This morning I was enjoying a lazy day in bed, watching quality programming where one teenager says to her pregnant friend “Well, there’s not really anything you can do to avoid getting pregnant” all while feeling overwhelming pride at the youth of our nation. As that show ends and I’m ready to begin the next gem when I realize “Crap, I have class today!” How one can forget that Mondays and Wednesdays are class days means GO TO CLASS ON WEDNESDAY is beyond me, but somehow I am just that good.
I quickly threw on one of my “go to” outfits and a cute pair of heels to make myself feel better about not being able to brush my hair on the way out the door. Class today was in the Community College theater where we were going to hear a speaker. I had no idea what he was going to talk about, something sciencey (I’m aware, not a word, let’s move on) I assumed. Then he started talking about how he had been in Mexico with this tribe that lives in the canyons and runs 100+ miles on a regular basis and has virtually no crime or disease.
And guess what? They don’t wear shoes! This guy’s theory is that running shoes make us land on our heels and that naturally you would land on the ball of your feet. I honestly couldn’t get past his shoes for a good amount of time. Kelly had recently seen someone on the train wearing them and sent me a picture and we tried to figure out WHY GOD, WHY?
Anyways, this guy goes on and on about how when you run barefoot or with these special shoes your body responds so much better and that since he’s started running barefoot all of his pre-existing running conditions have dissolved. Then he talked a bit about before the 70’s running was all about vitality and strength and after Nike and Adidas started pushing running shoes with this “fear mentality” that the wrong shoe would hurt you and running turned into a mindset of fear and pain.
He was much more entertaining than I had expected, and you could tell that a theater full of community college students were thinking and processing what he had said. I walked out of that theater in my 3 inch heels, not quite ready to go barefoot.
You can check out Christopher McDougall’s book Born to Run about his time with the remarkable Tarahumara Indians here.