After reading a small sample of the barefoot running literature, I can't tell whether they barefoot proselytizers realize that the probable performance gains from learning the "barefoot running" technique are significantly more important than actually running barefoot. A little bit of background:
The concept? Simple: run barefoot.
The reasoning behind it? Deceptively simple: humans have been running barefoot for thousands of years, why change that with expensive, unnecessary, injury producing shoes?
The execution? Not so simple: we've trained ourselves to run in shoes since childhood, so running barefoot requires unlearning these tendencies. Switching can be a long and painful process. It's difficult to switch from running 6+ miles in shoes to running less than a mile barefoot: you're body feels like it can run farther, but you'll destroy yourself if you do.
Halfway through the switch (with the caveat that I've never ran fully barefoot), here's my…
Tubing is like swimming, except it requires no energy and you have a free hand for beer. You can also do it over rapids. Shallow water's not a problem either. You don't even have to get wet. You can even carry on conversations with people. Ok, it's really nothing like swimming.
But it is a great way to spend a Saturday. In what might have to become a more frequent summer occurrence, we went tubing at Harper's Ferry through Harper's Ferry Adventure Center (formerly known as "Butt's Tubes." I like "Butt's Tubes" better). As an aside, we went tubing with River Riders last year. I recommend River Riders of HFAC, since their trips start farther upstream.
Here's the scoop. For $36 (read the small print, it's not the advertised $32), you get transit to/from the river, a tube rental, and a sun burn you'll feel for the next week.
It's pretty much like a mellower, lazier, warmer, but much longer (in both distance and duration) ver…