A straightforward yet exceptional training strategy for endurance runners

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If, this time last year, you had informed me that, later in the year, I would be running the local half marathon event for charity I would not have believed you. I got in on a whim however had had a mind to start up running after a good ten years out of practice as I had actually bought the ChiRunning book by Danny Dreyer. I liked the concept of discomfort-free running, well who wouldn't?

Dreyer provides you with the techniques to change your running form so you could run injury-free. Considering that it was so long since I 'd run frequently this was a very important point. In the past, I had experienced painful and so am completely aware how this irritating and painful problem could destroy even the best prepared running method.

Enjoyment is a recurring theme in Dreyer's book. Throughout the book he suggests you smile and take time out from dealing with strategy to look around and enjoy your environment. This part can often be forgotten.

Injury-free Running

Danny Dreyer provides an array of 'focuses' to work on as you run. You merely need to think about one or two of these per session, so it doesn't get too difficult.

A great benefit of this method of foot contact is that a great deal of the effort is taken out of running due to the fact that you lean from the ankle to accelerate, so gravity does a lot of the work. To raise velocity you merely lean forward, to decrease speed you lean less. Simple and very effective, running does not become effortless but it IS a great deal easier going.

Injury-free AND Effort-free Running

This much shorter stride is a little unusual at first but you get used to it. A desirable result of this is that a great deal of the effort is removed as you merely lean at the ankle to raise or reduce speed. It's as easy as that, although it's not actually straightforward and does take tons of practice.

The cool-down period is emphasised throughout the book to ensure the subsequent run is comfortable. He provides some stretches and a little self-massage but I went a step further and got a regular sports massage which was superb. So excellent, I still get them even now.

In all honesty, I would heartily recommend that anybody training for distance event include massage as a crucial part of their training. It actually aids with the recovery and guarantees you begin the next run fresh and ready for action. Sports massage definitely helped me get to the start line in good nick!

I highly recommend both ChiRunning technique and Sports massage to all distance runners. Be nice to yourself, ay?



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