Dr Arvind Gupta .

Running is popular in it’s own right and a fitness activity across the globe, and it’s sad that +50% runners get injured every year.

Still articles keep pouring in about avoiding injuries only on belief, arguments and theories and possible links … exhalation on same foot, exhale long, inhale long, sync strides to respiration as the impact load is 3 times body weight and so on.


As marathon is all about running in aerobic zone

There’s a fancy emphasis on respiration…Why is it so?
Mammals have an in built mechanism to lock into stride – breath mechanism known as LOCOMOTOR RESPIRATION COUPLING (L-R-C)
Human evolution suggest that humans can also train to lock stride -breath mechanism hence sync them to avoid injuries.


Human diaphragm is vertical and mammals have a horizontal diaphragm so mammals always tend to sync strides with respiration celebrex cost.We manage a sync only in a slow jog or at high speed running.

Breathing is INVOLUNTARY and governed by respiratory centres in the brain stem and is BEYOND YOUR CONSCIOUS CONTROLas the respiratory centres work on feedback mechanisms from receptors present in intercostal muscles, lungs and diaphragm

Breathing is also fine tuned by chemoreceptors, near your heart and aorta which respond to changing blood gas levels, pH of blood. Also an efficient expiratory centre is present in the brain stem which activates during exercise only and increase your respiratory rate to changing pH level while running .

Any attempts to sync breathing with foot steps decrease venous return to the heart which in turn affects the cardiac output .

CO2 dissolve and dissociates faster in blood itself so forceful expiration removes CO2 faster to bring in more O2 is ill founded.

Expiration is pure passive recoil of lung ,diaphragm and chest muscles .You cannot add to passive recoil by any means .Any forced expiration hampers the next respiratory cycle .

Cerebral cortex has no role in respiration . Humans breathing on count of footsteps tries to bring volition into play …..a function of higher centres in the brain L C R of 2-2, 3-2, 2-3, 2-1 conscious control will always concentrate on FOOT STRIKE more than respiration.The brain is designed so . Its known as EMBODIED COGNITION which activates the neuronal circuitry of running mere by thinking about it . No such neuronal circuits exist with respiration as its involuntary
The only time when cerebral cortex coordinates with respiration is COUGHING SWALLOWING & SPEAKING.

A word about difference in MALE -FEMALE breathing ,males are Abdomino-thoracic(use more abdominal muscles) and females are thoraco-abdominal breathers (use more chest muscles than belly). 
Trying to sync strides with respiration in females is less efficient than males as females use accessory muscles of neck in breathing which affects the diaphragm movements .

LEARNING to sync breathing and strides …….first breathing by lying down ……then on slow jog ……..and then onto the run is ill founded (2-2, 2-3, 3-2, etc). The sync will happen only when BODY ADAPTS TO A PHASE OF MINIMAL OXYGEN-CONSUMPTION (RUNNING ECONOMY ): (METABOLIC FITNESS )

The body will adapt eventually with time and max. training into aerobic zone.(lydiard way of running )
INSPIRING (3-2) more or EXPIRING (2-3) hampers with this body adaptation of lowest O2 consumption ,venous return ,metabolic changes while running hard . Let the body do it’s best .


Sync the respiration with strikes otherwise the 2-3 times body weight impact load will bring injuries ….read in many articles .IMPACT LOAD DEPENDS ON THE GLUTES STRENGTH (Which have weakened over years of sitting ….sitting long hours .)it has affected THIGH EXTENSION , ABDUCTION AND THIGH ROTATIONS AND FORWARD TILT OF PELVIS eventually affecting HIPS movements…….you run through hips always…….RIGHT.


The foot contact time is very short 0.22-0.3 secs
Neutral and fore foot strikers impact is very less. Heel strikers always take care .
Human pelvis is narrow restricting the load moving down the contact plane .
The movement of 9kg internal organs is 2-4cm only ….over a bag of air- fluid(5-6 litres ) filled intestines which buffers the load.
Core muscles have a respiratory and stabilizing role .It goes more towards respiratory role while running so as to adapt to minimize oxygen needs ……any attempts here to sync will destabilize the LUMBAR SPINE ……inviting injuries.
Core muscles forms a stable ball while running and distribute the impact load to all sides. CORE MUSCLES ALWAYS CONTRACT BEFORE THE FOOT STRIKE .
While running the centre of gravity may remain high at foot strike .
Gluteus medius and minimus muscles are leg stabilizers. STRENGTHEN BOTH GLUTES .
Check your upper and lower part of kinetic chain (hips and foot)if you are injury prone .


A word about the Hb levels…A Hb molecule carries 4 molecules of oxygen
A 15 mg Hb level has a O2 carrying capacity of –20.8ml/dl
10 mg Hb level has a O2 carrying capacity of–13.9mg/dl
Marathon is all about aerobic run. Check this premise well….
Take iron supplements .Your doctor runner friend advised you long back .