Beware ‘Crazy Time’ That Comes In Many Guises, Including Barefoot Running


Hi folks,

You will ignore this advice at your peril. From:

During life we have to overcome many challenges, including major life-changing relationship issues. The author is no exception in this regard. The good news is that you learn what to expect, how to protect yourself whilst attempting to be fair to others, and you know the pain will end and a new, exciting life will appear once you accept the loss and move on. The real danger comes during this transition phase. If you are going through a major life change, I recommend that you read the book, ‘Crazy Time,’ by Abigail Trafford. Or at least remember this piece of advice that I ignored at great cost – “When in a state of serious emotional stress, don’t make any major life decisions and don’t sign anything that you don’t have to.” This is how I remember it, anyway. I did both, at great personal cost, but I got over it. We learn from our mistakes, eventually. The key word here is ‘eventually.’

Combi Van bought by the author during post-AAA-stent surgery crazy time. It needs much too much work, so I will sell it at a loss. I was so pleased to be alive after my surgery that I bought this vehicle on a whim with no inspection. Bad idea!

You might be wondering what crazy time has to do with sports. Well, as soon as we let our emotions drive our thinking, as opposed to the balanced view recommended by Kahlil Gibran with his sailing ship analogy in ‘The Prophet,’ trouble is not far away. For instance, my investment strategy for retirement funds, which live in the rocky seas of the finance industry, is based upon the book, ‘The Intelligent Investor,’ by Benjamin Graham. The book is well reasoned, and my results have been satisfactory except when I let emotions override my decision making. Such an example included one group of stocks in my ‘NASDAQ portfolio’ prior to the big market correction in the year 2000. Reasoning from the book indicated that I should sell based on the evidence. Consequently, I sold all such shares except those in an Internet company for which my son worked. The latter company stock sank to zero a month or so later, almost without warning. I’m not a rich man, and I try to be prudent. We learn from our mistakes, and this was a lesson that will stick with me.

Crazy time with respect to endurance sports comes in different forms, including fads where emotions can take control. Such a fad was barefoot running. I read Born to Run, which was great, and I wrote several posts promoting the approach, whilst chronicling the challenges I encountered in the process. I applied the principles described by skilled barefoot runners for about a year. I am now working to eliminate strains to tendons that support my foot arches induced by my enthusiasm.

Is barefoot running a bad idea? NO! It is great, and should be incorporated into your training, but with extreme caution. I suspect that our individual history of barefoot running as children plays a key role in this issue, as a result of which we vary considerably in our ability to take it on later in life. I did zero barefoot running as a kid raised on the streets of a major city. I know of other people experiencing absolutely no problems but they ran around barefoot as children. I was emotionally attached to the idea, logic told me to stop or slow down, but I ignored the warning signals until it was too late. Running barefoot or in light shoes feels great but you do it with some risk, unless you can find a way that is safe for you. I was in Barefoot crazy time!

So beware crazy time, my friends. It’s always waiting to get you.

-k Your Medical Mind



  1. No, not always true. Poetry is best when written in time of high emotion and trauma.
    Wilfred Owen and Siegfried Sassoon are good examples.
    Without WW1 there would have been a different output by Tolkein.
    Crazy time have their uses. They can bring insights to authors and inventors. They are, however, horrible to live through.
    Yet I do agree with “don’t sign anything”

    • Hi Trevor,

      You’re right, crazy time has it’s uses, and it can be a time of real growth as long as one is prepared to do the work and change. In the case of training it generally leads to disaster, but it may result in unexpected success.

      I look forward to your comments, as they cause me to pause and reflect.



  2. Rory Conolly says

    Re the camper van, I was there when you bought it, and I’d say that the guy you sold it to probably needed the money more than you did. I’m sure he spent the rest of that day thinking what fair and just world it is.

  3. Buy silver but not too much.I like the advice from Kipling in his poem “If”:

    IF you can keep your head when all about you
    Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
    If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you,
    But make allowance for their doubting too;
    If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
    Or being lied about, don’t deal in lies,
    Or being hated, don’t give way to hating,
    And yet don’t look too good, nor talk too wise:

    If you can dream – and not make dreams your master;
    If you can think – and not make thoughts your aim;
    If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
    And treat those two impostors just the same;
    If you can bear to hear the truth you’ve spoken
    Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
    Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
    And stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools:

    If you can make one heap of all your winnings
    And risk it on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
    And lose, and start again at your beginnings
    And never breathe a word about your loss;
    If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
    To serve your turn long after they are gone,
    And so hold on when there is nothing in you
    Except the Will which says to them: ‘Hold on!’

    If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
    ‘ Or walk with Kings – nor lose the common touch,
    if neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you,
    If all men count with you, but none too much;
    If you can fill the unforgiving minute
    With sixty seconds’ worth of distance run,
    Yours is the Earth and everything that’s in it,
    And – which is more – you’ll be a Man, my son!

    • Kevin Morgan says

      I really like that poem, too, which I read many years ago. Takes something to be a man. -k @FitOldDog

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Disclaimer: As a veterinarian, I do not provide medical advice for human animals. If you undertake or modify an exercise program, consult your medical advisors before doing so. Undertaking activities pursued by the author does not mean that he endorses your undertaking such activities, which is clearly your decision and responsibility. Be careful and sensible, please.