Day 2: TGIF Crew!

screen-shot-2016-12-01-at-8-07-49-pmTGIF! Time to take a rest day, right?

Nooooo!!!

That would be a mistake…because the Core Crew grind includes Friday!

Rounding out your week with a little sweat can provide a boatload of health benefits!

I know you’ve already worked hard this week, but here are a bunch of reasons the Daily Burn says you shouldn’t skip out of your Friday workout. Trust me, you’ll want to load up on those cardio-induced endorphins before the weekend.

  1. You’ll smile a whole lot more.
    It’s easy to sleep in, yes, but getting jacked up on exercise-high endorphins will help put a smile on that face. Even better, researchers found that smiling could be as stimulating for your brain as receiving up to 16,000 British pounds (that’s about $23,000 American dollars!).
  2. You’ll be super productive at work.
    Having a cup of joe in the morning may give you the boost you need to get your day started, but it’s nothing like what a workout high can offer. Studies show that exercise improves learning and performance on memory tests. Who knew that a little sweat and a few smiles was all you needed to nail that work presentation (and maybe score a raise)?
  3. Your confidence will skyrocket.
    Research shows that people have improved self-esteem after exercising! Want to up your game even more? Take your workout outdoors. One study found that even a five-minute walk outdoors could help improve your mood, so you can strut your stuff feeling all sorts of sociable!
  4. You’ll sleep better.
    Let’s be honest: most people use their weekends to catch up on sleep. But as runners, we’re usually up early on the weekends too. Getting in a Friday workout will make your weekend zzz’s that much better. Studies show that those who get in at least 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous activity each week report a 65 percent improvement in sleep quality, plus they feel less sleepy throughout the day. If chronic sleep problems are an issue, another study found that four months of consistent exercise helped insomniacs net 45 minutes of extra sleep per night. So you’ll be winning all around!
  5. You’ll keep those weekend cravings in check.
    You know that moment when you’ve been eating on point all week, but you find yourself caving to craving after craving? A Friday workout can help keep those rumblings in check. Researchers discovered that exercise can help curb food cravings and help you make better choices throughout the weekend.
  6. You can relax…well at least one weekend day.
    At the end of the day, fitting in your sweat sessions during the work week gives you the option to take a rest day on the weekend. Get your workout done on Friday and you can relax on your non running day this weekend without feeling guilty.

If that’s not enough to get you moving today…how about a quick, effective workout that will continue to help us strengthen our hips and core? You got it! Back to Modern Mom’s Hip Workout. Don’t worry…it’s just on Friday. Monday and Wednesday will be a brand new, killer hip and butt workout! 😉

Day 2 exercises: Modern Mom’s Hip Workout + one :60 Plank of your choice

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Bonus: #FridayWorkout

Today’s bonus won’t take much extra time…but it will give you a little extra calorie burn to start your weekend!

Feeling a little squirley? Do it twice! 🙂

Whatever life throws at you today…love yourself enough to take a little time for you! You deserve it and your weekend will be so much nicer knowing you got it done.

TGIF Crew!

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Day 25: Turkey Day Aftermath

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The day after a big eating holiday can go a few different ways.

  1. Sit around feeling bloated
  2. Sit around feeling bloated then reach for leftovers
  3. Go shopping and walk off some calories
  4. Knock out yesterday abs, today’s hips then go for a run!

Unless you have to work, you can probably make time for activity today! Don’t sit around making yesterday worse…get up and get moving! Who’s going for a run today? Who skipped abs yesterday and has some catch up work to do? (Me!)

I am not a Black Friday shopper. In fact, I avoid stores at all costs today. We do have plenty of leftover turkey and ham so sandwiches it is!

Since we are home and have no pressing matters, I plan on being active and getting outside for a while. What are your plans today?

Day 25 exercises: Hips – 3 sets of 10 

****Click here for how to videos****

  • Brigid’s Runner Clams
  • Side Lying Leg Lift
  • Reverse Clam (feet up)
  • Forearm Plank – :60
  • Pigeon Pose – :30 each side

Bonus: Go for a run! Remember “active recovery” after our racing yesterday is a good thing! Go for a shake out run. Keep it slow and easy and just have fun being outside and burning some calories. In this case, “active recovery” can also refer to recovering from the aftermath of our Thanksgiving meal! So go on….get up and be active today Crew!

Do yourself a favor and avoid the scales today. No reason to make yourself crazy. Lace up and go outside instead! 🙂

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Day 23: Get Involved

screen-shot-2016-11-22-at-7-51-31-pmI can tell why you should do strength work…

I can show how to do the exercises…

But the best way for you to learn and really remember…is for you to get involved!

December is close and I need to know what you want to work on. What have you liked in past months? What areas do you want to work on? Send me a video of you doing your favorite exercise or just send me your ideas.

Get involved and make December your best month yet!

Day 23 exercises: Hips – Follow video below

Our hip workout takes 4 min per leg. That’s 8 minutes to stronger hips. Can you make the time to help you avoid injuries and run stronger?

Bonus: We’ve been doing this hip workout for a couple weeks now. Are you strong enough to go another round? Bonus = Hips round 2!


Speed Work: Unless you’re racing this week, you should be doing speed work! Here’s this week’s workout.

Workout: 4-6X 800M (1/2 mile repeats) 

  1. Warm up – 1-1.5 miles (slow)
  2. 4-6x 800M – 1/2 mile repeats with :90 rest in between sets
  3. Cool down – 1-1.5 miles (slow)

Total of 3-6 miles depending on your distance level. If you’re in “training purgatory” the lower level of 3 miles is a great way to work up a sweat and keep your speed in tact. If you’re in peak training and have a race coming up, go for the longer distance and bust out 6 miles with 3 miles of speed work!


Who’s racing tomorrow? Turkey Trots? Thanksgiving fun run? Longer races? Tell us what you’re doing so we can cheer you on!

Remember to think about what you want to see next month and let me know.

Get involved Crew! 🙂

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Day 18: Weak Bums

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Our “weak bums” contribute to injuries….injuries that no runner wants to deal with.

Strengthening the muscles of the bum, hip, thigh, and leg are essential for a runner to maintain power and health!

Our hip muscles control the mechanics of our knees, so if we have weak hip abductor muscles and poor hip rotator muscle strength, our knees are at a higher risk of injury from patellofemoral pain syndrome and iliotibial band syndrome. We’ve already seen a few studies this month about how weak hips cause issues…but there’s more!

A recent study published for runners and referred to on RunnersConnect.com looked at the contributions of three muscles — the gluteus medius, the gluteus maximus, and the tensor fascia lata (TFL) — to hip motion hip strength exercises.

These three muscles are of interest because they have distinct and significant roles.

  • The gluteus medius is the main abductor and external rotator of the hip.
  • The gluteus maximus extends the hip and assists with abduction and external rotation.
  • The TFL is an abductor of the hip, but because of its positioning, it can also contribute to internal rotation

According to John Fairclough, who published an article specifically about IT Band Syndrome in the Journal of Science and Medicine, “a tense TFL (tensor fascia late), because it connects directly to the knee’s lateral side via the iliotibial band, may increase knee strain that could develop into or exacerbate injury.

His final thoughts…

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So what does all this mean for us? Well…Runners Connect and this Journal of Science and Medicine study suggest 5 exercises that are specific to runners and will help us strength our hips, and prevent and treat injuries.

  • clamshells
  • sidesteps with band
  • single-leg glute bridges
  • bent knee donkey kicks
  • straight leg donkey kicks

Great news for us since we have done ALL of these exercises this month! So for today, let’s do them again. Bonus exercises today: side steps with band, single leg glute bridge, and both variations of donkey kicks. Don’t worry it won’t take too long. These exercises transition easily into the next one.

Day 18 exercises: Hips – 3 sets of 10 

****Click here for how to videos****

  • Brigid’s Runner Clams
  • Side Lying Leg Lift
  • Reverse Clams
  • Forearm Plank – :60
  • Pigeon Pose

Bonus: 2-3 sets of 10

  • Side Step with band (If you don’t have a band it’s super cheap and would be a good investment!)
  • Single Leg Glute Bridge
  • Donkey Kicks (bent knee)
  • Donkey Kicks (straight leg)

See below for slide show with photos of these exercises as reminders.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

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She Power Virtual Half Marathon & 5K: Remember that “She Power” virtual half marathon/5K we talked about a few weeks ago? Jan let me know that it’s on sale right now for $25.50 so it’s the perfect time to sign up!

The virtual race will be in January and you can run it anytime within the month. You can run it all at once, or in pieces, but I think we will try to pick a date that a lot of us can try to run it “virtually together.” I will start an event in Strong to the Core so we can chat more about the date that works best for everyone.

Let us know when you sign up! Here’s the link:  https://131events.com/she-power/


So what’s on your schedule this weekend? Who’s racing? I know Jamie Murray is running the Philadelphia Half Marathon on Saturday and he’s gonna KILL it! 🙂 Jamie, ca we track you?  Anyone else doing this race or other races? Full? Half? Any fun 5Ks?

What about long runs? Tell us what’s on your schedule so we can cheer you on!

Remember….distance makes the heart grow stronger! So figure out your plan and get ready to GO LONG Crew! 🙂

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Day 9: Drop It Low…Let Me See Yo Hip SWING!

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Working out doesn’t have to be a drag…

Let’s have some fun…turn up the music and rock it out Crew!

Drop it low and let me see yo hips SWING!

Day 9 exercises: Hips – 1 round per leg – Follow video below

  • Side Leg Pulse
  • Side Bicycle
  • Leg Stir
  • Big Circle
  • Hot Potato
  • Back Butt Press
  • Forearm Plank – :60
  • Pigeon Pose – :30 each leg

Bonus: Yesterday was a doozie so we’re taking it a little easier today. What’s your favorite hip or glute strength exercise? TONS of options…take a short video of your favorite and share it with the Crew!


Sarah’s Calorie Burn: Easy extra to throw in

  • 25 Squats
  • 60 Jumping Jacks
  • 20 Push Ups
  • 50 Crunches

Speed Work: Who’s doing speed work this week? I’m hitting the track this morning and Catherine is joining me YAY!! Early morning for us but we’ll share how it goes when we get done. What’s your plan to get it in? Click on the “short ladder” link and scroll down for this weeks workout.

The “Short” Ladder


Racery: The race is ON with 17 out of 30 runners on the board! 24 miles through Paris in 7 days. Remember, it doesn’t matter who crosses first….it’s all about getting those miles in.

24 a little over your weekly average? Add a mile to your daily run and get a long run in this weekend and you’ll get it done! Click here to log your miles and see the scenery along the way.

10 spots still left in the race and plenty of time to jump in. Click here to join now and start logging your miles!

Life is too short for boring workouts. Make it fun and let me see those hips SWING!

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Day 4: Brutally Strong Hips

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Our pelvic floor, quads, hamstrings, knees, calves, and feet are constantly under fire. Without strong hips and glutes, they might just blow!

When it comes to running strong, efficiently, and injury free, it’s all in the hips and butt.

Our hips and glutes work together to provide postural stability in walking, standing and running. They stabilize and align the hip, decelerate your swinging leg while running, and provide power in your footstrike and push-off.

The problem is that runners often have weak hips and glutes, leading to discomfort, inefficiency and—worst of all—injury.

According to the TrailRunnermag.com article 4 Hip-Strengthening Exercises to Help You Run Strong, “Trunk muscles—including your hips and glutes—are arguably the most important part of your running anatomy. Pay attention to them to prevent injury and stay strong.”

Weakness in your glutes is related to a lack of “recruitment,” explains Toni Dauwalter, a Physical Therapist at Accelerated Sports Therapy and Fitness in Minneapolis. “Two big reasons for [glute weakness are] our sitting lifestyle and a history of back pain and injury,” she says. “There isn’t much need for core recruitment in the sitting position, especially the frequently adopted work position of forward head and shoulders and rounded spine.”

When do you do your strength work? We’ve talked about this before and ideally, the best time to do your strength training is right before you run. Doing these basic exercises just before heading out for a run will not only allow you to warm up a bit, but they will also remind you of which muscles you should be engaging while running and you’ll be more inclined to practice things like firing up through your butt and maintaining good form if you prep yourself in this way.

If you’re not running, then you have time to throw in an extra round! 😉 Either way, finding time for these lower body exercises means running stronger, faster, and with less pain.

Day 4 exercises: Hips – 3 sets of 10

****Click here for how to videos****

  • Brigid’s Runner Clams
  • Side Lying Leg Lift
  • Reverse Clam (knees together / feet up)
  • Forearm Plank (:60)
  • Pigeon Pose (stretch both legs!)

Bonus: Fire Hydrants – 3 sets of 10

  • lock the elbows and abduct the hip at 90 or 45 degrees
  • draw the navel in
  • look at the ground

Need a refresher on fire hydrants? Check out the video below.


It’s Friday y’all! The weekend is when people tend to get lazy and slack off. Remember that this is a process. To get stronger, you have to stick with the plan.

It doesn’t take long but done consistently, that lingering pain that keeps coming back might finally GO AWAY!

Take it day by day….keep working towards your goals!

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