Well, it’s been a few weeks now since I abandoned my running shoes. All is still well. In fact, I have not felt this good for years.
I am still getting used to it: my feet ache more and I feel like I am on the verge of getting shin splints. My ankles are stiff in the mornings and they click a lot when I rotate my feet. But it does not last very long once I’m moving about.
On the positive side, I am running faster and further than I was a few weeks ago.
When I am on the track, my ankles feel so much stronger and my stride is longer as a result. I am managing to do much more and I am not continually expecting a muscle to give way at any time like I was a few weeks ago.
Best of all, yesterday I ran to some local soccer pitches, which is about two kilometres, and then did some speed training.
I do what I call one minute turnabouts along the length of the pitch.
This means I set my countdown timer on my watch for one minute and then run the length of the pitch. When the alarm goes, I run back. The beauty of this is that you can run as fast as you want to, depending on how many reps you do.
The pitch I chose was on a slight slope, so I ran uphill in one direction and downhill on the way back.
Recently I have only been doing sets of four, usually two sets, and then I would stop before something gave way.
This time I did twelve. In one go. Then ran home.
I have not managed to do this much since I was in my twenties, so, you can probably understand that I am feeling pleased with myself.
There is something going on here that is not entirely due to the change of shoes I am sure. I don’t suppose it matters that much because it is having the effect of me running better and faster than I have for years and I do not feel like I am about to get an injury at any moment.
That last point is the most important.