. The inner lower part of my shins started to feel very tender - almost bruised. I haven't had this feeling in a very very long time and I can only put that down to not running in shoes.

Thankfully, things felt much better on Wednesday morning and Wednesday's run in Vibrams was good and the day ended without any niggles what-so-ever.

Now this isn't a scientific study, but a very simple personal test that quickly showed that running in shoes unintentionally changes my running style and to the detriment of my body.

So that's it. No more running in shoes for me. It's barefoot, Vibrams (or similar) or no run from now on.