Obviously running is a very important part of your beginner triathlon training. Not only is it one third of the overall sport, it’s the last event and final stretch of your race. I know you want to feel good on your run and finish strong, but what if you are just now getting off the couch and have never run before?
If you are wondering where do you even start when it comes to running form and posture, then these tips are for you. And these triathlon running tips are also some good checkup reminders, even if you have been running for years. Jess and I want to make sure you succeed in all areas, so let’s get off on the right foot when it comes to running.
Maybe you need more beginner triathlete running inspiration? Click here.
Here are some basic running tips for triathlon beginners.
As you can see, this was an old video for my personal training clients, but now it works great for any beginner triathlete looking for some running tips.
Start with good posture.
Just like your mother used to tell you, keep you head held high and your shoulders pinned back. Unfortunately, this is the first to go when you start to fatigue. But oh how important it is! I was talking to my physical therapist friend and she told me about how dangerous it was for your body to run with bad form and posture. What happens is with proper mechanics, your body softens and displaces the impact of your foot strike. When out of proper form, excessive forces give repeated blows, not only to your running joints, but to your entire skeletal structure as well as your organs.
Don’t let the arms flail.
Haha, I don’t mean to laugh but I’ve seen countless runners wasting lots of crucial energy with exaggerated arm movement. And I know you can picture that awkward running form too. Overall, arm movement should be minimal and directed forward – not side to side. Keep your elbows comfortably bent, pinned in at your sides, and keep your hands loose and close to your body. Only when sprinting or charging up a hill do you need to swing your arms for momentum.
Land with properly placed foot strike.
When running, you want to land more fore-footed, toward the ball of your foot, and having good shoes really helps the way your foot lands and takes off again. Many running shoes out there have a massive heal cushion that promotes improper running form. (You don’t want to land on your heals so why all that padding there!? If you were to run barefoot would you land heal first? No!) Watch the video for a demonstration.
If you want some advice about how to find good running gear, check out Jess’ post here.
Vary the pace and the place.
I love running on the beach or on grass for a number of reasons. A couple of good ones are that those surfaces help build ankle strength, agility, and stability. You’ll also want to change up the pace at which you run. I hope you don’t always run at the exact same slow speed every time you go out.
One of the absolute best ways to increase your overall running pace is to throw in some different speed training. There are two ways of doing this: Go for a short run, but much faster than your usual pace. For example, if you normally would go 5 miles in 45 minutes or so (approximately 9 min/mile), try a fast run like 2 miles in less than 15 mins (or approximately 7 min/mile).
Next time you head out for a fun run, keep these running tips for the beginner triathlete in mind and you’ll soon be whittling down your run times, but most importantly, feeling better while doing so. And you will look way better running with good form too.