Running talk with Dr Mark Cucuzzella

mobility run form Oct 20, 2021

I recently joined my good friend and physician, Dr Mark Cucuzzella on his Run For Your Life Podcast to discuss all things running. Dr Mark and I met in 2013 at a healthy running seminar in Los Angeles, where I gave a lecture on fascia (the connective tissue in our bodies that holds every organ, blood vessel, bone, muscle and nerve fibre in place) and taught Dr Mark how to master the Turkish Get Up which he still does three times a week! It really is a powerful mobility exercise for athletes.

It’s always been an honour to talk about running, wellness and fitness with Dr Mark who’s recently published a phenomenal book called Run For Your Life: How to run, walk, and move without pain or injury and achieve a sense of well-being and joy. In this comprehensive book, Dr Mark goes into detail about the biomechanics of efficient, joyful, injury-free running and includes one of my favourite signature mobility exercises, the Awesomiser, in one of his chapters. This move is simple but will truly transform the way you move and run, which Dr Mark and I both agree on.

The Run For Your Life Podcast

In this podcast, Dr Mark and I chatted about everything from the importance of nasal breathing (when active or at rest), to how to run with fluidity, open-up and just relax and enjoy the freedom of running, rather than running to sort your frustrations out. We also spoke about nervous system trauma and how this can have a negative effect your mitochondrial function.  

I shared some of my learnings throughout the years with Dr Mark as I’ve had the privilege of working with some of the most dedicated professional athletes in the world. Two of which are Amber Neben, an American cyclist who recently finished 4th at the UCI Road World Championships in the elite women’s time trial after fracturing her pelvis just weeks before, and Flora Duffy, an Olympic gold medallist and triathlete from Bermuda, whom I’ve had the pleasure of working with for years.

Both these athletes have embraced the concept of “Being fluid in mind and body” which is about running with ease and letting go of the notion of no pain, no gain. Gone are the days of sucking it up or toughening it out in a hard race or training session. You should be moving seamlessly and effortlessly with gentle, relaxed movements. Sure, some races or training sessions will be harder than others, but it’s about working with your body, rather than against it. If you can view your athleticism as a craft or an art or a blessing to enjoy, it’ll allow you to run for longer.

Mobility exercises I recommend

Dr Mark and I spoke about a few key mobility exercises I think every runner should incorporate into their daily routine. You’ll find these on my YouTube channel along with plenty of other videos where I share more effective mobility exercises, stretches and running cues to help you run effortlessly.

Rounding and arching with breathing – brilliant for releasing a tight diaphragm and synchronising breathing with movement

The spinal wave for a strong, supple, fluid spine

Pelvic clocks for pelvic, hip and sacroiliac mobility

Synchronous hips to open up and soften the hips and pelvic region.

To improve your overall running economy, I highly suggest watching Dr Mark’s Principles Of Natural Running YouTube video here:

 LISTEN to the Podcast with Dr Mark and I here

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