Days 1 & 2: It Is On Again

screen-shot-2016-09-30-at-4-57-21-amNo time to rest cause IT IS ON AGAIN!

Who’s your favorite Super Hero? Who can you connect with this month and channel their super human strength to push through each day?

We’re going to need that inner strength to get us through lots of long races, fall races, and a killer strength workout!

Long run & stretches today then arms on Sunday, or switch it up and knock out arms today and go long tomorrow.

Either way…time to break out that superhuman strength and BRING IT Crew!

If you haven’t had a chance to look over the October Calendar here is a link to our monthly challenge main page. I’m dropping a copy of our calendar in our Strong to the Core files. Let me know if you have any questions. Lots of new exercises this month so please take time to watch the how to videos!

Day 1: Long Run + 7 Key Stretches for Runners + Bedtime Plank (1 :60 Plank before bed)

Day 2: Arms – 2 sets of 10

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

  • Halo Curl
  • Shoulder Press with Rotation
  • Push Ups
  • Elbow Kiss
  • Bedtime Plank (1 :60 Plank before bed)

No Bonuses this weekend. Just get familiar with everything for the month and let’s get ready to rock out October!

Another big THANK YOU to Jan and Sharon for their help coming up with the exercises this month, for sharing their videos with me, and allowing me to share them with you!

Find your inner super hero…let’s get to work and make it a fantastic weekend Crew! 🙂

super-heros

Days 3 & 4: Preparing for Extraordinary

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Might just be an ordinary training day…but every run is another step towards that extraordinary moment when you reach your goals.

We’re all in different places in our training….so whether you’ve got 3 miles or 20 miles…it’s your long run. Own it. Give it all you’ve got. Remember that your choice to keep going in that moment when  you want to quit may be the difference between reaching those goals…or falling short.

Don’t stop until you finish what you started.

Day 4: Long Run + 7 Key Stretches for Runners + Plank – Your choice (:30 2X)

You just com­pleted more miles than you’ve run the rest of the week com­bined. You’re tired. You just want to go home, take a hot shower, and sit down. Of course, we all want that after our long run. Some of us do exactly that.

Others, the ones more likely to actu­ally make it unin­jured to the race they’re train­ing for, take the extra ten min­utes and stretch before sitting down. Stretch­ing probably sounds as appeal­ing as apply­ing hydro­gen per­ox­ide to your burst blis­ter, but it’s just as help­ful for a clean out­come. If you’ve already ded­i­cated hours to your run, what’s ten more min­utes that will help work some lac­tic acid out of your poor tired mus­cles and reduce sore­ness later? Plus…it will feel good, I promise. Click here for 7 stretches that will have you feeling pretty close to normal tomorrow.


Day 5: Arms & Back – 2 sets of 10

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

  • Burpees
  • Bicep Curls 21s
  • Wide Rows
  • Plank – Your Choice (:30 2X)

Bonus: #LowerBackWorkout Screen Shot 2016-09-02 at 3.49.36 PM

A healthy back is as important to your running as fit legs. According to Runner’s World, “If your back muscles aren’t strong, they’ll tend to fatigue faster, taking energy away from other muscles, and changing your stride, which can lead to injury.”

This lower back workout helps to reduce pain, tension, stiffness, and soreness….all of which will feel very good after our long runs this weekend.

 


Wonderful, fulfilling exhaustion… Want that amazing feeling?

Better be in it for the long run!

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Days 20 & 21: RUNHOLE

RunholeOne of my favorites…because YES, I am a Runhole!

When I’m training for a big race, I tend to put a lot of other important things on the back burner because running is my passion and I need my me time!

Do you feel bad for being a Runhole? You shouldn’t… sometimes we just have to do what’s right for us…and I know you all give so much to your friends and family so don’t stress over the time you take for your long runs. You deserve it!

Who passed up some non-running fun plans this weekend saying, “Sorry I can’t. I have a long run in the morning.”?  I know I did! 🙂

Day 20 exercises: Long Run + 7 Key Stretches for Runners + Side Plank + Hip Dip + Leg Lift (:45 3X each side) + Ab and Squat Challenge

Ab & Squat Challenge Day 20:

  • 10 Sit Ups
  • 10 Crunches
  • 25 Squats

Plank Challenge: Side Plank + Hip Dip + Leg lift – Another tough plank coming at us today! The calendar calls for this to be a high plank…but I will do it from a low plank position and it’s fine if you do it this way as well. You will still get a great workout and will be able to balance yourself easier from the low plank position. The following video shows how to do it from the high plank position but don’t copy him completely. He doesn’t drop dow low enough with the hip dip. I think you can do better! 🙂


Day 21 exercises: 7 Key Stretches for Runners + Moving Lateral Panther Plank (:45 3X) + Ab & Squat Challenge + Rest

I know it seems like a lot for “rest day” but staying active is what we do and a short recovery run is always a good idea too! 🙂

Ab & Squat Challenge Day 21:

  • 20 Sit Ups
  • 15 Crunches
  • 35 Squats

Plank Challenge: Moving Lateral Panther Plank – I couldn’t find a video for this one but the steps are below. If you’re iffy about the movement, just hold the panther plank for 3 sets of :45.

  1. Assume panther plank position.
  2. Maintaining a flat back and keeping your knees two inches off the ground, move your body to the right by simultaneously moving your right hand and right foot to the right a few inches, then your left hand and your left foot to the right.
  3. Move right for 15 seconds, then move left the same way for 15 seconds. Continue for 45 seconds; do three sets.

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Ready to see some fantastic long runs this weekend Crew! Anyone who calls running “not a sport” clearly doesn’t go long on the weekend! 🙂

running not a sport

 

Days 13 & 14: I Run Because I Can

Screen Shot 2016-08-12 at 5.10.56 PMRain or shine you are piling up the miles, getting ready for the next. But your performance doesn’t seem to be improving, maybe you’re even going backwards, or the fear of injury is creeping in.

Consider the difference between training for running and conditioning for running. Training is the daily run itself; conditioning is about preparing for those runs.

When you are “conditioned” for running, you are prepared for the demand all those miles put on your body. The reality is most runners spend their time training, believing that running alone is the key to running better. But staying in the best running shape means understanding the demands running places on your body and meeting them with a conditioning program.

There are lots of running myths out there, but these two line up well with our long run / rest day weekend routine.

Myth: Stretch alone is enough

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I know I harp a lot on stretching, but this is a great point to consider as well. I’ve started foam rolling and using a small hand help massager on my legs several times a week. This has made a big difference in the knee pain I’ve experienced lately. Loosening up the muscles that connect all those lower body parts allows my knees to move more freely, to handle the impact more efficiently, and helps prevent inflammation.

Running is a high impact exercise which causes two and a half times your bodyweight to crash into the ground. The impact is absorbed by our muscles, tendons, ligaments, nerves, fascia, etc. These soft tissues can only take the shock when there is an adequate range of motion available at the joint being impacted. In other words, if your joints can’t move freely, the impact can cause injury.

Action Plan: Stretch, roll, & move. Stretch your quads, calves, hamstrings, IT Band, and back. Our 7 Key Stretches for Runners are the perfect combination to hit all these important muscles. Roll your legs, butt, and back. Start with your calves and work your way up. Hit your IT Band (outside of your knee), move up to your quads and hamstrings, then keep moving up over your butt and to your back. It hurts…but once you get used to it…it hurts so good.

Myth: Recovery is as simple as taking a day off.

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The term “recovery” is often confused withrest, taking complete time off of from movement or activity. While it is important to have “off” days, active recovery plays a key role in maintaining a healthy and effective running game. Scheduled rest days are great, but true healing, nourishment, and recovery actually come from movement, not rest alone. Your muscles work super hard to keep you pounding the pavement and if these intense muscular contractions are not properly balanced with a solid, restorative routine, possible injury becomes probably injury, and you’re in for sore and stiff muscles days after your long run.

Action Plan: In addition to stretching and rolling…you gotta move. Active recovery is less intense and has less volume so plan a short, easy recovery run the day after your long run. When I say short, I mean short. 30-40 minutes tops. And EASY…no sprinting, no technical trails, no watching your mile times. Just go and shake out and loosen up your muscles. If you don’t want to run, cross train…but keep it short and easy as well. Go for an easy bike ride, go swimming, take a nice brisk walk, go to a yoga class or check out our Yoga for Runners. This active recovery will go a long way in helping you walk pain free in the coming days and will keep your head in the right place for your next long run.

What will your active rest day look like? Remember that you can switch up these days to make it work for your lifestyle and schedule but if you go long on Sunday…make Monday an active recovery day. Don’t just go to work and sit down all day. Make time in the morning to get moving before you start the rest of your day.

Day 13 exercises: Long Run + 7 Key Stretches for Runners + High Plank Knee to Opposite Elbow

Plank Challenge Day 13 – High Plank Knee to Opposite Elbow

Day 14 exercises: Active Recovery + 7 Key Stretches for Runners or Yoga for Runners + Low Plank Knee to Same Side Elbow (Calendar has incorrect plank. Watch how to do the correct plank below)

Plank Challenge Day 14 – Low Plank Knee to Same Side Elbow

Bonus: Ab & Squat Challenge – Day 13

  • 5 Sit Ups
  • 5 Crunches
  • 5 Squats

Ab & Squat Challenge – Day 14

  • 10 Sit Ups
  • 10 Crunches
  • 10 Squats

So this weekend…long run, stretchesyoga, planks, ab & squat challenge and active recovery. Questions? Reach out to your fellow Crew members in Strong to the Core or send me a private message.

If you’re thinking about skipping your long run or giving up before you’re done….remember those who can’t run, what they would give to have this simple gift we take for granted….and run harder for them. They would do it for you.

I run because I can

Day 30: Run, Plank, & Stretch!

Day 30It came fast this month but here we are…the 30th of the month and last day of our July Challenge!

Love that we are ending this month on a Saturday…what better way to end a fabulous month then with a long run!

I hope you all got some great rest last night and are ready to bust out whatever distance is on your schedule. Let us know your plans so we can cheer you on!

Don’t forget your planks and stretching when you done then take tomorrow to rest some more because August is gonna be awesome!

Day 30 exercises: Long Run + Planks (:60 2X) + 7 Key Stretches for Runners 

August sarts in 2 days and it’s time to get your payment in if you’re still due. The PayPal link is below and anyone due will be tagged in today’s post.

PayPal link for Strong to the Core

Thank you for your continued support! Go out and kill those long runs today and let us know how it went! Amiee and I are headed out for 20 and Catherine and Diane are joining us for the back 10. It’s super early (3am) and I am ready for this challenge but do I see an early nap in my future!

Make it a great day Crew! 🙂

Days 16 & 17: Keep the Dream Alive

Screen Shot 2016-07-16 at 4.26.09 AMGetting up and out the door is the hardest part of our long run.

That’s what they say…but it’s not really true…

The hardest part of our workout…is our workout!

We run for what seems like forever, we sweat buckets in the heat, our lungs ache and our legs scream….but when we are done we feel empowered, we feel revived, we feel amazing!

As you battle with yourself to get out of your comfy bed, to leave your family at home, to get sweaty and tired…think about how you feel once it’s done, once you’ve depleted your body of all it’s energy. There’s no better feeling than clearing your mind of all the stress from your week.

Yes our body will be taxed to its limit…but the power that this workout will have on your mind is worth every step. Once it’s done, you’re ready to tackle anything. Well…after a nap. 😉

Keep the dream alive…get up and get moving!

Day 16 exercises: Long Run + 7 Key Stretches for Runners + Plank – :45 (2X)

Day 17 exercises: #AbPyramid + 2 extra Planks (:45 each)

Weekend Bonus: Yoga for Runners – Sometime this weekend, preferably after your long run, find a quiet place to relax, concentrate on your breathing, and stretch out your body and your mind. This is a great way to get ready for another grueling week. Tax your body…then take a little time to Unknot Yourself.

Ab pryamid

 

Days 9 & 10: Make Time To Run

Make time to runWithout a doubt the long run is one of the most important parts of our overall training cycle. Hopefully you have a pack of like minded people ready to go long with you this weekend.

If you must go solo…there are ways to make it easier. Let’s face it, if you’re following your training plan you’re physically ready to go the distance…it’s the mental part that is agonizing.

Here are some tips to make it easier to get out the door.

  • Plan ahead: If it’s actually written down in your calendar, you’re more likely to do it.
  • Get it done early: Don’t wait till Sunday, cross it off your to-do list on Saturday if possible. Lift that weight off your back early so it’s not looming over your head all weekend.
  • Get online: Your Core Crew is your support system and we an be a HUGE motivator. If you post that you’re going out for a 12 miler, you won’t want to let us down…right? Go ahead and #RunBrag afterward to celebrate too!. Your run post just might inspire someone else to head out for their run, too!
  • Get your gear on: Lay out your outfit the night before and put it on right away in the morning. You’ll feel silly sitting in your house in your running clothes, so hit the roads where those kicks really belong!
  • Pick a killer playlist:  There’s something to be said for those times when one of your favorite tunes comes on and nudges you to pick up the pace a bit. To be safe, only use one earbud with the volume just loud enough to hear it so you are safe.
  • Focus on the half-way point: The first half of a long run is usually the hardest part because you feel like you’re heading away from home. Even if you still have a ways to go, you get excited when you’re halfway done because it feels like every step is a step toward home. Breaking up the run into parts makes it more manageable and less daunting.
  • Be creative with your route: Try not to run the same roads all the time. Changing up the scenery can help beat the boredom.
  • Remember that it’s worth it in the end: It feels pretty darn sweet finishing a long run. Savor it.

Are you ready to go long? What’s holding you back? We are all here waiting for you to finish…waiting for you to brag about how awesome you are…waiting to tell you how proud of you we are…

Don’t let us down! Of course we’ll still love you if you do…. So even more important…don’t let yourself down. You know you want it…go out and get it!


Remember…if you need to wait until Sunday to get your long run in…spend a little time working those abs on Saturday! Switch it up and make it work for you!

When you’re done….PLEASE make time to stretch!

Day 9 exercises:

Day 10 exercises:

  • Ab Pyramid – 1 set
  • Plank – :30 (1X)

If you are thinking about skipping your long run this weekend because you’re tired, or don’t feel like it, or have to many other things to do…remember that this is your YOU time. You deserve this time for yourself…to be healthy, to be sane!

So if you’re feeling blah, tell yourself…no way am I giving up this time for me… no way…

Run I will