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.