So 2008 has come and gone. So far I’ve been lucky enough to find a day or two each week that was warm enough to get out and run. I even ran 14k on a mild (3°C) Saturday, although the slush and ice were unpleasant. Being away from work the last 2 weeks of December has allowed some extra sole thickening to occure. By staying out of socks and shoes inside and when possible outside, the skin on the heels and balls of my feet has thickened to give them more protection. Most people think that the soles get callused from going barefoot, but my experience has been that the skin thickens and remains soft and smooth. The thickened skin provides protection and reduces discomfort without removing too much sensitivity. This means I can go farther over rougher terrain without discomfort.
There is a threshold where conditions make it impossible to continue without some kind of foot protection. My goal is to keep pushing that threshold forward as far as I can. I want to find the point where I cannot push it any farther. As biological entities we are always changing to best fit the conditions we are in. Some of these changes happen slowly and others are relatively fast. So the more comfortable we make things for ourselves, the weaker we become. My goal for 2009 is to become stronger, not weaker.