Monday, October 12, 2015

Shaking out your arms

When looking through my yearly holiday calendar, Columbus Day isn’t one that jumps out yet, every October our company flags it as a floating holiday. Because our team works with a bank that has it as a holiday, we are expected to take it as well.

So while the rest of the world was heading to work this morning, I pulled on my big boy running shoes and made good use of my day off with a 20 miler. This would be my last 20 miler before my marathon in a little over 2 ½ weeks.

Two hours and half of running gave me plenty of time to work out my blog for today so here goes.

Over my many marathons, I have learned a few tricks. Here’s one trick that will help you later in the race.

As the miles mount up, we all begin to experience some discomfort. Most of the time, this happens in the legs. After all, they have to support the force of 3 times our body weight with every stride.

But nonweight bearing muscle can cramp just as well. For example, I have a bad habit of holding my arms pretty much in one particular position for the entire marathon. By the time that I hit 20 miles, I have trouble straightening them out. In fact more than a few time, I have had them cramp pretty badly.

How did solve this problem? Well, I came with a pretty ordinary solution which worked right out of the gate. Every marathon I always turn on my Garmin auto lap feature so it records my mile splits. When an auto lap event occurs, my Garmin lets out a little beep. This is beep is my reminder to shake out my arms. Surprising once I started doing this shake out, I found my arms felt so much better in the later stages of the marathon and especially in the post marathon hours. It has become part of my norm for every marathon that I do.

If you find your arms stiff, tight, or cramping in the later stages of race, give this a try during your next race. It doesn’t have to be with a beep. Do it at each mile mark along the course.

This little trick has made big difference for me.

The Cool Down Runner,







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