Many runners tend to neglect strengthtraining exercises, preferring instead to focus on just clocking longer distances and working on endurance.
However, strength-training is equally important. “It helps to protect your joints and increase muscle awareness so that you’re activating the right muscle groups during your run,” says stephanie. Here are the top eight moves every runner should do in order to finish faster and stronger.
Do as many reps of each move in good form as possible for 30 seconds per side. do this sequence at least thrice weekly for best results. Additionally, make sure you stretch and include neck, shoulder and ankle rotations to warm up and protect your joints before runs as well. aim to do five rotations per side slowly every day.
1 TWISTED LUNGE
Engages the glutes, quads and core while improving balance and stability. this helps to activate the muscles in the lower body before a run.
[A] Step backwards into lunge.
[B] Twist upper body towards direction of front knee.
[C] Return to starting position and repeat other side.
Works the entire body. this is a great warm-up exercise for any runner to wake up the hip flexors and hip extensors, and train endurance in the quads. It can help lengthen a runner’s stride as well.
[A] position hands at a 90-degree angle from body.
[B] Lift legs one at a time so knees touch palms. repeat as fast as you can.
3 SIDE LUNGES
Strengthens the adductors and abductors, and helps with stability. This activates the muscles in the legs that are often neglected in traditional lower body exercises.
[A] Start in side lunge position.
[B] Repeatedly switch sides as fast as you can.
4 SHIFTED SQUATS
Strengthens quads, hamstrings and glutes. do this if you want to target and load weight on a specific leg.
[A] Start in squat position.
[B] Shift body weight onto left leg so hips are above ankles, and then stand.
[C] Lower body into squat again and shift weight back to centre. repeat on other side.
5 PUSH-UP WITHT-ROTATION
Strengthens the arms and core, and improves motor coordination skills and balance. This helps to activate the muscles in the upper body before a run.
[A] Start in plank position.
[B] do push-up.
[C] transition into side plank. return to starting position and repeat on the other side.
6 DIVE BOMBER PUSH-UP
Strengthens the muscles in the upper body and activates the core. this is a great exercise for runners to warm up the upper body. Even doing as little as two or three reps will yield benefits.
[A] get into downward dog position.
[B] Shift weight forwards and flow into upward dog without letting your body touch the floor.
[C] push back into downward dog, again without letting your body touch the floor.
7 BUTT KICKS
Works the entire body. this warm-up exercise is especially good for the hamstrings.
[A] put hands behind butt.
[B] kick legs backwards one at a time to touch palms. repeat as fast as you can.
8 LEG SWINGS
A dynamic stretch and mobility exercise, leg swings are important for runners because they warm up the hip joints and can prevent future injury.
[A] kick leg forward and [B] back as high as you can in one movement. Swing arms as you do so to maintain balance.
[C] kick legs side to [D] side, and as high as you can.