9 weeks to go until the Coventry Half Marathon.

The final run of this week is 6 miles (10k), the distance of many of the charity runs in the local area.  If you have trained for a charity run and built up your running fitness; why not enter the Coventry Half Marathon and achieve a fantastic goal. 

Running efficiency is more important as the miles you run in a week start to increase.  You should be smooth, relaxed and have a natural rhythm, the better your running technique the less stress you place on your body and you will reduce your risk of injury.

Here are a few pointers to an efficient running stride: 

  • Keep a good upright posture; do not tilt forward from your hips, lean slightly forward from your ankles.
  • Relax your shoulders without rounding them, keep them square.
  • Let your arms swing naturally at your sides; focus on pushing your elbows backwards.
  • Don’t let your arms cross the centre line of your chest in front of you; this will lead you to hunch and round your shoulders.
  • Don’t over stretch your legs as you swing through, this can lead to a braking effect as your foot hits the ground, slowing you down and jarring your joints.
  • Focus on pulling your foot underneath your body and striking the floor under not ahead of your body.
  • Try not to bounce; you’re aiming to propel your body forward not upward.
  • Look where you are going not down at your feet, this will help keep your body upright and you will see any obstacles ahead.

The more efficient your stride the easier the run will be; I have a friend who lands with his foot almost side ways like Charlie Chaplin, his fitness makes up for his inefficient stride but his performance rockets when he focuses on good technique. 

The more efficient your running style the faster you can go with less effort.  Running becomes more enjoyable as you improve your efficiency because you will flow and seem to float along rather than struggling to drag your feet along with you.

The total weekly mileage is starting to add up now and your legs may be feeling tired, make sure you are completing your stretches every day and spend a little longer on them after the runs.  Treat yourself to a sports massage; this can really help to re-energise your legs, email me for details of the therapists we use at Achieve Coventry.

Self Myofascial Release can really help to improve your running fitness and works in a similar way to a sports massage; I’ll post more information on this later this week.

Here’s this weeks programme:

Day 1
Cross training (RPE 4-5)
Strength Circuit x2 

Day 2
3 miles focus on changing pace.
0.5m (4-5)
0.5m (5-6)
0.5m (6-7)
0.5m (5-6)
0.5m (6-7)
0.5m (7-8) 

Day 3
Strength Circuit x2 

Day 4
3m (RPE 5-7)
Include some hills in your route.

Day 5
Cross Training (RPE 5-6)
The same as day 1 but work a bit harder.

Day 6
Rest Day

Day 7
6m (RPE 5-6)
Your aim is to complete the distance and record the time; if you don’t manage to run the full distance, don’t worry, walk when you need to and just do the best you can and complete the distance.

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