April 2019 Challenge: Core Crew Strong
Below is a copy of the April 2019 Challenge calendar. A PDF copy of the calendar is available in our Strong to the Core group files for you to print so you are able to tally your points for the month.
You should also save a link to this page so you can refer back to it daily for the exercises, routines and how to videos we will be doing this month.
Below the calendar is a list of each day’s exercises along with links to videos you can follow along with or “how to” videos. Keep scrolling and you will find more info about this month’s Gym Bonus and a Blast from the Past that also counts for bonus points! The routines are also in printable list form in our FB group files.
All our routines for the month can be found on this page so save the link or use a bookmark so you can come back here often. Each month this link will expire and a new link will be added for current active members of Strong to the Core.
*This page is for active STTC Members only. Non-members will not have access. Please do not share this page outside of Strong to the Core. If you have a friend who is interested in joining our #CoreCrew, please send them a link to our STTC info page.
Strength Routine Videos – Follow along!
- Tomahawk Routine
- ITB Rehab/Strength Routine
- Stiletto Routine
- Modern Mom Hip Strength
- Nike/Runners World Arm Strength
- Standard Core Routine
- Ballista Routine – video coming soon (follow pdf version in STTC files)
- Claymore Routine – video coming soon (follow pdf version in STTC files)
Yoga for Runners
Gym Bonus: Phase 3 – Power and Efficiency
Our Strength Calendar is a great way to get stronger and avoid injuries and improve which means increasing our ability to run longer and faster. But we can do more. While bodyweight exercises are a great start and will make a difference in our performance, if we want to keep improving, we need to lift heavier weights.
If you have not started this Heavy Lifting program and are ready to make this part of your routine, reference our February 2019 Calendar and start from the beginning with weeks 1-4 this month. It is important that you follow this program from the beginning to get the most benefits and avoid injuries.
If you are ready to start phase 2, you will be referring to our March 2019 Calendar and Member Page. Read through the Gym Bonus section for the portion of the program you are in to watch “how to” videos before beginning your exercises. This is the peak phase of HPL where you’ll continue to lift heavier weights with less repetitions.
The main focus during this phase is power and efficiency. Using explosive lifts and plyometrics, you’ll increase your ability to use the stored elastic energy and reactive forces of your muscles and tendons. In other words, “you’ll improve your ability to use the “free speed” available to you when your legs are used as pogo sticks.” – Fitzgerald
Metabolic (Warm-up) + Skill + Work
Before you lift anything in the gym, you must warm-up properly. Our routine consists of three phases – Metabolic + Skill + Work
Metabolic/Mobility – get warm, increase your body temperature, and lubricate joints.
Metabolic Phase – This (warm up) consists of about 10 minutes of easy running, rowing, or cycling. Don’t over-think it. Just do some easy aerobic exercise for 10 minutes before beginning the next phase of your warm-up routine…the mobility phase.
Mobility Phase – this portion consists of dynamic exercises that further lubricate the joints and increase range of motion. Perform 10 “circles” or rotations in each direction of the following:
Skill Phase – You will now ramp up to the maximum weight you’ll attempt lifting in your work sets. For example, if you know you can squat 100 pounds for a challenging but manageable 8-10 reps, then that’s a good work weight. But instead of jumping into a work weight of 100 pounds, you’ll ramp up to this weight with two sets of lighter weights. This is your skill phase. The purpose is to make sure you are using proper form and have control of the weight. If your warm up reps are difficult, back off the weight and start a little lower.
- 1 set of 3-5 repetitions using 50 pounds (skill)
- 1 set of 3-5 repetitions using 80 pounds (skill)
Work Phase – Once your warm-up sets are complete, you’re ready to to go work! If you are struggling to keep proper form or can’t get through the prescribed sets with your work weight, back off a little to what you can safely lift for the prescribed sets/reps. This is a progressive program so as you get stronger you can add more weight. The #1 most important thing is DO NOT GET HURT! We are not trying to build bulk with super heavy weights. We are trying to build power, speed and efficiency by taxing our muscles and giving them the strength to push during races and long runs.
Follow the weekly layout below for sets, reps and when to increase your weight for the skill and work portions of your workout. You will perform the same exercises each week (Day 1 & Day 2) before moving on to the next week of the program.
Week 9 – Add a small amount of weight from week 8. Adjust as needed
- Power Clean from Power Position + Power Clean from Knee Position = 1 rep (the link shows a power clean from just above the knee in power position then another clean from just below the knee. These two moves together, one from each position = 1 rep)
- Push Press + Power Jerk = together as combination exercise = 1 rep
- Front Squat
Specialized Physical Preparation (rest 1 min between sets)
Plyometric Finisher (rest 1 min between sets)
Week 10 – Repeat Week 9 (above) with added weight. Adjust as needed.
Week 11 – Use the weight used week 9. Adjust weight as needed.
- Power Snatch from Power Position + Power Snatch from Knee Position = 1 rep (wide hand position first snatch from just above knee + 2nd from just below knee – this is a fast “snatching” movement)
- Overhead Squats
- Squats with weight
- Snatch Grip Deadlift
Specialized Physical Preparation (rest 1-minute between sets):
Plyometric Finisher (rest 1-minute between sets):
- 10 One-Hand Kettlebell Swings – 3 x 10x each side
- 10 Line Jumps (lateral jumps) – 3 x 10x each way
Week 12 – Repeat Week 11 (above) with added weight. Adjust as needed.
Blast from the Past
This month marks the 4th year of our 30 Day Challenge group which started in April 2015. To commemorate I wanted to bring back the challenge that we did way back then! If you have been with us for a while this addition should be easy peasy! Find out more about why we started this challenge in 2015 at this link!
Are you up for the challenge??
Follow along with the calendar below and let’s build some additional arm and core strength this month!