Tuesday, April 5, 2011

One Day Without Shoes

What do Charlize Theron and I have in common? Today we both went shoeless for a good cause. One Day Without Shoes is sponsored by the TOMS Shoe company, and helps raise awareness of the impact a pair of shoes can have on a child’s life.

TOMS was founded by Blake Mycoskie in 2006.  While traveling in developing countries, he discovered there were many who didn't own shoes.  Now when someone purchases a pair of TOMS, the company donates a new pair of shoes to a child in need.  In developing countries not wearing shoes can lead to many problems.  It increases the chance of contracting a soil-transmitted disease. There's also a higher likelihood of getting a cut that becomes infected.  Many times children can't even attend school because shoes are a required part of their uniform.
There were several One Day Without Shoes activities planned in my area, but nothing that fit into my schedule, so I decided to make my own small commemoration.  I decided it wouldn't be appropriate to go shoeless at work; I was subbing in another classroom, and didn't know what that teacher would think.  Besides, it would be quite chilly when we went outside for recess today!

I decided to lose my shoes for my post-work workout at the gym.  However, I was reluctant to go completely barefoot. Who knows what germs had been left by the previous shod users?  I chose to leave my white athletic socks on--it was crazy enough that if anyone asked what I was doing, I could tell them why.  After I changed into my exercise clothes, I took off my shoes, stowed them in the locker, and locked everything up.  I walked through the locker room and to the bank of elliptical machines in the back of the room in my stockinged feet.

I thought the exercise session would be easy,  but I found out the elliptical foot pad has a raised ridge running down the center of it that made it uncomfortable to my shoeless feet.  I decided I was done after 20 minutes and moved on.  In this gym the machines are right in the middle of the room. I figured that if anyone was going to notice my feet, this would be the time, but I completed a whole circuit without drawing any attention.  When I was finished, I walked back to the locker room to retrieve my belongings.  Before I put my shoes back on I took a look at the bottom of my socks.

EWWW!  They were quite black.  I guess wearing shoes is a good idea.


  1. I tried to walk on our treadmill one time in my stocking feet. I couldn't believe how uncomfortable it was!

  2. Good cause...that Tom's is alright. I used to love walking barefoot until my doctor told me it was the fastest way to get parasites. I still walk barefoot....
    This was a nice thing you did.

  3. The things I take for granted, wow what an awareness and what a great cause!

  4. It's amazing to me now that I used to go barefoot all the time when I was growing up in Hawaii. I didn't think anything of it. I wore slippers a lot too, but didn't own a pair of hard shoes until middle school. I would never think of doing it now.
    Gosh, it'd be hard to walk around the gym doing the equipment in your stocking feet. I'm surprised that no one noticed.

  5. I don't wear shoes in the house, either barefoot, socks, or slippers. But I don't go outside and run around barefoot. Too many bad things out there. I also like Tom's Shoes. Just bought my granddaughter a pair.