Mile Matters with J&A Racing
Six exercises to support your running
Follow along with our race director and owner, Amy Frostick as she demonstrates her favorite exercises to compliment her running routine.
Hello my name is Amy Frostick and I have a cardio problem. I can’t help it, I love the way it makes me feel, I love to sweat, and I love movement. With that being said, I struggle with strength workouts and mundane activities that don’t make me sweat. If you have this same obsession this article is for YOU.
I am an older school runner that grew up in the Cross Country and Track days, where running was enough, you did not need to do strength. I feared my legs would get big and muscular and I would look like Hans and Franz (google it), if I did any type of leg work. Well guess what? That thought process has caught up with me and I have had some injuries along the way that would have all been prevented had I had a strength program set up from the start.
Here are some exercises that I have committed to at least 3 times per week to compliment my running and keep my legs strong FOREVER.
Dead Bug With Marching
Lie down on your back with the legs up in the air and the knees and hips bent at 90 degrees. The low back should remain neutral or flat against the table through the whole exercise. Brace the abdominals and slowly lower one leg towards the table. Lightly tap the foot to the table and bring it back up to the starting position. Repeat the motion with the other leg. Try to maintain a 90 degree bend with both knees throughout the exercise. Keep a steady breathing pattern through the whole exercise. Work up to 3 sets of 10.
Sit against the wall or use a ball to roll down into the position. Hold for 5 seconds and repeat 10 times for 3 sets.
Single Leg Romanian Deadlift
1) Begin in tall standing position with a slight bend in both knees
2) Engage your core by lightly bringing belly button closer to the spine to maintain neutral lumbar spine
3) Next shift body weight to be standing on one leg only
4) Begin to hinge at the hips while you maintain a neutral spine. The first movement should be backwards as if someone were pulling your weight/hips backwards.
5) Once you feel stretch in the hamstrings, begin to drive through your heels to bring your hips forward and shoulders back to starting position.
Work up to 3 sets of 10
Resistance Band Side Steps
Separate your feet to shoulder-width. Place a slight bend in the knees while you keep your chest up. Slowly step to the side with the right foot. Your stance should be well outside of shoulder-width. Pause then step with the left foot in the same direction as the right. – Work up to 3 sets of 10 steps on each side.
Start on the floor on your hands and knees. Lower your forearms to the floor with elbows positioned under your shoulders and your hands shoulder-width apart. If someone looked at you from the side, your arms would form a 90-degree angle. Step your feet back, one at a time. Maintain a straight line from heels through the top of your head, looking down at the floor, with gaze slightly in front of your face. Now, tighten your abs and hold. Try 30 seconds to start working up to a 1 minute hold.
Clam Shells with Resistance Band
Lie on your right side with your feet and hips stacked, your knees bent 90 degrees, and your head resting on your arm. Draw your knees in toward your body until your feet are in line with your butt. Place your left hand on your left hip to ensure it doesn’t tilt backward. This isyour starting position. Keeping your abs engaged and feet together, raise your left knee as far as you can without rotating your hip or lifting your right knee off the floor. Hold for 1 second, squeezing your glutes at the top of the move, before slowly lowering your left knee to the starting position. Continue for a total of 20 reps, then repeat on the other side.
If you have any particular injury or back problems, please consult with a physician before trying these exercises. These are all just suggestions for adding some strength to your workouts. I need all the help I can get. Happy Strengthening!