Breathe properly when running

One thing that bothers a lot of people who try running as a weekly/daily exercise is the breathing part. It’s a common problem to get a sore throat or shallow and rapid breath, which many times causes unnecessary fatigue or unwanted pace deceleration. Here are the basics of how to breath right when running!

When breathing - inhaling and exhaling - we use muscles. The intercostal muscles (the musles located between all your ribs) and the diaphragm (the muscle separating the chest from the abdomen) are examples of these breathing-muscles. Just like all any other muscles, they can be toned by exercising them!

"When you take a breath, 80 percent of the work is done by the diaphragm. If you strengthen your diaphragm, you may improve your endurance and be less likely to become fatigued." *
So, how can you exercise your diaphragm and intercostal muscles?

The basic concept on strengthening your lungs and the muscles helping you breathing is to inhale and exhale more fully. When you take slow, deep breaths, more parts of your lungs gets used = better oxygen utilization, and by doing this when running you will strengthen your diaphragm!

In ordinary life, while not running, we’ve been taught to breath with our stomachs. This means that when you inhale, your chest should not expand, but your stomach, as if your lungs were located in your belly. Now dont get me wrong; your chest will expand a little, and it should, but your belly should expand more! And when exhaling, your belly should “deflate”. This very much applies to breathing while running too!  Your chest should basically not move very much, while you stomach “inflates” and “deflates”.

If you don’t know if you normally breath right you can easily test yourself: Just sit down and take your shirt off (easier to see)! Place one hand on your chest and the other one on your belly. If your belly-hand moves up and down with your stomach when you breath, you’re doing it right. On the other hand, if your chest moves more than your belly, you are not breathing properly, which could cause shortness of breath in any situation. It also causes unnecessary tenseness in you upper back and shoulders since you have to use your whole upper body when chest breathing. Chest breathing also wastes energy that could be better used!

Finally: Should I breath in through the nose and out through the mouth or reversed or what?
You should breath in though both to get as much oxygen as possible! Personally I try to breath in a little bit more though the nose since mouth inhales makes my throat very sore. But don’t exclude mouth inhales completely! When exhaling you should also use both nose and mouth to get rid off the carbon dioxide!

SO , quick list!

1. Inhale and exhale more fully. Deeper inhales will provide space for more oxygen, and proper exhales will remove more carbon dioxide.
2. Focus on breathing slowly and deeply
3. Breath in and out through both your nose and mouth!
4. Breath with your belly, not your chest!
5. The best one :) Don’t over-think the breathing process! Of course you have to focus on it in the beginning of your run, but try to trust your body to keep the correct breathing going without you thinking of it. If you are a newbie runner you might have to “control” your breathing some minutes after beginning your run, to get it back on track. But again, try to relax and let your body get into it!

I hope this motivated some of you to give running a new try! And remember, we are all rookies in the beginning! It takes time to work up a good running and breathing technique, so don't give up!

*Everett Murphy, M.D., Olathe Medical Center, Olathe, Kansas. 


» Holly

Thabks for the tips! What I have a lot of problems with when running is side stitches :( Is there anything I can do to avoid them?

Svar: oh we just discussed it under the pic on ig :) first of all: dont eat closer than 1,5 hrs before your run. some say drink a lot before, but i can do that since i get cramps from that haha so i guess its individual! but you can read what we said on IG :)
Karolinaterese Fitness

2012-07-06 // 12:25:54
» fromadistance

LOVE this babe thanks :)

2012-07-06 // 16:07:30
» Lindsay Stroschein

Thanks for the valuable info! I did alot of running my senior year of college to try & lose the "freshman 15." I have since now lost it! (Clap, clap!) but I'm intrigued by you. I'd love to talk personally with you. Is fitness your career or is it just a hobby?

Svar: Hi!
Oh good for you! Yeah it's just a hobby! But I learn a lot of the basics of anatomy and basics of how the body works since im studying to become a nurse.
Karolinaterese Fitness

2012-10-11 // 19:45:09

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