Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The Science of Running

I was privileged to attend the running clinic entitled "The Science of Running" just this evening that was organized by RUNNR, which is the premiere running specialty store in the country located at Bonifacio High Street. The speakers were elite tri-athletes Adrian Mok from Singapore and Arland Macasieb. Adian talked about how to properly use a heart rate monitor, while Arland discussed the proper running technique.

I have been running for two years already and I can personally say that a heart rate monitor has helped me improve a lot in my running. Adrian showed us his actual heart rate monitor stats while training which gave me a glimpse on how I can train as well and improve my running. I once heard from someone that heart rate monitors aren’t that useful pointing out that elite runners don’t normally wear them. But I believe that technology can actually help every runner even elite runners to improve. Maybe one of the reason we don’t see that many elite runners wearing heart rate monitors is because of budget constraint. There are also some elite runners who have a heart rate monitor, but prefers not to use them during races. But even if you are not into using heart rate monitors on races, they can still be very useful in monitoring your progress during training. I myself saw its benefit and I would recommend those who want to improve to go get a heart rate monitor. RUNNR sells different lines of Polar watches that provide heart rate monitors. Prices of these watches vary depending on the functionality. Some watches have the capability not only to measure heart rate but speed and distances as well.

After Adrian discussed about heart rate monitors, Arland began discussing the proper running technique. Running technique is important if you are keen in improving your speed. If you look at the elite runners, you will easily notice the difference in style as compared to slower runners. The truth is, there are some things in our genetics that we can no longer improve upon which separates Haile from us. But, at least we know that proper running form is something we can improve on and which will definitely help improve our speed. As what Arland said, we can improve our running by using the proper form and using the right technology. The Newton running shoes which is only sold at RUNNR here in our country is the only shoe I know that promotes mid foot running. There have been debates about the most efficient foot strike, but based on studies mid foot running is the most efficient form of foot strike when running long distances. Another product that I wanted to try myself is the CWX compression tights. I’ve tried researching in the web and all I hear are praises for this product. CWX claims that wearing the tights can boost your performance because it helps improve your running efficiency and posture. Unfortunately when I visited RUNNR a couple of days ago, my size for the compression tights was out of stock. I’m waiting for the next delivery of the CWX tights which will hopefully have my size.

The clinic did not disappoint me, and I’m sure a lot of runners specially the newbies learned a lot during the clinic. Thanks to RUNNR for organizing such an event, and for making the clinic available for free.

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