I wish I knew ten years ago, what I know now about the importance of core and strength fitness for runners. In my teens, twenties and even thirties, I just concentrated on getting the miles run! Of course, being sidelined from running due to injuries over the last year has increased my awareness and need for core fitness and strength training! Now, even though I am not injured, I make these exercises a priority 2-3 times a week!
- Core and strength exercises are important for building balance and strength in your muscles.
- Running performance and efficiency improve when muscles are activated in multiple ways.
Six Key Execises: These are my “go-to” exercises for anywhere and anytime!
- Kettle Bell Swings- I complete one set of ten with my right arm and then my left arm. This exercise really works the muscles in your shoulders to build upper body strength! Watch this Video Here for proper movements.
2. Burpees- This is a great full body exercise that engages all the muscles and raises your heart rate. I complete three sets of ten for a total of thirty burpees!
Watch this Video Here for proper form
3. Jack Knife Crunches- Hello abs! This exercise aims to engage and work the lower abdominal muscles, along with the lower back muscles. Three sets of ten with 20 second rest in between is what works for me! Here is a Video to watch for proper form and a few variations!
4. Squats- Love or Hate’m this exercise really targets all the muscles from the waist down! I break up squats into five sets of ten! Squats build up the quads, hamstrings and calve muscles.
5. Side Clam Shells with Resistance Band- This exercise is great for targeting and engaging the glute muscles. As runners, it is important to strengthen and stabilize the hip muscles. Strong hips and glutes help to support all the other muscles that are used in running. Watch this Video Here for proper form and technique.
6. Push-Ups- This exercise targets and engages muscles in the upper arms and shoulders. The abdominal and glute muscles can also be targeted and engaged as well! The diagram below is a great visual!
- Back in the spring, when I was working with my PT, I was reminded of how important it is to condition and strengthen the core muscles!
- These are six of my favorite core exercises because they don’t require much equipment or space!
How often do you incorporate core and strength exercises into your weekly fitness and running schedule?