Pumpkin Pie 10k & 2 Simple Words of Advice on Good Running Form
So, this morning I ran Denver's 10k Pumpkin Pie Race! It's was an easy, fun run! Totally recommend it. The race is mostly flat with a tiny hill. I enjoyed running it with my gals and chatting it up. I am pumped to get to the next race in January! Guess I got that runner's high.
It's crazy to think that I almost gave up running at one point. Last year I suffered an intense IT band injury while training for a full marathon over a year ago. I almost stopped running, thinking that a slight scoliosis was the underlying cause. I finally went to a free 30-minute PT session and was immediately diagnosed with weak glutes.
I almost gave up running, something that is near and dear to me because of a simple fixable mistake. It got me thinking a lot about good running form....two things I wish someone would have explained to me about running form:
1) Try to pay attention to how you land while running. We have about 4 inches of padding on the ball of our feet versus a tiny amount of padding on our heels. Logic tells us that we should be mindfully landing on the ball of the foot. I watched a few videos on YouTube recommending to run barefoot. I think this is a genius idea! Your body instinctively knows the optimal way to move. I think sometimes our shoes might be even too comfy for our own good and so we forget how perfectly designed we already are!
2) After you have successfully landed on the ball of the foot try to bring the heel up to the booty. This is how you engage your glute muscles. For years I had people tell me to run with my butt. I had no idea what that meant. I also find it helpful to think of pushing off of the ground and trying to kick my butt when I run. We are a quad dominate society. My quads are probably the biggest muscle in my body! My quads got so strong and tight they began to pull on my IT band. I needed to strengthen my glutes to balance my legs. I still have to actively think about this as I run but the pain is mostly gone and I run much faster now these days.
And there it is! Two easy things you can try on your next run!