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Training In My FiveFingers Vibrams

I finally jumped on the FiveFingers Vibram band wagon. I love them so far! I have such a large foot I was happy to get the “girly” versions.

I used them to run intervals in and I felt much faster. I was surprised by how running on and over hot asphalt and rocks didn’t affect me at all. The rocks were almost less noticeable than my tennis shoes.

But the reason I actually bought these was to try them out in the gym. A man at our gym swears by them. He’s an ex-power lifter. He retired because of bad knees. He claims he’s been able to start squatting again AND add weight – so he’s progressing. He said his knees haven’t bothered him once. His wife also swears by them. She has damaged knees from running many marathons and clocking lots of training miles. She said her knees don’t hurt nearly as bad when she wears her Vibrams. She also says she wears them everywhere; they help her that much. I’ve noticed this in public more and more. I’ve also seen them showing up in the gym more often. I thought I might see what I’m missing out on.

Today was the first day I wore them to the gym. I had a great leg day planned with plenty of squats to test them out. Very interesting. Time will tell how much my mind was interfering with this experiment. But overall, I had stronger heavier squats.

10 sets of the following reps and sets:

Set 1 – 20 reps @ 65lbs (feet wobbled and calves adjusted accordingly)
Set 2 – 20 reps @ 65lbs (feet were working, mind muscle connection had been made)
Set 3 – 15 reps @ 95lbs (noticed calves working more)
Set 4 – 10 reps @ 115lb (felt nice and strong)
Set 5 – 10 reps @ 125lb (felt solid… strong)
Set 6 – 10 reps @ 135lb (again, solid and strong. I also noticed right adductor working more to stabilize; my weaker side)
Set 7 – 5 reps @ 155lb (again with the adductor)
Set 8 – 2 reps @ 175lb (and again, also felt glutes really activated)
Set 9 – 2 reps @ 185lb (same as above)
Set 10 – 1 reps @ 205lb (total failure but it felt pretty solid. The adductor on the right was working hard.)

Then off to lunges. Only 2 sets of 12 reps each leg with increasing weight. I did this same workout 2 weeks ago and used the same weight and I felt stronger today than then… AFTER the squats. The thing to note here, is the overall load on the squats. This was the most I’ve done in quite some time. I did notice my stabilizers working twice as hard – starting at my feet and working all the way into my abs. My feet began cramping up on me a bit – mainly the left foot (my stronger leg). Hmmmm….

We’ll see what the next workout holds for me. But this one was definitely stronger and utilizing different muscles in a way I’m not used to. It has my interest and curiosity peaked.

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