|on my shoe rack (l to r): Vibram Five Fingers Bikila, Merrel Trail Glove, Vivo Barefoot (model unknown)|
I have worn the above three pairs as my day to day shoes (Luckily I work in an office where I can do this ;))
I have done a little running in the VFF but that totaled less than 50km and only about 5km at a time. My thinking has always been that you can get most of the benefits with very little risk of injury by wearing minimal shoes every day rather than expose yourself to the pounding of running and run the risk of injury.
The minimal shoes that I have worn the longest and in some way are my favorites are the Bikila from Vibram Five Finger below. Well I noticed something rather interesting over the months. Let’s look at the bottom of the shoes at the wear. First of all I am amazed how little wear there is after two years of wear most days to work. Have a look at the image on left closely.
You can see that there is uneven wear on the left and right feet. (just remember that the left shoe is actually on the right in the image)
Let’s look at this more closely:
For some reason I can not place these images next to each other. Please excuse the unnecessary scrolling.
My right foot (image left) has got a lot more wear in the ball of the foot. Not sure if you can see but there is hardly any wear on the big toe. I tend not to roll through very well on this foot and it shows on my running shoes too.
Now a look at the heels:
First of all I was surprised by how much wear there was on the heels but then I was standing a fair amount and not actually running as per natural barefoot runners.
Right heel show way more wear than the left.
Next up the Merrel Trail Glove:
I got these so that I would have a more “normal” looking pair of shoes. They worked pretty well. One issue I have with them is that the transition from midfoot to toe area somehow goes through a dead spot which is really annoying.
Enter the Vivo Barefoot:
As you can see the sole is flat as a Karoo landscape and the forefoot is super wide. I really love these and they are a close favorite, especially when worn with injinji socks.
Maybe I can get some people who know more about wear in shoes to comment. Right now I just wanted to document my experiment of one here.
I like all of the above shoes for what they do and the “close to the ground” feel I get. But then I like a bit more protection underfoot when pounding down a rocky trail.
Let’s have your comments and experiences below!