Day 2: It’s All In the Hips

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In 2007, Reed Ferber, Ph. D., director of the University of Calgary’s Running Injury Clinic, conducted a study of 284 runners (men and women) who complained of leg pain. He found that 93 percent of them had weak hip muscles. After putting these people on a targeted strength program, 90 percent of them were pain-free within six weeks!


Most runners know that  our core is one of the most important thing we can work on to become stronger and faster, and it will also help us avoid injuries. Ask any fitness nut or personal trainer about “core work” and you will be treated to a long spiel about how important is it to our routine.

First, we have to figure out what exactly we mean when we say “core.” Ask for a core workout from a personal trainer at a health club, and you will probably get a series of crunches, planks, and sit-ups. However, “core” means something very different to a physiologist or an orthopedist: it means all of the muscles of the lower trunk and pelvis: not just your abs and your back, but your hip flexors, glutes, abductors, and adductors too!

These hip muscle groups are particularly important because they’ve been involved in a range of running injuries.  Weak hips can often be the cause of IT band painpatella tendonitis (runner’s knee)piriformis issues, sciatica, and a myriad of other common running injuries.


How do we protect ourselves from injury and pain and stay on the road healthy and able to train and do what we love? We strengthen our hips, core and glutes!

Today’s workout is one we’ve done for a while but it’s still tough. For our newbies, you WILL feel today’s workout. Push through and finish what you can. Take small breaks when you need to…rub that booty then keep going. That soreness means it’s working!

Day 2 exercises:

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

  • Donkey Kick Workout – Workout video on how to page or follow along with me below
  • Moving Clamshells – 2 sets of 10
  • Side Lying Leg Raise – 2 sets of 10
  • Plank – :60
  • Wall Sit – :60

Challenges:

  • Superman – :15
  • Push Ups – 25

MadManMartin’s Plank Challenge:

  • One more :20 plank

Donkey Kick Workout – I did this video for our November Challenge and I will do another one for you soon so you can see how much stronger I’ve gotten in the last few months. Follow along with me and feel that booty burn! You got this Crew! Knock out this 10 minute burn then move on to your moving clamshells and side lying leg raises.

When you’re done with today’s workout. Take another minute to stretch out those hips and glutes. Try one of my favorite stretches. The pigeon pose. It’s ok if you can’t get all the way down or your legs don’t quite move into this position easily yet. Keep working on it. This stretch is fabulous for after a run or after lots of hip and glute work. Pop on the TV and watch your favorite show while you give your hips and booty a nice stretch. Your legs will thank you!

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Love yourself enough to be active today. Push through the pain, strengthen those hips and glutes, and DO NOT GIVE UP!

Nobody remembers the guy that gave up. Be memorable and have a great day Crew!

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Day 1: Let’s Do This!!

screen-shot-2017-01-31-at-8-13-13-pmFebruary 1st. Day 1.

A chance to start over, recommit, and forget about the past. Time to reset and get ready to kill another Challenge!

We have several new members so those of you who’ve been here for a while need to step it up and show them how we do things in the Core Crew!

Since we’re starting on Wednesday…and Wednesday happens to be a yoga day…we are starting a little easy. So to off-set the easy day…I hope to see everyone killing the bonus workout! 😉

Day 1 exercises:

  • Yoga for Runners – Tight Hips and Legs  – Great way to loosen up between leg days on Tuesday and Thursdays. If you have tight hips and legs you’re going to love this time for you. Find a quiet place and get loose!
  • Side Planks – :30 each side
  • Wall Sit – :60

Challenges: Click here for “how to” videos for push ups and the Superman exercise

  • Superman – :10 – Hold the superman pose for :10. A little later this week I will put together a quick video showing you this move and how to modify it as we get farther into the month and the time gets longer. 🙂
  • Push Ups – 25 – From your feet or from your knees. Against a wall or on steps or a bench. Whatever works best for you!

Bonus: Coffee Break Workout – This can be done throughout the day whenever you have a few free moments. Do one round each time you get up from your computer, or take a break from work. SIT LESS MOVE MORE! 🙂

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#MadManMartin’s Plank Challenge: For anyone who wants to join in! Start on Day 1 and let’s get to planking! 🙂 One extra :20 plank today.

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Might seem like a lot but it’s really not that much. Next week we will get back to adding speed work in too! Remember that this month it’s all about sitting LESS and moving MORE. Getting fit takes dedication and commitment…cheating on it won’t help you get where you want to be.

Make a commitment to yourself each day that you will get up each day and MOVE!

Let’s do this!! Make it a great day Crew! 🙂

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Days 6 & 7: Plan for Success

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Ah, the long run. The pivotal run of each week. The one we plan meals and weekends around. The run that, when it’s done, makes us feel like a million bucks.

Sometimes you have one goal for your long run: to finish it.  With no worry about pace or how long it takes, as long as you complete the distance, you’re a happy runner.

Then, like most runners, you start thinking about the next race…and how you can improve. If you’ve always ran long runs at a slow, steady pace maybe it’s time to try some different tactics.

Here are the basics behind popular types of long runs:

LSD or long slow distance: LSD is the most common type of long run, and it’s the best choice for beginners, runners who are returning from injury, and those without time goals. The point of LSD runs is clocking time on your feet. In this workout, you run each mile a full 1-2 minutes slower than goal race pace. Experts say it’s best to run LSD runs by time and not distance to prevent fatigue and poor form. Increase your LSD run by 10-15 minutes each week.

Long run with middle miles at goal race pace: More advanced runners can add more intense training by running several long runs with the middle miles at goal marathon pace. Come race day, you’ll find it easier to dial into your goal pace.  If you’re running a 20-miler, warm up slowly for 3 miles, run 12 miles at goal marathon pace, and cool down for the final 3 miles.

Fast finish long runs: There’s nothing worse than hitting the wall in a half or full marathon. This can happen for many reasons, but one of the most common mistakes runners make is starting a race out too fast. If you go out too quickly in the beginning, there’s a good chance you’ll pay for it in later miles.

The fast finish long run teaches you how to prevent this. Say you’re running a 14- to 18-miler. You’d run the first 8-11 miles at an easy pace then gradually pick up the pace for the final 3-10 miles. Each mile should be faster than the last. Doing this type of long run prepares you to push the pace at the end of the race when it really hurts.

It’s not a good idea for all of your long runs to include fast miles. That’s essentially the same as racing every weekend, and you could wind up injured and burnt out. You should only run goal race pace or fast finish long runs every other or every few weeks. Weeks in between should be LSD runs so your legs have adequate time to recover.

No matter what distance is ahead of you, having a plan is the key to your success.

What is your plan for this weekend’s long run? Remember that if you’re just getting into running or returning from an injury, long run might mean a shorter distance, but it’s still long to you. Don’t let anyone else’s version of their long run take the wind out of your sails. Make your plan and go out and get that runner’s high!

Day 6 exercises: Long Run + High Plank with Shoulder (Taps :45 3X) + 7 Key Stretches for Runners or Yoga for Runners

Day 7 exercises: Plank Up & Downs (:45 3X) + 7 Key Stretches for Runners or Yoga for Runners + Rest

See below for how to videos for Plank Challenge Day 6 & 7 “How to” videos 

Remember that these days can easily be switched up depending on your schedule and lifestyle. Maybe you go long on Sunday and take Saturday as a rest day. Up to you…but once again, make a plan and stick to it.

And don’t skip your stretches! We all know that stretching is important and take a few extra minutes to stretch, roll, and ice any tight, sore spots could mean the difference in how you feel the following week. Take a look at our 7 Key Stretches for Runners or our Yoga for RunnersYoga for RunnersYoga for Runners and take your time working through each move.

Day 6 Plank Challenge: High Plank with Shoulder Taps

Day 7 Plank Challenge: Plank Up & Downs

Post Long Run Checklist

Broken record here…but let’s chat once again about post run necessities. Once we get done with our long run, we still have a little work to do, but don’t worry, it’s easy and feel good stuff that will help ensure proper recovery and the ability to walk the next day without pain and stiffness.

This post run checklist is a great tool for getting it all done. Without a list, that post long run fog brain will talk you into sitting down…and not getting back up again for hours. Take a screen shot of this checklist and keep it handy.

That’s all Crew! Hope you’re getting lots of rest and have your plan ready for the weekend. It’s still really hot out there so plan your hydration well and make it fabulous! 🙂