Sunday, December 11, 2011

What is F.A.B. Running? | Here is the Story

Awhile back, I wanted to develop a blog name to inspire other runners, yet serve as an easy mantra to remember during a race or a training run. 

Then, I posted to someone (on my FB Fan Page) to have a “FAB-O race”. That word “FAB” stuck with me so I decided to play around with the word for a bit.

As luck would have it – the 3 key elements of the focus of my training and those who I coach fit great into the FAB

  • FORM
(not neccessarily in that order)

Why are Form, Attitude and Breathing so important to me?

Let’s start with Breathing – back in February of this year, I had an asthma attack at the end of a 5K, that was very cold weather. Keep in mind, I have never had any asthma attacks in my life. It was scary and interesting to say the least.

I began research and found out about Exercise Induced Asthma (EIA). That was me to a tee. Instead of immediately jumping on a rescue inhaler, I learned great breathing techniques. I learned the importance of warming up the muscles around the lungs prior to a run. It became the cornerstone of the changes I was about to make in my training.

I got and confirmed I had EIA. I now carry a rescue inhaler with me on all runs and races.

From there, during my PT and rehab after a hip injury, I began to change my Form in running with ChiRunning. If you look at my earlier race pictures, I look like a toy soldier. Legs stiff, shoulders up at my ears. I learned the benefit of allowing our bodies to run the natural way. It was so natural to learn, but once I got it – it happens naturally now. Here is a comparison of my running form pre-ChiRunning and how my form looks now  –

Attitude – well, attitude is everything. We all have bad days or even weeks. Goodness, you all have experienced a HORRIBLE week with me this past week and I thank you for your support, I really do. I am sure many of you did not know I could be so feisty and vocal, huh?  lol  Trust me, you didn't see the half of my wrath towards Competitor Group.  For me, when I hit my emotions head on, I can deal with it and start the healing process to move forward. 

When I am running and I am not feeling it – it usually is in my mind. Something is distracting me. It might be my kids, my work or whatever. I can either use the run/race to clear my mind or not. Most of the time, it does clear my mind. I find racing is the best mental therapy. I become laser focused on a run. It’s me and the clock. It’s me against the course. For those few moments or hours (depending on the race distance) I forget about what the heck is bothering me.

  • There are days, I have to focus more on my Breathing. Some days I need to work more on my Form. Some other days, I need to loose myself in running, just to get through the day, the Attitude.

Whatever it is. I keep that word FAB in my head. When I finish, I hope I can say to myself, “I had a FAB-O Run today”

Tell me, how have you had a FAB-O run? What mantras do you use to get through your run/races? Please share.

(c) C. Ragsdale 2011
Celebrate Your Finish,

Charlene L. Ragsdale - Las Vegas, NV
Certified Sports Nutritionist, Running Coach & Public Speaker
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