Book Review: The Barefoot Running Book

The Barefoot Running Book: A Practical Guide to the Art and Science of Barefoot and Minimalist Shoe Running
by Jason Robillard
The Barefoot Running Book

There is quite a bit of information packed into this tiny little book. At just 61 pages, it’s an easy read, yet one that would be a helpful reference for anyone transitioning to barefoot running and a good resource for people who are just curious about the practice.

The book is set-up so you could work through it to become a barefoot runner over time, giving you guideposts that you should reach before transitioning into the next step. There is no mistake to be made with this book, making that transition isn’t something you can do overnight and that fact is really emphasized in this book.

This book really advocates that people who want to run barefoot or in minimal shoes practice completely barefoot first, even if they ultimately plan on running in a minimal shoe like the Vibram Five Fingers. The reasoning behind this is that only when completely bare will your feet be able to provide you with the necessary sensory feedback to perfect your form and experience the freedom/joy that comes from barefooting.

The book does not touch on the topic of running barefoot on a treadmill very much, however the author does mention that he runs barefoot on a treadmill in the winter months when it is too cold to run outside bare. (I have a feeling that living here in Las Vegas, I fall in the opposite end of the spectrum that he talks about, where the ground could burn your feet if you are completely bare!) But I was kind of hoping for a little more info that told me yay or nay to running barefoot on a treadmill, since that’s the way I’ve been practicing.

Even though the author talks about how much you just need to be aware of the ground around you, I still have a very hard time wrapping my brain around running completely barefoot, even around my neighborhood. I have been thinking it would be fun to get a pair of VFF’s and running the 1 mile loop around my neighborhood regularly, just to get away from the treadmill. (The treadmill and the joyous freedom from being barefoot don’t seem to correlate in my mind, but it’s what I’ve got!) Just in the few feet it takes to walk to my mailbox there is always broken glass on the ground because some of my neighbors are slobs and/or the recycle pick-up crew is sometimes messy and break stuff.

I liked this book though, it’s well-written and it covers some topics that I hadn’t even thought about but are valid points (being gracious about other’s inquiries because you’re representing a relatively small community). And it’s humorous, I really appreciate a sarcastic sense of humor and this book is chock-full of funny little side comments!

The author has a whole site set-up, BarefootRunningUniversity, that contains a lot of information about this practice as well as ultrarunning tips too!

The book is available on Amazon as both a paperback AND a Kindle format. I like when books are on Kindle format, because I can then carry them around with me on my iPhone for reference with my Team if needed!

* I’ll have a copy of this book to giveaway beginning tomorrow, so keep watch for that!

FCC Requirement: This book was sent to me for free by the author for the purpose of review and spreading the word about its existence! But these are my own thoughts.

4 Comments

  1. sounds interesting – i am just starting to dabble in my vibrams. i got them awhile ago but have been slack about running in them… to me it is so hard to ‘feel’ if i am landing too much on my heel or what — it doesn’t feel like i am, but i don’t know.

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