Mark Iocchelli, the “Running Blogfather,” is a 40-year-old marathon runner who has conquered every running challenge from shin splints to stress fractures. Continuing to run, Mark shares his knowledge and experience with the running world through active blogging on sites such as The Complete Running Blog Network. This site composed of “runners with a blogging addiction” shares such helpful tips as “How to Breathe When Running.”
I don’t know about the rest of you, but for me, mastering my breath is the most difficult part of any run. My legs can take it, my heart can take it, my lungs, on the other hand, tend to struggle. According to Mark, difficulty breathing on a run can mean one of two things: you need to slow down or you need to increase your oxygen intake. The first is fairly simple to accomplish, while the second is not.
Luckily, Mark provides tips for dealing with the latter:
- Try slowing down before attempting to change your breathing
- Focus on longer, deeper breaths
- Breath more from your diaphragm (belly) than your chest (chest breathing is more shallow)
- Focus on exhaling more fully. This will remove more carbon dioxide and allow for deeper inhalations of oxygen.
- Allow the air to enter through both the nose and mouth. This will allow for maximum oxygen intake.
- Aim to take three footsteps for every inhale, and two footsteps for every exhale (3:2 ratio)
- Try not to over think your breathing. It’s best to slow down, relax, and let yourself fall into your body’s natural rhythm.
Try incorporating these techniques into your next run and see just how great your body feels afterwards. Oh, and if you need a little help building up the motivation to get to that next run to test these tips out, try Change Anything out to get the ball rolling.