Monday, March 5, 2012

Technicalities and Chia Seeds (Feb 4)

Today I want to discuss a couple of topics: one the language I use to describe different kinds of shoes and running and two the great endurance food/drink, chia seeds. So early on I differentiated barefoot from 100% barefoot from minimalist. However, having read some more literature on the topic, including a post by my favorite, Steven Sashen, I have decided to reclassify how I reference this topic. You may have already noticed I switched over to calling all minimalist shoes, including huaraches and toe shoes, by the same name....minimalist footwear. Barefoot running, I now consider just that, running without any shoes. Go figure it makes sense now. Finally I will do away with the phrase "100% barefoot" except when wanting to add extra emphasis. Sorry to change this terminology, but as Steven says, it really doesn't make sense to call a shoe barefoot. Barefoot means just that. It's a small distinction but an important one. This doesn't change the fact that some shoes are more minimalist than others. created a continuum to more and less minimalist shoes (see here: under "barefoot running shoes continuum"). To see Steven Sashen's post on the classification of minimalist shoes vs. barefoot go here (


Now the other topic for today is the magical food chia seeds. Well I guess they aren't exactly "magical" per se, but they are an excellent source of just about everything. This is just a section I took from wikipedia to give you an idea:

"In a one ounce (28 g) sample, dried chia seeds contain 9% of the Daily Value for protein (4g), 13% fat (9g) (57% of which is ALA) and 42% dietary fiber (11g), based on a daily intake of 2000 calories.[8] The seeds also contain the essential minerals phosphorus, manganese, calcium, potassium and sodium[8] in amounts comparable to other edible seeds, such as flax[9] or sesame.[10]"

However, many sources have also applauded chia seeds, just type them into google. In addition, they also contain a substantial amount of calories, which make them a great endurance food. The Tarahumara put them in in water with a lime and a bit of sugar, also known as Iskiate. This is one of two endurance drinks that the Tarahumara live on when running 100s of miles non stop. So whether you use them for a natural daily superfood or for endurance running, these little guys can't be beat! They are also incredibly cheap and can be purchased at your local grocery store, I got mine at the bulk section of a local coop. They also have a shelf life of two years if kept in a cool, place. One CNN article praised the nutritional benefits but cautioned the amount of calories per serving. But if you use them for endurance running, they are perfect! (here's the CNN article Well that's all for today but definitely go buy some chia seeds and try them out. One last note, if you let them sit in liquid for a while they develop a gel coating, which creates a second kind of fiber (both are good for your body!). This gelling also helps them fight hunger if you are trying to lose weight or are running long distances non-stop. Chia seeds magnify the taste of what they are put in, making limeade taste more lime-y, chocolate chip muffins more chocolatey, etc. They can also be used in baking! You can substitute chia gel for butter in many baking recipes as well! As you can see there are endless benefits to these magical little seeds. However, if you need to take any drug tests any time soon, be warned that they make you test positive for salvia. While legal in the U.S. and many other countries, some businesses will not let you test positive so just be aware.


As always kick off your socks and shoes and go barefoot!


P.S. I wanted to share this hilarious video done by Steven Sashen. It has already been put on and it getting lots of attention.

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