Day 19: Power From the Hips

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Most runners don’t realize exactly what powers their strides.

We picture power being generated in the running stride when the foot pushes off the ground, which is correct. But in the mental image that most people have, that “push” comes from the quads, much like a leg press, or the calves.

While it’s true that some of the power in the running stride comes from your quads and calves, the reality is that the quads and calves play only a minor role in your ability to generate a powerful stride compared to the hips, hamstrings and glutes!

The power these three muscle groups generate is a huge part of the running process because of the act of driving your entire upper thigh and leg backwards after your foot contacts the ground. The power for this movement is generated primarily from the hips, glutes and hamstrings, and it is perhaps the single most important factor in your ability to run faster and to stay on the road longer without injuries.

Our Day 19 exercises focus on strength and mobility in our hips, hamstrings and glutes…the three areas that make up our hip extension and help us power our legs backwards, which helps us power ourselves forward.

Day 19 Plan:

  • Quick Morning Workout & Quick Before Bed Workout
  • Day 19 exercises: 2-3 x 10
  • Bonus: Modern Mom/Dad Hip Strength
  • Extra Credit: Two Joint Hip Flexor Stretch
  • Speed Work: What is your plan?

Quick Morning Workout & Quick Before Bed Workout:

Day 19 Exercises: Click here and scroll down for “how to” videos for today’s exercises

  • Donkey Kicks
  • Fire Hydrants
  • Side Lying Leg Raises
  • Single Leg Bridge
  • Wall Sit – :60 or more!

Bonus: Modern Mom/Dad Hip Strength – One of the Crew’s favorite bonus videos. 4 minutes per leg and a GREAT hip workout!

Extra Credit!: Two-Joint Hip Flexor Stretch – We have some great hip stretches like the pigeon pose but this is another good one to add to our arsenal. Try it and let me know what you think!

Lie flat on your back on a table or elevated surface (a bed works) with your legs just off the edge. Bring both your knees to your chest. Scoop both hands under one leg and then let the other leg drop down below the edge of the table or surface. Let your leg drop as far as you can while holding the other leg to your chest with your hands. Repeat 8 to 10 times on each leg.

Screen Shot 2017-09-18 at 4.53.14 PMToday’s exercises will help improve the power in your hip extension and develop the flexibility you need to create a more powerful stride. Take your time with them and keep your form in mind as you perform each exercise.

Leg day is always a good day for runners…and our hips, glutes and hamstrings are an important part of our legs. Hope you make it a priority!

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