I guess my question is summed up pretty well in the title. I tend to think of the mid-foot as the area of the arch so I just want to make sure that I have the right form when I strike with the cushy/padded ball of my foot first. Or should I be landing with more of a flat foot?
Hi Vanessa - Yes, you have it right. The mid-foot or the cushy/padded ball of your foot. depending on how fast you are running, you do want the heel to land or touch the ground, but not with tremendous force. The slower you are running, the more you should slightly touch the ground ONCE you initially strike with the mid-foot.
This is where the strength benefits come in when barefoot running because you will naturally strike well. And in doing so, you are training your arch to strengthen and create a natural orthodic. This is very hard to accomplish in shoes. I also recommend this great exercise to strengthen your foot and arch, try it out. Watch the video carefully and you can see my foot landing just as you would want it to in running. Fit Ball Foot Raises