Posts Tagged ‘Runner’s World’

March is the month that podcasters are encouraging their listeners to share their favorite podcasts in an effort to get more people to try a pod.

Screen Shot 2017-03-13 at 10.02.20 AM

I am happy to share my favorites as a thank you to those podcasters who have gotten me out the door for many a run. I’m one of those kooky people who do not listen to music while I run (yes, we do exist). I love to listen to podcasts and audiobooks though, and I rarely run without one or the other.

My favorite podcasts are:

1. Another Mother Runner: These ladies first introduced me to podcasts and I’ve loved them (the ladies and their podcasts) ever since. Not only do they have great guests and content, they also are completely relatable and I simply enjoy catching up with them each week. So many times I’ve laughed out loud as I listened to their opening dialogues and interviews. This podcast grew out of their books Run Like a Mother, Train Like a Mother, and Tales from Another Mother Runner and the wonderful Another Mother Runner community that has sprouted around those books. New podcasts come out every Friday, just in time for listening to on a weekend long run. And guess what? I sent in a voice memo about training with my teenager for a half marathon and you can hear that clip on today’s episode (at about the 12:30 mark if you want to fast-forward to it): How to Get Your Kid(s) Involved in Running.

2. Run to the Top Podcast from RunnersConnect: Tina Muir does an excellent job hosting this informative podcast with high quality guests. She’s an elite athlete who manages to be both humble and inspiring as she shares content that appeals to beginners and professional runners alike.

3. The Rich Roll Podcast: If you’re a fan of Rich Roll and his book Finding Ultra then you might also enjoy his podcast. He has a unique perspective and his podcast is one of the few that goes long-form with one- to two-hour interviews with a wide variety of guests, from celebrities to fitness experts. He hits heavy on the topics of sobriety and veganism, but there’s something there for everyone.

4. The Conscious Runner Podcast: Listening to the Conscious Runner host Lisah Hamilton is like listening to your own personal coach and running friend. She has a lot to teach a new runner and anyone who wants to improve running form and speed. Her guests range from experts to everyday runners, and they all share a passion for running that will keep you inspired to get out there and do your best.

5. Human Race Podcast by Runner’s World: This relatively new podcast features human interest pieces that share the stories of various runners and the running community.

6. The Runner’s World Show: This show hosted by Runner’s World Editor-in-Chief David Willey is an interesting mix of running news, tips, and interviews.

Are any of these on your favorites list too? What are your go-to podcasts, running-related or otherwise? I would love to hear your recommendations!

Read Full Post »

The other day as I ran on the treadmill I watched my reflection in the gym windows. With each step of my right foot, my right shoulder dipped a little. Seems natural, right? Except I didn’t notice the same dip of my left shoulder when I landed with my left foot. I started wondering if I had some sort of leg length discrepancy or other imbalance that made me impact heavily on the right side. Then I read the new book Running on Air by Budd Coates and Claire Kowalchik. The authors explained that when a runner’s foot hits the ground, the force of impact is two to three times the runner’s body weight. Research shows that that impact stress is greatest when the footstrike takes place as the runner starts to exhale. Many runners breathe in a 3-3 or 2-2 pattern, breathing in for a count of 3 and out for a count of 3, which means that the exhalation coincides with the footstrike of the same foot, over and over again. For me and many other runners, that happens to be the right foot. No wonder the impact appeared greater on my right side!

In Runner’s World Running on Air: The Revolutionary Way to Run Better by Breathing Smarter, the authors recommend a 3-2 breathing pattern, switching to a 2-1 as the runner’s effort increases. This rhythmic breathing method distributes the footstrike impact of exhalation evenly between the left foot and the right foot, and helps the runner achieve stability and centeredness. The hope is that that then leads to a reduced risk of injury.

With the above explanation, you’ve gotten the core premise of the book and you could go out on your next easy or moderate run and practice the 3-2 pattern, inhaling for a count of three steps and exhaling for a count of 2. Who should buy the book then? Runners of all levels and abilities can benefit from reading the entire text, but I want to highlight a few groups in particular who might get the most out of it:

  • Beginning runners who haven’t “gotten over the hump” — who feel like every run leaves them out of breath and disappointed with their performance.
  • Runners with asthma.
  • Intermediate to advanced runners who have hit a plateau or gotten tired of focusing on pace on a GPS watch or heart rate on a heart rate monitor. Rhythmic breathing provides immediate feedback without the need for any fancy technology. It allows you to make every run a “success” no matter your pace or distance, because you’ve run for the prescribed length of time at the prescribed Rhythmic Breathing Effort.

The book guides the reader through some belly breathing exercises to work the diaphragm to its potential and allow the lungs to fill to their largest volume of air. It lays out several beginning, intermediate and advanced running plans for race distances from 5K to the full marathon. (As I said above, the plans are based on time and effort, not pace and distance. It also follows a 14-day training cycle. I can tell you that as I’ve trained for my second marathon with a pace-based training plan, I’ve been a little frustrated and disappointed when I couldn’t hit the pace for a particular run. So while it would take a leap of faith for me to follow a Running on Air plan based on Rhythmic Breathing Effort, I’m intrigued by the idea).

The book also has chapters on hill running, racing, strength training and stretching. While I found those chapters valuable, the real gold nugget of the book remains the 3-2 and 2-1 breathing pattern and the explanations of how to incorporate those patterns into your running. I’ve given it a try on several training runs. I can do it but it still takes a lot of mental concentration and focus on my footstrikes to do it. I can see how rhythmic breathing would easily become more natural over time, and it could help a runner achieve a meditative state on a run. For now, I will use the breathing method to check in with myself during a run, to alternate the footstrike occasionally, and to give myself a boost of oxygen as my effort increases.

Have you read Running on Air? Do you focus on your breathing when you run?

Disclosure: I received an advance digital copy of this book for review. I did not receive other compensation. If you want to buy the book through the Amazon links in this post at no additional cost to you, that would net me a whole 50 cents or so, which I would gladly accept but I can promise you that’s not enough to bribe me into writing an overly positive review. That would take like $100. Kidding.

Read Full Post »