A lot of people think going faster when you’re running means trying to power your way to speed or trying to recruit as many muscles as possible.
That might work in the short term (aka sprinting) but it’s not something you can keep up very long. It’s not sustainable so that’s why a lot of people hit a wall through their races.
When it comes to long-distance running, like life, less is more. Being compact means you’re being as efficient as possible, while trimming the fat from your running form. Flailing arms or bouncing really doesn’t help you in getting to the finish line as quickly as you’d like.
If you ever see the pros, it barely looks like they’re even trying yet they’re clocking sub 3-min kilometres. They’re incredibly compact and efficient. And fast! And it’s not coming from their huge legs or arms.
It also makes you realize using your core to stabilize your body makes you a more efficient and thus a faster running. ChiRunning puts emphasis on going forward since running is a linear exercise. Swaying from side to side not only takes away some speed, it also puts you at risk of getting injured, especially with hip and IT band issues.
This also applies to life in general. The more you stay in your lane, the easier things are and the best the outcomes seem to be. Focus and form helps tremendously in almost everything you do, except maybe brainstorming…
So next time you’re out for a run, think about staying in your cylinder and see how much of your energy is going forward as opposed to up and down or from side to side. You might be surprised by the result.
Some folks look like Carlton when he dances when they run (see above). Don’t be like Carlton!