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I had the WORST side stitch last night that I have EVER had and I noticed that it happened right after my breathing got thrown off because another runner was beside me. For some reason when I come up on another runner and we are side by side (even for only a 1/4 lap) that it throws off my breathing and it gets really hard to run from there until I am away from them for a few minutes. I plan on trying to run a marathon this year and I have to get over that. Any suggestions????

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It may just take some practice at tuning out what others are doing and staying in your own "space". That's what I do, but then again I find that to be very easy.

Do you have any normal pattern? Like breathe in 2 steps, out 2 steps?
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Ignore the other person. Speed up if you have to get by them quickly. Concentrate on what you are doing and nothing else. Sing a song in your head while you're next to someone. Try making small talk with them as you pass. Just some ideas. Good luck! :D
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I usually breathe in/out every 4th step and - this is wierd to me because Im new and figuring it all out - if I breathe and open up my lungs instead of halter the breath (I dont know how else to explain it)- I seem not to be able to run as long....does that make sense? That was something I figured out last night too. So much to learn!
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When you inhale your stomach should go out (filling your lungs) and your shoulders should not rise. When you exhale your stomach should get flat again. If you are breathing like that during the entire run you shouldn't have any problems.
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breathe in for four steps, and out for four steps. That's what I do, and it works for me....
Just keep doing that, and pay no attention to the kid beside you. S/he's a loser, anyway, so you're going to beat him/her.

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