About Caity

Caity McCardell LA Marathon

“…Caity, the chief promoter of Run Barefoot Girl, who is a lovely person with an inspirational story. A great attitude and she is kind to old people, children and dogs.” -Chris Russell, RunRunLive.com podcast

I’m the host of the Run Barefoot Girl podcast, which I’ve been producing since May 2011, and The Caity McCardell Show, a show that started in October 2013.

I started my running passion in my early 40′s in a somewhat common way: I randomly saw Christopher McDougall on the Jon Stewart Show. Watching that interview, everything he said drew me closer to the screen… I had to read that book.

I started in Vibram FiveFingers and occasional barefooting but learned that I would sustain Top of The Foot injuries after long runs in FiveFingers. Barefoot Ken Bob and Barefoot Todd convinced me that it was time to go barefoot full-time, and I haven’t experienced Top of The Foot Pain since. (I continue to work on my form with the help of Tina Dubois’ coaching, because, as I’ve learned, running is a skill and needs to be learned over time.)

I ran my first marathon in March 2011. Anyone who was in Los Angeles on March 20, 2011 knows that Mother Nature decided all barefoot runners needed their feet cleaned. It was wet and windy and cold. And my knee and hip decided to take a major dump on me, too. So 6 hours later I hobbled through the finish and promptly got emotional. I’ll do it again, but I’m looking forward to a healed knee next time… and maybe less rain.

I had plantar fasciitis from October 2012 until December 2013, so while I continued producing the Run Barefoot Girl podcast, I was not running and my emphasis on the barefoot movement shifted. While I used to focus on trying to encourage more women to try barefoot running, I have a passion for ultra trail running and now have a variety of runners on the Run Barefoot Girl podcast. The tagline to the show changed from focusing on barefoot running to “Caity McCardell’s Running Podcast.”

I have two barefoot children and an occasionally-barefoot husband. We live in a cohousing community on California’s Central Coast… a wonderful place to run since we have the dunes, the beach, the mountains and everything in-between.

Here I am in 2011 with the Los Angeles Times and Barefoot Todd in Huntington Beach:


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  1. Theresa

    I notice the same thing about us barefoot running women! Nice to catch up with another one. :) Thanks for sharing….can’t wait to read more.

  2. Trish Reeves

    Your first marathon story sounds a lot like my half marathon story. Thank you for sharing a little about yourself. <3

  3. Sue Kenney

    Hey Caity,
    I’m in Canada and barefoot running in the snow! I love your site and was feeling somewhat alone as a woman barefoot walking/running. Great to read more and connect with other barefoot women. Cheers!

  4. Ryan Whitaker

    When I first started running barefoot, I was shy about possible comments. Rather than fear or avoid them, I decided to take them straight on. I decided that on each run, I would keep running until I had ‘collected’ at least 5 comments, positive or negative. This meant I HAD to search out other people and run by them, otherwise I would not get my quota of comments!

    This really changed my attitude about running barefoot. Now I have memories of some very good comments made by people. Here are some of my favorites:

    From a group of pre-school kids playing outside (said in sing-song fashion): Be sure to watch for nee-dles!

    From a foot-patrol policeman: You’re more of a man than I am!

    From some Goth-type high school boys: Dude! The ‘original style!’
    That must hurt!
    Me: Not as much as your piercings!
    “Oh yeah, good point!

    From a 5-year old girl to her father: “Daddy — that man isn’t wearing any pants!” (She must have thought I forgot to finish dressing that morning!)

    From a homeless woman, talking to a woman waiting for a stop light: He always runs that way! He likes it! Its good for him!

    From a man walking on a sidewalk: You’re either a Navy Seal or you’re just plain crazy!

    From a woman: Oh – I could never do that!
    Me: Me either!
    She: But you ARE!
    Me: Exactly – So can you!

    From some men begging at a street corner: Dude! You gotta stop that — you’re making us look good!

  5. girlrunningbarefoot

    I will be adding this site to the resources on my blog.

    I’ve been looking for fellow female barefoot runners too, although I was thinking more of in the same continent as I am but I’m glad to have stumbled upon your site. Lot’s of material here to help newbie barefoot runners like me.

    Kudos! <3

  6. Marci

    Woo-hoo! So happy to be associated with fellow female barefoot runners!

  7. Ryan

    Got a bit warm under that plastic poncho, did it?

  8. vegetarianbarefootrunner

    Hi Caity!
    I’m so glad I found your website! Looks like you have some great stuff on here, and thank you for empowering women to run bare! I can’t tell you how much it’s changed my life. I saw you live on the coast in Central Cali too… we currently live in Portland, OR but my husband and I are thinking about making a move to Ventura County area maybe next year, I would love to know your thoughts :) Thanks for doing what you do!

  9. Alex Henson

    I love your site, but I’m confused. I thought you were vegan? Why then are you making huaraches from leather? If bought from a craft store, there is no way that it was ethically sourced. Some poor cow had that town from his/her living body. Is it really worth your child’s comfort to gain it at the expense of a poor animal that was deprived of the chance to live a normal life.

    1. caity

      This is the kind of comment that (1) I don’t care to respond to with an explanation because I have no idea what the source of the conversation is and (2) make me feel like dropping the Vegan title.

      1. Alex Henson

        I reference this post of yours. http://runbarefootgirl.com/2011/11/homemade-huaraches/

  10. Eddie

    I’ve been running and playing barefoot since childhood. There was a time I was forced to live with my dad and stepmom who had the notion that you couldn’t leave the house without shoes on. I hated it! Stubbed toes was the rule while I grew up.

    And to this day, going to the beach barefoot i the way to go.

    Long Live Salamanca!

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