Mixed running style

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25/10/2012 at 10:02

This feels like an odd question. I suspect the answer is "it doesn't matter" but I just wanted to bounce the question off folk that have a clue rather than guessing for myself.

I've noticed over my last few runs that I have two distinctly different "styles" of running. When I get to a hill I lean forward and run more on my toes with shorter strides. When I get to a flatter bit or downhill I tend to run with the ball of my foot more than my toes and I run with a longer stride.

So far so good. I reckon that's probably normal. But when I am tired I seem to be less able to switch back to the more lolloping gait and end up running on the flat or downhill somewhat on my toes with short strides.

I know that I am faster with the lolloping style than with the on-my-toes style - if nothing else it simply covers more ground per stride - but I find it hard to switch back if I am fatigued (even though it is more comfortable!).

I suspect this is "normal" but you know how it is when you are running and your brain just goes off on a train of thought on its own. I hadn't ever considered it before.

Do any of you have mixed styles of running and find it hard to switch between them? Does it matter or would I be worth making a bigger effort to switch to my lollop when I get to the top of a hill?

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