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I'm doing interval training on a treadmill and I've realized that when I'm running at my peak, I can either raise my thighs to go faster, or try to keep my thighs low and swing my feet forward at a faster rate.

What should I be concentrating on to ensure I can run for a longer amount of time?

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This puzzles me as well. In my previous tri-club, the top two runners (10k in 31-33 min.) had two different running styles. One of them would definitely keep his thighs quite low - which to me just looked "wrong" ^^. I think he had slightly shorter legs than the other and was ~2cm smaller, maybe that plays a role. –  Rafael Cichocki Feb 20 at 12:45

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The key thing here is your cadence - the number of strides per minute you are taking. To run for a longer amount of time then as well as your fitness level being the main factor, you can help this by running more efficiently. This can be achieved by running with a high cadence and shortening your stride length.

Have a read of this article about cadence.

A distance running coach I've worked with in the past used to stress the technique he called 'high hips, short levers' was key to having a high cadence. In other words, keep your hips high then at the end of your stride, rapidly bring the heel of your trailing leg up to your backside and rapidly follow through with your knee ready to take your next stride. In other words, spend the least amount of time possible between your trailing leg becoming your leading leg (I know it sounds obvious but try the technique. It keeps your strides relatively short and leg speed high). In relation to your question, this tends to lend itself to your thighs raising more but it also lends itself to your feet moving faster, so in essence, do both. Concentrate on running efficiently and you will start to see speed and endurance results.

Hope this helps

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