With the New York City Marathon just around the corner (we hope), many athletes, workout enthusiasts and fitness newbies are looking to the streets or the treadmill for a spot of cardio.
Running seems to feature in most people's workout regimes to some extent, and there's no doubt that when done properly, it can be great for heart, body and mind.
Below are my top tips for making the most of your run, whether it's 10 minutes on the treadmill, around the park with your dog or 26.2 miles around New York City.
Carrying tension in your arms, face, neck and shoulders will reduce your efficiency. Try loosening up a little, especially in your arms and fingers. Unclench your hands and let your jaw move around a little, too.
Focus on feeling your diaphragm doing the work and not your chest. Your breathing should be rhythmic and deep. Exhale with controlled force and when you pick up the pace, don't let your breathing get shallow.
3. Run Tall
At the gym, I see a lot of runners "folding" in the middle when their feet connect with the treadmill. Gravity and a weak core will cause this, and the compression wastes valuable energy that could be used to propel you forward. Pretend someone is pulling you up by the shoulders, thrust your hips forward and focus on stability. Engage your core, too, and you'll find it much easier to stand tall and run forward.