While joggling can slow some people down (Michal gives a nice breakdown of how much), it can also help you focus. This makes running easier and for me, it seems to speed me up. I’m often asked how fast I would be if I didn’t joggle. Since I only joggle I don’t really know. But it’s certainly a little faster. If I wasn’t joggling I wouldn’t have to stop completely at the water stations. In a marathon, I lose about 5-8 minutes because of these stops.
Beginning runners wonder about the timing of their joggling and foot pacing. Here is how joggling can help.
Running Pace Right?
People who don’t regularly run have the misconception that the best runners are the ones with the longest legs. They figure that a longer stride allows you to cover more ground with less effort. This is mostly wrong unless you’re comparing the stride difference between Herve Villechaize and Shaquille O’Neal. For elite runners, leg turn-over is much more important that stride length.
The less time you spend in the air, the better
According to the experts, the best running pace is 180 steps per minute. You can test your current pacing by counting each step you take with one foot during a minute and multiplying it by two. If you’re joggling, it’s easier to count the number of catches you make in one of your hands. It turns out, the natural timing for joggling is that each time you catch a ball in one hand, your opposite foot should touch the ground.
My pacing is naturally about 85 steps for one foot or 170 steps per minute. By concentrating, I can push that past 180 SPM. It’s just hard to concentrate.
The way joggling can help your pacing is this. Your juggling throws and catches will naturally sync up with your running strides. So if you want to increase your stride count, you can speed up your juggling pattern. Your legs will naturally adjust and viola, your pace is regulated.
Well, the plane is landing so I’ve gotta split. London, here I come.