(trying to long) run efficiently

Man - Monday came in too fast, and it's already half week gone.

With many fast weeks, comes fast approaching SCSM. I was on a treadmill t the gym today, targeting an easy 20 minutes run to calm some pain on my left hip that I got from DUKEthon on Sunday, and thought of loooong Flexibility Training. 20 minutes turned out to be a full hour, and it felt great. (I did a 6:40mins/hr - starting slow).

Funny thing about running on a treadmill is how much time you could spend thinking, as opposed to pacing people, chasing the next hill or sprinting at the park (see how boring it is). And thanks to the mirror right in front, today I was able to analyse my run. Not that I am a pro, but I seek to understand what has to be done to go the distance, and make my runs more pleasurable.

So, how do you run efficiently?

According to Dave Guilford (American Running Association), they are;

1) Focus - Keep eyes straight ahead on a horizontal plane. Avoid tilting your head up or down, right or left
2) Fix - Keep your elbows bent so that your arm is at a 90-degree angle
3) Rotate - Rotate the shoulders so that your hand moves down and backward past the hip with force
4) Hammer - At the end of the arm rotation, have your wrist relaxed and on a hinge so that the hand can follow through as though it is wielding a hammer
5) Squeeze - Keep your arms close to your chest so there is no space between the arms and upper body
6) Pinch - Pinch your shoulder blades together to keep your back straight
7) Arch - Curve the lower back slightly
8) Punch - Punch your knee out and forward in the initial movement from the ground
9) Cycle the foot - When the foot leaves the ground, bring the heel to the hip, followed by punching the knee out and forward. These movements should be made in as much of a straight line as possible
10) Snap - Pull the foot down and back until the back of the leg is straight

Those may sound too technical for a novice me, but as I was layan-ing the surprisingly pleasant run on a stationery machine and seeing my feet thumping the conveyor, I understand few points and made necessary alterations. During the run, I managed easier run due to;

1) improved posture, less haunching (see no. 6) Pinch) - cause less fatigue, and arms automatically swings further and I was told, faster arm swings translates to faster and further strides
2) slightly arched lower back (see no. 7) Arch) - automatically feels more comfortable and took away haunching from my back.
3) cycle the feet (see no. 9) - certainly took the pain away from my hip, and I could feel foot landing and gait improves
Of course, running is as exclusive to eating patterns for individual us, and I suppose this is just a gentle reminder to us all to find within us the correct running techniques best suited to ourselves. So, when the day comes, we will enjoy the run, improve our times, and survive the race injury-free, and sign up for more.


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