Breathing Retraining: From Sick/Victims to Superhumans
Running Benefits: Higher Body O2 Only with Nose Breathing
are the benefits of running? Running
or jogging is the most natural way to
increase body-oxygen levels and this is the main benefit of any physical exercise.
The increased level of oxygen can be easily measured using the body oxygen
test. Better results means better physical health and even elimination of
chronic diseases, such as heart disease, cancer, diabetes, asthma, and bronchitis.
Indeed, if the body oxygen level remains the same
after weeks or months of running, there would be no improvements in
symptoms and required medication.
In order to get the most physical and psychological benefits of running, a person needs to
have the crucial main
requirement for any physical exercise: more oxygen in the body cells after
exercise. This result is easy to achieve with strictly nasal breathing (in
and out) during running. Then your breathing after exercise will be lighter
providing more O2 for brain and body cells.
Nasal breathing ensures absorption of nasal NO (nitric oxide), and that
immediately lowers the heart rate (for the same intensity of exercise). Additional benefits
of running with nose breathing include increased CO2 levels in the blood and
slower breathing after exercise, which provides more O2 in the body cells.
Furthermore, running daily with nose breathing mimics high-altitude training due to
mild hypoxia. You do not need to go to the mountains: get more benefits from running
due to nose breathing in and out.
Soviet and Russian MDs tested thousands of patients and found that
daily exercise with nasal breathing only prevents acute exacerbations due to chronic
diseases (no exercise-induced asthma, no heart attacks, no strokes, and so
on) and gradually improves oxygen transport due to increased CO2 and NO levels in the
lungs and arterial blood. It also helps with weight loss naturally.
Natural lifestyle choices before and after breathing retraining
Body oxygen < 30 s
Body oxygen > 50 s
Medium, low, or very low
Desire to exercise
Not strong, but possible
Craving and joy of exercise
Intensive exercise with nose breathing
Hard or impossible
Easy and effortless
Typical mind states
Confusion, anxiety, depression
Focus, concentration, clarity
Craving for sugar and junk foods
Addictions to smoking, alcohol, and drugs
Desire to eat raw foods
Weak and rare
Very common and natural
Rare and requires efforts
Natural and automatic
Often of poor quality; > 7 hours
Excellent quality; < 5 hours naturally
How to run and benefit from it for beginners
If you want to experience these benefits of running, but have little or
no recent experience in running or jogging, you have to start
very slowly. Too often, Buteyko students, after they achieve
decent daily CP numbers due to breath work (e.g.,
up to 30 s or even more), experience failure in their running attempts
due to injuries.
Why? Their respiratory and cardiovascular systems are able, at
over 30 s CP, to experience positive effects of 1-2 hours of running.
Furthermore, after doing breath work, these students have very high
energy levels and a desire to exercise. However, since they had not run in
recent days or weeks, their muscles, tendons, ligaments
and bones are not fit yet for such a long and intensive challenge.
Hence, it is crucial to consider the following suggestions, for maximum running benefits, when you begin jogging:
- Start with walking for up to 30-60 minutes per session for 3-5 days
and make a slow transition to power walking or fast walking for another
- After this initial period, add only 5 min of very light and easy
relaxed jogging or running at the end of your power walk (e.g., instead
of 30 min power walk, do 25 min of fast walking and then 5 min of very
light and relaxed comfortable running with nose breathing only).
- Increase the duration of running by about 2 min per session only so
that your ligaments and tendons can readjust themselves to this
physical load increase. Hence, the amount of running will increase very
gradually: 5 min, 7 min, 9 min, 11 min, and so forth. In about 2-3
weeks you should be able to run for 30 min without any negative
- Always use running shoes with soft soles. (Consider barefoot walking
and barefoot running since these are nearly ideal Buteyko exercises.)
- If you later start to have longer running sessions (up to 30 min and
more), run on a soft surface (e.g., grass, sand, snow, or gravel), but
not on hard surfaces like roads and concrete pathways to avoid
This approach is similar to Graded Exercise Therapy, which has been used in
clinical practice with very limited success due to negative mouth breathing,
which cancel the main benefits of
running for most people.
Keep in mind that for breathing retraining and higher body
oxygen levels, it is smart and useful to do some "uncomfortable" or
"ascetic" things (like taking cold showers with certain rules, sleeping
on hard beds, sleeping in a sitting position, and running when it is
windy, raining or snowing), but running with pain in your knees or feet
is not a good idea. Graduality is the key to success in getting the most benefits of
Can I run in the morning?
For most psychological and physical benefits, it depends on one's morning CP (the body oxygen test result).
Over 90% of students and nearly all people with health problems have a large drop in their CP throughout sleep. Hence, their morning CP can be up to 30-70% lower than their best evening CP or before-sleep numbers. Then people can benefit from a short session (about 10-15 min. is enough) doing reduced breathing or practicing with a device.
Advanced breathing students have very short sleep naturally (about 4.5 hours or less naturally). As a result, they do not experience a large CP drop and their breathing in the morning is as slow and easy as they had before sleep. These students do not require any breathing exercises, or they can do one or a few breath holds to increase their CP up to 60 s and more, and go running.
For those who are interested in getting the most benefits out of
running, here is an excellent fitness device to train with. Many of my other breathing students (who were never involved in competitive sports) tried this device and found it very effective to run and benefit from exercise. The name and a link to analysis of this device are provided right below here as your bonus content.
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