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Running 101

When I watch marathoner Paula Radcliffe run, I feel deep in my bones that I am not a natural born runner. Not that this has kept me from pounding the pavement since when I run on concrete sidewalks I literally feel that in my bones.

Since running seems like it should be natural but doesn't, I work on my form. A lot!

Here are a few basics, from head to toe, to consider next time you are out for a run.

  • Look where you are going – straight ahead – not at your feet. How you hold your head affects your pelvis, and the pelvis and hips are what is ultimately powering you forward so you want proper alignment of the entire spine.
  • Keep your shoulders relaxed. A nice deep exhale will help them fall away from your ears.
  • Swing your arms forward and back. Avoid swinging your arms across your body (this I call the "Charlie's Angels run" because I swear Cheryl Ladd ran swinging her arms across her body in every episode of the show). Keep your elbows bent to 90 degrees.

I'm only half way down the body, to see what do with your feet


  • Don't lean forward. Run straight and tall in your torso. This will also make it easier to breathe.
  • Keep your stride short. It is more efficient for distance (endurance) running.
  • Run lightly and don't slap your feet – this is why it is good to run occasionally without headphones so you can listen to your feet. Land between the heel and the mid-foot and push off quickly.

Whenever I read tips, I want to get out and put them to practice. Hopefully this post will get you out on the road too!


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