Running with your eyes closed – I wouldn’t recommend it in Central Park in New York (my old stomping ground) or Griffith Park in Los Angeles (my current one). But the Alter-G treadmill allows a runner to disconnect visually. And it is great!
The benefit of this machine is, of course, to reduce the pressure on vulnerable joints and muscles and healing bones. But since the runner is held in place by the overlapping “tent”, he stays in place, in a way that regular treadmills don’t allow. Being “held”, as it were, I felt safe yesterday to close my eyes while warming up for my 5-mile run at 65% of my body weight.
Suddenly, I felt what was wrong with my stride. I could sense my posture was off. I relaxed my shoulders. I minded my breathing. Having the visual distraction cut off, my other senses were that much more active.
Then I closed my eyes again at the final mile, which I ran at sub-6 minute pace. In my book I have described running as “flying low” – this was flying blind, and fast. I loved it.