Posts Tagged ‘facebook’

Yes, this was my birthday cake for my 40th birthday.

Yes, this was my birthday cake for my 40th birthday.

In the past week I have been bombarded with either email links or Facebook tags regarding the recent settlement between Vibram USA and a Class Action Law Suit led by a woman who said the company deceived customers by claiming, without scientific evidence, that its FiveFingers shoe could strengthen foot muscles and decrease injuries.  Vibrams USA will be paying out $3.75 million to anyone who bought a pair of FiveFinger shoes after March 29th, 2009.

“Aren’t these your shoes?”

“What do you think?”

“Are you going to keep running in them?”

Theses questions, and many more, have been asked of me along with the tags and emails of that story.

I will admit, I bought into the increased foot muscle strength and the decreases injuries mantra hook, line and sinker, and I am very disappointed in both Vibrams USA (for not having the scientific data to back their claims up) and myself (for not doing a little more research).

That being said, let me make it clear, I will NOT be asking Vibram USA for my $94 that I can rightfully claim.


Because Vibrams Fivefinger Shoes were very much an integral part of getting me INTO running AND taking my running to the next level.  Without my KSOs, Bikilas, Treks and Seeyas, I don’t know if I would have achieved 8 marathons in less than two years.  Did I wear them for every marathon? No.  But they were an important part of my weekly training, and I believe they DID help keep my feet injury free.

Where’s my proof?  I have none except my own experience.  During a stretch a couple of years ago, after finding BQ success mixing my runs between VFFs and the original Saucony Kinvara, I purchased the 3rd iteration of the Kinvara.  During about a 6 month stretch, I ran almost exclusively in them, despite never truly liking them.  I’m not sure why I had moved away from the VFFs other than maybe VFFs were becoming popular as an alternative and I foolishly didn’t want to be “mainsteam alternative”.

Foolish, I know.

I eventually stopped using the Kinvaras because both of my feet were hit with plantar fasciitis…anybody who has experienced it will tell you just how painful it is.  When I mentioned my pain on Facebook, a friend said I needed to put my VFFs (Vibram Five Fingers) on, go out for a run and burn that PF out of my foot.  This went contrary to everything I had read on the Interwebs about PF.

Roll frozen water bottles under them.

Get orthodics!

Support, support, support!

Being the occasional contrarian (see above) that I am, I decided to heed my buddy’s advice, but instead of putting on my VFF’s, I went completely barefoot.  3 miles later, not only were the calluses on my heels now pedicured for free, but my PF was gone…yes, gone.  After having suffered for nearly 10 days heeding the common wisdom, barefoot running had cured me of my PF.

Is that scientific proof?  Absolutely not, and I want people to be perfectly clear that this was something that worked for me and for my feet.  I am not you and my feet are not yours.


Do I think Vibrams USA made a mistake in claiming what they did in the manner in which they claimed it?


Do I think Vibrams USA is completely at fault for what this woman and many other may or may not have suffered through due to their use of VFFs?

No.  Friggin’. Way.

Even I, a mildly experienced runner at the time of my first purchase of the VFFs had absolutely no clue as to what I was doing.  I went out and ran 3 miles in them the first day I got them and proceeded to be literally hobbled for the next week because I nearly snapped my Achilles’ Tendon.  There are so many people in this country who, looking for a quick fix, will buy a product without thinking whether it is good for them and then go straight to using them without following instructions.  That was me the first time I put them on…and I even had a friend who had adamantly told me to run no more than a 1/4 mile in them the first time.

Did I listen?  No.

Typical of my fellow citizens, I went all out and nearly injured myself in a serious manner.

After that first run, my VFFs went into the closet, presumably never to come out again.

But then came the book Born to Run and I thought, maybe I didn’t do things right the first time (which I hadn’t).

This time I did a little research on transitioning into them. I read blog posts of runners who enjoyed some success in them and figured out how to make the slow transition myself.

I would go on to train exclusively and run 3 marathons in VFFs running a 3:54 (Manchester City), a 3:32 (Boston) and a 3:30 (Providence) all in the course of about 6 months.


So what’s my point?  If you take nothing else from this post or from the Class Action Lawsuit that Vibams USA settled, let it be this – Barefoot and barefoot style running works…for some.  Barefoot and barefoot style running doesn’t work…for some.  There are a thousands of people who rediscovered running due to the FiveFinger Shoe because they were forced into better running form.

That health benefit, to the individual themselves and to our society as a whole, is priceless.

I will not be asking for my $94.

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If you follow me on Facebook, you may have seen a few of my latest posts that take jabs at those who excoriate those who don’t eat “real food”.  Whenever and wherever I see these “experts” and “gurus” inadvertently shaming others, the inevitable question of those on a tight budget comes up –

“How does someone on food stamps or someone who is struggling financially manage to eat only “real food”?

This is a fair and appropriate question – as many of you have pointed out, access to these “real foods” can be 2 or 3 bus rides away, and that’s after at 12 hour work day.  There is not only the immediate higher monetary cost because most of this “real food” is more expensive per volume, there is also the time cost, which unless you are a mother or father you may not know is simply priceless.

Whenever I see this question posed, the answer is almost always,

“well, it’s cheaper that getting sick.”

What kind of answer is that?

It isn’t.

It provides nothing other than letting the speaker feel they have conveyed some sort of positive message, while leaving those financially struggling, time strapped families with no real solution and a feeling of shame and embarrassment for not having the resources to provide their children “real food”.

This is what I posted on Facebook recently after seeing yet another “it’s cheaper than getting sick” response:


While I laud efforts that encourage people to move their bodies and eat a more nutrient rich diet, I can’t help getting a little irritated at, as one running Instagram friend put it, those who “look down on someone from the high pedestal of privilege.”  Let’s be clear, if you have easy access and the financial means to shop at specialty markets then you are privileged, there is simply no arguing that.  I was happy to hear from another friend that in her area there is an affordable indoor/outdoor farmer’s market located in the heart of her city that accepts EBT cards and food stamps and is open year round.  The key words?  Affordable and In the Heart of the City.  That is a tremendous start, but we still have a  long way to go before we reach food equality for all in this country.

So with that being said, I am seeking your help.  I would like to post YOUR favorite, relatively healthful recipes for four that you can make for around $10 (US) or even less.  I am hoping to collect around thirty recipes that I will price out, document my attempt to make and then post here on the blog.  Quick recipes will obviously help the time strapped families, but I will gladly take all kinds, especially those that can be stretched – the key is that they need to be relatively healthy.

Relatively healthy…what does that mean?  To be honest, I’m not exactly sure.  I suppose it means that it’s not made up entirely of processed foods and has elements that call for veggies or fruits (fresh, frozen or canned).  If you are in doubt, send it to me anyway.  I will happily credit all contributors (if wanted) providing links to blogs or websites as well.

If you have an inexpensive healthful recipe you love and are willing to share, please email it to me at runluaurun at gmail dot com or message me on Facebook.

The bottom line is that I would like to see more people NOT eating out of a box for every meal and my hope is that WE can help provide the means for more people to both think and eat “outside the box”.

Thank you in advance for your help,


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Yesterday I received this tweet from my girl Becca:

@awsmeBecca :

@luau 1st day of new month, how bout a friendly challenge to see who can get more @CharityMiles in Oct for @autismspeaks? 🙂

Charity Miles followed up with their own tweet:

@CharityMiles :

OH SNAP! @awsmeBecca just threw down on @luau: who can get the most @CharityMiles for @autismspeaks?! #EveryMileMatters

To which Becca responded with:

@awsmeBecca :

@CharityMiles @luau @autismspeaks it’s the throw down of 2012 #southVSnorth#autismspeakswins #girlsruleboysdrool#all4fun#teambecca#teamluau

How was I supposed to respond? Only one way:

@luau :

Oh it is on!!! It is on like Donkey Kong woman!!! @awsmeBecca @charitymiles @autismspeaks

Along the way we may have picked up a couple other competitors in @biggreenpen and @Bry_nFlynn.

Of course Becca had to take it to a whole new level with this message on Facebook:

Wanna make it a bit more fun? I bet at the end of the month I could find a cheap gorilla/monkey costume, the “loser” runs the difference while wearing the costume, Team Up jersey and blue wig. You’ll have Katy’s by then so you’ll be 1/3 ready 😛

Oh boy. This is gonna be a fun October! Last night Becca drew first blood with a late night 2.6 mile run.  I just got back from 6.8 miles Becca – right back at ya.  Maybe I’ll have to keep a daily and running tally on the sidebar of the blog.

So…are you #teambecca or are you #teamluau.

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