Running may be one of, if not the most divisive practices in all of fitness. Regular running can come with tons of benefits including increased endurance, stronger bones and muscles, and improved immunity, but even so, it’s not without its challenges. Especially for those who are just starting out or have health conditions such as allergies and asthma, running may cause shortness of breath or a winded feeling that leaves you feeling worse than no exercise at all.
Fortunately, there are a few ways to make breathing while running easier so that you can continue to run without feeling so tired. Be sure to consult with a medical professional to determine if running is appropriate for you.
Breathe Through Your Nose
This doesn’t just go for running; nasal breathing is almost always preferable to breathing through the mouth. Our noses act as a natural filter against pathogens and humidify the air we take in. If you do feel like you’re struggling to get enough oxygen, it’s okay to switch to mouth breathing. Over time, the length of time you’re able to breathe through your nose will increase as you build up endurance.
Breathing deeply into your belly can help your body to take in the oxygen it needs as you exercise. Try inhaling for a count of three and exhaling for a count of three while running and be mindful that you’re not taking shallow breaths.
Don’t Hold It
Whether through your nose or through your mouth, the most important thing to keep in mind is to keep breathing at all. When we’re focused on something challenging, it can be easy to hold our breath by accident. Pay attention that your breath is flowing so that your body can continue to receive the oxygen it needs.