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#201446 - 07/23/18 02:32 PM Getting Accustomed to Zero Drop Shoes?
Bill Kennedy Offline
member

Registered: 02/27/18
Posts: 146
Loc: Portland, Oregon
Does anyone have a feel for how long it typically takes to get completely accustomed to zero-drop shoes?

I bought a pair of Altra Lone Peaks back at REI's anniversary sale and have been walking about five miles a day, 5 or 6 days a week, with some uphill, and thought I was getting used to them.
Well, I did the Gnarl Ridge/Elk Meadows loop on Mt. Hood the other day(maybe 9 miles and 1500ft elevation gain) and to my surprise, my calves got pretty sore, and are still sore two days later.

Usually, if I've been walking regularly, I can do more than that without getting sore. Of course, it was more up & down than I'm used to, and I'm getting older as well.

I'm just trying to figure out how much of this I can attribute to the shoes. On the plus side, I had no foot discomfort at all.
_________________________
Always remember that you are absolutely unique, just like everybody else. -Margaret Mead

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#201450 - 07/24/18 12:08 PM Re: Getting Accustomed to Zero Drop Shoes? [Re: Bill Kennedy]
4evrplan Offline
member

Registered: 01/16/13
Posts: 765
Loc: Nacogdoches, TX, USA
I'm afraid I have no answers to this, but I'm really curious to see what people say, as I've been in the market for inexpensive hiking shoes, and the Lone Peaks can often be found on sale. My wife has run in 0-drop Altras for years, but that's not the same as hiking.
_________________________
Hiking is the ultimate realization that the journey is more important than the destination.

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#201551 - 08/20/18 01:39 AM Re: Getting Accustomed to Zero Drop Shoes? [Re: 4evrplan]
dralahiker Offline
member

Registered: 08/26/04
Posts: 326
Loc: North Georgia
Feet vary quite a bit, even between left foot and right foot. I had Altra Lone Peaks for about 6 months. I liked them just wearing around. Then did a couple of hikes with steep climbs. My toes would cramp from the lack support, i.e. the toe box was too flexible.

I just acquired the Altra Timp Trail, which has a thicker mid-sole. Good so far, but a hike next week will be the real test.

Cheers,
Bill in Roswell, GA

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#201924 - 10/13/18 05:09 AM Re: Getting Accustomed to Zero Drop Shoes? [Re: 4evrplan]
Bill Kennedy Offline
member

Registered: 02/27/18
Posts: 146
Loc: Portland, Oregon
A little update, if you're interested...

I've put over 400 miles on the Lone Peak 3.5s now, maybe 500, mostly on my daily walks, but some on trails. I seem to have gotten accustomed to the zero drop, but my calves occasionally still feel tight. The Altras are perhaps the most comfortable shoes I've ever had, I suppose due to the width, shape, and rather cushy insole. They feel good with a flat, thinner insole, too (Spenco Comfort insoles).

The 3.5s are no longer available, unless maybe you wear an unusual size. They have an upward curve in the heel area, so not much material there, and they've pretty much worn out there, although the rest of the sole and uppers are still pretty good. I've been patching the heel area with Shoe Goo to get some more miles out of them. It looks like in the 4.0 version there's more material in the heel. I can't say I like the looks much, but there you go.

The Altras aren't cheap, so I'm not sure whether I'll get another pair, or go back to cheaper ones that aren't zero drop. Years ago when I had plantar fasciitis, my podiatrist told me that an elevated heel and excessive toe spring both contributed to it, but I know that going from an elevated heel to a flat shoe can aggravate it, also, since a shortened calf muscle puts more pull on it. Lots of variables and YMMV. Women who wear high heels have the most problem with this.

It may or may not be significant that before I got the Altras, and for the first month or two after, I would occasionally get a little momentary twinge of plantar fasciitis-like pain, but I haven't had it recently. Maybe just coincidence.
_________________________
Always remember that you are absolutely unique, just like everybody else. -Margaret Mead

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#201930 - 10/15/18 05:34 PM Re: Getting Accustomed to Zero Drop Shoes? [Re: Bill Kennedy]
4evrplan Offline
member

Registered: 01/16/13
Posts: 765
Loc: Nacogdoches, TX, USA
Thanks Bill; that is good to know. For now, I went with an even cheaper option, the Saucony Cohesion TR11. Not 0 drop, but I've never had issue with PF. We'll see how it goes.
_________________________
Hiking is the ultimate realization that the journey is more important than the destination.

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#201936 - 10/16/18 02:48 AM Re: Getting Accustomed to Zero Drop Shoes? [Re: 4evrplan]
Bill Kennedy Offline
member

Registered: 02/27/18
Posts: 146
Loc: Portland, Oregon
I have a pair of Sauconys, the Grid Escape or something like that, and an older pair of New Balance MT510s, both of which are fairly comfortable, but don't compare to the Altras, at least for my feet.

Zero drop seems as though it promotes a more "natural" gait, but that may be playing into the Naturalistic Fallacy, that is, assuming that something natural is necessarily good.
_________________________
Always remember that you are absolutely unique, just like everybody else. -Margaret Mead

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