The first 6 months of running, I was using a combination of Vibram Five Fingers (VFF), barefoot and also Invisible Shoes (now called Xero Shoes). And they all had pros and cons. VFF’s were great in getting me accustomed to forefoot running, while still providing plenty of protection against natural elements. Unfortunately I was getting blisters on my longer runs (10+ miles) especially on a hot day. And by golly, the smell! I use Tea Tree oil to treat them and keep the stench out, but that was high maintenance. Xero Shoes were pretty awesome and felt very much like running barefoot, but they didn’t provide adequate protection for me on trail runs. I was just starting to get interested in trail running when I heard about Luna Sandals.
Ordering Luna Sandals
Turns out my feet have transformed after many months of running barefoot. I wish I had taken a picture before. My arch is more pronounced, the feet have gotten meatier and wider to the point my 8 1/2 New Balance doesn’t fit me anymore! Not sure if I can sustain this professionally 🙂 but I’m incredibly uncomfortable in shoes these days. After googling around a bit, I settled on the Original Luna Sandals with ATS laces and Copper Brown Suede. Since none of the default sizes offered by Luna were a fit for me, I had to trace my foot and sent it to them for a custom cut. About 10 days later, I was super excited to receive them.
Running with Luna Sandals
I ran a 10-miler the very first day of receiving my Luna Sandals. The 8mm sole (with the footbed) is plenty to avoid natural elements, but still light enough that you don’t feel them on your feet during the run. The ATS laces took my adjusting and experimenting to get the tightness just right, given that there’s an elastic band on the heel strap. I also got some blisters at the top of my foot where the buckle on the ATS laces are. I ran the first 3 or 4 miles of the San Francisco Half Marathon with Lunas before I took them off (I still like running barefoot), but these sandals have seen some miles already.
In fact during summer when it was warm, I wore them on a few dates with my wife and she was cool about them! The ATS laces have a modern look and don’t make me feel like a roman gladiator (that’s what my kids call when they see laced up huaraches). My toughest run with the Sandals was up to Black Mountain which was a 2 hour roundtrip with a 3,000 foot elevation gain. The Lunas held up, didn’t slip and slide during the ascent or descent and yes, I would highly recommend them.