C25K W5D3, Vibram’s Day 13

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Woo-hoo!  I survived the great 20-minute run!  Unfortunately, it wasn’t all peaches and cream.

My schedule was swapped around a little this week, so instead of running in the valley yesterday I ran along Lake Champlain in Burlington.  There’s a gorgeous, albeit overcrowded, rec path that follows the lake as it curls around  from the center of town.  Here’s a map in case you’re local and interested in checking it out.  If you’re unconvinced of its beauty, here is a sample of the view (taken in early February so there’s still ice on the lake; I promise there was no ice yesterday):

There were two things that made this run less phenomenal than I’d hoped for.  First off, I didn’t have Toby with me.  Despite tons of training, he’s never really grasped the concept of a leash; mostly due to us rarely being in leash-appropriate environments so he doesn’t get a ton of practice.  I would like to start getting him to run with me on a leash, but I didn’t think it would be a good idea to jump right into that along with my first long run.

The second bummer, which I honestly didn’t even think about, was that the entire path is hard pavement with a little bit of boardwalk thrown in for good measure.  This did not equal happy fun times for my feet.  I’ve predominantly run on grass and mud; even the treadmills were softer on my feet than this.  I did have two short experiences running on asphalt, but I found this to be much harder.  I didn’t notice it at first.  It wasn’t until the last five minutes that I started feeling burning in the balls of my feet as I hit the ground.  By the time I transitioned into the five-minute cool-down, my feet were screaming mad.

I took off my Vibram’s and immediately saw the blisters.  I had large oval blisters on the balls of both feet and a large round blister on my right big toe; I mentioned previously how I’ve found I push off a little from the right big toe and today that really bit me in the butt.  When I got home I soaked my feet in pot of warm (not hot!) water with a cup of dissolved epsom salt.  After soaking, I noticed that my left foot didn’t actually have a blister, it’s just a little raw on the ball.  After letting my feet dry, I covered up the blisters on my right foot with Band-Aid Blister bandages.  They feel much better today, though still a little ouchy.  I’m spending the entire day on my feet doing another chair massage event so I’m nervous and have my pot ready for another soak when I get home.

What does this mean?  Eh, Google has conflicting ideas.  The general consensus is that I’m still not a running pro (big surprise there) and I need to lift my feet more and be conscious about how I plant and lift my feet.  One blog described the idea as “running through paint”.  He said, “You don’t want to smear the paint.”  I’m going to work with that image.  The flip side is that since I have not been training with hard surfaces this also was just a shocker on my feet.  However, supposedly if I was running “correctly” to begin with I should not have wound up with blisters.  Who knew this running stuff was so complex?!

Hey, the good news?  I freakin’ ran 20 minutes straight and felt great about it!!  Next run is Monday!

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