A change in focus

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Quite often when we run or do any exercise, we can get a bit distracted with pain and discomfort, maybe even boredom. With boredom, we can quickly create a new challenge, another 30 seconds of chanting something motivational? Some runners do this and it has been recommended to keep it to two simple buzz words, just keep it to yourself. No one wants to hear someone giving it ‘Strong! Determined!’ as you pound the pavement…..it’s odd, awkward and ¬†you could get locked up. Another one for boredom is avoid having just one focus, which maybe finishing, surviving maybe. Have a few areas to focus on. Last week, it took me 2 minutes to get to the tree, 5 to get to the cafe, 10 to get to the bus stop, try and beat those times. Try running with a similar paced person and having an easy run and chatting. You will have to work hard to run and string sentences together so be aware of this and adapt to suit. Whatever you do, don’t be a racing snake and try and have a full blown conversation with someone that has just got back into it. Your not going to be popular and could suffer some bad language.

Regarding pain and discomfort, recognize where the pain comes from. Is it serious? If so, act accordingly, its not worth missing time off work through injury. If its just an ache and your struggling, there are some methods of dealing with it, pretty simple stuff really. If its your legs that ache, divert your focus onto the arms. Moving your arms like pistons, instead of across the body (which can waste energy anyway) and your legs will follow. Honestly, try and walk and pump your arms faster than normal, you will feel your legs wanting to follow suit to keep up.

It could be your stride is too long, meaning you may feel your not doing that well and try to compensate by stretching the legs out further, or it could be your trying to beat a PB. If its becoming a problem, try shortening the stride but moving the legs quicker. If we take long strides, we are physically balancing on one foot longer than we could if we took shorter strides. As running is weight bearing, this can have us aching in those joints in the legs. Give them a break and spend less time on one leg, by taking shorter strides at a quicker pace.

Takes some practice but between the coping strategies above, this should help see you through the harder sections in a run.

Hope you enjoy the posts, let me know if you do and if there is anything you wish me to discuss with you or explain. I will aim to get some more coping strategies done soon. All the best and enjoy your running

Mick