Wednesday, April 13, 2016

MAP Training - Do you meditate before you run?

What is MAP Training for Runners?

by Kathleen Lisson

MAP Training for Runners - Meditate with Your Running Shoes on! 

As a RRCA certified running coach in San Diego, I was interested to find out more about the concept of MAP or Mental and Physical Training. Scientists at Rutgers University have found that in a study of 52 participants over an 8 week period, practicing MAP twice a week for an hour each workout resulted in a reduction in depressive thoughts in persons with a diagnosis of nonpsychotic Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) and "individuals without a clinical diagnosis of MDD also reported significant reductions in depressive symptoms." 

MAP training consists of a three part workout. First, the athlete will practice 20 minutes of meditation that focuses on the breath. Then, there is a transition to 10 minutes of walking meditation with a focus on the feet. Finally, after a five minute warm up, the athletes participate in 30 minutes of moderate intensity exercise. Keeping the intensity to 50 - 70% of VO2 peak can be monitored by paying attention to one's heart rate. The workout ends with a 5 minute cool-down. 

If you or someone you know could benefit from less anxiety and rumination and more motivation to exercise, consider adding MAP training to your workout schedule. 

Read the study in the February 2016 issue of Translational Psychiatry here:

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