Eddie Izzard & his barefoot South Africa 27 Marathons Challenge

"I have now got into barefoot running. After two million years of human development without shoes, and only about 10,000 years of putting them on, maybe they’re not that great for us?"
Eddie Izzard

When Eddie met Haile Gabrselassie

For those who have heard of Eddie Izzard he made his name as a British comedian (and transvestite!) in the Nineties, and has continued to tour as a comedian around the world, and appear as an actor in various films and TV shows.

In 2009, despite not previously being known for anything like this (And not exactly young in age either) he decided to run multiple marathons around Britain - clocking up 43 marathons in just 51 days - extreme!

The reason why I'm mentioning him is that in the past few years he has discovered barefoot and minimal running, has pairs of both VivoBarefoot and VFF's and has been helped by Lee Saxby from the Vivobarefoot training clinic in London  - Eddie's next goal is to run 27 barefoot marathons in 27 days around South Africa as a tribute to the 27 years Nelson Mandela spent in jail. Money raised will go to South African charities.


"Mr Izzard, 50, said he would undertake much of the run barefoot, or in "barefoot running shoes", and run in places that had a special resonance to the post-apartheid leader, including the area where he grew up, the place where he went to university and on Robben Island, where he was imprisoned. "

Unfortunately he's had to pull out after 4 marathons, due to combination of health issues, harsh terrian, humidity and altitude problems -


Regardless, it's awesome to see him flying the barefoot flag. :)

4 marathons in 4 days being plenty enough for the majority of us... but he vows to return to S.A. and finish his challenge.  (The photo on the article is of him on his 2009 shod marathan challenge - they could have found a more recent picture!)

There's still the usual comments from some fans though worrying that barefoot is very dangerous and that he'll get "infected feet" if he runs barefoot in Africa. Though happily there are other comments about barefooting and mention of VFF's.  :) If I'm worried about anything though it would be the heat and the climate over running barefoot.


He also occasionally tweets photos of his feet....lol, he's as bad as us! ;)


  • I suspect after getting into barefoot running that wearing heels will never be the same again ;)
  • Lol yes  ;D Seems he's gone from one extreme to the other!

    I wore heels in my late teens and early twenties (I'm female...) but thought it a bit of a bloody sod and something or other was always in pain or rubbing. I've been wearing barefoot shoes for over two years now - though I did wear a pair of 3 inch heel boots to a party before Christmas and as a result got blisters right across the balls of my feet...yowtch!  :-X

    Going to a wedding this weekend, I expect all the other women will be tottering around in heels. Not for me, tyvm...
  • This is great news, what we need are more high profile people on board. The masses won't listen to the science but put a celeb in VFF's and the world will want a pair! Sad times we live in but if it gets the job done...
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