Running can be one of the most efficient ways to get a workout in. You lace up your shoes and go. When you tell most runners that they need to do strength training, the response you will often get is "Why should I do anything other than run?" Running can cause serious imbalances and injuries if it is not complemented by targeted strength exercises. Ideally, these imbalances and weaknesses will be addressed in the beginning of a running plan. Strength training should ALWAYS be considered an essential part of a running routine, just like running hills, sprints, and time trials are.
During running, the human body is under a great deal of stress. The joints are taking a lot of impact, and very repetitively. That is the reason why the muscle groups need to be fine tuned and strengthened. They are responsible for stabilizing those joints and preventing them from taking any more stress and getting injured as a result. All of us have our imbalances, and specific exercises including one sided and other isolated exercises can really help to even out your strength.
Core exercises are also one of the most integral additions to a running plan. With a stronger and more stable core, your running will get better than ever. Your body will work more efficiently, and because of it your running will feel more effortless. Simple core exercises such a planks, supermen, and sit-ups will strengthen the entire core, including the low back. This is necessary for proper running form and injury prevention.
When it comes down to it, who doesn't want to be stronger, faster, and more injury proof when they are running? Strength training is the road to all of those things. Time is another concern amongst runners when trying to fit in their strength routines. Well not to worry, most of these exercises can not only be performed in your own home, but also in a matter of minutes! Keep that routine fun and interesting with our essential strength exercises for runners.
Here are our TOP 7 Strength Exercises for all Runners-
1- Bodyweight Squat-
*Squat down until your thighs are at least parallel to the floors. Try not to extend your knees past your toes. Do not arch your back. Stand with your feet slightly wider than hip-width apart, and point your toes slightly outward. Do 4 sets of 20*
*Work your way up to 10 seconds, 30, and 60.*
3- Single Leg Deadlift-
*Do 3 sets of 10 on each side*
*Lie face down on your stomach with arms and legs extended. Keep neck in a neutral position. Keeping your arms and legs straight and torso stationary, and lift your arms and legs up towards the ceiling at the same time. Hold for 2-5 seconds and lower back down to complete one. Do 3 sets of 15.*
5- Single Leg Squat-
*Perform a bodyweight squat, but with one leg. You may not get the same range of motion as your normal squat, but that will progress with practice. Do 4 sets of 8 on each leg.*
6- Leg Lift-
*Lie flat on your back and lift one straightened leg for 20 repetitions, and switch. Do 3 sets of 20 on each side*
*Do 3 sets of 20, alternating.*