Every Breath You Take.....
Life in the Fast Lane
In my book Run Tall, Run Easy (available now as an e~book at Amazon & ITunes) I tell the anecdote of the night in Santa Cruz, California along beautiful West Cliff Drive (adjacent to Steamer's Lane, one of the famed surf spots on the California coast line) that I self discovered a breathing cadence in my running on a mild Winter''s evening in 1993...it happened by accident as on that particular evening I became aware of the rhythmic pattern to the vapors of my out breath synchronizing with my strike of every second left foot ~ I had unknowingly 'back doored' my way into the Runner's Holy Grail..it was a run, a night that would change the course of my running career forever...I had never heard of a breathing cadence to running, never been taught one or taught about it...the first I saw in print was several years later in Runner's World in an article written by Ed Eyestone. I was thrilled when I read the article~ it validated so much for me~ there was someone else out there that understood me I felt, I was no longer alone on an Island. It more importantly taught me that I was on the right track, the right path...and to this day not only do I preach and teach breathing cadence but I use it on every single run...I mostly feel at ease with the 3-1 cadence, a musical rhythmic pattern breathing out on every second left foot strike with one breath out on one step succeeded by one breath in over three steps (right, left, right)...on that inspirational evening in 1993 I also discovered the very precise position and upward thrust of my left wrist positioned by my hip and over my left ankle at the point of the left foot contact with the ground and the outward air stream...I went on to call this the 'Triangle' years later in my book....another popular cadence (one that my older son Luke uses) is another symmetrical four beat multiple of two- it is the 2-2...one breath over two steps on expiration and one breath over two steps on inspiration...I use this cadence as well but I tend to use it at the higher levels of intensity in the latter stages of a hard workout or race where there is a perception of a more rapid and urgent requirement for oxygen....the purpose of today's musing as often is the case with me is to get you think about your own 'game' and the cause and effect of running actions and activity...work on your 'game' and do not leave things to chance...breathing cadence allows you to block out the negative thoughts that threaten to permeate our minds as we run...it provides a safe haven, a protective pocket to were we can relax, stay in the moment and think with clarity about the task at hand and it is at the very heart of relaxation at speed- without it, we are a pilot flying in fog without an instrument panel- we are in infinite danger of not making it to the finish line for a timely arrival, if we finish at all !
Walk in peace and let the good times roll !