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Running Form Workshop

December 16, 2011

My journey to seriously running started years ago, when running was just something I did occasionally to cross-train for crew. After starting grad school and leaving the structure of an organized team, I ran more often, but still thought of it as cross-training. I thought “I just have to get my heart rate up,” speed and efficiency were never priorities. And even when I started running marathons, I ran them for fun. Sure, I wanted to finish, and faster was nice, but I never put any emphasis on speed. I would say “I do my speed training for rowing, I want to keep running just fun.”

I guess somewhere along the line, speed and efficiency became a little more important. Maybe not to the same point as crew. But I’ve begun putting more importance on speed. And so last night I ended up at Fleet Feet (our local running / triathlon store) for a free seminar on better running form. Something that just a year ago I would have swore I would never attend!

It was a little intimidating to see video of ourselves running on a large screen (the seminar started with everyone running past a video camera; they then played it back in slow motion to look at our form). But the instructor said about me “this looks like a really good example of a proper midfoot strike and good body position.” Yay. So I can approximate good form, when I’m thinking about it, and I’m fresh. That’s a start, right? The whole workshop was full of useful tips on how to improve our form and consistency, which should reduce injuries, increase endurance, and yes, increase speed.

I have to admit, I’m glad I went. I’m still more concerned about speed in crew than in running, but proper form will help with more than just speed. And I know that as my running form has improved over the years, I’ve had less ankle and knee pain, run longer more comfortably, and become faster without trying. I guess sometimes we need to relearn the basics of something we think we know.

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From → form, running

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