Running Song of the Week, 5/19/11

I’m definitely one of those people who goes through phases with music and running. Sometimes I can’t live without my iPod and sometimes I can’t stand it. Sometimes I just want to listen to the radio. Anyway, every so often I find a song that I really like to run to. This morning I thought, “WHY DON’T I DO A RUNNING SONG SECTION ON MY BLOG?”

So I am.

This week, I present to you Cliffs of Dover by Eric Johnson (ignore the wack picture in the YouTube video). I’m choosing this not because it’s actually my current song of the week but because it is such a useful song.

I’ve read in a few places (most notably in this entry on No Meat Athlete) that the optimum turnover rate for running is 180 steps per minute. I can’t claim that I achieve this regularly (mostly because I haven’t been paying attention) but the first time I tried it I thought my legs might spin out. However, a shorter stride is a good thing. You don’t want to overstride and injure yourself, and taking more steps more quickly helps reduce the damage on the legs.

Anyway, a good way to practice getting to this optimum turnover is to find a song that matches it and then run to the beat. If you want 180 steps per minute, Cliffs of Dover is your song. Ignore the intro; I’m not sure what that even is.

See? Cliffs of Dover is good for something other than being kind of hard on Guitar Hero.

Next week, one of our current Top 40 hits takes the stage. Stay tuned.

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I'm not a health or fitness professional. I'm just a writer who runs a lot. Don't follow any of the advice found herein without consulting an actual professional first; it's not my fault if you hurt yourselves.