When you start running barefoot the sole of your foot seems to get tender very quickly and for me it has meant a reduction in training miles. I thought this was one of the disadvantages of running barefoot and have taken to five fingers and other minimal shoes to help overcome this ‘weakness’. But if you have a read some of the online running message boards you will hear of people injuring themselves running in minimal shoes. Usually achilles are the culprit. I have a feeling it is simply a case of too much too soon. As we change our footwear but try to maintain our weekly training.
Then one day running barefoot along a grassy path it became clear. The soles of my feet are not the weak link. They are my canary in the coal mine. My feet will get tender before the rest of my body starts to succumb to injury. When they are tender it is time to have an easy day. It is that simple. To run injury free listen to your body and when you have no shoes on, your feet you can clearly hear what the ground is saying to you.
So take off your shoes and let your feet feel their way. Slowly build up those bare miles. Take care of yourself from the bottom of your feet up. Listen to your feet and never silence them with shoes. For they are your sole. And without them you will not travel far.