Jun 19

BarefootGate – ha that’s a funny play on words

In case you haven’t noticed the recent flurry of posts and discussion about barefoot “versus”* minimalist running, this should get you caught up.

*I put “versus” in quotes because, in the end, most people conclude that they just want to run happy, there isn’t an argument, to each their own, life is too short, I don’t care what you put or don’t put on your feet, hey don’t criticize me, we can all be friends, shut the hell up, tell me about it.

You may have heard my conversation with Barefoot Jaime, which caused Vanessa Rodriguez’ face to turn purple and before her eyes popped out of her head and steam burned her cat from shooting out of her ears, she recorded this little ditty: Rebuttal To Run Barefoot Girl Interview With Barefoot Jaime

EDIT: I forgot about Vanessa’s follow up post “Why I’m Re-Thinking Barefoot Running.” She’s an ultra girl, through and through, and has learned through experience that running trails hurts like a mo fo. And slows her down. She loves running without shoes, but doesn’t want a label on her back that people hold her up to.

Then it was decided that if we’re told we can’t wear shoes, then soon enough we’ll all be wearing grandma underwear and standing in bread lines. The running community (well, a few of my running friends) ganged together and blasted out their best assault:

Trisha Reeves: Building a Better Toolbox. Takeaway line: “I am a runner first, and a barefoot/minimalist second.” And a fine writer, girlfriend.

Angie Bee wrote her response in “Barefoot Is A Tool.” Very very interesting… but a comment from a fan of hers leaves me less concerned about BarefootGate and more concerned that Angie is being stalked. Sheesh.

Then Krista Cavender stepped in with a one-two-punch: Defending Choices: The Barefoot Versus Shoe Debate She claims “I just walk away from something like this.” It’s more like she runs away. For, like, 100k. And then declares she wants more running. Sheesh!

Jason Robillard was smart enough to let his readers do the writing in his “Barefootedness: The Debate”

And then there are the sane people sitting back reading our work, having a nice drink and wisely referring us to their archives:

- Kate Kift’s “Reclaiming The Word ‘Running’
- Flint Bourdeau’s “Shod, Barefoot: A Runner’s Manifesto

EDIT: Also, Barefoot in Arizona posted this piece “How Barefoot Is Barefoot,” and Learning To Run Again posted “It’s Not About the Shoe.” Both interesting commentaries… and there are probably more.

Your homework has been assigned, people.

But what I have to say is that how could any of this be more important than the fact that InknBurn now has a denim running short? Priorities here, people!



  1. BF in AZ

    I posted my response to the hoopla on my blog:

    Short version: I don’t think the decision whether to put on shoes should be stressful. For me, it’s mostly a question of what sounds the most fun today (keeping in mind that blisters and frostbite are not fun). However, I do think that people will benefit from doing some barefoot running, even if they don’t plan to run barefoot in the future.

  2. klanger

    I have listened to your podcast interview with Barefoot Jaime (just after it was released), and during the previous week read some blog posts-comments about the same topic (most of them you have mentioned above) and I was wondering for few days – sorry for the rude expression – WTF is all this about? ;-)

    My luck of understanding is probably due to the fact that I live on a different continent, and my personal background is rather different also… but really why do you all care about some one commenting on a facebook (or other social media) about your personal choice?

    Just give/show him/her “a finger” or simile (a better choice I believe) and run shod or barefooted away from that person/situation :-D

    Have a great weekend!

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