Strength training and core workouts go hand in hand with running. Experts agree that improving muscular strength by developing the postural muscles will reduce your risk of injury and improve your performance.
Especially with distance running, core muscles become very important in the latter stages of a race when fatigue sets in and form begins to fall apart. The stronger we are, the longer we can hold running form, which naturally translates to improved performance.
Core muscles include the postural muscles, which includes the muscles of the back, stomach, and hips. These muscles help us stand upright, transfer energy, and distribute the stress of bearing weight on two legs.
Watch these “how to” videos for our Friday March exercises and check back regularly to ensure you are doing them correctly to avoid injury.
Windshield Wipers: Lie flat on your back. You can have your arms straight out at the sides for a little bit of leverage. Two variations. You can keep the knees bent for of a beginner level or straighten your legs to make it harder. Try not to let the feet touch the floor. Feel the stretch in the obliques and hips. This is also a good exercise to open up the back.
Knee Cross Crunch: Standing Cross Crunches (also known as standing knee to elbow crunches, cross body crunch or simply crisscross) is a terrific standing ab exercise for developing a strong core. This standing ab exercise work all areas of your abdominal muscles with just one move. Use it to build obliques, burn calories, improve balance, coordination and postural support as well.
Standing Side Imprint: Having strong and toned side abs will help give you that hourglass figure and give you more strength in your core. This move takes a bit more balance, so feel free to have a wall or chair close by for aid if needed.
- Start the move by standing tall with one hand on your hip, wall or chair for balance.
- Extend the opposite arm into the air.
- Bring the elbow of the arm that’s extended in the air down to meet the knee of the leg on the same side of the body.
- Extend the same arm up and same leg down. You may choose to touch the toe to the ground for balance or keep it hovering above the ground.
Wall Sit: Targets Thighs, Quads, Hamstrings and Glutes. If you are running, perform this exercise post run on tired legs for maximum results.
Burpee: The burpee is one the most popular bodyweight exercises. It works our entire body and gets our heart rate up. Watch fitness trainer Kelsey Lee show us how to do a burpee with the proper form. She breaks it down, step by step, and shows you what muscles are used, how to do it the right way, and all the basics of the burpee.
We are doing a lot of burpees this month and I know most of you skip them. Take out the push up…start in the squat position and do the squat thrust, frog jump and jump squat.