Every runner worth their salt is well versed with the importance of doing strength training and endurance training to not just run for longer, but also to run faster. It’s been found over and over again that even with just working on one’s mileage, running times come down over time.
However, we often forget, or rather take for granted, a crucial part of running – breathing. While it is important to let the body breathe instinctively and not overthink every aspect while running, paying a little attention to one’s breathing can help improve endurance and strength, help maintain pace on inclines, and avoid common problems like side stitches.
Today, we look at a breathing technique that is an integral part of yoga and pilates, which is ‘Deep breathing’, also known as ‘Belly breathing’ or ‘Diaphragmatic breathing’. Diaphragmatic breathing results in air being pulled deep into the lungs, allowing for more lung capacity over time.
While belly breathing can take a while to get a hang of, including this simple exercise posted below during your cross-training and working out will make it easier to gradually follow it during your runs.
Take a deep breath, relax, and happy running!
Photo credit: US Army