To run faster, most athletes take this approach:
Run more and run harder.
It makes sense. That kind of attitude solves a lot. Most of the time, the athletes willing to work longer, harder, and more often are the ones who pull ahead.
Well, this time around…
It might be the OPPOSITE of what you need. Let me explain…
Running fast comes down to 3 things:
Running mechanics (AKA your technique, how fluid you move, etc.)
Muscle synergy (how the muscle groups required to run work together)
Strength (that’s where drilling, lifting and running come into play)
But let’s say you’re problem is with your Mechanics.
Your technique is off, and it’s shaving seconds off your running times.
If you run more… and harder… all you’ll end up doing is reinforcing the bad habits you already have.
The BETTER thing to do in this instance is run LESS – but with perfect technique. The faster you run, the sloppier your technique will get as your muscles work harder and harder.
If you slow down, you can focus on your movements. You can reflect on how your muscles are working together. You can observe yourself.
But Mechanics and Synergy are like two peas in a pod.
Your imperfect technique could come from the way you exercise and lift weights. If you’re doing motions that aren’t complete, fluid, and functional – your muscles are building in a way that will cause them to move with less efficiency.
So your muscle synergy is causing your mechanics to be imperfect. Make sense?
So to run faster, start with this:
Next time you go to lift or exercise, take it SLOW. Especially with leg exercises. Do everything PERFECTLY. Don’t worry about how many reps you can do. Worry about how you do those reps. So if you’re doing squats, do the full range of motion slowly. Make each squat perfect. Make each one count.
When you run, same thing. Try running slowly and really focusing on your technique. Pay close attention to how your legs move, your arms, your core.Does anything feel clunky or non-fluid? Is anything hurting? Does anything feel harder than it should?
ANYONE can get faster. I don’t care if your whole life you’ve felt like you just “weren’t a runner”.
You just need the right technique, and the right strength.
Stay tuned. Next time we’ll get into exercises you can do to quickly boost your speed ;-).