As I have mentioned in the past, one of my fitness goals for 2011 is to complete my first triathlon. I decided that the Virginia Run Sprint Triathlon would be a great way to start since it’s distances (250m swim, 12mi bike, 5k run) are relatively short compared to other sprint and international triathlons.
I started my swim training about a month ago and my main goal has been to steadily increase in lung capacity. After about 3 weeks, I had only been able to decrease my 250m swim time by 30 seconds. That is, until I decided to focus specifically on form. (Prior to this, I was only swimming the way I could remember from swim lessons 15 years ago).
I corrected my head position, my stroke, and and my breathing pattern. I could feel the difference almost immediately and it showed in my time. I was able to reduce my time another 60 seconds; and on top of that, I felt amazing. I did the same 250m set twice more and still had energy left. The point I’m trying to make is: if you take the time to work on proper form, it could be a completely different experience altogether.
As a triathlete, this proposes one question: If there is a proper form for swimming which can increase efficiency, and the same goes for cycling, what about running? My answer: a big, huge YES. In general, most people (in our generation) just put on a pair of sneakers and go out on a run without even a thought if there is a better way to do it. I’m telling you, THERE IS! I’ll delve further into that thought on a future post. Till then, I’ll leave you with a a side-by-side picture demonstrating improper and proper running form.