Running in Southern Summers

Greetings from Savannah, Georgia!

It has been a busy and southern-filled vacation so far. We have been enjoying every minute of it. Vacations have a great way of reminding us of the need to relax and enjoy the small things–like your morning coffee or walks after dinner.

Thankfully, the 17 hour drive to Savannah wasn’t nearly as overwhelming as I once thought. Our group broke up the drive safely and ended up pulling into Savannah around 1:00pm on Monday. It only took us minutes to jump into our suits and head to Tybee Island, the most popular beach spot in the area.

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We enjoyed catching some rays but quickly realized we were hungry after all of that driving! We headed to dinner after the beach where I chose a black bean burger topped with pineapple salsa with fresh fruit on the side.

20130620-145741.jpgAfter dinner, it was easy to go to bed because of our sleep deprivation from the night before.

When we woke up on Tuesday morning, Nate suggested we go for a run. We laced up our running shoes and headed out the door into the muggy, muggy Savannah sun!

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While on my run, I found myself feeling sluggish quickly due to my fatigue and heat. After talking with my friends, we thought of the idea to post on proper running form.

Running properly is essential to not only safe but productive exercise. Just like any other sport, one must run with proper body mechanics to decrease the risk of injury and find the exercise most enjoyable. Starting from the top of your body, below are some basic pointers to keep in your mind.

  • Head: Try to always look out and naturally ahead towards the horizon. This will put the rest of your body in a forward position. (I’ve noticed, looking at your feet can leave you feeling exhausted and defeated.)
  • Shoulders: Should be relaxed and in a lower position. Many new runners often feel tension in their shoulders after long runs because they put strain on this area naturally. Be cognizant of this area when you are attempting to get into a solid running rhythm.
  • Arms: Should be bent by the elbow in a 90 degree position and swinging slowly and naturally. Typically, sprtinters move their arms faster and more frequently than long distance runners. Attempt to keep your hands unclenched to avoid tension build up.
  • Hips/Torso: Should be facing forward and extended. When I ran track, I remember the coaches telling the athletes to “run tall” meaning, stand up straight without slouching. If you feel yourself doing so, take a deep breath and pull your shoulders back.
  • Legs: Your knee lift does not need to be dramatic or exaggerated. Similar to your arms, let them fall into into a natural pattern.
  • Feet/Ankles: Many people differ in the way their feet hit the pavement due to bone structure. Your outer foot should be hitting the ground first and rolling inwards with every step. Most people have to intentionally train themselves to run this way.

The rest of the week will be a continuation of exploring in Savannah! Tonight we are mini-golfing and grabbing ice cream. I hope you have a great evening!

-Chelsey

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4 thoughts on “Running in Southern Summers

  1. Welcome to my running life! 90% humidity plus is a complete norm, especially this time of year. Thanks for the post 🙂 It is also especially important to stay incredibly well hydrated when it’s humid because you will sweat more…

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