Ok, Ok, I exaggerate. I don't get ALL my running info from YouTube. But I did find this fascinating video comparing the running form of an Olympic marathon runner, an average runner, and a duathlon runner. I know this video is trying to sell you some sort of product that I have no clue about, but try to ignore that part. In fact, just skip to 51 seconds in to the video.
Isn't it striking how different the strides are? You can tell that the average runner is so much more upright, and each step is much shorter. I find it particularly interesting how he mentions you need good glutes/hamstring strength to kick back and bring your foot forward again.
This video was quite eye-opening. From watching my shadow, reflection in car windows, and race photos, I know I run really upright. I know I stride more with my lower leg and not my thighs. I know I don't immediately contract my hamstrings, and I know my foot lands ahead of my center of gravity. Keeping all these things in mind, I have been focusing on one aspect at a time on my runs. The biggest thing for me is the contraction of the hamstrings as soon as the foot makes contact with the ground. This has helped me spend less time on the ground, and more time going forward. Propelling myself forward with my thighs and tilting my pelvis forward really does help me move faster without too much extra effort, but I find that my muscles and bones aren't used to that sort of pounding yet. But I think concentrating on form a little bit at a time is making me more aware as a runner. Looks like I've still got a ways to go!
What do you think of this video? (Minus the product placement) What form do you focus on when you run?
I have another session of repeats on the treadmill today. Yikes, my knees are a-hurtin'! I am actually quite scared of it right now. I don't know how they'll feel for all 6 repeats. I think that I will slow it down a little if they start to twinge. No point getting hurt three weeks in just to run 5-10 seconds faster.
And now I have to go find my brain because I have been SUPER scatterbrained the last couple of days and I need to get my life back in order. Brain! Where'd I lose you at?