How to Run Like a Pro by Elite Runner Rob Gibson
I have been running my whole life. I have completed countless races ranging from 200 meters all the way up to the marathon. While I have had some success in my 20 years of running, I have always strived to make myself as efficient of a runner as possible. Fortunately, I live in Boston where there are some of the best tracks in the world as well as the world’s most prestigious marathon, the Boston Marathon. Because of this, I have been able to watch countless races featuring some of the fastest distance runners in the world. Whenever I watch any of these races, I find myself marveling at the way world-class runners make running so fast look so smooth and easy for so long. While each runner’s body is unique and works differently, I have noticed that the following things are consistent amongst the world’s fastest runners.
Things to keep in mind while running:
- Head should stay right over your shoulders and head movement should be minimal.
- Keep eyes up and looking forward.
- Shoulders should stay relaxed. A lot of people tense up their shoulders and the energy used to keep shoulders tense is wasteful and doesn’t help.
- The pelvis should be in line with head and feet. In my opinion, this is the most important part to stabilize. Once you start dropping your pelvis back and sit, your form and overall efficiency go to shit.
Stomach and Core
- Should be upright.
- Keep belly button pointing straight in front of you.
- Should be kept at 90-degree angle and should swing from your hip to your nips
- Try to prevent crossing your body. Any part of you that is moving laterally (side to side) messes with your forward momentum and ultimately you are trying to go forward as quickly and efficiently as possible.
- Arm drive is extremely important for when you want to run faster and finish out a race.
Foot Strike and Placement
- Foot should land just in front of center of mass.
- Ideally, you land on your midfoot.
- Keep foot flexed as you cycle through your stride.
- Heel strike acts as a ‘break’ and puts a lot more stress on the legs.
- Forefoot fine but puts a lot of strain on the calf.
- Knees should drive forward and not cross your center line
Rob Gibson, an Elite Runner, is YORK Athletics Operations Manager & Customer Service Guru. Rob runs in the Henry Optic Mesh in Bone.