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Molly's Foot Transformation Story

I came across this incredible story on social media, and reached out to the author who gave me permission to share. Her timeline and photos really highlight how amazing and adaptable human feet are when we give them the care and attention they deserve! Read on to learn how her feet went from weak and frail to strong, pain free, and functional.

Yesterday I went to an urgent care because I kicked a sheet of metal 2 weeks ago and it took a chunk out of the inside of my pinky toe- wanted to get it looked at because it was just taking a while to heal and I don’t play around with the threat of losing toes. As the doctor was cleaning my toe and bandaging it he commented that it was super helpful to him that I could keep my pinky toe so far away from my 4th toe and most people couldn’t do that. We chatted about minimalist footwear for a while and he said he used to like the Vibram five fingers when they first came out and I told him to check out some of the more stylish options they’ve got available now- maybe another convert.

Anyway- it got me thinking about looking at a progress photo for my feet. I don’t have any photos from right before I started transitioning, but here’s what I do have-

2016: Age 21, pretty sedentary and dealing with some circulation issues (Raynaud’s secondary to an autoimmune condition, diagnosed later on) but I was taking a picture of my toe losing circulation. My toes were pretty squished together and I had a tailor’s bunion forming. Not a lot of definition to my feet at that time either.

2020: Age 25, I switched to barefoot shoes in March 2020. It was great timing. I had spent a few years getting into shape so I already had stronger feet as a result of that. The picture below is from 4-5 months in, and I was pretty thrilled with the progress. I didn’t expect my feet to spread much, and I thought my toes might not spread much more either just because they’re so short (maybe I thought they’d reached max spread capacity?) How naive I was.

2023: Coming up on age 28 and my feet continue to improve every year. I’m finally starting to see splay improvements with my pinky toe (which has definitely been much more evident in the last year) and my big toes have great alignment. My arches are strong, my feet are strong, and I love wearing minimalist shoes or none at all!

Just wanted to share as an example of how much feet can change, even if you don’t think there’s much room for improvement. I didn’t have terrible foot problems to start with- my worst problems were the tailor’s bunions and some arch weakness. It probably also helps that I’m young and active, so I have had minimal trouble with adjusting to barefoot shoes over the years. (I actually only tried barefoot shoes because I blister really easily on my feet. I don’t know why but I always have- and having toes squished together in shoes would always leave my toes blistered and in pain if I had to walk more than a mile, even when I’d wear “comfortable” shoes like Nike sneakers. I got a pair of Altras to try and fix that issue, and I stumbled into this world. Definitely has been one of my more life-changing choices.)

A huge thank you to Molly for sharing her story! I hope it inspires hope and confidence in you, dear reader, that your feet are capable of getting stronger and supporting all the ways you want to move through the world.

Your Barefoot Guide,


PS. Would you like some guidance on your foot transformation journey? Gait Happens offers a Fit Feet program providing expert-approved steps toward fully functional feet! Use code BarefootGuide10 for 10% off!



Hey, I'm Kim!

I'm so happy you're here.

I believe that your feet are the foundation for full body strength, and living a barefoot lifestyle is key to moving through your years with joy and freedom.

Join me as we live our best barefoot lives together.


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