Monday, February 15, 2010

Running Progress, Posture, and Plans

In response to a question a few posts ago (sorry I took so long to reply), I want to share a couple sites where I map running routes. My favorite method is to just make my own route on gmap-pedometer by Google. However, sometimes I want to run a route that someone else has created and others have reviewed. You can find routes like this on USATF and Map My Run. A lot of sites also recommend logging your runs so you can track improvements. You can keep a log online or in a notebook. I have not done this yet, but I probably will start when I really work on improving my speed.

Now I'm happy to announce that I have lost one pound since my last post and I am only 2 pounds away from my goal weight! I love my workouts and I feel great. I think I have dropped another size because my clothes fit best right out of the hot dryer. (Isn't that just the best?)

On to the running tips! I finally cracked open my copy of ChiRunning and have started to work on the focus goals. Good news to our walking friends; there is also a book called ChiWalking! The first lesson is about posture. This is fortunate for those who do yoga or pilates and are already developing better posture. Running posture starts with the feet. Toes should be pointed straight forward. If yours tend to turn outward, focus on correcting this first. Moving upward, be sure that your pelvis is level, rather than tipped. Then lift the sternum and elongate the spine by lifting the back of your head from the base. Feel like the crown of your head is floating upward. When you engage your core, this position feels much more natural. This can feel like a lot of adjustments, so the book recommends going on shorter runs (20-30 minutes) in order to focus and work on this the whole time. I've done a fair amount of running, but I'm learning these concepts because I want to be a better runner. I want what the title of the book talks about: effortless and injury-free running. People who have learned this method said that they feel like they can run forever. Now that sounds nice, right?

So who's with me? Let me know if you have registered for a race or are planning to run one without registering (like I did on my first half-marathon). I'm looking at doing a 12K (about 7.5 miles) in May and a half-marathon in the summer. As I train I will continue to include these lessons from ChiRunning and how they work out for me. I can't wait to go running this afternoon!


Kathy Haynie said...

Emily, your description of running posture reminded me so much of what Mark and I are learning in our yoga class. I find that throughout the day I am reminding myself to lengthen my tailbone, feel the string pulling up through my head, open up the spaces between my ribs, keep my toes pointed straight ahead, lift my kneecaps, etc. Thank you for the link to Chi Walking!

Dorothy said...

Since you mentioned it in another post, I reserved and checked out a copy of Chi Walking. Lots of good information. Thanks for the tip!

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