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The Peaceful Runner Newsletter #12 - September 2, 2011 - Taking the plunge and going barefoot!
September 02, 2011

Welcome to the September edition of The Peaceful Runner Newsletter - a free monthly resource of tips, inspirational quotes, recipes and the latest news and trends in running.

In this issue:

1) Quote of the month
2) Article: Taking the plunge and going barefoot!
3) Running and Meditation
4) Coconut Water for Hydration
5) Recipe of the month: Cynthia's Mexican Dip

Quote of the Month:

"Don't Limit Your Challenges... Challenge Your Limits."
-- Anonymous

Taking the plunge and going barefoot!

I finally took the plunge and started running barefoot! I bought my first pair of Vibram Five Fingers -- The KomodoSport Shoe -- about a month and a half ago. I have been doing a lot of walking in them and in flat flip flops and doing barefoot squats -- all in preparation for the day I would do my first barefoot run.

It happened two weeks ago. I slipped my toes into the five "fingers" of my shoes and I was out the door. They felt so light and comfortable and it did feel like I was running barefoot. I have read a lot about runners getting injured trying to transition too quickly to barefoot running, so I plan to take my time and transition slowly.

On my first run, the route I chose was a short 2.5 kms loop in case I ran into problems. During the first kilometer of my run I began to worry. My feet felt like they were cramping. They were not used to running without support. Nevertheless, I continued to run, but I did take a short 30 second walk after the first kilometer just to give my feet a rest.

During the second kilometer, my feet felt much better. I was doing it. I was running barefoot! I took another short walk break after the second kilometer. I was feeling good so I continued running and ran the loop a second time to complete a 5 km barefoot run.

I was pleased when I was finished, but my calves were really hurting. Barefoot running changes how we foot strike and forces us to use muscles that we haven't used in a very long time. I was expecting to feel some soreness.

During the following week, I completed my second barefoot run. It was a 6 km run. This time my calves began hurting almost immediately so again I took more walk breaks in the beginning than I would take normally. The pain in my calves began to diminish and eventually went away completely during the run. During the last kilometer or so, I began to feel really comfortable and energetic in my Vibrams so I picked up the pace a little. I felt so free and light and I had very little soreness after my second run.

Next week I plan to do a 10 km run and I intend to gradually increase my barefoot mileage each week. The experts recommend a 10 percent increase each week. If I follow this guideline, it will take me about ten weeks to completely transition to barefoot running. I am excited about that and I am looking forward to that day.

Get more information on this article on barefoot running.

Running and Meditation

We have all heard the many benefits of meditation and we also know how difficult it is to practice. We know how difficult it is to let our minds quieten and experience stillness of the mind.

Running provides a unique opportunity to do meditation. It is easier to become aware of our body during running. We can be more easily distracted from our mind as we focus on our muscles and all the sensations we feel as we move.

Learn more about Running and Meditation.

Coconut Water for Hydration

Coconut water is nature's sports drink. It is the perfect drink for hydration and recovery -- containing more potassium than a banana. Not only is it great for replacing lost electrolytes, it has so many health benefits you will want to drink it even when you are not running.

Read more about: Coconut Water for Hydration

Recipe of the Month: Cynthia's Mexican Dip

This is a great dish to serve at a post-race event. I recently attended a post-race party and my friend Cynthia brought this dish. It was a big hit and with hungry runners, it disappeared very quickly.

Cynthia's Mexican Dip

  • 1/2 - 3/4 lb ground beef or ground turkey
  • Steak spice
  • 1 small tub of fat free sour cream
  • 1 bottle of mild taco sauce
  • 2 medium tomatoes (diced small)
  • Multi-colored peppers (diced small)
  • Shredded lettuce
  • Shredded cheese (try low-fat mozza)

  1. Fry meat with the steak spice until brown. Drain fat and let cool.
  2. To assemble the many layers for this recipe, you will need a large, deep serving dish. Pour and spread the sour cream in the bottom of the dish. Add the remaining ingredients in layers in the following order: taco sauce, fried meat, tomatoes, peppers, lettuce, cheese.
  3. Serve with low calorie crackers or taco chips.
  4. Share and enjoy!

Note: For a seafood variation of this dish, you can substitute small shrimp or crab for the meat and seafood sauce for the taco sauce.

If you have enjoyed this ezine, feel free to share it with friends. If a friend has forwarded this to you, you can subscribe here.

Keep peaceful and keep running injury free,


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