micke-midlife on April 21st, 2009

breathe_rightThis is no commercial for some plastic strip you slap onto your nose five minutes to start, but rather the first hint in this series of hints for the ambitious runner. In many guides and programs you find advice and pointers for beginners, with this series I thought some experiences for those of you who have run some kilometers already could be quite interesting. This doesn’t mean that these hints aren’t useful for the beginner as well. Share your views and opinions!

Breathe right! No. 1, Focus on breathing out instead of in. No worries the lungs look after the intake by themselves. The harder your beathe out the more is your intake afterwards.

No2, Train your abdominal breathing, it also maximizes oxygen intake. Also known as diaphragmatic breathing, the diaphragm, a large muscle located between the chest and the stomach area controls the movement. When it contracts it causes negative pressure within the chest forcing air into the lungs.

A good exercise for at home on the living room (my favorite) carpet: lie down on your back - starts promising already at this stage, doesn’t it? - put a book or the stuffed rabbit of your daughter on your stomach. When breathing in and out the book (or rabbit) goes up and down, then you’re doing it right.

To give the breathing muscles an extra push you can take the next step here and train them actively. Lie down on your back again, arms wide outspread. Use some weights in both hands, e.g. some 4kg dumb-bells. Breathe in when lifting your arms and bringing your hands with the weights together. Breathe out strongly when bringing your arms back down outspread on the floor.

Proper breathing is a healer for all sorts of tensions and things. When reading through some guru material it sounds like it can get us over the economic crisis… check out some more details for yourselves on this 5-10 minute summary.

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