Breathing Techniques In Running

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One of the more important aspects of running is the proper way of breathing. Running is not just about the legs and thighs and feet. It is also about the lungs and how to bring greater amounts of oxygen into the system efficiently.

Unnoticed by many, even by the athletes themselves sometimes, the nature of your breathing during your running affects your performance. Those runners who can correctly deliver oxygen into their system are stronger than their counterparts who struggle when they are running because they do not know the technique.


Swimmer’s breathing

One training technique is to breathe slightly slower than your body requires when you are not running. This starves your system for oxygen and forces the heart to beat faster.

After a time, the body learns to compensate for the lack of oxygen so that when this technique is not in use, your body is already more efficient in processing your breathed air. This is demonstrated in swimming.

Swimmers do alternate breathing which is breathing every third stroke. This enables them to breathe on alternate sides without taking a breath with every stroke.

At the start, their body demands more oxygen, but will learn to adjust to the decrease in oxygen. In time, the body becomes more efficient in processing the limited air. Runners who swim often have excellent breathing efficiency.

Breathing rhythms

Sometimes, in long races (or even those short races) a runner may lose focus and is thrown out of his breathing rhythm. It could be caused by the simple forgetting to concentrate on the breathing or its pattern.

One way to avoid this is for the runner to time his breathing in rhythm with his steps. This is like the style of the swimmers who breathe at every third stroke.

Runners who get to this state can keep running like a clock, with consistent pace and a great deal of efficiency. This concentration on breathing can also take his mind away from pain or soreness that may have developed at this stage and can cause him to quit the race.

Deep breathing

One other technique that can be used when running is deep breathing. It has several benefits when correctly done and practiced.

It helps the runner to stay relaxed, which in turn, helps to decrease fatigue. The ability to relax decreases the chances of performance decline.

Runners who forgot to relax find themselves making inadvertent changes in form until they feel the resulting pain. Examples include clinching of fists too tightly and running with the shoulders too high to be effective. This type of poor form often results in muscle fatigue and soreness.

Deep breathing helps promote relaxation while running. This is done by taking a larger-than-normal breath and exhaling all the way out.

During the exhale part, you should concentrate on releasing all the tension in your arms by shaking them, opening up your hands and moving your head in circles.

This combination of activities will give you an easy way to remain relaxed during the run and does not even need to break stride to do all of them. This is true to all the other breathing techniques in running – no requirement of great efforts but just as effective.


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Chinese Herbal Teas

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Chinese herbal teas are technically called Tisanes.  These are recognized as infusions made herbs and not teas from the Camelia Sinensis plant.  The essence of the herb is extracted when the tea is steeped in hot water.

Traditionally, the Chinese herbal teas are used for their medicinal and healing properties.  However, there are many varieties that are also enjoyed simply for their taste.  Today, these teas can be bought in China as the country produces an entire pharmacy of herbs.


The Benefits of Chinese Herbal Tea

One of the well-known benefits of Chinese herbal tea is that it offers the tea drinker caffeine free alternatives.   Many of them are considered to be very soothing and comforting.   The Rosebud and Chrysanthemum herbal teas are just two of them.

The Rosebud and Chrysanthemum teas are known in China as a woman’s herb.  However, it is also useful for aiding digestion.  As noted, even a hardcore tea drinker will surely enjoy the flowery freshness of these miniature rosebuds.  The Chrysanthemum in particular has a unique flavor.  It has long been used to cool the body and reduce fever.

The Chinese herbal teas are even great beverages to have at night, especially when you might not want caffeine.

The Famous Flower Herbal Teas

There is a number of Chinese herbal tea varieties, one of those are the flower teas.   These teas are caffeine free alternatives and offer various benefits.  Most of them are calming and soothing, while offering a palatte of flavors.

Here are the most famous flower teas:


  • Carnation Flower Tea – This is an attractive red flower tea which is said to help restore the energy of the body.  It is also considered great for relaxing.


  • Chrysanthemum Herbal Tea – This is but a top grade of the famous cooling tea infusion.  It has a subtle sweetness and is highly refreshing.


  • Gongju Herbal Tea – Another caffeine-free tea, which is smooth tasting.   The whole flower is known for its soothing as well as relaxing attributes.


  • Jasmine Bud Flower Tea – According to some experts, this Chinese herbal tea consists solely of the small and beautiful Jasmine flowers that have yet to open.  This produces a caffeine-free and sweet brew.


  • Forget Me Not Flower Tea – This is also caffeine-free and is said to aid the lungs.  It brews a mild and grassy flavored tisane.  And, it is known for its beautiful purple flowers.


  • Yunnan Flower Bud Tea – As the name implies, this Chinese herbal tea grows in the old forests of Yunnan.  This is considered a rare flower and is a local Yunnan drink that is caffeine free.


  • Wild New York Ginseng – Here is another well-known Chinese herbal tea intended for those who appreciate the wild growing conditions in which the roots lived.  It is said that because of the rugged wild conditions, each root has a unique appearance and personality.   Some of these wild roots can be very small but also very old.  There are also some larger roots that can be younger.  Accordingly, these herbal roots lives for at least seven years and up.


  • Kuding Pearl Tea – Many who have tasted this tea noted that this is a bitter tea.  This variety is rolled into large pearls which are also called “one leaf tea” because of the size of the leaves.  Others call it “one leaf” because one needs only one leaf of this tea to heal a number of things.   In addition, this is an ancient leaf and is deemed by many as an interesting herbal tea.


5 Fitness Myths That Are Responsible For Thousands of Fitness Failures

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Unfortunately, many people are misinformed and are also misled by the many promises of the fitness perfection/weight loss industry. Everywhere you look, you see or hear of people promising “Dramatic Weight Loss” with products such as “The Fat Trapper”, or “Exercise in a Bottle”.

Then you also have the hundreds of diets out there such as “The Zone”, “Sugar Busters” or “The Atkins Diet”. I’m sure you have heard of many of these yourself. You might have even tried some of them. Unfortunately, these products and diets are not the quick fix, or the miracles they are portrayed as. They are also usually very dangerous.


Below are some common misconceptions among people with regard to exercise and nutrition.

1. You need to exercise to burn fat.

The truth is you don’t gain body fat because of a lack of exercise. You gain it because your blood sugar levels exceed what you are using. Basically, you are eating too many calories at one time.

2. Your metabolism slows down once you hit 30.

WRONG! Actually, hundreds of research studies have shown that the slow down in metabolism is due to a loss of muscle tissue. And the loss of muscle tissue is directly related to a lack of hard physical activity!

3. Pasta and bread are fattening.

Anything is fattening! Lettuce can be stored as fat! Any food or drink, which contains calories, can be stored as body fat if it causes your blood sugar levels to exceed what the body needs at that time. Bread and pasta are actually great sources of complex carbohydrate! The key is how much you eat and when you eat it.

4. Eating after 7pm will make you fat.

Absolutely false! It all depends on whether or not the body needs that amount of calories at that time. Keep in mind your body is constantly burning calories, 24 hours per day, just the amount varies.

5. Strength training will make you bulk up.

Another NO! It seems as if mostly women are concerned with this one. Muscle size is primarily affected by genetics and hormone production; therefore, most women don’t have the potential to build very large muscles.
Muscle burns calories, so the more muscle you have, the more calories you burn which makes easier to burn fat and harder to gain it!

By no means is this a complete list! There are so many I could write a whole book just about them. The key is in education, but not by reading fitness magazines!


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