I’ve been going barefoot since 2009 – walking, running, hiking, training, playing, and just otherwise being barefoot for the vast majority of my lifestyle. It’s been great and I love it, but that’s not what this post is about. You see, in that time, I’ve had to adapt my social skills to include a large selection of quick responses that must be ready at a moments notice. If you’re already a barefoot runner, then you know exactly what I mean. You just never know when someone is going to publicly announce their opinion about your feet, and it’s immensely satisfying to be able to respond to these poorly thought-out remarks with flair. And let me warn you, these foot-stalkers can come out of nowhere!
Case in point. I was running with my dog on one of our usual routes, a portion of which is frequented by walkers, runners, and cyclists. It was pretty cold that day, and it was raining with a thick, foggy haze, too. Then it happened. A single humanoid figure started to appear in the fog ahead – walking toward us. My dog, Ronin, perked up immediately, raising his imposing posture to appear as large as possible (not hard for him) and directing all of his attention on the mysterious, approaching figure with a “let me at ‘em” expression. I whispered “easy boy” and reminded him that he had already eaten breakfast that day.
It was at this moment that something just told me that I wasn’t going to get past this person without receiving at least a small dose of teasing – maybe it was the high-tech shoes he was wearing, or his awkward stride, but deep down, I knew what was about to happen. I was going to get the “treatment.”
I prepared myself as best I could with only the few moments I had. As we got closer, I could see that it was an older gentleman with a cheerful smile, which quickly turned to a scowl as he said to me, “my word! Your feet must be freezing,” to which I responded, “daaaa, guuhhh, duhduhduh – yeah.” And we kept running past him – hardly breaking stride. Needless to say, it wasn’t my most shining moment, but I was now determined to succeed next time this happened! So, I literally spent the rest of my run thinking about what I should have said (does that make me weird?). Next time, I wouldn’t be caught off guard!
Continue reading Barefoot Running Lingo + Things NOT to Say When Running Barefoot