Mother nature is a fan

Thunderstorm at Kansas State football game

Death by Lightning on 2! Break!

There are few things more impressive in nature than a massive, horizon-blistering thunderstorm. And if you can view it safely, even better. Well, some folks at the Kansas State/UCF game last weekend were treated to a nice one courtesy of a serious system that moved through the mid-west at the end of last week. The game was delayed for a while as what looked like Hell formed over the stadium.

Those folks snapping pictures on what looks like an upper section of the walkway? Yeah, um, they’re not real smart.

ECCO BIOM A takes running gear to another level. Or maybe it really doesn’t.

ECCO BIOM A is the most expensive running shoe on the market

I don't know, I guess. It is yak leather.

GearJunkie.com posted yesterday about the ECCO BIOM A, currently the world’s most expensive running shoe at $220. It’s made of Himalayan yak leather. Leather. On a running shoe. Hell, I suppose. They even come with an instruction manual. Seriously.

It’s the latest attempt to capitalize on the trend of “barefoot running,” or the pitch that everyone should suddenly start striking on the pads of their feet, not the heels, because it’s more natural. I’m not wholly convinced.

The Vibram Five Fingers have exploded in popularity but I have yet to read about any new world records being attributed to training in them. A lot of elite runners take time to run in their bare feet to help strengthen muscles and further callous their pads and heels to absorb longer periods of impact.

There is no scientific proof that today’s heavy-soled shoes contribute to injury. If you started running early in life without shoes, or a makeshift sandal like the Tarahumara, then of course that method is going to be what’s best for the long term. Additionally, products like the Vibram encourage runners to begin training on a drastically different sole instead of slowly working it into their normal routine.

In short, there isn’t anything wrong with running in bare feet. I just don’t see it as the answer to anything. In fact, I never knew there was a question.

Are bears covered under the new health plan?

Black Bear arthroscopic surgery

Photo credit goes Takaaki Iwabu of the N&O

The Raleigh News & Observer published a cool photo essay of a Black Bear’s recent arthroscopic surgery performed by veterinarians at NC State. The surgery involved removing small portions of bone from the bruin’s elbow that were creating some irritation and limping. The bear, Yona, is a resident at the N.C. Museum of Life and Science in Durham.