Building a stronger runner.
My Boston marathon training is not just running. If all I did was run I think my body might quit on me. Thankfully my coach Denise (The Sustainable Athlete) has a very balance approach to training that allows time for speed work, temp runs, hill repeats, easy base runs, long runs, rest days, strength training, cross training, Plyo-metrics and of course Core Strengthening! I have to admit the added benefit of having strong abdominals come summer time is definitely a plus however my real love for core strengthening comes from the added feelings of strength and stability when I run. When I am racing and I start to feel tired I always remind myself to use my core strength to carry me through the tougher sections of a race course.
According to the article How Core Strength Training Works, some people believe that, “core conditioning is more about training your brain and muscles to work together while you focus on isolated core exercises, rather than hurriedly tacking them on to the end of your weight training.” I love this approach to core training because being a successful athlete is more than just training your body its also about training your brain. As a successful runner you have to allow all of the parts both mental and physical to work together.
Did you know that your core is more than just your abdominals? This image from Apex Osteopathy shows you all of the areas that truly make up your core muscles.
Why do you need a strong core?
- Strengthening your core muscles will help prevent injury.
- A strong core will help you to overcome fatigue and maintain speed by keeping your body in proper running form.
- You will have more power in your legs if your core is strong and stable.
- You will maintain good posture when you run if you have strong core.
Your core is your POWERHOUSE. It is your secret weapon to becoming a faster runner. In order to strengthen your powerhouse you need to do a variety of exercises not just crunches and sit-ups.
Planks and wall sits and squats . . . OH MY!
Here are some suggested core strengthening exercises from around the web to help you become a stronger and faster runner:
- wall sits
- “dead bugs“
- “bird dogs“
- side planks
- lateral leg raises
- one legged squats
Good luck strengthening your “Powerhouse!” and happy running!