Running Science: Optimising Training and Performance
(2017) edited by John Brewer
- Running performance is greatly determined by how much and how quickly horizontal force can be applied to the body.
- On calm days the energy cost of running to combat air resistance is still approximately 8% for sprinting, 4% for middle-distance running and 2% for marathon running.
- There is no additional benefit in exceeding 60-70 miles of training per week for a recreational runner (or 70-110 miles for elite runners).
- Exercise is an effective strategy to regulate and improve mood, which supports creative thinking. Successful performances are therefore linked to strong mental and physical health.
Training Tips and Errors
- Avoid straightening your knees on landing, striking the ground in front of your body, swinging your trailing foot and leaning too far back whilst running because it decreases running economy.
- Run on a variety of surfaces to create greater adaptations in bones and soft tissues.
- Avoid taking an absence from running (unless due to injury or mental fatigue) for four weeks or more. Cardiac output may fall by 8% and VO2 max by up to 15%.
- As exercise intensity increases concentrate on the components of running, such as form, foot strike and stride length, to run closer to your maximum.
- If you listen to music whilst you run, ensure the tunes incite emotions appropriate to the situation; listen to calming beats on easy runs and personally motivational songs during more important workouts.
- Avoid wearing clothes made from materials such as cotton and wool that will keep sweat from evaporating whilst running. Instead choose wicking fabrics such as polyester to prevent overheating.
- Wear sunglasses whilst running on sunny days to ensure your eyes are relaxed, which is crucial for performance.