Well, today I had to wear shoes most of the day, for the first time. I had worn the skin down too far on the balls and toes of my feet on my 6-mile hike earlier in the week, that further barefoot walking would have damaged my feet.
It was actually quite nice to have the opportunity to work on my arches with the shoes on, as I could put more pressure on the balls of the feet. However, of course my last two toes were quite unhappy, as were the backs of my heels from the shoes rubbing on them.
I found out yesterday I had inspired a new acquaintance (a fellow yogi) to walk barefoot across San Francisco (Dolores to Potrero). He loved it, and noticed he felt more connected (yes, you are!) and noticed he spent more time watching the ground for glass, etc. He also noticed he got lots of disapproving looks from strangers, which I predicted and sympathized with.
There is something meditative about feeling the ground with each step you walk. It is a conscious “being-present” with each step. For me, it has transformed the very way I walk (slower, more use of hamstrings and balls of the feet).
I chose to wear shoes today because I had to walk a few miles. It turned out to be a very good decision as I took the wrong BART stop, which doubled my journey! The arches are tired now, which is great. I need much more arch work, so perhaps I can alternate shoe-wearing days the next couple days to keep the arches going. And it’s probably time for another beach run soon too.
Life is good.