Monday, June 27, 2011

My new favorite thing

As you have read, (if you have read) I began doing the Couch to 5k. I really liked the program and was well on my way to running for 45 minutes without stopping. Until I got to the intervals of 5 minutes, and thought I was dying, I could not breathe and my knee was already hurting me.
I went on a road trip with Amber and Vernon Burger (and their littles), and we got to talking about running, running shoes and running technique.

Vernon gave me a few tips and the next day I had a three 5 minute interval run and felt like I could do it again.
Some of the things are such simple correctives. Some are...well...not.
He also recommended that I read this book.
I finished this sucker and wanted to run all day! Not that I could, but I desired to!
It is written by a man named Christoper McDougall, check out his blog for tons of other tips and stories and races.
The thing about me is that I liked to run, but couldn't run long enough to actually feel like I was a runner. Plus I have a brother who can run like a bat out of hell. (one time he asked me if I wanted to go for a run, I asked, "How far"..."not far, like 13 miles"...true story) I was a miserable runner and on top of that have terrible knees and lower back problems...Christopher had similar problems!

So...Here is the update. I am by no means fast, but I can run and I love doing it. Today I knocked out a 25 minute interval with a smile on my face...the only stop was to change shoes...I am breaking in my new ones) The pain is almost entirely gone in my knee when I run now and I have found myself waking up earlier than the alarm to jump up and get those shoes on. (I even woke up earlier than Andrew the last 2 days...which is NOT normal)

So here are some tips that changed my running and then Check out Christopher's blog for a ton more tips on technique.

1. I am a heel striker, this is where my knee problems come in. And takes a ton of concentration for me to change. DON'T land heel-toe...strike down on that padding your body gives you like you were standing still and jumping from the ankle...your strike should be near the front of the foot, stabilizing with your big toe and kicking back the track, or road. Then bring those knees straight out. Our hard-core running shoes with heel pads make it hard to strike correctly and since I have knee problems, I decided to work into these...Merrell Minimalists.Thanks Mom for the B-day gift. I love them, I feel great and my legs and feet are thanking me!

2. straighten up. "RUN FROM YOUR CORE" is the phrase that changed my running life. I could not breathe when I ran. I was hunching and gasping...and this one leads to number 3.

3. If you can not conversate (have a conversation) you should probably slow down. We try to push ourselves to go fast, but that should not be our goal, at least at first!

There are a few more great tips that I have learned since these three, but Christopher has already typed and videoed them. So check out his blog...seriously.

I will end with my new favorite pic of me!
This is me Saturday Morning, 7am at the top of a hill in Missouri!

Happy Trails!