by VALERIE HUNT
Now that we have covered the basics of pose-fall-pull, a word of warning: initially you will feel “prancy” and “choppy” as you try out your new running form. This is due to lack of familiarity and comfort with falling, so please practice this daily. In fact, I tell my runners, “Any time you see a wall, fall into it!” You will also fall farther than you can keep up initially, so your running will seem more taxing. Again, now that you are falling, you will be running at faster speeds, which means you have to let your body adjust. Expect for it to take somewhere between 3-6 weeks until it feels “normal,” and from there you still need to continue practicing.
Progressing from “Learning” to “Running”
When you attend a CrossFit Endurance (CFE) seminar, you receive six weeks of homework that progresses you at what we have found to be the right pace to get comfortable in your new technique.
In the meantime, a general guideline for the first 4-6 weeks of learning is to choose one day every week as skill day: Practice a drill, then a short run 25-50 meters in a repetitive drill/run for 30-45 minutes.
For every run, warm up with standing in Pose, pulling and falling. During your run, check in with your pace by counting your cadence or doing the 1-2-3 drill described below.
“The 1-2-3″ Drill
My favorite progression drill is called the 1-2-3 (that’s the name I call it — it’s not official!)
Start with a single change of support in place, then fall and change support — checking to see that you are in Pose at landing — then fall and change support again.
As this gets comfortable and consistent, progress into 3 quick changes of support at what I call a “1-2-3″ tempo: pull-pull-pull, quick pause to check Pose, then fall and 1-2-3. For those of you who are musically inclined, the Pose pause is like the length of a quarter note, and the pulls are like three successive eighth notes. Create a mental image — like running across burning coals or hot sand — to increase your cadence and do quick, low, pulls.
Your goal when you run is to keep your cadence at a minimum of 180 steps/minute or 90/foot/minute. Focus only on trying to pull as quickly as you can, while allowing yourself to fall and move forward. When I first started Pose, I would find a fall point close to me and just run to that point, then pick another point farther away and run there. Once you get comfortable with the feeling of your feet keeping up with your body, your fall point can be the finish line.