Bikila notes...

not sure if we have a topic like this yet - i looked and didnt see any but...

anyway - just got my bikilas today - notes as follows

-havent run in em yet - let you know tommorrow how that feels
-feel great on the feet
-socks? always been an injinji guy - but these have a 'thicker' feel - not 'flow thicker' - but thicker - not sure i want the socks on though they certainly do fit w the socks (size 46 like the rest of vibes)
-strap! why dont the ksos have a strap system like this - simple simple - no need foe my tape mod here
-color - they look crazy - but i really like em - i like odd color schemes - especially for running shoes

thats it for now - but i think i'm a fan - as i mentioned - these are gonna be in the rotation with the ksos - especially for my 13+ milers and races

anyone else...


  • love the heel.  that's what allows them to not have a heel strap.  the back of the kso is much looser so they give the strap as a way to keep them on or at least avoid slipping. 

    i've been wearing them for the last five hours at work and these things feel good.  the inside is so smooth and soft. 

    more snug over the foot than other models but i think that's the difference in materials. 

    love the color...been wanting something that stood out and this fits the bill

    wont run in them till tomorrow but they feel like i will be able to run all day
  • I really like the heel on the Bikilas.  It felt a bit loose at first as compared with virtually every other VFF model, but now I think it just feels "there" but not THERE if you know what I mean.  Gives my Achilles some nice freedom -- just enough.
  • great way to describe it Justin.  i think it's perfect in design for comfort and feel.  i was worried it would be like typical running shoes that have a high raised heel but their not.  it's soft and feels good wrapped around my achilles. 
  • argh - one more day till i try the bikilas - L foot still sore - so i did the bike - tommorrow i think i should be good to go
  • Reading this is making me even more impatient!! Just checked up on tracking, my Bikilas are out for delivary from my local UPS this morning. Should be there when I get home, can't wait might even try to sneak out of work early today.
  • Received mine yesterday like Jimmy and I have been wearing them predominantly at work as it has been raining pretty good here and I don't want to ruin the clean look the first run.  I am thinking since I have a game 7 to watch tonight I will probably give them a test run on the treadmill mixing in some barefoot work...I can't wait to get them outside.  I am having a slight issue with them though.  The left foot is not adjusting to them very well.  The outside (muscle?) on my left foot tends to throb in them.  I am guessing the issue is I have to stretch these out a bit.  Hopefully it is as simple as that.  I do have a blister in that area which also could be adjitating it.  Not quite sure.  With more use I am sure it will be fine.  Still digging the new shoes smell... mmm mmm mmm
  • i've put in nearly 12 miles in mine the last couple of days and they still smell new!  love that part. 

    Adam to your point I feel like they seat the toes differently than any other vff i've got.  my big and little toes are up against the inside of the pocket with lots of room on the outside. i felt that in my right foot the first day i wore them and it caused some discomfort that day but it went away. the blister could be keeping your toe contracted as to not rub and cause pain.  that would activate the musculature you're talking about. 

    next note is the arch.  i'm getting some good miles in these shoes and i gotta say they are great.  vibram did a great job and i believe this shoe was worth the wait, as painful as that was.  i know some people said they felt the arch was supportive and after my first run i said it was an assistant but i'm starting to rethink all of that.  today was my longest run in them and it was 7 miles.  i feel that the first two runs i did kind of broke them in and now i am really feeling what this shoe is like. 

    first the insole that is worrisome thick for others.  i wouldnt worry about it.  it molded around my foot and made the shoe hug my foot better than any other vff has.  i've checked the thickness and in the spots where i land most the padding has compressed and is no longer as squishy as it was right out of the box.  it's also noticeably thinner now and i think that is giving me all the normal feedback i'm used to.

    the arch is not supportive once you have run in these some.  my first run i thought it was nice as it held my arch up a little.  today it did nothing of the short.  it hugged my foot, again like no other vff has, and made the shoe really sit still on each step.  i feel little to no movement of my foot in this shoe and i think a large part of that is due to the arch insert.  it also made me realize just how sloppy my other vffs really are in terms of fit.  my others fit perfectly but in comparison you can tell this shoe was made for running and the others were not.  i can feel my arch working the way it should with each step now and my form went back to a very natural and smooth feeling on my run today.  it was great and i blame the bikila for such a comfortable 7 miler in 80 degree temps and 23mph winds. 

    vibram is a young company in terms of shoe making and this is their first attempt at a running shoe.  i'm amazed at just how right they got it.  it's almost unbelievable
  • Great feedback!  I figured it might have something to do with breaking them in.  I plan on knocking out a few miles tonight during the Pens game... really wish it would stop raining I want to test these on downhills.  I have a feeling I am going to love them for that purpose.  I am sure I will still continue to do most of my runs barefoot but if they end up fitting the way you are describing them after a few runs I may never take them off! 
  • i have yet to try them - still a sore foot :-[ hopefully tommorrow but i really want this foot healed - as regards to the fit - the toe area seems snug - almost - not as snug - but almost like the fit you get from the flows - i didnt like that about the flows but like i said they are not thick and snug like that - i'm excited to run in them though - like i said - foot is getting better but i dont want to rush it - keeping fit on the bike
  • Adam they are pretty nice on the downhill.  in fact i feel more pounding on the uphill in these shoes than the down.  i think this comes from the heel being a little padded which for paved running on hills is outstanding.  i can actually charge down a hill now instead of having to find a way to baby step down.  i'm not sure why i feel the pounding on the uphill but my pads got a little tender today on the uphills but nothing going down or flat.  i'm gonna keep trying to analyze it but at this point i dont know.

    Marley: wear them.  that's all i'm gonna say.  when i first put mine on i thought that maybe they were too tight.  in fact when i tried to take them off my toes literally stuck in the pockets and the shoe almost turned inside out.  made me crazy nervous, plus the top of my foot was really tight...kind of uncomfortable.  i've worn them in and they stretched to fit my foot!  i am now super happy with that snugness as it allows these shoes to very comfortably hug my foot from one end to the other.  give it some time and i would bet you feel the same as me. 
  • finally got out this morning for some bikila running - 9 miler - R foot bruise felt fine - healed up? L ankle still sore which hampered the run and preoccupied me a bit - kept the pace down too - but anyway - the bikila is a fine running shoe - ground feel is important to me and i tell ya - i like the ground feel in this shoe - somewhere in between a kso and a trek imo regarding ground feel - now - this could be good or bad depedniong on one's view point - i might see it as a nuetral factor in comparision as i see the bikila will play an important role for me i think - besides a regular spot in the rotation with my 3 ksos - i could see the bikila being the shoe of choice on race day and for long runs - that extra sole cushion could be a benefit when logging long mileage in minimalist shoes - anyway - they felt just fine (with injinjis too) loved the fit and love the look
  • Like Marley... I was able to run in the Bikilas last night... not as long as I wanted to but I had to watch game 7 last night... yes we lost but oh well it was worth it.  I jumped on the treadmill planning on just running a quick 5k. 

    Earlier in the day I had been walking around in the Bikilas and let me tell you the tread was really bothering me.  The cushion that Marley refers to just didn't agree with my feet throughout the day.  I felt like I lost a bit of the ground feel and flexibility in my foot.  I am also still fighting a recent injury while running barefoot so I figured I would just go until it hurt.  Well at about the 2 mile mark I was thinking "ok you don't want to push it, get to 3 miles and call it a night :(" but at the three mark the Pens were still playing and I said if they can get through the first period so could I.  I continued running and at about the 5k mark my feet felt adjusted!  Had to adjust the strap on the right foot but my feet felt great.  First period over at the 4 mile mark decided to stop and took the shoes off.  My feet never felt so good taking off a pair of shoes before.  I liken it to putting your feet in the hot tub for an extended period and taking them out and feeling like my feet are brand new!  What a feeling. 

    Only gripe was the strap on the right foot.  I got a blister from it and felt that it was a bit tight on the top of my foot but I can not fathom going up a size.  I guess they just need to stretch out a bit. I am guessing that during my next run which will be tonight I will notice a significant difference in the feel of the Bikila.

    I certainly will not stop running in my KSO's or barefeet, but the Bikilas have earned the top spot in my rotation!  Love them and will write more as I break them in.

    Jimmy - you were right when it came to the cushioning caused by the sewn in insole.  I can already see the impressions my feet have made and they are significantly compressed at this point.  I assume with more mileage I will barely even notice the difference in ground feel. 

    Now if I could stop getting a blister from the strap I will be happy!

  • Adam I'm surprised about the strap.  Mine fit so perfectly over the top of my foot that I dont even tighten the strap.  They hug my foot so I just loosely close them and i'm in business. 

    Marley:  what the heck?  you've been too hurt to run and on your first time out you pop 9?  i'm impressed but dude dont play it safe or anything :-)
  • yeah i know - never been accused of being the sharpest knife in the drawer thats for sure - but i love long runs - the 9 is really my staple run - its like i dont know how to go short - once in a blue i will do an afternoon 4miler at race pace - but usually if i'm running its 9, 13 or 15 - i want to be able to kick those up to the 20 range but i keeped getting nicked up
  • on 1273758734:

    Adam I'm surprised about the strap.  Mine fit so perfectly over the top of my foot that I dont even tighten the strap.  They hug my foot so I just loosely close them and i'm in business. 

    Yeah I can't seem to figure out why it rubbed.  I felt it for awhile but just ignored it.  The blister is about the size of dime maybe a little smaller but it's just very irritating.  Hopefully the rubbing will stop!

    on 1273758734:

    Marley:  what the heck?  you've been too hurt to run and on your first time out you pop 9?  i'm impressed but dude dont play it safe or anything :-)

    Go Big or Go Home! - Marley's Motto!
  • might need to change that to 'go big and limp home'
  • on 1273764389:

    might need to change that to 'go big and limp home'

  • adam where's the blister?  would loosening the strap up change it or maybe tightening it?  i guess it depends on what was actually rubbing.  i would not expect the strap to move at all.  you dont have any random pieces of fabric hanging free from the upper do you? 

    Marley you're a man...the man.  that's some long running my friend. 
  • on 1273753467:

    i could see the bikila being the shoe of choice on race day and for long runs - that extra sole cushion could be a benefit when logging long mileage in minimalist shoes - anyway - they felt just fine (with injinjis too) loved the fit and love the look

    Just got my Bikilas last night and initial impression is the same, I see Bikilas as my Tempo Run/Race Day and Long run while keeping my KSO's in the Easy run line up. Feels like I may be stuck in my old ways a bit as I always rotated my "normal" running shoes but for some reason it just feels like it will be right.

    Will find out more soon, easy run tonight, tempo run Friday and long run Sat. I'll try to update my initial thoughts with actual results on Monday.
  • Didn't bring the shoes to work today so I'm not sure if there is a piece of fabric where it is hitting me.  I'll have to investigate prior to my run this evening.  I have a blister on the inside of my right foot, right at the beginning of my arch.  In Classics today as it just barely misses the sore spot on my foot.  Hopefully it was just a loose string that I can snip when I get home tonight.  I didn't even bother to look after the run.  I was just enjoying how my feet felt after jumping out of them :D
  • there is a seem right where you are talking about.  where the upper, strap, and white inner lining all come together.  the inner lining stops at that point being cut to follow the line of the grey strap leather on the outside.  odds are you were either rubbing there or the material might be a little long.  could also have been that the material is still just a little stiff.  i dont think this should or would remain a major issue though.  good luck and let me know.
  • Follow up -

    So far I have run 10 miles in total in the Bikilas.  Some positive and some negatives. 

    Last night I set out to do a 6'er, no hockey means more outdoor time! :D

    When I got home I took a peak at the inside of the Bikilas to figure out what is causing the blister.  It is certainly the stitching I am trying to figure out what I can do to fix this issue, maybe some toenail clippers to or a file to file down the area that is adjitating my foot.  I didn't want to spend to much time on it so I decided lets run with a band-aid on the blister and move on!
    I stepped out the front door and I have a little downhill which leads to a big uphill.  The downhill was amazing!  No more slipping and I felt very stable versus the KSO's or running barefoot which usually has me saying OW OW OW!  Next up the big hill.  I found that running more with a flat foot in the Bikilas was more comfortable kind of gave my calves a break going up hill.  A different feeling but I felt very relaxed. 

    3 miles in I felt very fatigued.  I relate this to the fact that I have been doing most of my mileage lately barefoot and the added weight, minimal weight mind you, but, it felt like it was a factor.  Shortly after the 3 mile my foot hurt!  The padding under the strap is really hurting my right foot (left foot is fine).  It felt like my veins on the top of the foot were being constrained and I had to change the tightness from loose to tight, tight to loose.  I am still trying to get these Bikilas to stretch.

    Has anyone else experienced the sore glutes in the morning?  I am not sure if it relates to the tread or not but man I feel like my butt got a work out like no other this morning.

    I love the heel in the Bikilas, best design ever!  If only I could figure out what to do with the cushion that sits under the strap I may actually never run barefoot again, well on occasion but most of my runs would be in the bikilas.  I love the fact that when my toes get sweaty in these I am not slipping and sliding around.  When I get sweaty feet in the Kso's my feet feel like they are on a slip'n slide. 

    I plan on wearing the Bikilas all weekend to stretch them out a bit and will be doing a 10 miler on Sunday to prepare for the Half Marathon on May 29th.  My first half marathon.  Pretty stocked about it.  Hopefully by Sunday I will have figured out how to strap the shoe so I don't have to adjust it on the run.  I am half tempted to cut the strap off on the right foot if it doesn't stretch.  I guess my right foot is slightly larger then my left.  Maybe I will purchase a pair of 44's and wear a 43 on the left and 44 on the right.  Time will tell.

    The Band-aid helped up until the 5 mile mark then I started to feel the band-aid! I CAN'T win!

  • That is why I am waiting for my local store to get them in.  If there was an issue with extra threading they would put some moleskin on it for me.  Then I wouldn't have to worry about it.  That is what they did for my sprints when the threading on the strap was cutting my foot.  The manager took them to a back room and applied moleskin to the strap and they feel great.  Only problem is the stretching of the pinky toe.  That is a standard issue that everyone experiences and it goes away pretty quickly. 
  • adam nice report and yes i too had the glute pain but only on my right side.  that's the side that i had my knee rebuilt so i took this as just a compensation response.  maybe it still is but more of a from thing than just my one leg thing.  it's a good response though as it means we're working those muscles more and the more muscles you can incorporate the more efficient you will be. 

    i would say that after or around the ten mile mark in the shoe plus the 9 hours at work is when i really felt the shoe fitting my foot.  i'm thinking the sweat from running helped the material stretch out some and now the shoes are perfect for me.  so much so that a guy at my running store tried them on and he said he could feel that they were molded to my foot already!  amazing thought for a vff. 

    moleskin over the seam could be a good idea as it would put a smoother and softer surface over the seam.  outside of that you just have to remember that on longer runs you break down some and you're gonna feel everything. 
  • Quick follow up. 

    About 30-35 miles in the Bikilas so far and I have noticed some changes.  As I reported before, the strap was irritating the inside of my foot and causing a blister on the inside part of the strap.  This issue has been resolved!  After running a couple times with a band-aid to prevent further damage to the are the Bikilas have stretched quite a bit.  Tonight I was doing a training run for the 20k I am running on May 29th and noticed that I had to tighten the Bikilas up tonight. They seem to have stretched a bit to much.  I was actually a bit loose in the shoe tonight.  I could certainly tighten the strap a bit more but I didn't want to change it mid run. 

    I LOVE THESE SHOES!  I can't say that enough.  Yes I have had some minor issues with them but overall the very best Vibrams out there! 
Sign In or Register to comment.