Running is one of the best ways to keep yourself healthy, but there are certain hindrances for it to happening smoothly.
For instance, do you happen to struggle to take large gulps of air after running for merely 2 minutes, perhaps? Then this article is for you.
How to Breathe While Running?
How to breathe while running? For most people, breathing is not something to think much about. It is an automatic process.
But when it comes to running, it is really necessary to learn how to breathe while running correctly and efficiently. When running, it is important to breathe rhythmically and shallowly from your mouth.
You should inhale and exhale in a steady rhythm and avoid holding your breath. Here are some easy, effective breathing methods to enhance your running performance.
Try one breathing technique at a time and give yourself more than a week before attempting another new method.
6 Effective Breathing Techniques for Runners
When you first start running, it is normal to feel like you cannot catch your breath while running. But with some training and guidance, you can easily understand how to breathe while running efficiently.
It is essential to know the different types of breathing and how they can influence your running to breathe correctly while running.
There are many different techniques to breathe while running, and the right method for you may depend on your personal choice and running goals.
1. Breathe Rhythmically
It would be best to practice rhythmic breathing to get the most oxygen possible with each breath. Attempting rhythmic breathing while running can spread stress equally on both parts of your body.
To avoid muscular imbalances, exhale alternately with the right and left foot. This means that your inhalations and exhalations should sync with your foot strikes to take in more air with each step.
Try a 3:2 rhythmic breathing pattern that lets you alternate foot strikes on the exhale. Take a breath in for three-foot strikes and breathe out for two-foot strikes. If you’re jogging faster, you can try a 2:1 method.
Remember to keep your breathing process steady and in control with a rhythmic pattern – do not let yourself get too out of breath.
With proper technique, rhythmic breathing can help improve your running performance and make staying active for longer periods.
2. Belly Breathing
Belly breathing, or diaphragmatic breathing, is a type of deep breathing that uses the diaphragm muscle to expand the lungs. This boosts the quantity of oxygen taken in with every breath and benefits in improving your overall steadiness.
When running, it is important to breathe properly, and practice belly breathing to improve your lung capacity and running form.
To belly breathe while running, you need first to practice belly breathing on its own. Put one hand on your abdomen and inhale deep breaths so your belly expands with inhales. As soon as you get used to this method, you can try belly breathing while running.
Ensure that you maintain your shoulders loosened and down, and focus on taking deep breaths from your belly. Notice how each breath affects the muscles as your stomach rises and falls.
If you are a belly breather, you are likely to have more stamina and steadiness while running.
This is because you take in more oxygen with each breath and use your lung capacity more efficiently. Additionally, proper belly breathing can help to improve your running form by keeping your torso upright and preventing side stitches.
3. Nasal Breathing
Nasal breathing is better suited for light runs or moderate jogging than sprints (although many runners and experienced athletes have their preferred breathing methods).
Nasal breathing involves inhaling and exhaling through the nostrils only, without involving mouth breathing.
4. Mouth Breathing
Breathing through the mouth is typically done during high-intensity exercises. However, it can cause stress and make people feel like they’re hyperventilating.
Mouth breathing is most effective for high intensities when a runner might switch to it in preparation for a sprint or uphill climb.
5. Box Breathing
Box breathing, even called square breathing or four-square breathing is a four-part breathing approach that can bring peace and well-being to the mind and body when under anxiety.
In this deep breathing method, one inhales deeply into the abdomen during inhalation for at least four counts, exhaling completely, then holding one’s breath during exhalation for at least four counts.
6. Nose and Mouth Breathing
Whether you prefer to breathe with your nose or mouth while running is mainly a topic of personal choice as your breathing rate, the most vital thing is efficient breathing, which is why many runners adjust to a mixture of nasal and mouth breathing.
This means to breathe with your nose and breathe out with your mouth.
While running, it is necessary to maintain your breathing steady because it will improve your overall efficiency and prevent you from becoming too breathless.
The respiratory system supplies oxygen to the lungs, and nose and mouth breathing is the most efficient way to do this.
When you inhale through your nose, the air is filtered and warmed; when you exhale through your mouth, the carbon dioxide your body produces is expelled.
Nose and mouth breathing also allows you to take in more oxygen with each breath than if you were just mouth breathing.
6 Tips for How to Breathe While Running
How you breathe while running can depend on various factors, including atmosphere, body weight, asthma, fitness level, or the speed of running.
If you are starting to run or you want to find out how to get enough oxygen during your workout, here is a summary of how to breathe while running properly.
1. Warm Up Your Lungs Before the Run
A proper dynamic warm-up gets your heart pumping and blood flowing, priming your respiratory system and loosening your muscles so you can more easily expand your lungs and diaphragm.
Before running, try some chest-opening exercises that will expand your diaphragm and make your abdominal breathing more efficient.
A good way to warm up your lungs before running is to focus on your breathing rhythms and make sure your chest is breathing rather than shallow breathing from your throat.
You should also ensure that you are taking deep breaths for the most oxygen intake. You can also do light exercises such as arm swings and leg swings to gradually get your muscles loose and increase your heart rate.
2. Focus on Your Running Form
When running, it is important to focus on your running form. This means knowing how you are carrying yourself and making sure that your breathing patterns are efficient.
An exercise routine that includes running can help you practice breathing in a way that will be beneficial when you are running.
Also, ensure that you have good posture and maintain your head in line with your spine, so it does not go down or forward. Avoid hunching over or tilting forward. Let your shoulders hang down away from your ears in a relaxed manner.
3. Practice Belly Breathing
Making the switch from chest breathing to belly breathing can have major physical benefits during strenuous exercises, like running for long periods.
Consult with your trainer before changing anything about your exercise routine, especially if you have any medical conditions that may affect your breathing.
4. Inhale Fresh Air
Breathing is much easier when you breathe clean air. If you want to walk outdoors in an urban area with high air pollution, opt for a time when traffic is less heavy like early morning or an evening stroll.
Stick to less congested streets and avoid heavy traffic at all costs.
5. Check the Weather if you Have Asthma
Several kinds of weather can trigger your asthma so be careful. On these days, you may choose to run inside to stay healthy.
When the air is cold and dry, it is not as comfortable to breathe while running and it can trigger symptoms.
If you often get colds or allergies, one way to stop this is by covering your mouth and nose with a scarf to breathe while running.
Another solution to try is changing your location. This works best if it is dry and cold outside. If the weather changes, if it gets hot, it can also trigger a cold or an allergy attack.
6. Try Different Breathing Techniques
If you are living with asthma and run regularly, it is important to be conscious about how you breathe while running. Several breathing exercises can help, including controlling your breathing through techniques like yoga and pranayama.
You can try out the techniques below to see which ones reduce your symptoms and bring you the most relief and make it easier to breathe while running.
- Nose breathing
- Deep belly breathing technique
- Breathing exercises
- Papworth technique
Frequently Asked Questions
1. What is the correct way to breathe while running?
The ideal approach to breathing while running is to use simultaneously your mouth and nose to take in and let out the air.
2. Why do I struggle to breathe when running?
Running, for instance, puts more strain on your lungs and circulatory tract than usual, along with being a strenuous physical activity.
3. How can I run longer without getting out of breath?
If you’re running and you start to feel yourself getting out of breath, slow down. During one or two minutes after your running exercises, go slowly until your breathing returns to normal.
It is important to be aware of how you breathe while running, taking regular breaths will help you maintain energy and keep your muscles from getting too tense.
Tips mentioned above for how to breathe while running will help. Attempt to take deep breaths with your nose and out with your mouth with each step. Focus on taking slow, steady breaths while running rather than fast, shallow ones.
If you feel short of breath, slow down your pace or stop immediately and, take a break to breathe while running.
Practice these techniques, and soon you will be able to follow the natural rhythm and breathe while running simultaneously!
Remember that walking is okay if you need to catch your breath. Just get back to running when you are ready. Stay safe and healthy!
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