June 20, 2014

Fixing Your Feet

Fixing Your Feet

If your chosen sport has anything in any way to do with your feet, I say John Vonhof's Fixing Your Feet is a must-have. This massive 350-page book details the prevention, coping, and recovery strategies of those penultimate foot-bashers, ultramarathon runners. No, there is not a simple fix to be found here, nor, as Vonhof himself writes, is there such a thing as a universal fix.

What works one day may not work the next, but it may work well for you, and for a long time, to paraphrase the book's central premise. Such a deep level of nuance—and information—may be a tad much for the casual reader, or weekend warrior. The book reads like a graduate course. That said, anyone who has ever found themselves plodding along on sandy ground, miles yet to go, on wrecked feet, will find this an invaluable resource.

I especially like the detail given to actual, on-the-market products, including tapes, socks, and compounds. The mention of so many products by brand name may at first raise your cross-marketing hackles, but be assured the author gives a fair representation of the spectrum of offerings in any one category in addition to making specific recommendations. You can also check the author's site for the most current information on products.

I had no idea many of these products existed (teflon-woven socks?), but I've already gone on a mini-ordering spree to try a few out. Beyond blister care, there are extensive chapters on footwear, socks, mechanics, toenail issues, and other injuries and conditions of the foot. For those of you in the distance game, I say get it now. This is simply a must-have.

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When there is snow, SierraDescents is Andy Lewicky's California backcountry skiing and mountaineering website. Without snow, sierradescents becomes an ill-tempered hiking and climbing blog.

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