Born to Run author Christopher McDougall had a provocative piece in yesterday’s New York Times, “The Once and Future Way to Run” about a simple 19th century technique for teaching good running form. The “100-up” drill McDougall describes forces a runner to land on the ball of the foot rather than the heel. Even though I’ve switched to barefoot running I still heel strike occasionally, a habit caused by a lifetime of wearing cushy shoes. I’m gong to make this drill a regular part of my fitness program.
The article also takes a jab at Rodale’s Runner’s World magazine which, apparently, hasn’t ever seen a shoe it didn’t like. Multi-million dollar advertising contracts with shoe companies just might be the reason why. This is a common ethical lapse in fitness journalism. A local free running rag I picked up had a cover story on barefoot running which was all about . . . minimalist shoes! In two years of running with no shoes at all (i.e. barefoot) I have yet to get even a scratch.
Click on the article link above to see a helpful video showing the 100-up drill.