Awesome Core Workout for Runners
I had someone ask me whether or not core exercises were really important for runners. I did an internship at a physical therapy clinic my last year in college and there were a lot of runners that came in with different knee, back, or other issues. A lot of the issues came because the person had weak core muscles. A week core can cause bad running form and posture causing back problem, it can also cause the runner to have too much rotation as they are running causing other injuries. A strong core keeps the body more stable, helps prevent injury and can also make you a better, more efficient runner.
Here is a great core workout to strengthen your core. This is great to do after you have gone out on a run when your muscles are already warmed up. Do core workouts two to three times a week. Make sure as you are doing these exercises that you keep your abs engaged the entire time.
Repeat this entire set 2-3 times
Plank: Hold plank position for 30 seconds. Make sure that your hips are in line with the rest of your body and not higher or lower than the rest of your body.
Side Plank: Hold each side plank position for 30 seconds each.
Bicycle: Use smooth, controlled motions to alternate bringing each knee to your stomach and then straighten it out. Do this 15 times.
Leg ups: Lie on your back, legs straight out. Slowly lift your legs, keeping them together and then slowly bring them back down, keeping them a couple of inches above the ground. Hold your legs above the ground for 2-3 seconds and then repeat 15 times.
Legs side to side: Lie on your back, legs straight in the air. Slowly lower both legs to one side, bring them back up into the air and then slowly bring them down to the other side. Bring them back up. Repeat 15 times.
Marching: Lie on your back, knees in the air, legs bent. Slowly bring one foot down and tap it on the ground then bring your leg back up. Do the same with the other leg. Repeat this 15 times. Make sure your movement is very controlled as you do this and focus on your abs and using your abs.
Hips in air: Lie on your back, legs bent, feet on the ground. Push your hips up in the air, focus on using your glutes as you keep your hips in the air for 30 seconds.
Superman: Lie on your stomach, slowly bring your feet and your head, shoulders, and arms off the ground, hold for 2-3 seconds. Repeat 10-15 times.
Fire hydrant: Get on your hands and knees. Slowly bring your leg up to the side 15 times. Repeat with the other leg. Make sure that you don’t arch your back as you do it, keep your abs engaged the entire time.
Back kick: On your hands and knees, kick one leg back, focusing on using your glues and keeping your abs engaged. Do this 15 times on one side and then 15 on the other.
Side step: Standing up, squat down. Step to the side, continue across the room and then back. This should engage your hip muscles. To make this harder, use a resistance band over your knees.
You can choose to do each exercise for 10 reps instead of 15 depending on the amount of time you have and on how much you can handle, I just recommend doing 15 reps. You can also increase the amount of reps if you don’t feel challenged enough. This is a great core workout that will workout your abs, hips, back, and glutes which are so important to strengthen for runners. It will also help you with your posture and other aspects of your life. It is so important to have a strong core. Let me know what you think!