Stride is known to be a running specific class because we tend to focus on aerobic conditioning while mixing in speed, form drills, and other elements to emphasize efficient running. One of the best ways to build strength and endurance while running is with incline. For the month of July we will be touching incline throughout every session for many specific reasons all designed to make us faster and stronger.
One main reason we utilize incline is to simulate what it’s like to run outside. If you are training for a race or simply enjoy running outside there will be a constant ascent and descent on any course, and we have to practice that way. This rolling hills affect the pace we are able to maintain, it defines the intensity of the run, and tests our muscular endurance.
When we always run on a treadmill at a completely flat grade we benefit from the turnover of the treadmill’s engine, but can result in the lack of posterior chain engagement. We run flat in Stride and Tread & Shred on purpose because we want to focus on speed and highest intensity possible, but when doing so we have to put more emphasis on how we engage and think about our running form. Instead of letting the belt pull our legs forward we have to imagine we are constantly pulling against the ground to engage our hamstrings and glutes, which will allow us to maintain our most efficient and safest stride.
We will be moving at some kind of incline every single minute of class throughout the month of July. This doesn’t mean intense, steep hills all the time, but rather placing importance on how we move to keep our bodies strong and healthy. Begin to practice the principles of running engaging the appropriate musculature whether you are running at a comfortable pace or going as fast as possible. Get ready for a little bit of everything this month!