Friday, February 25, 2011

Results of the form change so far

With my 10k tomorrow, I wanted to check my form to see how the last six weeks have treated me.  So I dragged out the video camera and tripod and did a few easy strides this morning.  Recall this was me less than two months ago:

As was this:

This is me this morning:

Forgive the horrid tan line (these are my new racing shorts, which are shorter than my usual) and the hurried and sloppy editing.  I've got a freeze-frame here as well:

I could not be much happier with the results.  You can see a number of things from the freeze-frame above.  I'm landing slightly in front of my center of gravity on my midfoot with a slightly bent knee, shin pretty much vertical.  My posture is straight, hips under me, with a very slight forward lean.  Back leg is coming off of the ground with the heel highish (it gets higher as I run faster).  And if you look at the front/back section of the video, you'll see that my side-to-side motion is greatly reduced (although still there).  Overall, a major improvement.  I look like a runner and not a zombie trying to do the rumba down the street. 

I want to emphasize that I wasn't trying anything new or special or running in a way different than I usually do.  This is my current form.  Oh, I was thinking about some of the mental cues that I have developed for running, but I do that during my normal runs.  I daresay that the form gets sloppier as I run longer too.

And there are still things to work on.  I swing my arms too much and I have my wrists at a weird angle (I didn't realize this until watching the video).  I need to work on better hip extension.  I think I reach forward with my legs and "paw" back a little too much, and on some of the strides I think I'm landing just a touch in front of where I'd like.  I'm sure an expert like my brother-in-law could pick out a hundred other things to fix.  But I'm light years ahead of where I was six weeks ago.

Now let's see how this form does in an actual race.

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