Entry 102 – Why is breathing when running so hard?!

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Obviously I can breathe when I run otherwise I would just end up in a heap on the floor.

BUT

I puff and pant as I run.  I know I am doing it.  I struggle with getting my breath to be natural and genuinely find this element of running hard.  I’m not sure I’ve yet had a run where I thought I wouldn’t finish because of my legs but definitely have from the breathing or simply not being able to catch my breath.

So something I need to work on and so this week I went for a 4 mile run with the hubby and tried to listen to his advice and concentrate on my breathing.  It was cold, and dark but was a comfortable run and almost at my usual pace so I was pleased.

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I then ran to and from the gym for my pilates class and it’s only half a mile and yet on the way there it didn’t feel comfortable at all.  On the way home it did but still not as comfortable as the 4 mile run.  It didn’t make sense to me that 4 miles felt easier than half a mile and even after the half a mile I still looked like a sweaty tomato.  Every time I exercise I go from normal to this guaranteed.

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I had intended to do Park Run on Saturday and was going to try and run home too in a bid to get some longer runs in or at least longer than I’ve ever done before.  However, I ended up doing the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park 10k run with my lovely friend Helen.

Now you know when you go on a run or a bike ride and you have a route or road or hill that is your nemesis well the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park 10k run is my nemesis run and route.  Don’t get me wrong I would recommend this event to anyone – it’s local enough, only £17 (or £15 if you are part of an affiliated club) and you get a medal and a goody bag.  The people involved are all lovely and there are photos available after as well.  Despite all this I just find this a tough run.  I’ve done enough 10k’s now and I this one just seems to get me every time.  It is three laps and I dislike laps with a passion.  It is what they describe as undulating.  They needn’t describe it as I feel it as I run every single lap.

After my 4 mile run I had high hopes for the 10k and in my head I wanted one of two things – either to complete the run with no walking or to get a finish time of sub 1 hour.  After the first lap I remembered that this is not my favourite run, as per usual I went off way to quick and my breathing was shot to bits.  My only goal became to finish it.  It was raining and windy and I was dressed in full length running leggings and a long sleeved running top but it was not cold at all so I was pretty hot – got what to wear completely wrong!  This was how the run made me feel 😦

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My poor friend Helen was super supportive as always and ran with me through my puffing, panting and moaning.  Here is a pic of us on the final lap and it says it all about how Helen feels when running and how I feel.  We finished after what felt like hours and hours but was actually just over 1 hour and 1 minute.

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When I checked my Strava I was surprised to find that it turned out to be a PB for me for the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park 10k run and showed that every run I have done there showed an improvement on time.  It also confirmed that I had gone off way too quickly yet again at a pace I cannot maintain!

So I learned two things that I need to work on – my pace and my breathing!

If I am honest after the run I got in the car (did I mention my lovely hubby turned up in time to see me on my final lap after an evening shift of overtime) and I was pretty disappointed with myself but after some lovely words from my hubby and Helen I realised I am improving all the time and my progress compared to this time last year is huge and I am pleased with that and will carry on!  And I lost half a pound this week too!

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2 thoughts on “Entry 102 – Why is breathing when running so hard?!

  1. Breathing is so important when running, I always count my breaths, usually 4 steps in and 3 steps out. When I’m sprinting faster, I go to 3 and 3. It’s kind of zen as well just to count your breaths, you don’t think about what your legs are doing, you just go from one breath to the next.

    Liked by 1 person

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