Yesterday I ran my farthest yet! 3.65 miles in roughly 36 minutes. The first two miles, I was averaging a 9:20 min/mile pace but slowed down after I started getting tired. This is a change for me because usually I stop when I'm tired. Instead, yesterday I focused on breathing. I was so focused on my breath that I kept running and stopped when I thought I did enough. Surprisingly, I could have kept going!
So what did I do? I breathed in through my nose for a count of 3 (or 3 strides) and breathed out through my mouth for a count of 3. When you're tired, breathing in through your nose for that long is tough but if you really focus on doing it, it will make you run longer. I read this first on someone's blog - sorry I can't remember who - I follow a lot of blogs! And then a couple of my facebook friends suggested it as well. Today when I was thinking about how far my long run will be this weekend, I thought of my breathing technique yesterday and remembered that's exactly what I learned in Lamaze! I clearly remember our instructor's "relaxed" face during the breathing - it still cracks me up! I never got a chance to use my lamaze breathing since I had a C section but it's good to know that the money spent on the class wasn't wasted. I'm using Lamaze for running!
So next time you find yourself exhausted on your long run, try to focus on your breath and see where it takes you. I'm confident I will use my lamaze breathing this weekend on my long run (hoping for 4 miles).
Are there are other breathing technique you use during your runs? What about techniques in general? Do you have any that you reserve for races?
Until my 4-miler,