Running Tips 101

Running Tips 101

Now that our gyms are closed and our fitness studios are shut down we’re starving for physical movement as well as some outdoor time. Many people are turning to running outdoors as a great way to increase physical activity. However, if you haven’t slowly conditioned your body for this type of exercise, you can find yourself with some new aches and pains.

Here are a few tips to help you be mindful when you’re hitting the streets.

Running Tips 101: The “Blue Belt” Technique:

One of the first things I teach my fitness clients is to put on their “Blue Belt”.

In studio, I put a nylon belt around the bones of their pelvis and squeeze it pretty snug so they can understand the sensation. It just so happens to be blue, which is why we call it the “blue belt”.

When this belt is around the pelvis it simulates the activation of 3 main muscle groups: 1. The Transverse Abdominus 2. The Pelvic Floor and 3. The Multifidus Muscles along the spine. When these muscles are active there is a support system in the body that facilitates a relaxation in the neck and shoulders, effortless upright posture and equal weight distribution among the feet. It evokes a feeling of physical peace.

Everyone’s first question is “Can we wear this all the time?”. “NO!” If you were to wear this belt all the time that muscle group would become weak and not support you at all. That’s a recipe for disaster.

At home you can us any belt around your pelvis to simulate this tool. It can sometimes be difficult to get the belt tight enough on your own, so if you have the option, you might ask a buddy to help with this step.

Now, here’s the real goal: After you take your belt off can you put your imaginary belt on? Remember the sensation and engage the same muscle groups. By doing this you begin to train your muscles to support a posture that will decrease the stress on the body. This is true for all your daily activities, but especially when you’re exercising.

Remember the next time you’re out running to put on your imaginary “blue belt”.

Running Tips 101: Slight Lean Forward:

My second tip is to slightly lean forward when you run. Most running coaches recommend this lean, but the one thing that needs clarity is the place in your body where this lean is coming from.

Be careful not to lean forward from the hips or waist. If you lean from the hips or waist it can put too much strain on your low back. Rather, this lean should be at the ankle joint.

Practice this standing still. Put on your imaginary belt and then slightly lean forward from the ankle. It gives you the feeling of falling forward. If you’re doing this while your run, it will propel you forward. When you are being propelled forward during your run your speed will increase.

Hopefully, these tips help you the next time you’re out “hitting the pavement”. Be well and happy running!

Check out these tips on our YouTube Page.

Cheryl Dunn
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