“How long was your transition to running barefoot?” must be one of my top-5 questions, right behind “do you wear those toe shoes?” and “what about splinters?”
If I don’t answer the transition question with a specific number of months, weeks, and days, it’s only partly because I don’t have records of my transition; mostly it’s because your legs and experience are different from mine, and your transition will be different too. When I say, again and again, “listen to your body,” I don’t mean it in some woo woo Marin hippie way. I really mean – run only till it hurts, then stop.
If the ubiquity of padding and of NSAIDs means that we no longer can feel when our body hurts, then that’s a problem that needs to be fixed. Sensations from your nerve endings are real electrical stimulation, scientifically measurable – this is not vortex healing. Learn to listen to those nerve endings, and then pace your workouts to match the feedback from your body, not according to a schedule set by some dude who’s never even met you.
And yes, expect to allow at least six barefoot months, very likely a year, until you regain your previous shod running mileage. In the scheme of a healthy lifetime, isn’t that worth it?