This is my life. Sometimes shown through the eye of my camera phone, and sometimes not. I'll talk running, gadgets, music, and whatever else I stumble on to

Monday, May 03, 2010

Beating the Belly Breathing Blahs

Wow. A total of seven miles run over two days. That's something I haven't done in quite a while. Five miles on Sunday, two miles today. It felt great to get out there.

As I mentioned in a previous post, I can tell I've lost a bit of my endurance. One way I can tell, is that my breathing has been quite labored toward the tail end of my runs. It's taken me a long time to reach a 3x3 breathing pattern- one breath in for every three steps, one breath out for another three steps. This isn't an easy thing to achieve, mind you. It takes a little bit of work.

I think proper breathing, along with proper nutrition of course, during runs is vital to make sure I'm feeding my muscles with plenty of oxygen to go long. This gets critical on warmer days, when getting the proper dose of c02 means the difference in finishing, or tiring too quickly.

Right now, I've lost my ability to breathe 3x3 all the way through five miles, which was a piece of cake before. Not only that, but having to concentrate on breathing from the diaphragm, instead of my lungs, is a challenge. It takes practice. Kind of like taking the air out of a balloon, and then breathing it back out, over and over again.

Things get even MORE complicated since I'm a "breathe in through the mouth, out the nose" breather when I run. This can get messy, folks, even more so when I have a sinus infection, like a do now!

Fortunately, I know exactly what to do to get it back. I find myself focusing so much, that I can tell when I need to drop down to a 2x2 pattern to take in more air. So for a five mile run, for example, I will do 2.5 miles in a 3x3 pattern, and the rest in 2x2. Then I work myself up to the point when I can breathe normally and be relaxed all the way through.

And THEN, there is a different breathing pattern when I hit miles in the 8:30 to 8:45 per-minute range (marathon pace), but I'll leave that for another post.

This sounds kinda silly, but it's probably the most importance piece to get right, I think. Practice, practice, practice.

My body will remember.



Blogger runner-grrl said...

Really interesting stuff on the 3x3 breathing. I haven't thought much about my breathing, but tomorrow, I wonder what kind of breathing I'm doing. --Alex

2:19 PM


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