I always thought the phrase “Barefoot and Pregnant” was funny but somewhat derogatory:
so I decided to do a little play on words and update the phrase a little bit. Let me back track a little bit and explain…
When my husband and I went to see a chiropractor for the first time, but husband was told that his arches were collapsing. We were 23 at the time! So we got him some orthotics and he wore Birkenstocks which are great for arch support! Well the strange thing was, was that no matter how much we supported his arches, his feet always hurt after short stints of standing on them and he was continually needing more support. It got to the point that he could barely walk around the house barefoot, because it hurt so bad!
So then someone told me the basis of “barefoot technology” which is kind of like a misnomer, because it’s really LACK of technology! The idea behind going barefoot is that most people have “supported” their feet so much with orthotics, and special shoes that the muscles in their feet have become weak and start to fail! This is what was happening to my husband. He was told that if he did not continually wear some kind of foot support that his arches would collapse completely and he would be in a lot of pain most of the time. So we thought, hey it can’t hurt! We’re spending close to $200 every year on foot support, lets try this barefoot thing!
We had heard a lot about the Vibram Five Fingers shoes. A couple of our friends had tried them and really liked them. So we decided to try them… we had heard that in order to find a good fit you MUST try them on. Well considering we live in Wyoming (the LAST state to get anything new) we had to drive to the next state over to find a store that sold them! We went to a couple different places to try on a bunch of different styles before settling on the Bikila lace up style.
We were also told that (just like breaking in Birkenstocks) you need to take a little time and break in “barefoot shoes” slowly and that your feet will probably hurt. Yay! Now the reason for this is that the muscles in your feet (which have essentially been on crutches the whole time) now have to work, and now they get sore because you are working them. Well my poor husband suffered through the first couple days because he did not want collapsed arches, and if this meant fixing his sore feet, he was all for it!
After about 3 days he wore them all day, and they felt good! After a week his feet felt great! He could stand for much longer periods of time and actually said, “For the first time in a long time, I FEEL like running! I feel light and much more agile!”
One other point to mention is that the other reason for “going barefoot” is so that you feel and experience the world around you. When my husband was young he had surgery on his ear and because of that had really bad balance, he couldn’t feel himself falling backwards until it was too late. Well when he could feel the angle of the ground with his feet through the shoe, instead of in spite of the shoe, it helped his brain compensate with his balance even though his ear told him he was just fine.
We purchased our barefoot shoes in late winter. Well come spring time, I was lucky if I could wear my shoes twice before they smelled awful! Socks helped them last maybe one more day, but I was having to wash my shoes at least twice a week, and each time you have to let them air dry. Don’t get me wrong, I was still very happy with the results of wearing the shoes and the shoes themselves, I just come from a sweaty family.
That’s when we heard about Invisible Shoes. Same barefoot technology, just applied differently. The “shoe” is just a piece of rubber that you order to your foot size (and can cut to fit if you choose) that is held to you foot with nylon cord! So simple. We ordered the 4mm ones on special and when they came in the mail had a lot of fun with the different tying patterns. In a world where everything is “one size fits all” its kind of nice to make something that fits just you. So ever since those came in the mail, that’s all I wear. Super comfortable, even after a day long shopping trip walking on cement floors.
This is our feet from our family picture. You can see my husband and I are both wearing our invisible shoes. My right foot is behind the kids.
So now that I’ve explained the concept of “Barefoot” to you, now you can get a good laugh at my “Barefoot and Pregnant” picture. I was pregnant with Baby #5 here. Enjoy!
*as for brands of Barefoot shoes, I only mentioned the previous two because those are the only two we have tried. And take my word for it, before you buy any barefoot shoe… TRY IT ON FIRST unless you are ordering something that you will cut to fit. It will save you a lot of hassle.