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June 19, 2006

BehindTheMedspeak: Is running backward the next big thing?

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I saw an item in the May 30 USA Today about Timothy "Bud" Badyna (above and below), one of the world's greatest backward runners.

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Pretty amazing: He's run a sub-four-hour marathon and a 10K in 45:37 — backward.

That's a lot faster than I can go forward these days.

But I digress.

According to the article, "Badyna, dubbed 'Backwards Bud' by fellow runners, holds the Guinness World Record for fastest backward run in a 200-meter-race (32.78 seconds), set in 2001."

Turns out that the 39-year-old Badyna is one of around 500 people in the U.S. (more in Europe) who routinely walk or run backward.

It's also called "retro-running."

I like that.

A lot.

Supposedly it burns 20% more calories than regular jogging.

Perhaps it's time to put a workstation at the rear end of my treadmill.

Apropos of that it seems to me that backward running on a treadmill is far more conducive to staying alive and intact than taking it out on the street.

I'm just saying.

Tom?

Jim?

Liz?

Bueller?

Anyone?

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More about backward running here.

June 19, 2006 at 04:01 PM | Permalink


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Comments

I just joined a new gym this summer and the eliptical machines I've been training on force you to switch to a reverse pattern at least once during the session -- about 5 minutes of this and its disconcerting at first, but it really does get to muscles you don't use walking forward.

Muscle memory as it is, gets pretty lazy, we fall into patterns and need to break those same patterns every now and then. You have to work a lot harder at breaking those patterns, but once you do, its second nature. Kinda like learning to juggle -- its harder than hell and takes all of your concentration -- but once you learn it, its burned into your memory for life and you can do it blindfolded even 10 years later. Probably the same for running in reverse. Once you get the balance down, its probably not going to burn that much more energy than it takes to get the muscles that you've neglected on the forward run.

Anyhoo...

Posted by: clifyt | Jun 20, 2006 8:56:52 AM

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