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  1. #1
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    OT - CHIRUNNING book questions...

    I just located and have started reading the ChiRunning book so heavily touted by various runners. Being a biker first and a runner second, I figure I can use all the help I can get. Can anyone point me in the direction of what to 'body focus' on to start with as this is totally different from my flail and flog method I currently run with? Seems like alot to absorb to start with, and I'd like to make as much positive progress as I can to start with. Thanks for any and all replies...

  2. #2
    Senior Member jennings780's Avatar
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    I read ChiRunning in March and have (pretty much) been doing the technique since then.
    My running is faster and more fluid. I have been pleased.

    I would focus on you walking around the house and at work, etc. Lift up your feet. He suggests in the book to imagine you have poles sticking out from your inner ankles that you have to step over. I would suggest doing that when walking.

    Also try to practice using your abs to keep your posture correct. When I first started I was experiencing back pain due to using my back. Use your abs.

    When I run I mainly focus on kicking my legs up in back and swinging my arms towards the rear. The visualization technique he suggests of focusing a few hundred feet ahead and imagining that you have a big rubber band hooked to your chest pulling you along really works well for me.

    I have passed the book on to some some friends and some of them have had some problems doing the technique. So, for some it may take some time.

  3. #3
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    The most critical thing to think about is posture. Efficient runners lean forward about 6 degrees, not bent from the waist, but in a straight line from the foot up. You should feel like you are falling forward with each step. This posture puts you in position to extend your upper leg well behind the hips and also reduces braking.

    Another thought is to avoid straightening the knees, both at the completion of leg recovery and at push-off.

    More information about running technique is available in my book The Triathlete's Guide to Run Training and on the video Joe Frielk and I produced, Evolution Running: Run Faster with Fewer Injuries www.EvolutionRunning.com Good luck, Ken

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    I don't have a running background so many points the book makes may have already been obvious to experienced runners. As with every running book I have read, Chi Running teaches you to prevent heel-striking. I started to learn this last year before I read the Chi Running book. It took some time to get used to but it is probably the single most productive change in a novice runner's form. Chi Running builts on this by emphasizing the lean, swinging your legs to the back and using hip flexors and "core" muscles to extend your stride without heel striking. There is a lot more to it but I find that this method helps spare your quads and calves--this is especially useful after you have wiped out your legs on the bike. As far as how to learn this, I find that making a short (<10) list of items from the book is step one. Then on your runs, just pick a few items to follow. After a while, you should start to feel what is most efficient for you. Of course, running with someone who is set on following the same method always helps.

    Has anyone purchased the DVD? I haven't heard anything good or bad about it but would like to know if it is worth the time.

  5. #5
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    Thanks Rugby! I've been trying it with some success the past couple weeks. Seems to be getting easier to run, but the heat here has been horrible and I think alot of my perceived effort is more because of it. But it does appear to be working. Much different than my sprinters stride I'd tryed to cross over to distance running with. I ran by a long store front window two nights ago, and have to think at least I 'look' better (just don't look at the face!) grin

  6. #6
    NEVER WALK A HILL cycleprincess's Avatar
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    I am reading ChiRunning too. I haven't been able to assimilate much of it yet...but then again you have to put down the book and actually run! I just don't like to run. I was hoping that by reading this book I'd get all jazzed about it. I'm still sucking wind.
    Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.

    T. S. Elliot

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    The most important things I remember from the book is to relax your body and land on your mid-foot, rather than your heel or toes. Also, remember that your mid-section is your center of gravity and all of your exertion should come from there, instead of your legs. I think that if you just try to find a way that allows you to run efficiently (run fast and far while using the least amount of energy), you will be doing what the book suggests.

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